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How Hipsters ruined your coffee

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Pompey You may taste different to other people , doesn't mean you can't teach your palate to appreciate things and tastes and develop it .

So keep trying :)

As said before perhaps go to somewhere that makes great coffee ( forum member , different cafe, different brew methods ) and see what you find and or taste.

Espresso can be the hardest way to get the taste notes compared to pour over methods for example.

Edited by Mrboots2u

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sour is sour and bitter is bitter and we all have the ability to taste those (maybe to differing degrees) as that's how our tongues are made. We don't mistake sour for the taste of raspberry or passion fruit or bitter for the taste of caramel or hazelnut. Even if we taste bitter chocolate we still should taste chocolate surely?

 

So, as I say whilst we may all taste to differing degrees, which I believe to a certain extent depends on the amount of taste buds we have on our tongues making some of us more able to distinguish tastes than others, that if something is bitter it is bitter and so with sour, whether we are a maligned critic or not.

 

I think it's more a matter of balance. I don't agree with the statement that you don't mistake sour for the taste of raspberry. Raspberry, passion fruit etc all have a sour element but that is balanced out by other flavours making it taste of raspberry or whatever. When's the last time you tasted sour on its own? To my tastes I don't mind a little bit of sour flavour as long as it's balanced with other flavours.


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Being inexperienced and not so good at putting into words what I mean to say, when I say raspberry, passion fruit etc I meant that even if there is an element of sour in those or go to make up those flavours, you must surely still be able to taste a bit of raspberry or passion fruit flavour and not just the sour. If others more experienced than me are agreeing and saying there is a hint of raspberry flavour and I'm not getting it; either my prep is out or my taste buds.

 

When was the last time I tasted sour on its own? Well maybe never, but all I do know is that whatever I'm getting with it, it is certainly not even a hint of what others are describing be it floral, fruity, chocolaty, hazelnut, caramel or whatever, because I do know what those things taste like. It is either the sour or bitter element overriding and masking any other flavour so that is all I can describe.

 

As has been said, I need to go somewhere where it is renowned for serving good properly prepared coffee and look at the tasting notes for that particular blend and see if I can taste any of those nuances. Now even with my underdeveloped inexperienced taste buds surely I'll get a hint of those nuances and not just sour or bitter.

 

I love a glass of wine and when smelling and tasting I can distinguish different fruits and flavours to a certain extent (I'm no Oz Clark or Gilly Goulden) so I'm guessing and hoping I just haven't got my preparation quite right.......yet.

 

As for our distinguished critic, he's had years of tasting and developing his brain to distinguish the tastes and smells going to it, as they say practice makes perfect. So whilst we all perceive things at different levels because we are not all pre-programmed robots, I'm guessing he's just had a lot of badly prepared coffee. Now because of his job he then enlightens thousands of the fact that because he can't taste it, modern day espresso must therefore be rubbish. Well shouldn't he be shown that simply isn't the case?


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As for our distinguished critic, he's had years of tasting and developing his brain to distinguish the tastes and smells going to it, as they say practice makes perfect. So whilst we all perceive things at different levels because we are not all pre-programmed robots, I'm guessing he's just had a lot of badly prepared coffee. Now because of his job he then enlightens thousands of the fact that because he can't taste it, modern day espresso must therefore be rubbish. Well shouldn't he be shown that simply isn't the case?

 

Isn't that the problem?

He has trained his pallet in such a way that it can't adapt.

 

Espresso tastes like THIS.

If this espresso doesn't taste like THAT then my pallet can't handle it and I can't taste a thing.

 

It's like drinking wisky.

I'm great at eating, I do it everyday, but when I drink wisky, it can be very over-powering and burn.

Is that the fault of the wisky?

Not really.

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Being inexperienced and not so good at putting into words what I mean to say, when I say raspberry, passion fruit etc I meant that even if there is an element of sour in those or go to make up those flavours, you must surely still be able to taste a bit of raspberry or passion fruit flavour and not just the sour. If others more experienced than me are agreeing and saying there is a hint of raspberry flavour and I'm not getting it; either my prep is out or my taste buds.

 

When was the last time I tasted sour on its own? Well maybe never, but all I do know is that whatever I'm getting with it, it is certainly not even a hint of what others are describing be it floral, fruity, chocolaty, hazelnut, caramel or whatever, because I do know what those things taste like. It is either the sour or bitter element overriding and masking any other flavour so that is all I can describe.

 

As has been said, I need to go somewhere where it is renowned for serving good properly prepared coffee and look at the tasting notes for that particular blend and see if I can taste any of those nuances. Now even with my underdeveloped inexperienced taste buds surely I'll get a hint of those nuances and not just sour or bitter.

 

I love a glass of wine and when smelling and tasting I can distinguish different fruits and flavours to a certain extent (I'm no Oz Clark or Gilly Goulden) so I'm guessing and hoping I just haven't got my preparation quite right.......yet.

 

As for our distinguished critic, he's had years of tasting and developing his brain to distinguish the tastes and smells going to it, as they say practice makes perfect. So whilst we all perceive things at different levels because we are not all pre-programmed robots, I'm guessing he's just had a lot of badly prepared coffee. Now because of his job he then enlightens thousands of the fact that because he can't taste it, modern day espresso must therefore be rubbish. Well shouldn't he be shown that simply isn't the case?

 

Yeah, stick with the practice and you'll get there. In terms of the delicate flavours do you use any brew techniques. I always get these flavours pointed out in tasting notes in brewed coffee (in all honesty I've a pretty beginner palate myself). I think the thing that makes learning difficult is the number of variables that can affect the end flavour when it comes of espresso (or any brewing in fact) from machine, grinder, settings, temp, coffee used and water type. How do we compare when we all use different things. Probably is best if you visit someone who knows what they are doing and discuss the tastes in the coffee as you say.

 

As for Jay, as others have said, I think he's completely missed the point. There's coffee out there for every coffee drinkers taste. If he doesn't like the lighter roasts fine, there's plenty of places serving darker. Maybe he should just stop drinking the lighter roasts that he clearly knows he doesn't like! Have you DSOL guys got any room for him on your next order ;)


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Rayner says he was served something, "sharp & unpleasant". This isn't any style of coffee, this is a malfunction. If you buy something you think is defective ask for your money back...don't repeat the mistake for 2 years then look for a list of scapegoats to blame. When I was a kid I saw an ad on TV for cream of celery soup, the ad said it was "delicious". I nagged & nagged my mum to buy some, despite her suspicions that it wouldn't be "delicious", in the end a bowl was presented to me, I took one spoonful & sure enough conceded, "Bleurgghhh! That's horrible!"...some month later, after another very convincing ad break, we repeated the excercise...I eventually learned my lesson.

 

Fast forward 40yrs and I'm now a grown up (supposedly), I buy what I like, don't buy what I don't like. I excercise personal choice & take responsibility for my choices. If something appears defective I complain, or veto it. If someone recommends something & I don't share their opinion, as long as I can't find a tangible fault, I put it down to a difference in expectation & move on, live & let live. I don't whinge in a newspaper column.

 

Talk of "fourth wave" & laying the blame at the feet of "technology" is obviously nonsense. Espresso (as we know it today) only exists through technology, unless someone can point me to the espresso tree/well? What, did some goatherd in the long ago accidentally pick, process, roast, fine grind and apply 9bar of pressure to 94C water to extract coffee from a finely perforated metal basket? The article implies that is impossible to avoid fruity/sour/sharp espresso...piffle.

Edited by MWJB

“Coffee evokes the most insane reactions in people”, Rene Redzepi.

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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The mental image of your childhood I have now ...I hope you never pointed at the chum advert and asked for that too...;)


I write a blog, it's nothing to do with coffee ...

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Personally I think his views, like a lot of similar journalists, are a caricature of his own. They are sweeping, exaggerated and to the point, but they're to be taken with a pinch of salt. Articles like this one spark debate and are just his views on the current state of things. Keep it up I say! That's not to say I agree with the comments, either...

 

Bang on - a journalist who thinks his opinions are fact.


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I've tried lighter roasts from HB and SQM and I, too, find them too fruity and acidic.

I prefer a darker roast, and please no bulls about me or anyone else needing to educate their palate.

I know what I like. Palate educated plenty already. Ta.

 

As far as I can tell, this guy is not, at any point, positioning himself as an expert or even as a connoisseur.

He's just expressing an opinion as a coffee drinker (no diploma required last time I checked).

 

Now, did you actually read the bit suggesting to:

"welcome and invite people in. We mustn't make people feel belittled, patronised and embarrassed." Too often ... the modern cult of coffee does precisely that.

 

Hear, hear.


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I've tried lighter roasts from HB and SQM and I, too, find them too fruity and acidic.

I prefer a darker roast, and please no bulls about me or anyone else needing to educate their palate.

I know what I like. Palate educated plenty already. Ta.

 

As far as I can tell, this guy is not, at any point, positioning himself as an expert or even as a connoisseur.

He's just expressing an opinion as a coffee drinker (no diploma required last time I checked).

 

Now, did you actually read the bit suggesting to:

"welcome and invite people in. We mustn't make people feel belittled, patronised and embarrassed." Too often ... the modern cult of coffee does precisely that.

 

Hear, hear.

 

I don't think anyone is criticising him for likening darker roasts. As you know plenty of people do. I think people are suggesting he is overly critical of lighter roasts by people who are showing passionate about their coffee. If you look at James Hoffmanns twitter feed you will notice the bit he felt was left out was that he wants London's coffee scene I be diverse as possible.


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No, what people are criticising him for is his arrogance and lack of knowledge. He wants his espresso dark - fine, probably happy with the offerings of the big chains. What comes across repeatedly in his piece is the chippy, smug, dismissive, condescending put downs of anything outside his narrow definition of what an espresso should be.


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There does seem to be some negative and opinionated undertones in his article , normal reaction from a percentage of the readers will be 'hang on whats he talking about' 'let's go check these places out and see for ourselves' so not all negative .


¿ ǝsǝɥʇ pɐǝɹ ǝuoʎuɐ sǝop

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It's london centric again as well, if your living in preston say you probably haven't got a scooby what all the fuss is about ,there are only chain shops that make coffee on way there .


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It's london centric again as well, if your living in preston say you probably haven't got a scooby what all the fuss is about ,there are only chain shops that make coffee on way there .

 

Wow, you mean there is actually a world outside of Preston? This is bursting my bubble.

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There does seem to be some negative and opinionated undertones in his article , normal reaction from a percentage of the readers will be 'hang on whats he talking about' 'let's go check these places out and see for ourselves' so not all negative .

 

Sadly Cat, think the opposite is likely to happen.


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Biggest joke is the London Coffee Festival invited the bore to take part in their sponsored coffee crawl.


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Sadly Cat, think the opposite is likely to happen.

 

Any publicity is good publicity .


¿ ǝsǝɥʇ pɐǝɹ ǝuoʎuɐ sǝop

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Wow, you mean there is actually a world outside of Preston? This is bursting my bubble.

 

Preston was once described in the Sunday Times as 'a cross between Hiroshima and the Bronx' - made me smile but upset the great and the good on the council.


Londinium-R - EKS43 running SSP Silver Knight burrs

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With a mother like his he probably had a troubled childhood ;)


¿ ǝsǝɥʇ pɐǝɹ ǝuoʎuɐ sǝop

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Look , he's just trying to make a coin like the rest of us. Its not his fault he works in the media and to keep his job he has to be an attention grabbing bullsh1tter.

 

Give the guy a break.

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So we should feel sorry for him working in the media and having to turn out patronising lazily researched copy? Don't think so.


Londinium-R - EKS43 running SSP Silver Knight burrs

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Burn him !!!....


¿ ǝsǝɥʇ pɐǝɹ ǝuoʎuɐ sǝop

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Maybe he should just stop drinking the lighter roasts that he clearly knows he doesn't like! Have you DSOL guys got any room for him on your next order ;)

 

He could request membership to the DSOL, he might get "black balled" though!

 

It's not a voting method, it's just a variation of "tunnel of death" initiation that we do. :)


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I don't like Jay Rayner but I think he's spot on here.

 

Trendy / modern / fashionable espresso, as served in trendy / modern / fashionable coffee shops is, for a lot of us who just don't warm to the taste, sour and unpleasant. That's all he seems to be saying. It isn't easy to find somewhere that does more "traditional" espresso really well. You need to go to Southern Europe for that.

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