HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Am I kidding myself? Coffeemate and sugar (34 msgs / 578 lines)
1) From: Dan Bollinger
Try weaning yourself from using creamer. It has flavor additives that will
mask coffee origins.  The reason for using creamer in the first place is to
reduce the horrid acids in poor quality coffee.  Home roasted coffee does
not have these bitter flavors, or at least I hope not!
<Snip>
I
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2) From: Michael Horowitz
Am I wasting my time playing with different roasts and different beans if I
use coffeemate and sugar in my cup?
Am I significantly masking the coffee flavors that I might as well settle
on one bean/one roast? - Mike
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3) From: Jim Schulman
Hi Mike,
Sugar is fine, it doesn't mask tastes. Margarine 
flakes, aka Coffeemate, is another story. It's 
ideal to mask all flavors from the typical 80% 
Vietnamese Robusta office coffee brewed on a never 
cleaned Silex.
Remember, the incredible secret of homeroast 
specialty coffee is that it actually tastes good. 
If it helps overcome your protective reflexes, you 
might pretend it's not coffee at all. In any case, 
try it black just once; you may be surprised.
Jim Schulman
On 27 Dec 2002 at 16:31, Michael Horowitz wrote:
<Snip>
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4) From: Rich Adams
I would say it depends on your goal.
Do you enjoy the cups?  Do they taste good TO YOU?  If so, you are not
wasting your time but instead making enjoyable coffee.
OTOH, if you are not satisfied with what your doing/making. or not satisfied
that you cannot tell the difference between origins/roasts and you want to
and the cause of these dissatisfactions is creamer and sugar, then yes, you
could be wasting time if your goal is to be able to compare origins/roasts.
I graduated HS in '74 with a Peter Horowitz, any relation?  lol
I know, I know, but its not as bad as asking someone if they knew "joe"
after they tell you they were in the Navy.
Respectfully,
Rich Adams
radams

5) From: Michael Horowitz
Yes; but you gotta go back all the way to Moses. - MIke
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6) From: john kangas
<Snip>
My wife uses vanilla creamer, sugar, and powdered cocoa (all at once!) in 
her coffee. She can tell if a specific coffee's roasted a bit darker than 
she likes, when it was only 5 degrees difference, or that it's a little 
flat, when it's roasted 30 seconds longer.
I'd say, don't worry about it if it's what you're used to.
John
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7) From: Mike McGinness
From: "Michael Horowitz" 
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I
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Yes & no. Or no & yes? Most likely no, period. Though I primarily drink
black, be it Americano, Cafe' Crema, Vac, Press, or Shot I do make 'desert'
style beverages on occasion. Major case in point my 'road warrior' can't
leave home without it white chocolate Kona mocha. When I was perfecting the
drink I originally was using dark roast Timor Maubesse shots. It was very
good, better than the espresso stand I based it on per Debi. Thought to try
it with Kona and man did it sing! Never went back. Yes, even with milk and
white chocolate what is pulled for the shots makes a huge difference. Of
course, my ratio of milk to espresso is about 8:12 (8oz milk, 6 double shots
for batch, plus water to 1/2gal inc. white choc etc...) so the espresso
really comes through as major part of flavor...
MM;-) aka Kona Krazy miKe mcKoffee
Variable Variac Rockin' Rosto Roasting
Miss Silvia brewin'
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8) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 20:30 12/27/02, Mike McGinness typed:
<Snip>
Whereas I have not tasted you road warrior, I think it is not comparable to 
coffeemate.  You are using high grade ingredients which should be 
complimenting, not overwhelming your coffee.  Coffeemate would just 
overwhelm, IMNSHO.  On my side, I drink all of my coffee with a touch of 
raw sugar and goat milk.  I make the milk distinction as I have determined 
that I will turn down coffee if there is "creamer", will think hard if 
there is cow milk and  have recently discovered that I really do not care 
for cream in my coffee.  It is just to heavy, and muting of the flavor 
(aside from often tasting cowy)
Basically, (to who originally started this), I think you are not getting 
the most out of your coffee with coffeemate, but if you like it, please 
drink it that way.  We are here to ENJOY coffee.  If you are "used" to a 
white additive, just try milk.  I have never been able to ween to 
black.  Every time I try I stop enjoying my cup, so now that is that, I am 
a  happy adulterator.  I just make sure I only adulterate with the best.
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Roasting and Blending by Gestalt
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9) From: Ed Needham
I like Eagle Brand condensed sweetened milk in my coffee or espresso every
now and then.  Yummy.
Ed Needhamhttp://www.homeroaster.comed
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10) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 09:52 12/28/02, Ed Needham typed:
<Snip>
Again, mainly sweet and good milk.  Sounds good now and then.  Almost 
coffee eggnogish (minus the egg)
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Roasting and Blending by Gestalt
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11) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 13:44 12/28/02, Michael Horowitz typed:
<Snip>
I am going to hesitantly say yes and no.  In my experience, milk does 
effect the flavor of coffee (otherwise I would not use it) but not mask the 
origins, etc.  I have found that "aggressive" milk products (i.e. cream) 
does indeed mask flavors (again why I don't care to use it).  No-dairy 
creamers I find very aggressively flavored and masking.
Let's now see if I have kept my foot out of my mouth 
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Roasting and Blending by Gestalt
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12) From: Michael Horowitz
The implication of this and other replies is that milk (as opposed to
non-dairy creamers)does not mask the coffee flavors. Correct? - Mike
At 10:05 AM 12/28/02 -0800, you wrote:
<Snip>
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13) From: Dan Bollinger
<Snip>
Not to my thinking.  I believe the casein in milk reacts with the acids in
coffee and tea to neutralize them. This not only would change the flavor,
but reduce the brightness as well.  If you drank cheap coffee roasted to
American even I'd be adding half-n-half and plenty of it.  I wouldn't add
sugar, though, I'm sweet enough already.  ;)  Dan
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14) From: Jim Schulman
Milk masks flavor too -- think of cream or butter 
sauces -- but it also adds mouthfeel and can 
mellow very bright or very roasty flavors. For 
instance, with some coffees, it's easier to taste 
chocolate roast flavors in a coffee with cream 
than straight, where the flavor may be that of 
unsweetened cocoa. I doubt a margarine product can 
work the same magic.
I personally prefer a little cream or condensed 
milk to lots of regular or low fat milk, but each 
to their own. 
Jim Schulman
On 28 Dec 2002 at 16:44, Michael Horowitz wrote:
<Snip>
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15) From: Angelo
 From what I understand fat, which is found in most dairy products, is good 
for  flavor delivery, so I don't think it would mask the flavor too much. I 
myself, if I choose to use a diary product use about a tablespoon of 
evaporated milk. I sometimes sweeten my cups with condensed milk, although 
I have been cutting back on the sweetness level....
My first forays into coffee drinking were done when I was a mere tot and I 
know my mom used evaporated milk, and I guess that taste has been 
imprinted  on my taste buds...It's comforting.. I do stretch out, once in a 
while, though...
I would be curious as to how much sugar Italians use in their coffee 
compared to the people  in the Sates (as well as in other countries). Those 
countries where the Ibrik is used also tend to use quite a bit of sugar. 
Some even brew it with the coffee...
There are some tastes which always seem to go together (salt and oil, for 
instance - yang/yin?). I'm wondering if coffee and sugar are one of those 
combos...?
Ciao,
Angelo
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16) From: Dan Bollinger
Another way of looking at this:  If milk didn't change the flavor of coffee,
then it wouldn't have been used in the first place. Dan
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the
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17) From: Dan Bollinger
<Snip>
Angelo
This opposes what Alchemist John said, "I have found that "aggressive" milk
products (i.e. cream)
does indeed mask flavors."
Who to believe?  Dan
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18) From: Photogal1966
In a message dated 12/28/2002 5:58:49 PM Eastern Standard Time, 
danbollinger writes:
<Snip>
I think maybe, just maybe, this calls for a LOT of testing... poor us.
Maybe we need to all get to roasting and brewing EARLY tomorrow... lol
Andrea (who can drink coffee black, but prefers a splash of half and half, ty 
very much!)

19) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 14:47 12/28/02, Dan Bollinger typed:
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I believe that is what I said.
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Roasting and Blending by Gestalt
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20) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 14:55 12/28/02, Dan Bollinger typed:
<Snip>
Actually, on the surface it may look contradictory.  I wonder in actuality 
when the fat content gets too high (cream, etc) it simply completely 
encases(binds) certain flavor components, thus "masking".  Just a guess, 
not that  matters really.
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Roasting and Blending by Gestalt
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21) From: Ed Needham
No...anything added to coffee will change or mask the flavors.  I like cream
and sugar or Eagle Brand once in a while, but if I have an exceptional
coffee, I won't add anything.  Most of the time I drink drip coffee or
espresso with no additives.
Ed Needhamhttp://www.homeroaster.comed
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22) From: Dan Bollinger
John,  Or, the fat coats our taste buds reducing the ability to sense
flavors.  It sounds like the consensus is that milk alters the flavor or
reduces the flavor of coffee.  Dan
<Snip>
milk
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23) From: Jeffrey A. Bertoia
Angelo wrote:
<Snip>
Most of the Italian Customers I have, seem to use two spoonfuls of 
sugar.  These are of course,
espresso spoons so it probably amounts to about a teaspoon or so.  That 
is in a single espresso.
<Snip>
Illy suggests that sugar reduces the surface tension of the espresso and 
allows it to better
penetrate and cling to the taste buds.  Thus allowing one to more fully 
experience the flavor
and to have the aftertaste last much longer.
jeff
<Snip>
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24) From: Dan Bollinger
And, Sugar, especially fructose, is a known delivery agent for vitamins and
drugs.  I use fructose to sweeten espresso, it's healthier than white sugar.
Dan

25) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 04:25 12/29/02, Dan Bollinger typed:
<Snip>
The coating sounds about right.  I always want to brush my tongue after 
cream.
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Roasting and Blending by Gestalt
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26) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 06:12 12/29/02, Dan Bollinger typed:
<Snip>
Fructose is a white sugar .  If memory serves (no promises) fructose and 
sucrose are both one metabolic step from glucose, thus no difference health 
wise.  Why do you say healthier?
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Roasting and Blending by Gestalt
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27) From: Dan Bollinger
John, It's how fast your body processes it into blood sugar that is
important.  What you want to avoid is a food becoming blood sugar very
quickly. Frequent and rapid blood sugar spikes are thought to contribute to
diabetes and heart disease. Our bodies didn't evolve to digest these foods.
A slow rate is good, just as protein becomes blood sugar over a period of
hours.  This is listed in the glycemic index, with glucose being 100.  The
lower the numbers are more healthy.  Notice how high the 'white' foods are,
something that I've cut out of my diet as much as possible. Not only am I
feeling better, but I've lost 20 pounds, too. :)
Glucose    100
WHITE bread 95
WHITE potato 95
Sucrose (WHITE table sugar) 75
WHITE rice 70
Lentils 30
Fructose 20
Soybeans 15
Now you see why I use fructose to sweeten with! And, I use less because
fructose tastes 25% sweeter than sucrose. hope this helps.  Dan
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and
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health
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28) From: The Scarlet Wombat
Fructose has a lower glycemic index than sucrose.  It is converted into 
glucose more slowly than sucrose is, but it is all converted to glucose and 
is probably not a great deal more healthful than any sugar, none of which 
have any health benefits to speak of, strenuous exercisers execpted.
Dan
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29) From: Dan Bollinger
Oops!  Then you better stop eating carrots.  They have a glycemic index of
85 and are also converted to glucose!  ;)  On the other hand, an apple is
40.  Not as good as fructose, but still quite low.  Dan
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and
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30) From: The Scarlet Wombat
As a matter of fact, Dan, being a type two diabetic, I do not eat carrots, 
and no apples, either.  The Glycemic index is not perfect, individual 
variations are still important.
Thankfully, coffee is not a problem, so I can be as snobbish in roasting, 
grinding and pulling shots as I like and stick my nose up at blood glucose 
levels.
Dan
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31) From: Dan Bollinger
One of the reasons I switched to black coffee was my doctor wanted to do
'fasting' blood tests last year.  I could have black coffee, but no added
half and half.  ;)  I really don't miss the stuff and I especially don't
miss the sour half and half! Dan
<Snip>
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32) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 11:32 12/29/02, The Scarlet Wombat typed:
<Snip>
That is my basic take on all sugars in general.
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Roasting and Blending by Gestalt
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33) From: Dan Bollinger
<Snip>
execpted.
<Snip>
Actually, you are both making my point for me. Granted, sugars aren't
proteins and are 'hollow calories;' but, if you are going to sweeten
something, then use the fructose instead of sucrose.  At least our bodies
have evolved to process fructose.  Sucrose on the other hand has only been a
staple for a little over 100 years.  The long term health effect of table
sugar on the human body is only now being noticed. In 1900 the average
person only ate 10 pounds per year. In 1985 it had risen to 124 pounds and
in 2000 to 160 pounds per year. About 25% of the calories Americans consume
is from sugar and many children receive almost half of their calories from
sugar. So, dump the white sugar, buy fructose at the health store, and use
it for your coffee and espresso!   :)
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34) From: David Westebbe
<Snip>
IMO, cream masks the bitter burned taste of low-quality restaurant robusta
to the extent that I can drink it without wincing.  I always add cream to my
coffee except at home, where I drink it black.
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