HomeRoast Digest


Topic: My first pre-roast blend (11 msgs / 235 lines)
1) From: Kathleen Tinkel
So far I've blended roasted coffees. Yesterday I got the bright idea -
thinking more of espresso than drip - to roast these together:
   50% Brazilian Cerado
   25% Sumatran Mandheling
   25% Ethiopian Yrgacheffe
   A total of 8 ozs, Alp, by ear. 
Had an odd roast; in fact, wonder if my scale is off leading me to try to
roast too much. Was trying to get to just below second crack. Took 14:30 to
first isolated crack and 14:55 to first reasonable cluster (normally hit
between 12:30 and 13:45), none of the pops very loud or sharp. 
Finally pressed cool at 16:45, based on anxiety and nose as much as
anything I was hearing. The result was medium-brown beans (varying somewhat
by variety), completely dry, that left me with a foreboding sense of
under-roasted.
I was thinking of using them for espresso (been trying to get my ancient
Krups Nova, ca 1989, to work right), but couldn't wait so made my usual
5-cup auto-drip pot this morning. 
Surprise: Very nice coffee flavor, good body, some of Yrg's top notes very
evident. Almost no bitterness (and of course no charred taste). Also a
slight edge of straw, possibly because at least one of the beans felt
under-roasted. 
I'd repeat this blend in a heartbeat - as soon as I get more of the
Brazilian - only going a bit further (after checking and possibly replacing
my scale).
Kathleen

2) From: Mick
 
At 12:36 PM 9/14/00 -0400, you wrote:
<Snip>
Kathleen
I use a blend of
Brazil Berrador Estate   50%
Yemen Mokha Mattari   30%
Sumatra Mandheling     20%
Roasted in a WB 2  to 2nd crack as you say "to first reasonable cluster" in 
5:30, I get a medium to dark brown roast with no signs of oil. I am the 
worst person to describe coffee taste but here goes, extracted with a 
Pavoni Professional smooth, rich, earthy & complex, no bitterness with 
heaps of crema (the kind that sugar floats on). Im going to try replacing 
the Yemen with Ethiopian Yirgacheffe & roast the beans separately but 
unfortunately im out of the Berrador so I will be using the Cerado instead.
Ciao
Mick

3) From: Kathleen Tinkel
Thanks for that - sounds fairly close to what I got (or hope to get by
roasting just a tad longer).
After choosing that blend, I found a note from Barry Jarrett on alt.coffee
in which he recommends 50% unspecified Brazil, 25% Sumatra, 25% Ethiopia -
for espresso - so I guess I sort of fell into a popular mixture.
It's making me rethink my general aversion to American coffees, let me tell
you! And I now see that blending before roasting can work just fine...
Not a bad number of revelations for one batch of coffee...
Kathleen
--------------- Mick's message --------------
I use a blend of
Brazil Berrador Estate   50%
Yemen Mokha Mattari   30%
Sumatra Mandheling     20%
Roasted in a WB 2  to 2nd crack as you say "to first reasonable cluster" in
5:30, I get a medium to dark brown roast with no signs of oil. I am the 
worst person to describe coffee taste but here goes, extracted with a 
Pavoni Professional smooth, rich, earthy & complex, no bitterness with 
heaps of crema (the kind that sugar floats on). Im going to try replacing 
the Yemen with Ethiopian Yirgacheffe & roast the beans separately but 
unfortunately im out of the Berrador so I will be using the Cerado instead.
Ciao
Mick

4) From: Simpson
Kathleen-
Just my opinion but I think yrg doesn't suit espresso very well. Lightly
roasted you get lemonade and darkly roasted you lose all of the wonderful
tastes that make it my favorite single-bean coffee. OTOH for fruitiness one
might add Harrar (my favorite) or if you are going to roast to a darker
standard a la southern Italian, a Djimmah.
Some are not fond of the Brazilians but all that I have bought from Tom have
been excellent base coffees.
If I were going to do your blend for drip/press/vac I'd try dropping the
brazil altogether and doing a faux m-j with 1/2 to 2/3 Sumatra and 1/2 to
1/3 yrg... that could be yummy roasted past 1st but not into 2nd. Not too
dark at all. Rest for 2 days and have at it!
Darn! Its 10:30pm here but now I'm thirsty for coffee... sigh...
Ted
<Snip>

5) From: Prabhakar Ragde
<Snip>
I've said this before, but Yirg roasted to just before second crack
and Pavonied is, to me, a dead ringer for the spiced
lentil-and-tamarind South Indian soup called "rasam". Quite a trip, if
you don't think of it as espresso. --PR

6) From: Kathleen Tinkel
Thanks, Ted -
<Snip>
That's interesting. I haven't tried it for espresso yet, but should have a
chance this evening or weekend. I've now roasted two batches of this 2/1/1/
Brazil/Sumatra/Yrg blend - the second a little darker, still not into 2nd -
so have plenty to test and time to see how it goes after a couple of days
of rest.
<Snip>
Until now I've been trying mostly singles or M-Js (though always by
roasting the individual beans separately - this was my first pre-roast
blend. Don't think I tried Sumatran with Yrg, however. I'll give it a try,
once I get through the three batches already roasted here.
The Brazil was a revelation to me, as I have always found American coffees
to be kind of insipid. I think I'll experiment a bit more with it as the
base of blends (especially as I just ordered 2 lbs from Tom!). I also
ordered some Mexicans - figured I'd wallow in Americans for a bit.
That's the joy of home roasting...
Kathleen

7) From: E Lund
Wow, so thats what that taste is! I really
like it. I too disagree that you cant make
espresso from yirq. 
My first roast was way way way too bright
for espresso. The next one was to dark and
was boring (I over reacted). Hmmm, I feel
like I'm telling a nursery rhyme (but the
next espresso goldilocks tried was juuussstttt
right hehehe). Anyway, I eventually found
the roast time (I time from the beginning
of 1st crack) that gets me an espresso that
has brightness but is not overpoweringly
bright. And the flavors from that are really
really great.
I guess now I'll have to decide whether I
want an espresso or a "rasam" every morning :)
eric
--
On Fri, 15 Sep 2000 10:03:31   Prabhakar Ragde wrote:
<Snip>
Angelfire for your free web-based e-mail.http://www.angelfire.com

8) From: OligoNuk
My limited experience thus far (~6 roasts) leads me to believing that 
roasting by the senses seems to work best (for me) there seems to exist too 
many variables that can affect the roasting times- ie. humidity, age of the 
bean, ambiant temperature.  I've been roasting in 4 oz batches- my last roast 
with a Timor was tricky in that the second crack was more quiet than my other 
batches- again this may be due the variables that I elude to- is this a 
widely held observation?  Or are these variables consistent enough to rely 
heavily on times for particular beans and degree of roast- given that we're 
not all using a probat, but rather a $6500 less expensive Alp.
-Todd L. ALP (in-love with!!!)
My favorite roast so far has been with Sumatra mmm, mmm   gooooood!

9) From: Kathleen Tinkel
Todd:
<Snip>
Me, too. I'm the only *trainable* component around here. 
On the other hand, the wild inventiveness of some of the roasters here is
seductive, so I amuse myself by considering their fiendish mods and
devices. But I'm too lazy to actually do them. (I do keep fairly good
notes, however.)
<Snip>
That's interesting. I believed those warnings to roast only 8-oz batches.
(On the other hand, the single-batch packet of coffee from Swissmar weighed
out 7 ozs, not 8 - so I was wondering what weight the machine was actually
optimized for. Maybe I'll try a 4-oz batch just to see what happens. It
would be useful to roast just that much of some beans. (I've been using the
FreshRoast for smaller batches.)
<Snip>
I've had some success roasting by the Alp's numbers when roasting below
second crack where I felt as if I had some leeway, and rounding up or down
by less than 15 secs (to the next Alp number) didn't seem to cause much
trouble. First I roasted a few batches of the bean by ear/nose to figure
out the ideal time, then calculated the nearest Alp setting. After that I
was able to use the number, but I haven't done enough of those to talk
about consistency.
For darker roasts (beyond full city) I'd be nervous - once the high-temp
changes begin to occur it often seems to take a split-second lunge for the
'cool' button to keep the beans from going too far.
Kathleen 

10) From: Kent Pierce
 
Kathleen,
For post start-of-2nd-crack roasts, using a quick read thermometer really 
helps reduce the whiplash induced by those snap lunges.
.........Kent
At 11:08 AM 9/20/00 -0400, Kathleen wrote:
<Snip>

11) From: Kathleen Tinkel
Kent:
<Snip>
Thanks . 
I got a long-shanked thermometer (recommended here last week, in fact -
thanks) and am mulling over how to put it into use. (My husband's been out
of town, and I generally let him tinker with the hardware.)
But the point remains: you're still likely to need to back up the Alp's
automation - for some beans, especially - with manual action. Tracking temp
should reduce the suddenness; and of course being able to see the beans
would help even more, but if wishes were horses...
Kathleen


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