Lets talk about COFFEE

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by Flambeur, Dec 2, 2009.

  1. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    HR Higgins in London is also worth looking into --- their selection of beans is pretty much unmatched, and the roast quality is high. If I hear of a good roaster in Germany, I'll post it here.

    Woodneck is a pourover device like Chemex, except it comes with a cloth filter, which is reusable and said to be as effective as paper.
     
  2. b1os

    b1os Senior member

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    Caffé Fausto (especially the India Monsooned Malabar) seems to be very popular at www.kaffee-netz.de . Pretty good price at 18,40€/kg, too.

    Ok, it's just that it looks so similar (wooden handle, leather strap), but worse (imo).

    Do you have a full setup, i.e. an espresso machine along with French Press, drip coffee etc.? How do you handle the grinding? I figure it's not very good for the grinder if you change the grind size on a daily basis. Moreover, it's a pita to replace the beans and remove the remains still sticking in the grinding unit. I'll probably get a used grinder for ~200€ for espresso and a used Graef CM80 (<100€) or so for filter/press coffee.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2012
  3. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    I only do drip brew at home, so at most I have to tweak my grind settings. I don't keep beans in the hopper, and weigh out what I need from the bag. When I do switch beans, I'll sometimes clean out the grinder, which is a PITA, but not too bad.
     
  4. Despos

    Despos Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Not sure how well known this place is outside of Chicago but I am very happy with them.

    www.metropoliscoffee.com

    Small local roaster. I get the beans at local Whole Foods store. Switch between the Redline Espresso and Spice Island beans. Have been consistently getting the best shots using their beans.

    They roast and ship the same day if you order online

    Haven't visited their brick and mortar yet but will stop by when I am in the area.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2012
  5. Axelman 17

    Axelman 17 Senior member

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    I use a Hario v60 (pourover) + Hario Hand Grinder Skerton + Stumptown Hair Bender Espresso in the morning.

    Probably 2/3rds of the time, when I pour around the perimeter, the grounds in the middle of the cone begin to float above the poured water, they sort of bob to the top. The residue in the filter gathers around the outside of the filter, mirroring the cone shape and the coffee drips through the cone pretty quickly (a lot of permeation through the grounds).

    1/3rd of the time, when I pour, the middle of the grounds stays put, the residue is flat across the filter (as opposed to accumulating more on the top and the sides) and water does not pass as easily through the grounds ie it takes much more water to get the same yield of coffee. The residue is also more "sludge-y."

    I will try and take pictures of these results next time, but was curious why the same grinding technique, beans, brewing method would yield such different behavior in the filter. The coffee does taste different though I havent tried to hone in on the exact discrepancy.
     
  6. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    The bloom, or the floating to the top is usually achieved when the beans are fresher. When it is more sludgy it means that the beans are getting a bit old.

    For pourover I usually kind of criscross the pouring to make sure I saturate all of the beans to get an even extraction.
     
  7. TheJared

    TheJared Member

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    My current favorite is Caffe Pellini da Agricoltura Biologica (organic); I buy it around Verona, Italy. It's a bit bold, so I add ~2 tablespoons of sugar and a splash of french vanilla creamer.

    I'm no expert in coffee, but I consider it's flavor and boldness somewhere between the starbuck's sumatra and cafe verona blends.
     
  8. indesertum

    indesertum Senior member

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    I was one of those people who takes photos of food and drinks during my trip to nyc two weekends ago. I had these spread over a few days.

    [​IMG]
    9th street espresso. My favorite. I don't even remember what I liked so much about it besides that it was really well balanced between richness, mouthfeel, acidity, and body. Just fantastic. Easily one of the best shots I've had and I drink a lot of espresso
    [​IMG]
    Blackbird. This was a great shot too, but much less concentrated than what I'm used to, but I am pretty used to the short triple ristretto (equivalent of 3 portafilters? in like .5 oz of water. something like that) poured by gimmee. It was not bad. Nice acidity in the background and relatively good body.
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    Joe's the art of coffee. What was really nice was that they poured me a shot glass of sparkling mineral water. Really loved that and I normally hate sparkling mineral water. It was too blond imo and on the bitter side of things, but overall not too bad.
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    Gypsy Espresso and Donut in nyack. The (I think) owner is one of those foodies. Pretty sure she started the place, but is a bit on the know it all when she doesn't really know that much. She had a sense of pride in taking 30 minutes to dial in the machine and eventually gave me a free shot, which is nice but she kept talking about how her shots have to be close to perfect and she wouldn't serve anything she wouldnt buy (repeated this like 5 times). Shot wasn't bad to be honest. Wish they gave out demitasse spoons. One time one of the baristas gave me a bro-spro (espresso without a saucer or spoon). i thought it was odd. Asked them for a saucer which they gave me.
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    The cock (;) columbia la coqueta) from Grumpy's. Brewed using their clover machine. I didn't have time so had to take it to go, but honestly speaking I've drank a lot of coffee and this might one of the best if not the best cup of brewed coffee I had. I can only imagine how good it would've been in a proper ceramic cup. Really nice juicy tropical fruits, great rich body, and just the most tantalizing acidity in the back to balance things out. The clover machine was fascinating to watch. Coffee was so nice I was supposed to meet somebody , but instead of hurrying toward the meeting spot I just sat down on a bench and took my time sipping this
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2012
  9. b1os

    b1os Senior member

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    Yay, my Rancilio Silvia v3 and Mahlkönig (Baratza) Vario Home II arrived today (ordered them from Italy on Sunday). Tomorrow, equipment will arrive: Coffee (Fausto Giasing), bottomless portafilter, Tamper (58mm and 41 mm by Concept Art), tamper mat (will see how it works without a station), LM1 sieve, puck "bin", Motta 0.25l milk can, "blind sieve", "brewing group brush", backflushing cleaner, ANCAP Competition cappuco and Palermo espresso mugs/cups, mauisu sugar (light and dark muscovado, demerara, sugar crystals) and a micro scale.

    Let the games begin... I hope I'll get drinkable results within my first kg of coffee (and no more heavy channeling -- and therefore mess -- with the bottomless). I'll start with the finest grind, 14-15g coffee (or rather until I can see the screw in the puck) for a doppio and a medium-heavy tamp. Will work my way up to ~25 secs. There's no real temp surfing experience necessary cause the thermostat stops at 212°F which is ~ideal. Then I need to train my frothing skills and finally latte art. Long way to go! :p

    I'll try another roaster for drip coffee but I think my stomach doesn't like it a lot in general at the moment.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2012
  10. CDHagg

    CDHagg Senior member

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    Haha, indesertum, you're like a guy on one of those food network shows that travels around and samples food - or, in this case, espresso. Thanks for the detailed critique - it will come in handy.
     
  11. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I still think Variety Cafe and Gimme Coffee has the best espresso in NYC. I have tried Toby's a few times, which is new to the City. I like it, it is good, just not my favorite.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2012
  12. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    Here's a great video on coffee varietals. I didn't know that coffee outside of Africa was mostly all derived from a single tree, while there are thousands of unclassified varieties in Ethiopia alone. It's a long one, but enjoy it with your next cup of coffee:

    [VIDEO][/VIDEO]
     
  13. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    One thing that I like about the third wave coffee thing is that it focuses much more on region than it does varietals. With wine the lay person seems to focus on a varietal and this is very misleading because the same grape grown in different areas of the globe and in different soils can take on extremely different characteristics. Newer roasters I feel have circumvented this by putting much more focus on region, which is much more influential on a coffee's characteristics than the varietal. But yes, there are tons and tons of coffee varietals. It blew my mind when I read about them pretty recently.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2012
  14. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    There's actually a big, ongoing debate about this: effect of varietal and geography on the final taste. The viewpoint I agree with most is that varietals express unique chracteristics, and the geography amplifies or attenuates different characteristics, but you won't ever make a Caturra taste like a Bourbon by manipulating just the growing conditions. The other thing that's hard to separate out is the effect of processing on the taste, too.

    Doesn't the same kind of thing happen in wine? A California pinot noir is pretty different than a Burgundy pinot, but they still share common characteristics of that varietal even if they emphasize different parts of it.
     
  15. blahman

    blahman Senior member

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    Has Starbucks improved their quality in recent years? Was at one the other day because lady friend wanted one of those frappes and had a double espresso that wasn't half bad. Or is it that I have such low expectations now that anything is a pleasant surprise?
     

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