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seeq

Am I a heathen?

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Since upgrading my grinder (and finally getting it seasoned in) I'm getting pretty consistent results. When I dialled in my grinder I was weighing the grind, weighing the output and timing precisely to get the best shot i could. Same as I have been doing for years.

 

Recently I've been getting a bit lazy. I'm not weighing the grind and I'm just doing it by look. If it looks to much I reduce the grind time, too little, increase it. I also get a good feel from the tamp as to whether it's half a gram under or over.

 

Same with the output, not weighing it. Just tasting and adjusting the grind or shot time depending on taste.

 

I've long been a believer of no fuss distribution. A couple of whacks and tamp, I believe is enough.

 

The odd thing is since just ignoring all the things I've previously thought as necessary for consistency I've been getting some of my best coffee, consistently.

 

Maybe it's just I'm finally getting a bit better at this, but do we sometime get so caught up on these weights and times we actually forget the most important thing, how it tastes?


Modded Fracino Heavenly | Eureka Zenith 65e | 15g/18g VST's | Made By Knock 58.35mm Tamper | Torr 58.4mm Tamper | AeroPress | V60 | NotNeutral Mugs | A cupboard full of stuff

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Yes.........

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As in we can get carried away by measuring, timing etc etc and forget about how it tastes............

 

but measuring, timing etc does generally allow us to get repeatable consistency plus allow meaningful adjustments.... to get back to good taste!

 

Heathen - I don't know :-)


There is a fine line between "Hobby" and "Manic Obsession"

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Expobar Brewtus DB, Mazzer SJ, Sowden, V60, Aeropress and all sorts

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Currently enjoying LSOL

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I think it's the case for me that you do it all 'by the book' for ages, and without realising it you develop a feel for distro, tamping, etc and an eye for quantity, much as I know from my fingers when the milk is 65°C having cross-checked with my temp tags so many times. I can usually judge the weight of grinds by eye to 0.5-1g, which isn't close enough to really nail a brew ratio, but it's plenty good enough to pull a decent breakfast shot for my morning flattie. I always use the scale under the cup to measure 'out' though - just can't eyeball that.


Rocket R58Ceado E37SAeropressAerGrind • Puck Puck cold brew widget • VST 18g basket • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 convex black Ti/walnut tamper • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 flat sharp edge tamper • Big bag o' beans • Triumph Street Triple 675R

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While I didn't have my 'coffee set-up' as I was between houses (living at my dad's old house with about 1 sq ft of worktop to use) and my partner didn't have a kitchen in her new house as she was having a new one fitted. I had to resort to using my Isomac (as it's titchy) and my V60 as that is all the space I had. All the rest of my stuff (scales etc.) were packed away. I just guessed the amount of coffee to use (measuring spoon from a V60 or some such) and didn't time it - just went by taste.

 

Now I've got my set-up back in herself's new kitchen, I weigh my beans, weigh output (for espresso anyway). I don't bother weighing output into a flat white as it's pretty much constant with the Pavoni anyway (plus the cup won't fit under the pf with scales as well..)

 

The ultimate quest is for taste. If it works for you then that's all that matters.. you heathen.. :whistle:


Input: 'Terranovered’ Versalab M3 + Mahlkonig EK43 Turkish burrs + Niche

Output: KVdW Speedster + V60 + AeroPress + Syphon + Bialetti Induction Moka Pot + Bialetti Mucka Express + jar of instant for visitors..

 

 

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No ...

 

 

 

 

But , they are there to help you make tasty coffee ... learning to adjust the variables to get there , seems to get

Missed sometimes in just achieving a number.

Plus 90 percent of people dump espresso in milk 90 percent of the time . That imho gives people a wider spot to hit to get sweetness as your adding, well sweetness .

If your using a dark roasted coffee then, that also has a potential wider range of sweet shots , at least in the sense til it gives any potentially sourness ... then your adding again sweetness ...

make of that what you will .

Edited by Mrboots2u

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

https://rjwinc.wordpress.com

Instagram - rjw_inc

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Taste is where you should be judging it. The numbers help you work out what's going on and how to repeat it again (if it's great).


Sage DB; Mazzer Major; VST 15g, 18g & 20g Baskets;TORR Trapez & Perger Tamper

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Witch.... burn him!

 

He turned me into a newt.


Espresso: Ceado E92 (modified for single dose); Vesuvius; VST baskets and refractometer.

Other: Aeropress, Sowden and Alessi Moka Pot; Mazzer Robur doser with Auber timer; Mazzer Mini E; Expobar Leva Dual Boiler

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I soon gave up all the weighing stuff once I got the hang of it. Better things to do. Timing the shot I still do to an extent but even there it is pretty obvious when it is too fast or choking.


"Is that all it does?"

 

La Pavoni Euro pro

Mazzer Major

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@seeq it's always good to hear that people are making consistently enjoyable cups, however they do it. But in the context of a written medium, where we can't see or taste what you are doing, how do we use this info for others who are perhaps not as experienced & not getting acceptable results? In these cases, noting parameters helps highlight potential pitfalls & hopefully steer folk to a happy place.


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

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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I'm thinking the variables are all very useful when you're not happy with what you are drinking, or when you want to experiment and see if you can improve what you do.

 

I guess with day to day making of coffee that you are happy with you get to a point where you can do it by 'feel'. It's like chefs, they will never season a dish by weight, or time how long they pour in salt. But then there is a time to weigh everything out.

 

I think when you're on here long enough you start believing everyone measures everything every time. And I guess that's not the case, particularly when you get to a point you know what you're doing.


Modded Fracino Heavenly | Eureka Zenith 65e | 15g/18g VST's | Made By Knock 58.35mm Tamper | Torr 58.4mm Tamper | AeroPress | V60 | NotNeutral Mugs | A cupboard full of stuff

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@seeqBut in the context of a written medium, where we can't see or taste what you are doing, how do we use this info for others who are perhaps not as experienced & not getting acceptable results? In these cases, noting parameters helps highlight potential pitfalls & hopefully steer folk to a happy place.

 

 

I don't want to detract from it. I've been using the same bean for several weeks, I'm sure when I change them the scales will come back out. I have been thinking about it though and as I said in my last post, I just assumed it was EVERY time and actually at a point you have to start relying on taste and weighing may even hold you back. I'm by no means an expert, but I think even this little epiphany (as such) actually will help me progress and perhaps others too.


Modded Fracino Heavenly | Eureka Zenith 65e | 15g/18g VST's | Made By Knock 58.35mm Tamper | Torr 58.4mm Tamper | AeroPress | V60 | NotNeutral Mugs | A cupboard full of stuff

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I always weigh things while dialling in the grinder after a bean change. Once I'm where I want to be taste wise I rely on the grinder timer to deal out the correct weight but will make small adjustments as and when I feel it is necessary. Sometimes I'll go back to weighing everything if I'm having problems but this is rare. I also keep a note of grind and time settings for any beans that I plan to use again as it gives a pretty good starting point when re-ordering said bean. This way I generate very few sinkers and wasted coffee !


ECM Barista, Rocket Fausto

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I also keep a note of grind and time settings for any beans that I plan to use again as it gives a pretty good starting point when re-ordering said bean. This way I generate very few sinkers and wasted coffee !

Totally. I felt a bit geeky and ridiculous keeping a spreadsheet with details of coffee at first, but it really saves on waste if you know roughly where to start when dialling in a new bean, especially ones you've had before. Also its handy to keep other notes (recipe, taste etc) and not just grind level/time.


Rocket R58Ceado E37SAeropressAerGrind • Puck Puck cold brew widget • VST 18g basket • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 convex black Ti/walnut tamper • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 flat sharp edge tamper • Big bag o' beans • Triumph Street Triple 675R

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I'm thinking the variables are all very useful when you're not happy with what you are drinking, or when you want to experiment and see if you can improve what you do.

 

I guess with day to day making of coffee that you are happy with you get to a point where you can do it by 'feel'.

 

 

 

I soon gave up all the weighing stuff once I got the hang of it. Better things to do. Timing the shot I still do to an extent but even there it is pretty obvious when it is too fast or choking.

 

I do still weight my grinds every time, but thats down to the fact I grind 31gs at the same time and split those between 2 15.5g shots

 

I do time and weigh now and again the actual shots,but I prefer to judge how slow or fast they pour and go by that.

 

I do have milk in 95% of my drinks, but dont think thats masking poor espresso, I just think I have good judgment

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I weigh beans (single dosing), dose, and brew every time. Even SWMBO exclaimed the other evening "I've started weighing all my shots!"

 

I have to say that finding the right scale has absolutely made the difference between faff and seamless workflow. The scales were either two slow, fragile, or too high to fit under the group. The Acaia Lunar has solved everything. I cannot see SWMBO weighing anything were this not the case.

 

The other thing that has made a difference is the 'single dosing swear'. That happens when you weigh 18g in but get 19.7g out because the grinder is still holding part of SWMBO's dose. She now weighs to make sure she's not leaving stale grinds behind for me. Result!


Espresso: Ceado E92 (modified for single dose); Vesuvius; VST baskets and refractometer.

Other: Aeropress, Sowden and Alessi Moka Pot; Mazzer Robur doser with Auber timer; Mazzer Mini E; Expobar Leva Dual Boiler

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the 'single dosing swear'!

 

I have my baristas over dose batch brew doses by 1.5g and not knock the chaff out into the batch doser but do it into a waste cup and I swear loudly every. single. time. that I go to single dose an espresso shot and it is full of really coarse chaff because they were too lazy to do it.


'it's all about the microbubbubbles'

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