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les24preludes

Best ways to tell sour from bitter?

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Grind finer and or pull longer.

More alkalinity will just flatten the flavour.

Sourness is more often under-extraction, under-developed roasts tend to lack sweetness & more savoury/umami than sour.


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

 

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8 hours ago, MWJB said:

Grind finer and or pull longer.

More alkalinity will just flatten the flavour.

Sourness is more often under-extraction, under-developed roasts tend to lack sweetness & more savoury/umami than sour.

Neither of those approaches has worked. The roast definitely lacks the sweetness I’d expect from it, no caramel or biscuit sweetness. Wife likes it in milk but she has no taste 

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Neither of those approaches has worked. The roast definitely lacks the sweetness I’d expect from it, no caramel or biscuit sweetness. Wife likes it in milk but she has no taste 


That last sentence made me chuckle
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Neither of those approaches has worked. The roast definitely lacks the sweetness I’d expect from it, no caramel or biscuit sweetness. Wife likes it in milk but she has no taste 


My wife would not drink the coffee I drink. She only drinks posh “Carte Noir” instant coffee. And she thinks it’s great!

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1 hour ago, MediumRoastSteam said:

 


My wife would not drink the coffee I drink. She only drinks posh “Carte Noir” instant coffee. And she thinks it’s great!

 

Millicano mate. Bl00dy millicano. Or Aldi decaf. Stopped making her decent coffee, no appreciation for the art of the process! 

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Making some progress here. My Aeropress brews were all a little bit sour, though they got better the more time elapsed. My grind is medium coarse.

First pour with a Melitta cone and filter this morning. Almost no sourness. I'd say it was a better taste overall - smoother and more rounded. I used 22g medium coarse and 250g water at 96°. The coffee was more than hot enough in the cup. I'm pretty surprised how good this cheap £5 plastic cone turns out to be. The pour was very easy with my Bosch temperature controlled kettle. No need for a gooseneck - I could aim the water very accurately. Anyway, overall this kills instant coffee and pods, plus it's quick and easy. 

I'm not saying the Melitta is the ultimate answer, especially not on a coffee forum! I suspect I could be getting more subtle notes from the coffee than with the Melitta - maybe with a V60. But this is early days - my first pour-over. Beans were months old Waitrose Peru decaf, grinder Mazzer Major. I have some fresh Columbian decaf beans from James Gourmet to try next. Happy days!

 

 


Gaggia Baby 2002 and 2005, Mazzer Major, Motta 58.4mm tamper

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50 minutes ago, les24preludes said:

I'm not saying the Melitta is the ultimate answer, especially not on a coffee forum! I suspect I could be getting more subtle notes from the coffee than with the Melitta - maybe with a V60. But this is early days

 

 

Glad you seem to have hit the ground running, but you won't get any significantly different flavour notes with a V60 (or Kalita Wave, Kalita Uno, any other commonly used drip cone - I have done hundreds of brews spread across all of them) at the same brew weights & grind. You just pour the water at different intervals & amounts to normalise the brew. The Melitta just holds the water back for longer which means you can pour in bigger, faster pulses, to hit the same end result.

The coffee, process & the grind size largely dictate the flavour notes, pouring the water too fast/slow just shifts the flavour in a predictable way based on the level of malfunction you introduce.


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

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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I’ve emailed roasters before to ask for recipes (temp, ratio) and usually just get a vague answer back. Not really helpful but if they say ‘that’s what they use’ I’ll use that as a starting point.

It’s a pity roasters can’t put info on their beans but I guess that’d be too much work for them and a lot of folks can’t adjust temperature on their machines.

It might be an idea to get a few things you know are sour/bitter. Taste them and remember where in your mouth they react. There was a picture somewhere showing what receptors taste which flavours (bitter and sour). I’m the same as others in that I can’t tell what’s sour or bitter, but by heck you know it when you taste a shot that’s way out.

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Input: 'Terranovered’ Versalab M3  + Niche

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

 

 

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45 minutes ago, Rhys said:

I’ve emailed roasters before to ask for recipes (temp, ratio) and usually just get a vague answer back. Not really helpful but if they say ‘that’s what they use’ I’ll use that as a starting point.

It’s a pity roasters can’t put info on their beans but I guess that’d be too much work for them and a lot of folks can’t adjust temperature on their machines.

It might be an idea to get a few things you know are sour/bitter. Taste them and remember where in your mouth they react. There was a picture somewhere showing what receptors taste which flavours (bitter and sour). I’m the same as others in that I can’t tell what’s sour or bitter, but by heck you know it when you taste a shot that’s way out.

Trouble is most roasters are going to give you:

The dose they use - screwed if that's 20g and you use 17g & vice versa.

A ratio - this is just a strength, when things taste OK. They might be hitting it at 1:2, but if you're not used to that you might be better off going somewhat weaker so you can pick out flavours & faults better, or stand more chance of hitting a normal extraction with a coarser grind than they might be using. You might need a level of mouthfeel to enjoy a shot, more than someone else's idea of balance, so then you might err shorter & use less bright beans/origin.

A time like 28s - Again this will be specific to their set up and still may change from bean to bean.

Temp - If what you have generally works, don't futz with it, you'll get faster & more effective changes by changing grind. Most folk can't change their temp reliably, or to specific deg c anyway.

Best guide to the recipe is the taste notes - nobody can taste 28s, nobody can taste a specific dose, you can tell if the coffee is less intense/more than what you usually get but then different coffees are more/less intense than each other at the same strength. The real issue is if the coffee is too weak/thin to be pleasurable. Then you might prefer it a little shorter in length, maybe at a finer grind too, even if it's not quite as a balanced.

You do know your usual grind setting/range, you do know your dose that works most often, you do know your brew ratio that works most often. Use these as your start point. Also, identify the origins you tend to prefer, keep a score, sort the scores by average & origin. If you find there's an origin that, on average, you struggle to enjoy, maybe don't take a punt on it if there's one you generally have better experiences with?

Still, bitter does not point to a single fault, or cause and you're not adding bitter to sour to get 'nice', you're trying to avoid bitter & sour (as faults). Sour is the more reliable fault that points to a likely cause (under-extraction).

The taste notes essentially are the recipe, as in the end result. The numbers, outside of the context of a representative taste, can serve to confound as much as help. We are tasting at home, we would like to enjoy the drink, so ultimately we need to consider what works for us through our proven experience.

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

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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