HomeRoast Digest


Topic: The Great Can/Am Brewer Throw-Down (40 msgs / 1556 lines)
1) From: John Despres
I'm collating the list of volunteers for The Great Can/Am Brewer Throw-Down.
As I see it, this is a "competition" of what we each keep on our own =
counters, not amongst each other. As Vicki wondered which brewer is best =
for each of us? The challenge went from Vicki to "Smarty Pants Mason" =
and Brett expanded it to involve more of us. In the end we're all =
winners! There shouldn't be any rules since these are your brewers, your =
roasts and, most importantly your cup.
So far we have participating:
1. AdkMike
2. Vicki S
3. Brett M
4. John D
5. Lindsay M
6. Peter
7. Kris M
8. Bryan W
9. Paul H
Brett suggested we get 10 listers involved - We need one more for that =
goal, but I think we can get more!
The brewers at this time include, but not to the exclusion of others:
French Press
Moka Pot
KMB
Espresso
High-end and low-end are both invited
AeroPress
Vacuum Pot
Auto Drippers of various brands
Tehcnivorm
Cuisinart (mine)
Chemex
Various Pour-Overs
Bodum
Melita
Kwik-Drip
SS-1 (I don't know what this is)
Kris's very cool 4 part pour-over cups
Gooseneck 1 cup moka pot
Vietnamese 1 cup stainless steel filter
Paul asked how to keep one cup from interfering with another - I plan to =
brew and taste one at a time with very careful notes based on these =
criteria:
Dry aroma: bean and ground (this will be done once the same bean will be =
used all morning.)
Wet aroma
Flavors both hot and cool
Aftertaste
Body - This will be the most interesting part to see if body changes...
Then I plan to enjoy the cup a bit before preparing the next brew. I =
figure about half hour each cup... Oooh - 7 brewers, 3 1/2 hours... =
Cool! I think I read Tom suggests a bit of apple between tastings..??
Saturday evening I'll post my results.
John
John A C Despres
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2) From: John Despres
Actually, I'll be brewing more than one bean. One bean per brewer, that =
is... Seven brewers, seven beans.
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-- =
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182
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3) From: Brett Mason
So far we have participating:
1. AdkMike
2. Vicki S
3. Brett M
4. John D
5. Lindsay M
6. Peter
7. Kris M
8. Bryan W
9. Paul H
Who will make it 10?
Brett
On Thu, Mar 27, 2008 at 9:27 AM, John Despres <
john> wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
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4) From: Larry Johnson
I'll bite. I have the following:
Bodum French press
Bialetti Moka Pot
Krups Moka Brew
AeroPress
Yama Vac Pot
Presto Scandinavian
SwissGold Pourover
When are we posting results?
On 3/27/08, Brett Mason  wrote:
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-- 
Larry J
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5) From: Brett Mason
Post when you like - everyone benefits...
I hope to post on Saturday evening, after I finish my tax return...
Brett
On 3/28/08, Larry Johnson  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Brett
   If I am not causing you to think, then I am letting you down.
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6) From: Vicki Smith
I'm expecting most people with post sometime over the weekend, Larry. 
Welcome aboard.
v
Larry Johnson wrote:
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7) From: John Despres
I plan on posting results Saturday evening and I think Brett is as well. =
Don't know about everyone else.
John
Larry Johnson wrote:
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-- =
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
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8) From: Sandy Andina
I have and use:
Rancilio Silvia espresso machine
Magister MS-40 HX espresso machine (in the shop, replacing Livia 90A)
Bialetti 6-tasse electric moka pot
2-tasse backpacking moka pot
Technivorm 8-cup thermal carafe dripper
S'bux Barista Aroma 10-c. thermal carafe dripper
Mr. Coffee 4-cup electric dripper
Melitta #1, 2, and 4 manual pour-over cones with Swissgold #2 and #4  
filters (#1 takes paper)
Aeropress
Three stainless French press travel mugs
3-and-8-tasse acrylic French presses
Single-cup Vietnamese pourover
Not counting the stuff that I've retired to my basement due to  
obsolescence or breakage.
Sandy Andina
www.myspace.com/sandyandina
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9) From: Paul Helbert
Ok gangue,
I knew I would be busy Saturday with farmer's market so I invited a few
friends in for coffee this morning. Two out of three were able to make it.
Mike, who usually drinks gas station coffee because he gets it free for once
having befriended the station owner. Troy, who owns Lucas Roasting LLC in
Broadway, VA. Troy was a home roaster for a decade or so before opening for
business this winter with a big Diedrich infrared gas fired roaster in its
own building beside his house. And me, small farmer, handyman & part-time
ne'ere do well.
I provided a vent lidded pint jar of Sweet Maria's Fancy Kona Kowali C+/FC,
rested three days. It was roasted in two batches. Two thirds of the melange
was the City+, 7 min to 1st crack and 11min to EOR in preheated SCGG with
heat coming from above. The other one third was the FC, 9 min to 1st crack
and 14 min to EOR in modified Poppery I. Neither entered 2nd crack. Both
were similar in color and were hard to distinguish from one another by aroma
or flavor, so I combined them to have enough for the exercise.
I spent several hours Thursday night cleaning equipment. Plastic which had
old coffee odor was scrubbed and soaked in sodium bicarbonate solution. I
got the smell out of everything except the rubber gasket of the Moka pot,
and that was greatly reduced. I minute-riced and brushed out the grinder.
Demitasse and cappuccino cups were warmed in the oven. All methods used the
same grind: twenty setting on the Baratza Virtuoso, which is a bit finer
than most folks would use for French Press and a tad coarser than we usually
use for the pour over filter. I knew, from experience, that it should not
clog the vacuum pot. Dosage was probably the variable we controlled least
well. We were not able to strictly adhere to the plan of 1 SCAA scoop per 6
oz cup because several of the devices had their own requirements (Vietnamese
and Moka).  We did hold fairly closely to this for the other methods.
Temperature was pretty well controlled by bringing fresh well water to the
boil (elevation 1000 feet above mean sea level) and waiting ten seconds to
pour into pre-heated devices. (The tabletop vacuum pot and stovetop Moka pot
were the exception here because they receive heat from below.
We began with a white paper Rockline Brew Rite, 8 to 12 cup basket type
filter in a #2 Melita cone over a beaker. Two SCAA scoops made 250 ml. We
all thought it good.
Next was the little 3 tasse Bodum French Press. Two SCAA scoops and about 12
fl oz water. Three minutes steep time. It was unanimously declared way
better. We later agreed that it had the best body of all five methods we
tried.
We then shared a bowl from the Cona II vacuum brewer.  Mike thought it was
better than the previous because it was smoother and he said, "Less bitter."
Troy and I did not notice any bitterness and appreciated the clarity but
preferred the fuller mouth feel of the FP that we had just sampled. We all
thought it "cleanest" of the five. Mike liked this one best.
The little Vietnamese filter only produced enough for about a shot each. We
were all pleasantly surprised by its strength and its sweetness. Mike
declared it, "Good", as did we all.
Last up was the little GSI Outdoor gooseneck camping Moka pot. We pulled it
just as it began to blond and split the demitasse it produced into three
preheated espresso cups. (One third of a shot each). Troy liked it best of
all. Mike liked it least. I thought it good and that it had wonderfully full
body and flavor.
In summary: Mike's favorite was the vacuum brew. Troy liked the Moka pot
brew best. We all agreed that we liked the vacuum brew for its cleanest
mouth feel, good body and well developed flavor. The best body was from the
French Press or the Moka pot. We all appreciated the sweetness and fine
flavor of the Vietnamese filter. The only one of the six which got no
superlatives was the paper filter pour-over brew (and it was good). We
wondered if it might not have been better if we had wet the paper before
use.
Undoubtedly we might have reached a different set of conclusions if we had
had a different order of presentation, if the weather had been different, if
our wives had been present or if any of a myriad of other circumstances had
existed. We were just three fellows standing around in the kitchen for two
hours. We did nothing between one sample and the next to cleanse our taste
buds. Each was very noticeably different from the previous offering. Wow,
I'll do this again. Thanks, Smarty Pants Mason!
-- 
Paul Helbert
Try this for laughs:http://haroldandkumar.com/and then navigate to send
prank call.
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10) From: John Despres
So, Sandy, are you participating tomorrow?
John
Sandy Andina wrote:
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-- =
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182
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11) From: Vicki Smith
Wonderful write-up and a great beginning for the throw-down.
v
Paul Helbert wrote:
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12) From: Eddie Dove
Well done, Paul!
That was a great read and I do appreciate you sharing.
I do look forward to the rest of the appraisals as well.
Eddie
On Fri, Mar 28, 2008 at 4:12 PM, Paul Helbert  wrote:
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13) From: Paul Helbert
It was revealing to me that there was so much difference in the cups from
the different brewers that we tried. The differences were more remarkable
than differences between beans or roast levels. I'm sure I'll be changing my
everyday brewing habits for the better. So many coffee makers (to evaluate),
so little time:
* Melita 1 cup pour over (used daily...replaced Revereware Dripolator 10
years ago)
Chemex (New, used once, now back in box awaiting marriage of friends) (SM)
Cona D vacuum brewer (for company when we have time) (eBay & SM)
* Cona # II tabletop vacuum brewer (used often w/ SM butane lamp) (eBay)
Cory vacuum brewer (used for company when we need the capacity) (eBay)
Eddie Bauer stainless vacuum bottle1 liter press pot (used rarely) (thrift
store $3.50)
* Glass Bodum 3T Brazil French Press (used in office weekdays) (Target
$15.00)
* Mokapot 1-cup GSI Outdoors gooseneck (canoe camping) (Christmas '07 from
Dad)
Krups Type 984 pump espresso (works great) (thrift store $6.00 looks unused)
Briel Estoril pump espresso (in garage, tested, works) (thrift store)
Magic Chef (thrift store) steam espresso (in garage,tested ok)
* Stainless steel Vietnamese screw-down single cup (thrift store $0.25)
Krupp "Cafe Voyager" (untested) (thrift store looks unused)
Big old aluminum peculator we used to use for church suppers
Big self contained ten or twelve cup drip pot
Old Gevalia free one at other house?
* = brewer used in today's evaluation.
Thanks to Brett, Vicky and all who gently goaded us into doing this. I hope
you all have as much fun as we did. I am excitedly looking forward to all of
your results.
-- 
Paul Helbert
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14) From: Les
Ok,
I am in!
Expobar Office Control
Sama Lever Machine
Olympia Cremina
Technovirm
Krups Moka Brew
Moka Pot
Depression era Vac Pot
Sumbeam Vac pot
Silex Vac pot
Turkish pot
3 French Presses
Percolator
Cold water extraction kit.
Areo Press
Pour over Pot
Cast Iron kettle
I'll pick 3 or so methods.
Les
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15) From: John Despres
May your taste buds win!
Have fun, everyone!
-- 
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
Drink some coffee
616.437.9182
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16) From: John Despres
May your taste buds win!
Have fun, everyone!
-- =
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
Drink some coffee
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17) From: John Despres
Excellent post, Paul. You've given me a couple Ideas for my own little =
party.
John
Paul Helbert wrote:
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-- =
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
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18) From: Brett Mason
My day has started with a good-old-fashioned aluminum Mokkapot brew (MiKe
called this one - it's CHEAP!)
  Brazil Fazenda - but I am keeping the notes and will report all the
tastings together...
Brief interruptions will be caused by 2 hrs baseball practice, and 5 hours
driving boys to and from a campout (taking one, bringing another home), oh
yeah, and finishing my tax return...
Thanks all who have joined!  And if anyone wants to brew with more than one
method today - please take notes, make some comparisons, and share with this
motley crue...
Cheers,
Brett
On Sat, Mar 29, 2008 at 7:22 AM, John Despres <
john> wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Brett
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19) From: Dennis & Marjorie True
Ok didn't want to jump in on this as I've been (understandably) 
preoccupied lately but so far I have IMV C at 36 hours rest and I'm 
working through my methods here is where I'm at now
AP-             Typical fruity clean cup like I'm used to.
Moka Pot-   Much nuttier less fruit but the notes are still there Smells 
wonderful while brewing, bit more mouthfeel near the end
what is up next...
Ibrinks-       
Gagglia-      
Swiss gold 1 cup-
I'll have the full report later today...
I do this to some extent every weekend but I've never really documented 
what I find, I know that my notes are very rudimentary compared to many 
on the list but hey I'm giving it a shot
Dennis
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20) From: Brett Mason
Mis-stated..  This is Brazil Cerrado 17/18 ...
On Sat, Mar 29, 2008 at 7:48 AM, Brett Mason  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Brett
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21) From: Brett Mason
OK Gangue, here's my results for the Great Can-Am Brewer Throw-down
FIRST – Thanks to Vicki for a great idea.
ALSO, to the Homeroast List – Thanks to Tom for a great place to share.
My final placement, best being #1…
  #1 French Press with a coarse Zass grind
  #2 Cory Vacuum Brewer with a coarse Zass grind
  #3 AeroPress
  #4 Oscar Espresso/Latte
  #5 MokkaPot
  #6 Melitta Clarity Drip, even with great temperature control
Grinder seems to make a huge difference, with Zass being on top, and Rocky
being next…
* Brewing and cupping notes:*
   1. *Aluminum MokkaPot*
Brazil Cerrado 17/18 screen, FC, 6 days rested
Rocky ground, 45.
Packed full
Filtered water
Heated on med-high, lowered to medium while water pushed through
Rich thick body
A good middle of the road coffee
Just a bit nutty, mostly a middle of the road coffee, with a little
sweetness.  A little chocolate, but it's not refined milk chocolate, it's a
lot more rustic…
Reminds me of almond-butter for mouth-feel
I loaded and leveled the mokkapot – so the cup is very rich
   1. *Espresso Shots with steamed milk*
Brazil Cerrado 17/18 screen, FC, 6 days rested
Rocky ground, 7.
Packed, Weiss distribution, good tamp – nice shots
Filtered water
Rich thick body
A good middle of the road coffee
Creamy, nutty, latte with a little sweetness.  Nice smooth "coffee" flavored
coffee, nuance of rustic chocolate, not milk choc or dark choc, more of a
"Mexican chocolate" if that makes any sense.
Nice smooth milk drink.  Still gotta get my microfoam technique down – an=
d I
KNOW I need more steam than the partial I tried with this one…  Thanks Mi=
Ke,
I DO appreciate the guidance…
   1. *Drip pot – Melitta Clarity*
Brazil Cerrado 17/18 screen, FC, 6 days rested
Cory Grindmaster (commercial) ground, regular setting.
Gold filter, 6 cup fill with filtered water
Light-Medium body…  Compared to the FP and AP, this is missing something=
…  But
when I drink the 2oz cup, I do enjoy it – a good coffee, but it feels lig=
ht
in my mouth…
A good middle of the road coffee
Nutty and light mokka aftertaste…
   1. *French Press*
Brazil Cerrado 17/18 screen, FC, 6 days rested
Zass ground, Very Coarse
Filtered water
Rich thick body, sweet.  Coarse ground Zass always brings out the sweetness,
and no bitters at all.  This cup is addicting – like liquid
chocolate-almond, with coffee.  My tongue feels like it is luxuriously
bathing in sweetness…
A great coffee, this IS desert! Chocolate, nutty, with sweetness.  Smooth
and rich.
   1. *Aero-Press, Inverted method*
Brazil Cerrado 17/18 screen, FC, 6 days rested
Zass ground, Very Coarse
Filtered Water
Rich medium body, sweet.  Coarse ground Zass brings out the sweetness, but
needs a finer grind as this one brews less time than the FP.  Still, no
bitters at all, thank you Zass 499.  This cup is medium thickness, with
nuances of chocolate and almond, and coffee taste too.  My tongue enjoys
this, but it's not the luxury bath the French Press made. Chocolate, nutty,
with sweetness.  Smooth.
   1. *Cory Vacuum Brewer, glass rod*
Brazil Cerrado 17/18 screen, FC, 6 days rested
Zass ground, Very Coarse
Filtered Water
Rich medium-thick body, sweet.  Coarse ground Zass brings out the sweetness,
the rstic chocolate, and the nutty taste.  Used quite a bit of coffee to
make sure it didn't brew thin (remember the pool of clear water win the
bottom while brewing, and make up for it).  Absolutely no bitters, thanks
again Mr. Zass.  This cup is nice and thick, but a bit cleaner than the
French press.  The glass rod filter keeps the cup cleaner than the French
press does.  This cup, brewed a full 4 minutes up North, has maintained the
nice velevety mouth-feel.  This is a similar luxury brew, just a tad cleaner
than the French Press.  Finish: chocolate, almond, sweet and smooth.
-- =
Cheers,
Brett
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22) From: John Despres
Good evening, Gangue, here's my  Brewer Throw-Down report.
 =
This was an excellent exercise in brewing and tasting. Thanks for =
initiating it, Vicki! I learned a lot. Also thanks to “Smarty Pants =
Mason” for dragging it out of Vicki!
 =
I invited my coffee snob friend Ken to join me on this journey and we =
chose six out of the seven brewers I own. We decided to pass on the =
Bodum single cup pour-over. The list below is in the order we used them =
with the results of each test.
 =
We brewed almost ¾ of a pound of IMV. Where a particular brewer called =
for any grind, I ground at medium on the Virtuoso. Where the brewer =
called for a specific grind, I ground for that brewer. The IMV is (was) =
a mélange of 4 and 3 day rested coffee. Both roasts City +
 =
1. Cuisinart DCC1200 Drip brewer. It delivers water to the basket at 196 =
degrees, which ain’t bad for a common dripper.
Coarse grind, 8 tablespoons coffee for a full pot.
Swiss Gold filter
Thin cup.
Decent flavor but not full flavored.
Not much aftertaste.
Light body.
 =
2. Chemex
Chemex filter
Medium grind, 8 tablespoons for 4 cup brew (24 ounces)
Very full flavor, very clean cup
Very bright, the fruit is all there
Very nice extraction
Apricot aftertaste and a longer linger than the drip
Very nice medium body
 =
3. French Press
Coarse grind, 4 tablespoons for 30 ounce brew
Add water, wait 1 minute, gentle stir, wait 5 minutes, plunge & pour (my =
typical brew)
All the flavor, blueberry, fruits with a bit of spice emerging as it cools
Balanced cuppa but not as big as the Chemex
Lighter aftertaste – not as much linger
Light but more toward medium body
 =
4. Bodum Santos Vacuum Pot
Medium grind, 4 tablespoons for 12 ounces
Lighter on the tongue, Brighter, balanced, all the fruit flavor is there
Not a long lingering aftertaste, but a flavorful aftertaste
Good, solid medium body
 =
5. Aeropress standard brewing method.
Americano
Meduim/Fine grind, 4 tablespoons, 12 ounce brew
Richer flavors, better extraction, a bit of chocolate notes in the fore =
with the fruit
Long lingering aftertaste
Solid medium/full body
 =
6. Bialetti Moka Pot
It was my intention to try the Bialetti Moka Pot but I ran out of coffee =
– There was enough to make a half pot, which I did and it was =
underwhelming. I’ve used it to success before, but this time it wasn’t =
so good. I ran out of coffee because I added the water to the top bowl =
of the vacuum pot and not the bottom… So I had to start over…
 =
Our favorites were the Vacuum and Chemex brewers.
 =
Your methods may vary.
 =
 =
 =
-- =
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182
Scene It All Productions 
JD’s Coffee Provoked Ramblings =
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23) From: Aaron
Thanks for the test john.
I have one of the electric bodum vac brewers and really like it as 
well.  Only thing id change with it is the filter its a bit on the fine 
side.  i like a lot of body in my coffee which is why i use a swissgold 
one cupper for the most part.   The bodum can sift out a bit more of the 
coffee than I care to have sifted out but still produces a good cup.
Now good luck getting any sleep over the next three days.
Aaron
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24) From: Brett Mason
I have added a picture of the Throwdown on my blog site:http://weblog.xanga.com/RockinJava9On Sat, Mar 29, 2008 at 4:50 PM, Brett Mason  wrote:
<Snip>
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25) From: Sandy Andina
Dunno yet.  Not sure of the rules. Thought this was a thread on who  
owns what brewers.
On Mar 28, 2008, at 5:50 PM, John Despres wrote:
<Snip>
Sandy Andina
www.myspace.com/sandyandina
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26) From: Vicki Smith
How terrific is it to read all these detailed accounts of our home 
brewing!!!
Background: I am definitely NOT a supertaster. There are people I roast
for who identify far more flavours in the coffee I roast than I do.
Perhaps that is the reason that I tend to choose coffee more for mouth
feel and the quality and duration of the aftertaste. Chocolate and nutty
flavours come through for me much more than fruity ones.
Ron (my husband)says he likes my coffee more than he likes anything we
have found in Red Deer, but he probably knows better than to say
anything else.
How: I brewed the coffee exactly as I would have if we were not doing a
throw-down. My espresso is not all that great, compared to our list
experts, but it has meaning to me to compare my espresso, to my vac pot,
etc. For all coffee except the espresso, I use Britta pitcher water. For
espresso, I use RO with a bit of Evian in it.
The Coffee: IMV roasted to City+ in my bread machine/heat gun. Total
roast time 13 minutes--5 days rest. The dry aroma, as it was being
ground, was very fruity--definitely a berry, but I have no idea which
one ;). This is not one of my favourite coffees, but I have a tonne of
it, because my friends like it so much.
KMB: This is my usual morning brew when both Ron and I are drinking
pre-work coffee--it's a 40 ounces in ten minutes kinda thing. I use 20
over true zero in my Rocky. At it's hottest/freshest, I didn't notice
any fruit flavour, but it tasted pretty good (but far from exceptional), 
none the less. The fruit aroma was in the hot brew, and was definitely 
strawberriesh (well, to me.) After a minute cooling in the cup, I got 
some unidentified berry tastes, mostly on the roof of my mouth. I used 
60 grams of coffee (ration 1.5:1.0, coffee grams to ounces of water)
French Press: When it is only me in the AM, I often use a French Press.
I grind at 40+ true zero and follow Tom's advice for time etc. I used 2
grams of coffee/ ounce. I noticed a strawberry aroma in the mug of
brewed coffee that was stronger than in the  KMB. I got a dead space 
feeling on my tongue (sorta in the middle) and no more fruited flavours 
than in the KMB. I did not have this dead taste in the KMB coffee, for 
some reason.
Moka Pot: I ground at +20 over true zero in the Rocky and used 2
grams/ounce. This coffee was noticeably different and better than my
first two brews. I got some vanilla flavour in both the cup and the wet
aroma. The after taste was longer and sweeter. I still had that dead
place on my tongue, about in the middle, but that is not exactly a taste
bud loaded area. I did a slow brew, at setting 3 on my electric stove,
but I didn't come close to approaching the five minute brew time Tom
mentions in his Moka Pot instructions, well, not if he means 5 minutes
after the coffee first appears. I use two burners to brew in a moka pot,
the first one set on high to boil the water, and then, after I can hear
that the coffee is about to appear, I switch to the lower temp burner.
Total time for making the coffee was about 5 minutes, but only half of
it was brewing time for my 12 ounce aluminum moka pot.
8 cup Yama brewer (32 ounces): When I first got my vac pot, I couldn't 
seem to get the grind right. These days I grind at the same setting I 
use for FP, and it works beautifully for me. The ratios is 1.75ish: 1, 
grams to ounces. The stand out for me with this cup is the aroma as it 
brews. It's also quite the show, so this is the method I often use when 
we have company for dinner. It's a very clean, sweet cup, but nothing to 
write home about, and it seems to have less body than all of the other 
methods.
espresso: Damn, I wish I made better espresso. I sinked two cups before 
I decided to lower the temp a few degrees and finally got the crema I 
was looking for. And very sweet crema it was. This method definitely 
brought out the fruit flavours and in doing so, brought home the lesson 
that for me, at least, fruited cups are just not anything I especially 
enjoy. At least not these fruit flavours ( I seem to remember a 
blueberry Harar I thought was to die for a few years back ;) ). I know 
it's list apostasy not to love IMV, but there you are. I made 16 gram 
doubles, and I ground at 5 above true zero on my Rocky. If I could do 
4.5, I would have.
Conclusion: My favourite cup of the day was in the moka pot. There was 
no bad coffee, but this is just not the bean for me. I had always 
wondered if my lack of appreciation for fruited coffees was related to 
the brewing methods I routinely use (KMB and Fr Press), and this 
experiment taught me that it didn't. I would really like to redo this 
throw-down, this time using something like Tom's Moka Kadir blend or a 
single origin I really love.
Vicki
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27) From: Brett Mason
You sound like a supertaster to me...  Great report - I lingered on every
word...
Brett
On Sat, Mar 29, 2008 at 8:10 PM, Vicki Smith  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Brett
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28) From: John Despres
Wow! Great report, Vicki!
You've given me an idea - How about we try this again sometime? The 2nd =
Can/Am Brewer Throw-down with each of us buying a bean we can all agree =
on and roasting them to our pleasure and having the greens in common? =
How about getting someone from another continent so it can grow to the =
Worldwide Brewer Throw-down?
I'll definitely do it again!
Anybody else?
John
Vicki Smith wrote:
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e.com
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/gallery/main.php?g2_itemId=7820
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-- =
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182
Scene It All Productions 
JD’s Coffee Provoked Ramblings =
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29) From: Vicki Smith
I'm up for doing it again, but, maybe not next week LOL. For myself, I 
would want to pick my own bean--this time going with something I really 
love. It's possible we could all agree on a bean, but mebbe not likely.
There is nothing to prevent any one of us doing this same thing 
anytime--I'd just like to keep throw down in the subject line so we can 
develop a super-duper archive of this sort of thing.
vicki
John Despres wrote:
<Snip>
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30) From: Paul Helbert
Great report and suggestions. We had so much fun that I'm thinking of doing
it from time to time as an activity to entertain guests. (Of course, not
just any guests...some might not enjoy it at all). It would be easy to do
just a couple of methods after dinner.
-- 
Paul Helbert
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31) From: Brett Mason
Just add Folgers - and then you'll have something for everybody...
Brett
On Sat, Mar 29, 2008 at 9:30 PM, Paul Helbert 
wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Brett
  If I am not causing you to think, then I am letting you down.
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32) From: Lynne
Didn't expect to take part here (although I loved the idea). Concerns this
week have been with doggie health (as always, it seems, with me these days)
- older dog, Shiloh, has a chronic ear problem, and I've been worried sick.
But some (new) friends came over today who might be able to help him. Of
course, I served my homeroast & biscotti! (My cocoa/hot pepper/spice
biscottti was a definite hit, too - and my friends are begging me to start a
little biscotti business!)
So - I used my KMB (don't get to use it too often, since the KMB doesn't
like to make smaller amts). Half Timor FTO Maubesse and half Guatemala
Huehuetenango (love saying that name!) decaf. Earlier in the morning, I had
my usual French Press of the same. Forgot to add the roasting date to my
jars!
I would like to add a try with one of my Mokapots, but my teeny older one
needs a new seal, and the newer one given to me by my dear friend, Ann
(thank you Ann - I'll figure this out eventually!) seems to have the little
valve clogged & I don't know how to fix it. Also, my wonderful espresso
machine given to be from Brett & Debbie stopped working - and, yes, Brett -
I have YET to call Hamilton Beach - I hope to get to that this coming week
(haven't had much time to breathe these days... need a bit lighter schedule
to feel a bit more 'together')....
Anyway, sorry for rambling.
This was SO interesting! My first cup, made in the French Press, was rich,
good - not absolutely terrific. I brewed it as I always do - used my Braun
whirly-blade (sufficient for me right now, thank you!), brewed without
timing (even if I tried, I'd get too distracted with my multi-tasking that
stretches my few brain cells left at my age, lol). But it was a decent cup,
rich, a bit too sharp for my tastes, but good just the same. Roasted it
stove top, trying to relax, with the freezing windows open to circulate the
air out as fast as possible (which does lower the roasting temp., so I need
to raise the normal temp on the stove - and changes the outcome).
The KMB tasted different. I always felt that the KMB was a 'cleaner' taste,
but full - better than my makeshift drip (I attempted a few times). This cup
was smoother than the French Press (I ground both about the same - finer
than course, because the whirly-blade just doesn't do coarse very good -
I've tried it & don't like the flavor in the FP). The fascinating thing is
that I found the roast (well, this was a blend w/both, so I'm not sure which
was the culprit) to be just a tad more than I like. But it was very smooth
(my guests, of course, loved it).
This was a great experiment! My compliments to Vicki, for having the idea
(and to Brett, too). It's totally amazing that the second try with the KMB
seemed like it was a darker roast! Sorry, my limits for tasting homeroast
is: mmm, tastes like coffee... mmm.. *good *coffee... so I can't determine
subtle flavors. I do know, however, if my French Press brew tastes a bit too
harsh, I'm going to try to convince my son (or someone, anyone) to share a
KMB brew with me - this actually took the edge off the roast.
I'm also going to be careful not to roast too long next time, too. Think I'm
losing my touch!
Great weekend fun :P
Lynne
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33) From: Vicki Smith
I can't wait to hear from the Sunday folks now. I love it when a plan 
comes together.
v
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34) From: Coffee
The Coffee:
Sumatra Organic Aceh District Roasted 3/22 to Full City in my Gene  
Cafe. Even my untrained pallet can pick up the chocolate and woodsy  
character of this coffee.
The Brews:
1) Bodum 3 Tasse French Press: 14g ground midway between the drip and  
press settings on my Breville conical grinder. The coffee has a very  
rich flavor and heavy body. The chocolate is the most prominent flavor  
I can identify.
2) Braun Drip: 14g ground a few clicks finer than the drip setting on  
my grinder. I've never done a single cup in this coffee maker before  
so I left the carafe out for the first minute to give the grounds time  
to steep. The drip is obviously a "cleaner" cup than the french press.  
The prominent chocolate flavor in the french press is more subdued in  
the drip. There is less in the nose as well. The body is similarly  
heavy. With the chocolate knocked down a bit I can tell there are a  
lot more going on. The woodsy part is much more identifiable and  
others that I can't pick out.
3) Cuisinart SS-1*. 14g ground at the fine setting on my grinder. This  
is different still. Between the french press and the drip. The deeper  
chocolate are there, but not as prominent as with the french press.  
The lighter notes are there too. There is more in the nose than the  
drip, very close to that of the FP, but not as dominated by the  
chocolate.
4) AeroPress: 14g ground a couple of clicks finer than I do for drip  
in my Breville grinder. I expected more from the AP. As always, it's a  
great cup of coffee, but it has always been better in my mind than it  
is now in comparison with the others. It's closer to the drip in  
character than the other methods. Perhaps because it's also filtered  
with a paper filter, like the drip, some of the deeper character that  
comes through with the french press and the SS-1 are lost here. It's  
not bad by any measure, it just suffers in comparison with the other  
brew methods. It's a bright clean cup of coffee.
5) Andreja Premium: 14g ground in my Rocky. It took me 3 pulls to get  
a reasonable pull time. I've never pulled this light a roast before  
and that probably had something to do with it. The deep chocolate  
dominating the flavor. Very one dimensional. No off flavors and it was  
a good pull, but I don't really like this coffee as espresso.
6) Bodum Santos (non-electric): 36g, ground at the same setting I use  
for the french press, in 25oz of water. I've never tried making a  
single cup in the vac pot, so I decided this was not the time to add  
that variable. This cup has all the richness of the french press, but  
not dominated by the deep notes. The chocolate is there, but the  
higher flavors come through too.
Summary: The French press produced a rich cup dominated by the deeper  
flavors. The drip suppressed the deep flavors and allowed the more  
subtle ones to shine. "Cleaner" and "brighter" are inadequate, but the  
best I'm going to do. I used a paper filter in the drip. Perhaps a  
swiss-gold filter would let through more of the deeper notes. The SS-1  
produced a very balanced cup, between that of the FP and drip. The  
chocolate is well represented without overpowering the other flavors.  
The Aeropress, like the drip, produced a clean, bright cup with the  
advantage of being the fastest to brew. Espresso didn't impress me  
with this coffee. The Bodum vacuum pot was perhaps the best  
combination. The deep notes were there along with the high.
Ranking in order of preference for this coffee...
1 - Bodum Santos
2 - Cuisinart SS-1
3 - French Press
4 - AeroPress
5 - Braun drip
6 - Andreja Espresso
This took me all day to do. After the first three I had to pace  
myself. I had a caffeine buzz going all day with my eyelids twitching  
by mid-afternoon.
*The Cuisinart SS-1 brews a single cup at a time. You put the grounds  
in a filter basket that is similar in shape to a portafilter basket.  
The machine has a piston that does a tamp on the grounds and it then  
pumps the hot water through. It is no where near the pressure of a  
espresso machine but similar in concept. After the brew, the piston  
compresses the grounds and squeezes the last bit of water out.
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35) From: Kris McN
Here's my report (this all happened yesterday, but this is my first chance
to get on the computer):
Bean: Colombia Antioquia '13353' Supremo, Behmor roasted 3/22 to FC. I've
found this bean to be generally inoffensive, but not too exciting.  I
roasted it because my mother is visiting this weekend (grandbabies!) and I
wanted to have something that she'd recognize as coffee, nothing too
challenging, but good.
Methods: Moka pot, Krups Moka Brew [KMB], AeroPress [AP], Bodum French Press
[FP], those Deco drip cups [DD]
Grinder: KitchenAid ProLine. The AP was the finest grind, followed by the
moka pot, then KMB/FP/DD.
People: Me and my husband (with my mother chiming in on the KMB and FP)
I used a grounds/water of 1.6 for the FP and DD, 2 full scoops of beans for
the AP, and filled the brew baskets to level.for the moka pot and KMB.
Moka pot: Delicious, nutty, rich cup.  A classic "coffee" flavor.  Very
full-bodied.  There's a little sludge in the bottom of the cup, so by the
end there's beginning to be a hint of bitterness.  Nothing crazy, but
notable.
KMB: I use the Yama cloth filters, rather than the paper.  Similar body and
mouthfeel to the moka pot, but the brew has a slightly harsh edge to it.  My
mother thinks it's a very nice cup, but my husband and I both prefer the
moka pot.
AP: I use a poly filter rather than the paper one.  Nice clean cup.  A bit
sweeter than the first two, which I find is often true of the AP, though
that sweetness kind of turns a little sour as the cup cools, which is
unusual.
FP: A nice, full-bodied cup.  All the nuttiness is present.  There's sludge
in the cup, so a bit of bitterness comes as the cup cools.
DD:  This is the lightest (thinnest) of all the brews.  Not a surprise as
this is the fastest brew time on the lowest grinds/water.  Still, I nice,
drinkable cup.
Overall, there weren't huge differences in flavor among the different
methods for this bean.  The main differences were in body and mouthfeel.
The moka pot was the favorite.  It had the fullest body and richest
mouthfeel while presenting the most subtle flavors.  Surprisingly, the AP,
which is usually highly favored around here, was ranked last for this bean.
This was fun!  I wish I'd been evaluating a more interesting bean (I'll take
your IMV over this Colombian any day, Vicki!)
Best,
Kris McN
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36) From: Kris McN
I'm in!  I roasted up some Indonesian Flores Bajawa Highlands last night.
Kris McN
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37) From: Les
I did my throw down with *Hawaiian Kona - Kowali Typica XF *rested 7days.
It was roasted to a city plus.
1. Espresso - This is one of the nicest SO shots.  It was buttery, with
awesome chocolate finish.  The piney distinctiveness of the Kona made itself
known in the middle of the shot.  It is a little on the bright side for an
espresso, but I kind of like them that way.  As a Cappo it was outstanding.
Melded with the micofoam to make a smooth complex cup of coffee finishing
with a fine milk chocolate.
2. Vac Pot - The vac pot brought out the fine nuances of this fine Kona.
Every sip brought out a unque smooth coffee flavor.  Clean, clear, crisp.
This coffee decended into a nice chocolate finish that lingered as long as
the espresso.
3. Technivorm with Swiss Gold Filter.  Nice cup, but not as clean and crisp
and the Vac-Pot.
4.  Areo Press.  Between the Technivorm and the Espresso.  One nice complex
cup.  The biggest problem, only one serving!
The verdict:
1. Vac Pot
2. Espresso
3. Areo Press
4. Technivorm
I was surprised the TV came in 4th.
Les
On Mon, Mar 31, 2008 at 10:33 AM, Kris McN  wrote:
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38) From: Barry Luterman
No surprise at all. That's why I sold my TV after I bought my Vac pot. TV is
better than Vac pot only if you have to go to work in the morning and don't
have the time to mess with brewing coffee. If you have the time and the
inclination Vac pot can't be beat. One pot in the morning and shots the rest
of the day. Wouldn't go back to work or pour over for anything now.
On Mon, Mar 31, 2008 at 5:12 PM, Les  wrote:
<Snip>
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39) From: Coffee
The Vac Pot came in first in my test as well... I think we're on to  
something. I'm surprised the AP did as poorly as it did in my test. I  
had higher expectations.
-Peter
On Apr 1, 2008, at 9:54 AM, Barry Luterman wrote:
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40) From: Scott Miller
I didn't participate in this event, but my own experience has been that a
vac pot gives me consistently the cup I enjoy most compared with other
methods for coffee .... espresso is a different critter altogether.
cheers,
Scott
On Tue, Apr 1, 2008 at 3:32 PM, Coffee  wrote:
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