HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Coffee taste and blending (3 msgs / 93 lines)
1) From: Ross
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Had an interesting conversation last night with someone who has done =
some work with human taste experiments.  It seems we humans have some =
interesting ways we process chemical taste, that probably relate =
directly to why blends are easier to sell and why a good SO roast is =
wonderful thing, and why a poor SO roast that is just bad tasting by =
itself may recover nicely in a blend or possibly with age, if the age =
takes care of the culprit chemical the benefit may overshadow the age =
loss.
Our "taste system" does things like "averaging" that has a logic of its =
own, it also has some hot buttons for very very small concentrations of =
some chemicals that will overpower huge quantities of other taste =
chemicals when in the presence of these hot buttons, combine this with =
the very large variety of chemicals in coffee roasts and wow, no wonder =
it is an unreachable goal to be consistently good with SO roasts.  It's =
amazing we can get good results most of the time. 
Ross

2) From: Andy Thomas
This is an interesting topic. The concept of averaging as it applies to smell and taste makes intuitive sense to me. I guess it's roughly analogous to color perception, for example when red and blue pigments "average" and are perceived as purple. And the hot button idea corroborates my experience as well. 
----- Original Message ----
From: Ross 
To: homeroast
Sent: Monday, December 31, 2007 1:07:07 PM
Subject: +Coffee taste and blending
Had an interesting conversation last night with 
someone who has done some work with human taste experiments.  It seems we 
humans have some interesting ways we process chemical taste, that probably 
relate directly to why blends are easier to sell and why a good SO roast is 
wonderful thing, and why a poor SO roast that is just bad 
tasting by itself may recover nicely in a blend or possibly with age, if 
the age takes care of the culprit chemical the benefit may overshadow the age 
loss.
Our "taste system" does things like "averaging" 
that has a logic of its own, it also has some hot buttons for very 
very small concentrations of some chemicals that will overpower huge 
quantities of other taste chemicals when in the presence of these hot buttons, 
combine this with the very large variety of chemicals in coffee roasts and wow, 
no wonder it is an unreachable goal to be consistently good with SO 
roasts.  It's amazing we can get good results most of the 
time. 
Ross
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3) From: Ed Needham
Yup.  The tastes that register most strongly are those that tend to involve 
survival, such as tasting rotting flavors or sugar/salt/minerals.  Taste is 
a very complex blend of gustatory and olfactory sensations, combined by the 
brain to create millions of taste sensations.
It is a fascinating area of study, but it makes your head spin with the 
complexity.
*********************
Ed Needham
"to absurdity and beyond!"http://www.homeroaster.com*********************


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