HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Couple of basic questions (18 msgs / 616 lines)
1) From: Jay
Looking to purchase I Roast 2(it will be from SM's), plan to roast
less then 2lbs per week, if that.  Want to try Air Roasting as opposed
to Drum, is this a sound plan?  Any feed back from list would be
appreciated.
I brew mostly using a French Press, would use Drip method, but only
with Quality Machine, i.e. Technivorm, which I do not own(yet).  Is
there any more popular methods of brewing on this list???
Question for all you espresso drinkers.  I drink at least two big 14
Oz. cups(French Press), each morning to start my day, while I have a
stove top Espresso Maker, it's not enough coffee, so do you all make
multiple shots, or what?
Feel free to email off list at jcohen1005
Jay

2) From: bb
Your plan is sound.  Hearthware says not to use the machine more then twice
per day or seven times per week.  2lbs is roughly 900 grams, at with the
recommended (around here/Tom) roast size of 150 or so grams, you're at six
roasts.
Have fun.  I know I am.  I know my wife is not.
Bill

3) From: Eddie Dove
Jay,
Welcome.  Two things to consider:
1) Your budget ...
2) Your grinder ...
If your budget is limited and you don't already have a very good grinder,
consider spending your money on that first.  You can find less expensive
ways to roast and brew.  If, however, you already have a the grinder taken
care of, then your plan sounds like a good one.
We enjoy just about every form of coffee brewing ...
Hope this helps ...
Happy Holidays!
Eddie
Long Beach, MS
On 12/20/06, Jay  wrote:
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4) From: Greg Scace
Can't help you on the drum vs air thing as I've only used a drum 
roaster.  Why do I think I've heard that air roasters accentuate 
brightness?   Maybe someone can corroborate.
WRT brewing methods, you oughtta try a vacuum pot.  The method is 
naturally temperature regulating, and it's quite a theatrical display 
that makes a superb cup.
I don't use a stovetop espresso maker (mocha pot).  I have a big 
two-group machine on which I produce as many shots as the household 
requires.  My usual morning routine is to drink two espressos and one 
small latte.  I make my wife an espresso shot diluted with hot 
chocolate.  Anyone who drinks a coffee in our house gets one that is 
espresso based - usually straight shots or americanos.  We go thru 
about 1 kg of coffee a week.
-Greg
At 10:50 AM 12/20/2006, you wrote:
<Snip>

5) From: Rich M
Jay-
You're in the same boat I was a couple of months ago.  I bought the  
IR2 and it has worked flawlessly for me. A few recommendations:
1. Don't turn on the machine and walk away. You'll likely get an  
awfully smoky house/garage/firehouse, etc. which is no good for  
anybody or any bean.  Also, part of your education will be watching  
the progression of the beans as time goes on.
2. I've found the IR2 to be VERY sensitive to ambient temperature.   
Try to have a reasonably consistent atmosphere when roasting.  The  
max. time for roasting is 15 minutes on the IR2, and I couldn't get  
my beans fully roasted in my garage when it was about 20F outside.  
Not that you can't roast in different temps, just be aware that the  
finished product may be different.
3. Don't get overwhelmed by all the info on this list.  Well, OK,  
feel free to get overwhelmed, but not discouraged.  It's really a lot  
of fun-- a nice mixture of art and science.
4. Buy a nice grinder.
5. Get a notebook and fill it with info on every roast you do.  What  
time did the first crack start/end, how much product, roasting  
profile, type of bean, how did you like the finished product, etc. As  
a wise man once said, "Know the bean, not just the equipment or  
technique."
6. Expect and be OK with mistakes and crappy outcomes.  It'll happen.
Take care,
Rich
On Dec 20, 2006, at 9:50 AM, Jay wrote:
<Snip>

6) From: Vicki Smith
Not all beans do well 150 grams at a time. Decafs, for example, often 
roast too fast with that size load. Tom recommends a 30% decrease in 
batch size for decafs. I also get better results with beans that roast 
unevenly using smaller amounts. If you roast 130 grams at a time, a 
goodly amount of time, 2 pounds a week might be pushing it for this 
particular roasting appliance.
The owner's manual suggest a *two hour* (not 20 minute) wait between 
roasts.
When I bought my iRoast I thought I would roast about 1.25 pounds per 
week. I then found that I wanted to share roasted beans with friends who 
I deemed "coffee worthy". My husband, who I thought was fairly oblivious 
to this, suddenly began asking me for roasted beans for his friends and 
colleagues. We also started drinking more coffee.
The IR2 really wasn't designed to keep up with that level of demand.
I also found, about three months in, that I wanted more control than I 
could get over my IR2 roasts. The IR2 is very, very noisy and it is hard 
to hear 1st crack, and next to impossible to hear 2nd. Control over the 
roast involves manipulating things like the ramp up to 1st and the time 
between 1st and 2nd. I found the IR2 wasn't great at that.
My solution was to roast with a bread machine/hat gun combination. I 
still use my iRoast, mostly when it is just too cold to roast outside 
(and by too cold, I mean less than -20 C/ -4 F in my unheated garage). I 
also use the IR2 for decafs as I don't use very much of that, and if I 
was roasting 3/4 of a pound (the minimum I generally do in my bread 
machine), the beans would go stale before I used them up. I do bread 
machine decaf roasts for friends who routinely drink decaf.
I think the IR2 is a good place to start, and it will give you (with a 
little work on your part) some mighty fine roasts, but don't be 
surprised if in a fairly short period of time you want something 
different. I'm glad I have mine, and can't imagine ever giving up this 
sort of roasting entirely, but I needed more than it could give.
You asked about brewing methods. Our morning coffee is produced in a KMB 
(Krups Moka Brew) which is no longer available in North America. It's 
pretty popular here, even though it isn't available any more. The 40 
ounce size is perfect for us. I have two of them, and a back-up carafe. 
I use both units when we have guests and need 80 ounces at a time.
Later in the day, I often use a smaller pot--in my case a Yama vacuum 
brewer, a Bialetti Moka Pot ( I have the 6, 9, and 12 cup sizes), or, 
most recently, a thrift store find DeLonghi espresso maker, which 
doesn't make espresso worth a damn, but makes a mighty fine single cup 
of coffee. I also use an Aeropress, a French Press, and various pour 
overs from time to time. All of them make quality coffee, but each kind 
of brewer produces coffee that is unique to itself and requires slightly 
different grinds etc.
vicki
<Snip>

7) From: Kris McN
Jay,
I second everything Vicki said.  I've been roasting for about 3 months now.
I started with an iR2.  For me, it was a good way to learn the hallmarks of
the roasting process: timing, 1st crack, 2nd crack, etc. (I've never had a
problem hearing 1st and 2nd crack on most beans, even with the fan noise),
and it let me produce really good roasts right out of the gate - positive
feedback goes a long way!  After a couple of months, I did want more
on-the-fly control and to roast larger batch sizes, so I started using the
BM/HG method, armed with good advice from Vicki and others on this list.
Since I had some experience by then, I think things went more smoothly than
if I had tried this method first (chicken-caffeination not withstanding
;-)).  Now I use both methods every week - BM/HG to roast 1+lb. to drink
over the week, and iR2 to roast small batches of new (to me) beans for
tasting and something different (perfect for using half a bag of whatever
comes in you SM sampler, which I'm assuming you'll order with your iR2).  I
also used the BM/HG to roast a bunch for Christmas presents!!  I'm having so
much fun!
Ooooo!  You're in for such a treat!
Kris

8) From: Jay
List Roasters;
Thanks very much for the positive feedback.  I subscribe to quite a
few lists and the amount of knowledge is only surpassed by the
friendliness of the participants. Thanks.
OK, with the sucking up done, I have another favor.
I have a fair grinder: Capresso Infinity Commercial Conical Burr
Grinder and will purchase an I Roast 2 near future, now next big $$
question.  If I wanted to buy a solid Espresso maker, stay under the
$750.00 price, would the list kindly provide a few suggestions.  I've
read quite a few reviews on SM and other sites, but you folks are
using the machines everyday, some of you have multiple machines or are
on your second, third models.
Any and all comments are appreciated.
Again, feel free to post to the list, or email me off list at
jcohen1005
Thanks very much.
Jay

9) From: Brett Mason
Jay, espresso machines are typically grouped according to certain features...
The cheap ones which few people favor are the "steam toys" which go
for less than $100 and basically push steamed water through coffee
grounds...
The next band goes up to about $600 where the single boiler has two
separate modes - either hot water or steam.  The temperature controls
on these work within wide bands, so there can be great shots to
terrible shots.  Many work on their techniques to "temperature surf"
in order to gain control over the temperature or pressure.
The next band goes up to about $1500 and has two separeate routes for
water.  The steam is almost always at steam temperature, and the water
is usually just above 206 so that appropriate temperatured water hits
the grounds "just right".  A quick "flush" of water before the shot
returns the temp to the right place, and steam is usually endleww.
These machines add in the capacity for temperature adjustments,
pressure adjustments, and water metering in the semi-automatics as
well.
Other bands include dual boilers with full controls on each.  Some
machines have levers to give more control on the dispensing of water,
etc...
I suppose there are subsets of these groups, and many people favor
different features.  I have lived in all three of these bands, the
last band yielding the best results.  I got to this band by selling
off my others, and buying used....  I certainly like this band the
best.
Try to guess which band will best suit you for the lo9ng run.  COsts
more to buy in each band...
Brett
On 12/20/06, Jay  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com

10) From: Les
If you must stay under $750.00 I would buy a Miss Silvia from Sweet Marias.
If you can squeeze another $49.00 in your buget, I would jump on the Expobar
Office Pulsar!  It is more than twice the machine of the Miss Silvia.  I
have an Expobar Office Control (a bit more because of the electronic
controls, same guts).  IMNSHO, the Expobar Office series are some of the
best machines for the money out there.  You will have a heat exchanger.
Learning to control the tempatures following the instructions on
Home-Barista work well on this machine.  You have lots of steaming power.
You will not get upgrade fever like you will on a Miss Silvia.  You might
get upgrade fever for other reasons, such as wanting a rotary pump, or a
machine with more chrome.
Les
On 12/20/06, Brett Mason  wrote:
<Snip>

11) From: True, Dennis W. FC1 (CVN69)
Reply Off List?
You think you are going to get off that easy? (kidding) 
Welcome to the best list ever!
First Grinder Grinder Grinder:
Dosen't have to be super expensive (get a Zass on Ebay if you are $$$
challenged)if your funds are a bit looser the Rocky is a great
investment as are a few other wonderful grinders on Tom's site. (I know
the list will chime in on the best)
Roasting:
 have you considered using a heat gun and dog bowl/bread machine? You
will LEARN so much just after a few roasts that no matter what method
you use to normally roast in the future. It will teach you about what is
actually happening to the beans every step of the way. (I highly
recommond you give it a try- not to mention you can do a larger amount
of beans then most other methods with little output of $$$) I have heard
good things about the I-roast. I own the Z&D (great for the smoke
reducing) Tom has very detailed reviews of every roaster that he sells
read them all and use those reviews to find the right roaster for your
needs. You really can not go wrong if you are well informed. 
**if you need more help what part of the country are you in I'll bet
there is another Home Roaster close enough that you might be able to
meet someone and get a little up close roasting experence which will
assist you more than you know (thanks Java Jerry for teaching me!) 
Brewing:
How ever you can get hotwater and coffee grounds together is great! some
better than others all different. 
The Aeropress- think French Press with out the fines (good for work/easy
clean up) and you can control the variables fast learning curve
Vac Pot- really cool to watch very good clean cup
Moka Pot- poor mans expresso/good coffee 
Drip pot- as long as the water gets hot enough and the coffee/H2O mix
long enough excelent results (consider a swiss gold filter)
Chemex- think funkylooking drip over but the filters are awesome for
making great coffee 
Cowboy Coffee/cupping- just dump in the grounds(with a tiny pinch of
salt) allow to steep and pour 
Turkish/Greek- STRONG Stuff be warned 2 of these you will be bouncing
off the walls. 
Well there is my 2 cents worth I hope something helped!
Dennis
AKA
FC1(SW) Dennis W. True
Safety Dept
USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69)
FPO AE 09532-2830
HG/DB and Z&D roasting in the Arabian Gulf
 "On station and on point 135 and counting down..." 
Looking to purchase I Roast 2(it will be from SM's), plan to roast less
then 2lbs per week, if that.  Want to try Air Roasting as opposed to
Drum, is this a sound plan?  Any feed back from list would be
appreciated.
I brew mostly using a French Press, would use Drip method, but only with
Quality Machine, i.e. Technivorm, which I do not own(yet).  Is there any
more popular methods of brewing on this list???
Question for all you espresso drinkers.  I drink at least two big 14 Oz.
cups(French Press), each morning to start my day, while I have a stove
top Espresso Maker, it's not enough coffee, so do you all make multiple
shots, or what?
Feel free to email off list at jcohen1005
Jay

12) From: James
Personally, my day starts with a nekkid portafilter packed with freshly gro=
und beans (cycle plain hot water through the portafilter and into mug whils=
t beans are grinding). After the machine gets back to temp and the ready li=
ght glows I press the pump button for a pump cycle. As soon as the ready li=
ght goes out I switch off the pump. Repeat. Take the portafilter off and cl=
ean out puck and refill with fresh grounds. Repeat procedure. Then take a t=
ablespoon of half and half and drizzle over the crema in a very zen-like mo=
tion.
End product is about 8 ounces of bliss with a shallow crema on t=
op. One thing that I've found is that since this is so intense compared to =
standard coffee, it is also much more satiating. Also, the aftertaste linge=
rs way longer than for regular coffee also decreasing the need for more vol=
ume.
 
Of course most mornings this only lasts me about an hour or so a=
nd then I have to have a second one!!!
  
James in Southern CA
=
<Snip>
. cups(French Press), each morning to start my day, while I have a
>stove=
 top Espresso Maker, it's not enough coffee, so do you all make
>multiple=
 shots, or what?
>
>Feel free to email off list at jcohen1005=
>
>Jay=
Do You Yahoo!?
Tired of spam?  Yahoo! Mail has the best spam prote=
ction around http://mail.yahoo.com

13) From: raymanowen
"...the IR2 is a good place to start"
KISS-
1) - Too many buttons with alternating functions-
2) - You're learning how to run the machine, not how to roast coffee, IMHO.
3) - If you're just learning to drive, the XKE is not for driving to the
store, unless you are in a different time zone.
4) - If you're learning photography, you probably wouldn't start out with a
Nikon F or a Topcon RE Super and a suitcase full of lenses, focusing screens
and other accessories.
Would you want a car that you could only run 20 minutes at a time, with just
one passenger and no luggage and you have to let it cool down for two full
hours between trips? Sick!
They saw you coming!
Cheers -RayO, aka Opa!
-- 
"When the theme hits the bass, I dance the Jig!" - -Virgil Fox at the Mighty
Wichita (ex- NYC Paramount) WurliTzer- 1976

14) From: Jay
Ray;
I'm open to specific suggestions as to Machines and Roasting, don't
care too much about cars.
Jay

15) From: Kris McN
Oh yeah, one more thing I liked about starting with the iR2 - you can see
the beans as they're roasting.  I sit with my nose about an inch from the
glass, so I can see how the beans change second by second.  I can't really
do that with the BM/HG -though I can pull a few beans every once in awhile -
but now that I know what to expect, I don't really need to see that up
close.  Again, for me, that was really helpful in climbing the learning
curve.
Kris

16) From: Sandy Andina
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Last night I dug in and took a green Scotchbrite pad dipped in Cafiza  
solution (it was also clean-the-espresso-machine night) and scrubbed  
the coffee oils from the inside of my i-Roast and i-Roast 2 pots.   
This morning, I roasted 150 gm. of Metropolis Greenline in each  
(preset 1 on the i-R and preset 2 on the i-2).  Plugged both roasters  
into an extension cord. The first roasts of the day took 7:15 and 8  
min. respectively, to reach a good solid City (and there were still a  
few pale stragglers I pulled out of the colander to finish in the  
wok). I also ran another 150 through the i-2, and this time 7:30 got  
me to City+.  Before I cleaned the roasting chambers, I would often  
get to FC+, Vienna, or even the verge of French in 7 minutes on  
preset 1 on the i-R and preset 2 on the i-2.   So if you find your  
roasts getting shorter or even stopping the machine prematurely, I  
suggest cleaning the roast chamber and screens on the chaff collector  
top lid AND limiting roast size to no more than 150 gm. (120 for  
peaberries).
On Dec 21, 2006, at 11:22 AM, Kris McN wrote:
<Snip>
Sandy
www.sandyandina.com
www.sass-music.com
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Content-Type: text/html;
	charsetO-8859-1
Last night I dug in and took a =
green Scotchbrite pad dipped in Cafiza solution (it was also =
clean-the-espresso-machine night) and scrubbed the coffee oils from the =
inside of my i-Roast and i-Roast 2 pots.  This morning, I roasted 150 =
gm. of Metropolis Greenline in each (preset 1 on the i-R and preset 2 on =
the i-2).  Plugged both roasters into an extension cord. The first =
roasts of the day took 7:15 and 8 min. respectively, to reach a good =
solid City (and there were still a few pale stragglers I pulled out of =
the colander to finish in the wok). I also ran another 150 through the =
i-2, and this time 7:30 got me to City+.  Before I cleaned the =
roasting chambers, I would often get to FC+, Vienna, or even the verge =
of French in 7 minutes on preset 1 on the i-R and preset 2 on the i-2.  =
 So if you find your roasts getting shorter or even stopping the =
machine prematurely, I suggest cleaning the roast chamber and screens on =
the chaff collector top lid AND limiting roast size to no more than 150 =
gm. (120 for peaberries).
On Dec 21, 2006, at 11:22 AM, =
Kris McN wrote:
Oh yeah, one more thing I liked about starting with the = iR2 - you can see the beans as they're roasting.  I sit with my nose = about an inch from the glass, so I can see how the beans change second = by second.  I can't really do that with the BM/HG -though I can pull a = few beans every once in awhile - but now that I know what to expect, I = don't really need to see that up close.  Again, for me, that was = really helpful in climbing the learning curve. = Kris Sandywww.sass-music.com
= = --Apple-Mail-323--558150639--

17) From: Vicki Smith
I see my beans even better in the bread machine, even if I can't get an 
inch away. I think the colour is more accurate in the outside air than 
it is in my kitchen's indoor lighting. The beans always look darker in 
the IR2 then they do once I get them out of the roaster. Not that colour 
is necessarily a great indicator of the degree of roast.
It is though nice not to have to deal with the flying chaff and smoke 
from the bread machine. The little venting toy that comes with the IR2 
is terrific, once you get the hang of making a tight(ish) connection.
vicki
Kris McN wrote:
<Snip>

18) From: Vicki Smith
It took me awhile to figure out that keeping the IR2 sparkling is hugely 
important to consistent roasting success. My trick (and I do it every 
three roasts or so) is to fill up my dishpan with very, very hot water 
and throw in some powdered oxy-clean. I let it soak overnight, and then, 
in the AM, the grunge pretty much slips off--even the stuff that 
collects on the inside of the metal heat/air inlet.
I don't know that I would ever use it in an espresso machine, but as I 
can rinse and rinse the IR2's roasting chamber, it works for me.
vicki
Sandy Andina wrote:
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