HomeRoast Digest


Topic: participate in roasting profile experiment (23 msgs / 780 lines)
1) From: Jeffrey Pawlan
I and Marty Curtis will be conducting a roasting profile research
session at the SCAA lab in Long Beach, CA  on Sunday Oct. 22.
This is by invitation only and most of the participants will be
long-time professional roasters and certified cuppers.
I have wanted to invite more homeroasters but had to wait until the
professionals in the Roasters Guild contacted Marty. I can now accept requests
to join us in the experimental session. You will be scoring numerous samples of
brewed coffee, an entirely blind tasting since you will not know beforehand how
each was roasted.  All the brews will be of the very same bean which Tom will
choose and provide so you are not being asked to compare beans or guess which
one is from where.
If you are interested, please look at the full announcement by clicking or
copying:http://www.pawlan.com/announcement/RoastProfileResearchSession.htmlIf you want to participate, you must send me an email with your full
name and your experience in roasting and cupping. Only send me your info if you
are certain about being able to be in Long Beach on Sunday Oct. 22 at 10 sharp.
There are only a few seats available and no walk-ins will be allowed to
participate. I will send a reply to all enquiries. Pease do not reply to this
list as I will not be looking at it for replies.
Best Regards,
Jeffrey Pawlan

2) From: Scott Marquardt
Just for general discussion on the list, I'm curious whether anyone else
hopes the results of this session will be available for perusal by the GP.
[None of the following is to impugn any list member, or anyone associated
with this event -- which sounds great and could help us all.]
Home roasters really are accorded second class status in the coffee world,
IMO -- or at least, those of humble means. Guild membership entails SCAA
membership -- quite a coin to spend, taken together or even separately.
IMO this is a bit sad, because innovations are as likely to come from
non-professionals as from professionals. One construal of that assertion
might go on to infer and retort that "well then, if that's true then being
insulated from the guild and the SCAA has done innovators little harm."
Possibly. Some of history's greatest innovators were off the radar screen of
their contenporary professionals. But on other fronts I'll go on record as
saying that the requirement for SCAA membership for the guild plainly sucks.
If I want to get my palate certified, I have to pony up -- what is it up to
now, $35,000 for both SCAA and guild memberships?  ;-)
Sorry -- woke up in the middle of the night to an interesting circumstance,
and despite its resolution my frame of mind apparently allowed this pet
grudge to Freudianly surface.    ;-)
- Scott
On 9/24/06, Jeffrey Pawlan  wrote:
<Snip>

3) From: Aaron
Scott, those are valid points you make there.
I wonder how many of these 'innovations' we have seen, were truly 
dreamed up by the professionals, and how many of the ideas were stolen 
by snooping on the 'little people' in their boards etc etc.  Sometimes 
the professionals get so stuck up on themselves that they are too busy 
being 'professionals' (keep head inflated to at least 45 psi) that they 
forget how to invent and conjure up ideas on their own.
However I will have to point out, you will see this kind of 
cliqueishness or fifedom in just about any 'society' or group.  Mensa is 
another group that comes to mind, they spend more time reminding 
everyone... especially each other... how 'smart' they are than they do 
actually doing something constructive with that collective 'smartness'. 
In this specific instance, the home roasters well, are kind of a 
nuisance to the group.. afterall they ARE professional roasters.  It'd 
be kind of like me putting high octane gas in my truck, and all of the 
sudden thinking I am now somehow eligible to join the inner circle of 
nascar drivers...  wow.  going from mensa to nascar, talk about a 180 
and a half :)
Membership in these societies is going to be expensive, as it is to weed 
out the truly serious roaster from the home brew in the garage roaster...
I wonder if anyone has tried to start upa HRAA (Home Roasters Assoc. of 
America)  just as an example.  Not to be a competetition to the SCAA or 
an 'in your face' to them but as an alternative to, that would 
specialize in home roasting and cater to that crowd instead of the high 
end crowd.  I am not even sure how one would even start that, or how to 
obtain a charter etc, etc but it might be something you could be 
interested to look into.
Aaron

4) From: Alchemist John
I think when it is all said and done, this right here is as good as 
any HRAA might be.  It is fulfilling needs.  It grows and shrinks to 
accommodate participation.  Making it more "official" doesn't make it 
any better.  No sour grapes here, but I recall the one roaster's 
guild meeting I was able to set in for - it was filling a niche, but 
it was not a niche for me - it was way to focused on large commercial 
best bang for your buck roasting.  Maybe real world, but not useful to me.
This experiment sounds ok.  Not to steal any thunder from it, but 
franking the same thought has crossed my mind, including the 
experiment.  How does a set quantitative profile affect a given 
bean's flavor?  It would be "interesting" to pick one of the recent 
difficult to nail beans, work up a set of half a dozen profiles, have 
1/2 a dozen people roast (that can nail a set profile) and then round 
robin the beans for cupping, report write up and most importantly, 
dissemination of the "best" profile and see if that helps other 
people hit the roast.
At 04:11 9/25/2006, you wrote:
<Snip>
John Nanci
AlChemist at large
Zen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by Gestalthttp://www.chocolatealchemy.com/

5) From: Derek Bradford
What is it that the SCAA offers its members that specifically and
detrimentally excludes homeroasters with a Consumer Membership?  A
cmember has access to virtually all the coffee-related resources the
SCAA has to offer, as well as significant discounts on some otherwise
very expensive products.  You can still attend the conferences and
workshops (although workshop space may be reserved for professional
members; I'm not sure about this).
In a way, homeroasters, from the viewpoint of a professional roaster
or other coffee professional, do present themselves (sometimes) as a
nuissance.  That's not to diminish what we do or who we are, but
rather to acknowledge the lengths to which professionals have gone to
get where they are.  I spend time on the Roaster's Guild board, and I
find most people there to be generally more helpful than other
craftsmen in different fields.
The fact remains that homeroasters, for the most part, are amateurs,
still learning their craft, and you have to prove yourself to gain
acceptance into just any group.  The roasters and the SCAA are no
different.
For what it's worth, I thought the invite to the homeroasting
community was quite a gesture.  There are politics and egos at play,
and the way I see it, you can either try to play along, or you can go
your own way (damn you Fleetwood Mac).  Sure, someone could start a
homeroaster's association, but wouldn't that unravel what I see as a
positive step toward greater acceptance in the trade?
But then again, I might not have a clue about any of this.
--Derek
-- http://www.novernae.comHome of the (currently lost) Wandering Sloth

6) From: Dan Bollinger
<Snip>
Homeroasters Association:  www.homeroasters.org

7) From: Michael Dhabolt
Dan
On 9/25/06, Dan Bollinger  wrote:
<Snip>
You beat me to it.
Mike (just plain)

8) From: Brett Mason
Has anyone experienced better coffee from an SCAA member store or shop than
we already get daily?
I have yet to be wowed, except at Hines Public Market, and that because of
an incredible Barista, not because of an SCAA membership.
Hope they sell lots of memberships and post their decals where everone can
see them.  Oh, is Folger's a member?
Brett
On 9/25/06, Derek Bradford  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com

9) From: Jeffrey Pawlan
Dear Aaron,
   You may not have heard my name as I have been a lurker here for two years
and previously was very active for around four years; six years total.
I AM one of those little people from right here on this homeroasting list.
I started as a homeroaster and then developed the computer controlled roaster.
see   www.computercontrolledroaster.com
I will be running two of these side by side and probably day and night for
several days in order to do as many roasts as I wish for this experiment and
also to have enough since I limit my loads to 260g.
Dear John,
  My roasters will duplicate roasts within a few seconds and since I can program
many different profiles, I hope to have something like 10-20 roasts to cup and
compare.
  The scoring is being worked out now. Marty and I are re-writing a cupping form
so that it is really suited for brewed coffee and not for a sample roast and a
traditional cupping which was meant to look for bean defects.  We will
incorporate many of the usual elements but also I have included the middle ring
of the flavor wheel.  Now in the particular case of the scoring form, since this
will be used by professionals, the form must be approved by the SCAA Tech
Standards Committee. Fortunately Marty is on top of this task.
to the group:
  For all the "talk" about roasting, why have I only received a couple of
requests to attend? Please email me directly if you want to attend.
  (I will not be able to read much on this list because I am busy making
improvements to the CCR including a new release of the s/w. The research event
is only 4 weeks away.)
Regards,
Jeffrey Pawlan

10) From: Zara Haimo
I'm planning to go down to Long Beach for this.  If nothing else, I'll learn
something about the limits of the sensitivity of my palate when confronted
with a lot of coffee to taste.  I'm also curious to see what effect
different profiles have and whether I can notice the differences.  I hope at
least a few other list members will be able to make it too!  Jeffrey always
asks interesting questions about roasting profiles and this will be a good
way of testing the outcomes of different roasting styles.

11) From: Scott Marquardt
Yeah, and that's great stuff.
Now what we need to do is develop a couple standards for interfaces and
control so that different controllers and different interfaces can work with
differing roasters.
I'm quite serious: the best thing that could happen would be for a handful
of innovators to agree on some standards that would allow a FIELD of
innovators to connect their ideas to other hardware.
For example, you have a controller. I have a novel roaster I'd like to PID.
No economical gas control interface exists. I'd like to see all three. Then
I'd like to see my roaster running on Salamander IR emitters with 220VAC --
and a controller interface that would work between your controller and that
-- with only changes in software or variables for your controller --
"roaster drivers," if you will.   ;-)
There's some very cool stuff that could be done in the small/home roaster
market.
It will be -- by someone. But only a colaborative undertaking would issue
into standards that could be a launch pad for a hundred skilled innovators
to keep driving the innovation.
Basic, simple standards. We need 'em.
- Scott
On 9/25/06, Jeffrey Pawlan  wrote:
<Snip>

12) From: Heat + Beans --all the rest is commentary
I sent a fuller response offline to Jeffrey, but Zara seems to have picked
up on the tone of his invitation more accurately than I did.  I did not
sense that Jeffrey's invitation was an invitation to learn, as Zara said,
"about the limits of the sensitivity of my palate." Rather, I was daunted by
the prospect of the science and rigor of his testing as indicated in lines
like these:
<Snip>
Since I have never attended a single structured cupping, it seemed
presumptuous to offer my enthusiasm, 5 years roasting experience, and no
experience with cupping as a "qualification."  If there hasn't been a flood
of interest and sign-ups from this list,  perhaps it's because others like
myself didn't think the invitation was for us.  That a "few" seats for
less-than-qualified persons like myself have been offered seems like an
afterthought--perhaps because fewer than the anticipated number of pros are
attending.
BTW, I'm a huge fan of what SCAA does for its C-members, and have enjoyed
enormously the July "reunion" meetings in Long Beach.
-- 
Martin
Heat + Beans
    all the rest is commentary
On 9/25/06, Zara Haimo  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Martin
Heat + Beans
    all the rest is commentary

13) From: Zara Haimo
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
My understanding, from offlist conversations with Jeffrey, is that he =
and the other planners really want homeroasters to participate - we are =
not an afterthought.  This is not a cupping session - we will be =
drinking brewed coffee to see if there is any pattern in the way people =
taste differences from different profiles.  I think I could learn a lot =
from participating and comparing notes.  If other list members are =
there, it could be a good chance to meet face to face which has always =
turned out to be a pleasure at gatherings both in the Bay area and up =
north at the PNWGs.  I hope those of you who can make it to Long Beach =
will come!

14) From: Heat + Beans --all the rest is commentary
Thanks for the clarification. I'm a researcher, so when I read "conducting a
roasting profile research session,"  I imagined  something more formal.  If,
as you say, being an experienced homeroaster (rather than cupper) is what
they are after, I'm likely to give it a try.  It will be several days before
I know if I can make the 22nd, but if I can and if there's still a spot open
I'll see you there.
On 9/25/06, Zara Haimo  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Martin
Heat + Beans
    all the rest is commentary

15) From: raymanowen
"I hope those of you who can make it to Long Beach will come! "
We were there, for a nice sailboat cruise out to Santa Catalina. Where wre
you in June, 1950? I remember well the Abalone fishermen that came alongside
in Avalon Bay- Jane [Hibbs] and Mom cooked 'em up for a lunch snack.
Couldn't get any fresher than that. My very first fish thing that I actually
enjoyed.
Number 2 was not at Ivar's on the pier in Seattle, but the Salmon Steak at a
wedding rehearsal dinner in Red Lodge, MT a few weeks ago. Whoa!
And Ken likes coffee. Guess what's headed north as soon as I get some valved
zip locks from SM's.
I can only hope to be among the "amateurs, still learning their craft."
Every time I do something wrong, I learn. Like osmosis, it's a slow process
but the result is better tasting coffee.
See? I've done it again- this Ethiopian Harar longberry has a vague hint of
blueberries, but only because I'm looking for it! I have two other lots, but
I could hardly want a more gorgeous or complex flavor than what I brewed
just now.
I'm glad I can do this as an amateur, not like the Professional that always
has to brew the same [stuff].
Cheers -RayO, aka Opa!
Got Grinder?
On 9/25/06, Heat + Beans --all the rest is commentary <
heatgunroast> wrote:
<Snip>

16) From: Dan Bollinger
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
I ate at the Red Lodge Inn in 1973.  The freshest meat anywhere. The =
local hunters and fishermen supply the hotel restaurant.  Dan
  Couldn't get any fresher than that. My very first fish thing that I =
actually enjoyed. 
  Number 2 was not at Ivar's on the pier in Seattle, but the Salmon =
Steak at a wedding rehearsal dinner in Red Lodge, MT a few weeks ago. =
Whoa! 

17) From: Scott Marquardt
Trying to express moderate opinions, I'll tell you one thing that does bend
my attitude a bit. Again, it's more a situation than something that anyone
could be blamed for, so that's not what this is about.
I, too, feel like my palate is uninformed and in need of training. In need
of some of the "Oh, that's what you taste too?" affirmations that let me
know I'm at least not totally wack in my judgments. In need of learning. But
cupping's for the pros. It happens in pro shops. It happens at trade events
one has to be members of expensive organizations (SCAA or, heaven help you,
the Guild is twice as expensive for requiring SCAA membership). Where else?
With whom? With what guidance?
This is where the amateur community could really profit from some
cultivation by the pros. And why not? Our attitude toward the pros is a
generous one. At my booth at the farmer's market, folks know I'll be done at
the end of October for six months. So where do I send them? To my own
favorite roasters and coffee shops, of course. To the pros. So really, my
expertise as a lightweight coffee business -- and the expertise of amateur
roasters and serious brewers all over the map -- is to their profit, because
we're not about cornering some market. Everyone I know is generous with
praise, informing the uninformed of the virtues of others. Why? Because we
love coffee!
I suspect that one reason there's not more cultivation of the amateur
culture's "deeper literacy" in things like cupping is simply that growing
indie coffee companies are just too darned busy. Call that a case of
"projection" on my part, 'cause I know how being busy can interfere with
one's best intentions for helping others. Heck, it can interfere with
profitable activities, so what chance do sacrificial ones -- live "giving
back" to the amateur community -- have?
The situation is frustrating though. If the reader recalls that I'm a
relative noob to roasting, the reader may better appreciate my surprise upon
finding that long-time amateur roasters I've met frequently wax silent when
the topic turns to cupping -- not 'cause they don't want to talk about it,
but because they get a faraway look in their eyes betokening a wistful
longing for some experience they just don't have.
-- Scott
On 9/25/06, Heat + Beans --all the rest is commentary <
heatgunroast> wrote:
<Snip>

18) From: Bill and Tricia Ballad
This is a multipart message in MIME format.
First off, I must apologize if I'm way off base here, if what I suggest has
been tried and deemed a miserable failure.  I'm new to the list, and to
roasting as well.  I'm also only halfway through my first cup of the day!
I have to agree with the statement below:
I, too, feel like my palate is uninformed and in need of training. In need
of some of the "Oh, that's what you taste too?" affirmations that let me
know I'm at least not totally wack in my judgments. In need of learning. But
cupping's for the pros. It happens in pro shops. It happens at trade events
one has to be members of expensive organizations (SCAA or, heaven help you,
the Guild is twice as expensive for requiring SCAA membership). Where else?
With whom? With what guidance? 
But - is there something to be done about the situation, now that we have an
understanding of what may be behind the lack of professional help for
amateurs?  Are there local, amateur coffee clubs?  I'm thinking of something
similar to Linux Users Groups, where groups of dedicated amateurs and
newbies get together to discuss different coffees, perhaps conduct informal
cuppings, bring in speakers, etc.  
{pardon me while I get out my writer hat} 
Are there books written for amateurs?  Coffee Cupping for Dummies?  If there
aren't.perhaps we can do something about that!  There is probably enough
collected wisdom on this and other home roasting lists to fill at least one
book.  There's also something to be said for taking information written for
a pro audience and revising it for an amateur audience.  
Tricia Ballad - Writer, Editor, Project Manager
Tricia

19) From: David T. Borton
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Tricia:
<Snip>
In our area, SE Wisc, one homeroaster has taken on inviting others on 
about a monthly basis to cup about 5-6 coffees, always on a Friday 
afternoon after a long work week.  (I always walk into the house after 
the cupping and apologize for being out late, drinking again .
Others in the group have better palates and more descriptive language.  
I am not sure I will ever taste 'blueberry,' but I do know now what they 
are describing.  For the most part, I just show up and listen...there is 
a lot to be said for it.  I do, however, certainly know what I like and 
don't like and I can learn a great deal from other homeroasters.
The other thing I have been doing is cupping another single origin 
against a single origin of Tom's, i.e., the Colombian Nariņo against 
another vendor's Colombia from nearly the same geo-terra.  It helps me 
discern what it is that one is looking for in a coffee.  It is a great 
exercise in discerning the subtleties that make a great coffee.
And to no one's great surprise, in my tests so far, you don't have to 
guess whose coffee wins the test straight up.
DB
-- 
Lord, it is time. The summer was very big. Lay thy shadow on the sundials,
and on the meadows let the winds go loose. Command the last fruits that
they shall be full; give them another two more southerly days, press them
on to fulfillment and drive the last sweetness into the heavenly wine.
-     Rainer Maria Rilke 

20) From: Bill and Tricia Ballad
This is a multipart message in MIME format.
Where in SE Wisc?  I have a sister who lives in Walworth.  Although I think
she'd be a bit offended if I told her I wasn't coming up to visit her, but
to go geek out with other coffee snobs! LOL!
Tricia
From: homeroast-admin
[mailto:homeroast-admin] On Behalf Of David T. Borton
Sent: Tuesday, September 26, 2006 8:19 AM
To: homeroast
Subject: Re: +participate in roasting profile experiment
Tricia:
<Snip>
In our area, SE Wisc, one homeroaster has taken on inviting others on about
a monthly basis to cup about 5-6 coffees, always on a Friday afternoon after
a long work week.  (I always walk into the house after the cupping and
apologize for being out late, drinking again .

21) From: Brett Mason
Poor man's cupping:
1. Buy a Sweet Maria's Sample Pack
2. Read the description for a coffee
3. Roast a small batch according to the recommendation
4. rest for 4 days  (you could do 1 batch a day and have daily cupping unti=
l
you get a taste...)
5. grind in a Zass
6. put in a cup
7. pour boiling water
8. watch, smell break the cryust, taste a spoonful
9. try to catch Tom's sense of the coffee
10 take notes
  do another coffee tomorrow.
This was where I first found lemon in Yirgacheffe...
Tom has given you enough to get going, and rather well.
AND I don't charge a membership fee and keep you out of useful meetings.
Brett
On 9/26/06, Bill and Tricia Ballad  wrote:
<Snip>
to
<Snip>
d
<Snip>
But
<Snip>
ts
<Snip>
u,
<Snip>
e?
<Snip>
ve
<Snip>
ing
<Snip>
al
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com

22) From: Blake D. Ratliff
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Question about number 5.  How fine should it be ground?
Thanks ... Blake

23) From: miKe mcKoffee
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Fairly coarse like for Press. Also, #7 said "pour boiling water", that
should be off boiling water. After letting it steep about 3min break the
crust AND gently stir then wait for the grinds for settle. Stirring after
breaking the crust helps the grinds settle to the bottom. (Alternate method
use a small Press Pot. Don't put the plunger in until after breaking the
crust so you fully get the aroma release.) Slurp the coffee into your mouth
from a clean spoon. This sprays the coffee getting all taste your buds.
Swish it around in your mouth then spit it out. (When cupping you are
tasting not drinking the coffee.) Rinse spoon in clean water before taking
another taste. Also rinse out your mouth witht water or other palate
cleanser between tastes. You'll want to "cup" from hot to cooled to room
temperature. 
 
Kona Konnaisseur miKe mcKoffee 
URL to Rosto mods, FrankenFormer, some recipes etc: http://mdmint.home.comcast.net/coffee/Rosto_mod.htm
Ultimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I must
first not know. And in knowing know I know not. Each Personal enlightenment
found exploring the many divergent foot steps of Those who have gone before.  
From: homeroast-admin
[mailto:homeroast-admin] On Behalf Of Blake D. Ratliff
Sent: Tuesday, September 26, 2006 2:52 PM
To: homeroast
Subject: Re: +participate in roasting profile experiment
Question about number 5.  How fine should it be ground?
 
Thanks ... Blake


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