A day or two ago, I received my Nesco roaster. After UPS sent it from California to Texas, then back here to Arizona... I've gone through two of the sample packs of green coffee beans so far, and with only six left, I'm looking at getting more beans. I'm not sure what kind to get, but I'll toss a coin for that. The first question is rather simple -- I've read that green beans store well. So... how well. If I get 5 pounds of beans, are they going to form a civilization and revolt before I can get to them? (I tend to go through about a pound of coffee a week... more or less) And tacked onto that first question is How can I tell if the green coffee is no longer good? Second question. My first roast was... not so great. I started with the Sumatra Mandheling, and after reading a bit figured that a lighter roast would be a 20 minute cycle (25 minute roast setting with the cool down of 5 minutes). I think I misinterpreted the tip sheet -- it mentions that a City roast is 20 minutes, so I added 5 for the cool down cycle. I carefully measured out 4 ounces of coffee, roasted... and wow that's dark. Hmm, and the house is smoky. But hey, maybe that's what it's supposed to look like. And smell like. Let the beans rest overnight, and... Mmm, charcoal. The beans were not in a happy state. My second attempt was better, but still not what I'd consider better than the grocery store coffee. Um, to stop rambling, second question is Does anyone have some quick recommendations for time for a new roaster? For simplicity, next in line in the sampler pack (chosen at random) is Indonesia Flores Sasandu Dry-Process. Any number recommendations for this? Keep in mind that I've been drinking grocery store coffee for quite some time, so answering questions like "what sort of roast do you like?" are going to be met with "uh..." and similar responses. For reference, I drink espresso made with the Solis Master. Because I'm not conscious enough in the morning to want to make espresso with a less automated machine. Thanks for any tips you can give me.
Nkuvu, First and foremost, welcome aboard. Green coffee beans do store well and you will probably soon find that 5 pounds is just not enough to have on hand. Stored properly, green coffee beans can last for a year. On the Sweet Maria's web site, scroll to the bottom and in the search box enter "green bean storage". If I remember correctly, the first three articles that come up contain some very good information and they are very short reads. The roaster you have used to be Zach & Dani's (I have one) and I think it must have had some improvements since that tip sheet was written. My experience was that it roasted quite a bit faster; had I roasted anything for that amount of time, it would have turned to carbon. If you wish, I can find and send to you some of my roasting notes and times from when I used this roaster. Just let me know offlist and I will forward them to you; I really don't mind. For timing, listen for 1st crack (sounds like popcorn) and 2nd crack (sounds like rice krispies with milk poured on them); if you can, initiate the cooling cycle on the Indonesian coffees just about when 2nd crack starts and let the roaster cool the roast. After a couple or few days of rest (letting the coffee sit so that the CO2 can escape and the flavors can develop) try some of the coffee each day for the next several days. This will give you a point of reference for your tastes and you can adjust from there. Once upon a time I roasted the Indonesian Flores - Bajawa Highlands (no longer available, but can be found in the coffee archives) in that roaster. I had filled the roaster to the "Dark Roast" line and set the roaster for 16 minutes which would have included the 5 minute cooling cycle. The coffee started first crack in just under 9 minutes. I stopped the roast at 11 minutes, but you will need to listen to the coffee. If you initiate the cooling cycle just as this coffee starts 2nd crack, you should end up with a good Full City+ roast that should serve your espresso needs well. Based on your palate, you can adjust from there. If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to ask and again, welcome to the list. Respectfully Eddie -- Errare humanun est - sed perseverare diabolicum My Home Coffee Roasting Blog and Profiles for the Gene Cafehttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/On 2/27/07, Nkuvu wrote:">http://southcoastcoffeeroaster.blogspot.com/Sweet Maria's List - Searchable Archiveshttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/On 2/27/07, Nkuvu wrote: <Snip>
on 02/27/2007 10:21 PM Nkuvu said the following: <Snip> There are worse methods. I'd just recommend that you get coffees from a variety of regions (i.e., some Central Americans, some Africans, some from the Pacific regions). That way, you can get a sense of which regions you prefer. Unlike many on this list, I find Centrals completely boring, and prefer the Africans and Asians. <Snip> From Tom, you are good for a year with greens, 6 months with the decaff greens. Especially if you store them in burlap (the plastic bags are good for 6 months, IIRC). I go through about a pound of coffee a week, too, and if I don't go the Harvey route, I generally order around 30-40 lbs. at a time. <Snip> Time will betray you, as will looking at colour. Go by smell and by listening to the cracks, and you'll have better luck. (I'm not familiar with your specific roaster, so I can't comment on that.) Bad Things will not happen if you grind and brew a bit right after cooling. Rest times are an average. Tom had a Sumatran a few years back that I loved up to 12 hours and found undrinkable after 24 hours. I've had a few beans over the years that were excellent at 5 days. Be well, Lissa -- My goal is not to subdue Nature. My goal is to eat Nature. Jeffrey Steingarten, _It Must've Been Something I Ate; the return of the man who ate everything_
My Z & D (previous incarnation of your roaster) roasted fast. Usually I would set it to 20, and stop with around 7-8-8:30 minutes left. Depended on the beans. I found it very easy to hear first crack, unless it was a peaberry. I have an I-roast now, but still have the Z & D for backup. Christina On 2/27/07, Nkuvu wrote: <Snip>
This is a multi-part message in MIME format. Christina, I'm only slightly more experienced than you but I can offer this = suggestion. Watch and listen while you are roasting, time is not as = important as what is happening with the beans, e.g. they are in 1st = crack, they are swelling up, they are turning reddish brown ect. Be = ready to stop/cool the roast when the beans look like what you want. = There are lots of color charts and other good info on the SM web site. Regards, Ross
<Snip> Oh, yes. I absolutely do go by the cracks, smell, etc. But I wanted to point out that a 20 minute roast on a Z & D is quite likely be too long. The time reference was just that, for reference. Sorry if that wasn't clear to the o.p. Christina On 2/28/07, Ross wrote: <Snip>