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Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
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andys
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andys
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Posted Wed Sep 24, 2008, 7:07pm
Subject: Re: Measuring Extraction
 

AlanAdler Said:

Your formula fails to account for the brew trapped in the used grounds.

My formula assumes that the brew strength of the liquid trapped in the used grounds is about the same as the part you drink. I've verified that to be correct.

Posted September 24, 2008 link

I understand that in "total immersion brewing" (as in the Aeropress), your original formula would be correct.

I'm a little surprised that with "cake filtration" effects, especially with an overdosed Aeropress like Mark prefers, the the liquid in the grounds in the same strength as the filtrate. But if you've actually measured it as such, I certainly take your word for it. Thanks for the info.

 
-AndyS
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nicfortin
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nicfortin
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Posted Tue Sep 30, 2008, 5:30pm
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

Very interresting that brew ratio "evolution" thread...

So if one keep an open mind, throw any standard over his shoulder and want to enjoy a tasteful cup of coffee.
Where does he start?
I've played alot with espresso and keep playing (dose, temp, time,volume) depending on taste/flavor I want in my cup.
But for Aeropress (which I use almost everyday) and press pot, I'm always wandering where should I start with a new coffee?
Grind size, amount (grams) vs. water (ml), steep time.
Does one of you have a standardized procedure to dial in new coffee?

With experimentation one should come up with a starting point with each brewing methods he use. I just can't convince myself to use
that much coffee (18g+) in my Aeropress!! :-o
Keep an open mind nic! After all if it taste good why not! ;-)

cheers
nic

 
Enjoy your coffees with Respect  :^)
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andys
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andys
Joined: 10 May 2003
Posts: 860
Location: NY
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Speedster, Londinium 1
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Roaster: PIDed Popper
Posted Wed Oct 1, 2008, 5:57pm
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

nicfortin Said:

for Aeropress (which I use almost everyday) and press pot, I'm always wandering where should I start with a new coffee?
Grind size, amount (grams) vs. water (ml), steep time.
Does one of you have a standardized procedure to dial in new coffee?

Posted September 30, 2008 link

My suggestion for the Aeropress is to start with coffee and water in a 1:16 ratio. For example: 12g coffee, and ~190g water a few seconds off the boil.  Start with a medium-fine grind (whatever that is) and try zero steep time, 30 sec steep time, 1 min steep time, etc. The grind shouldn't be so fine that it takes forever to gently press through.

If the coffee tastes weak, try longer steep time or a finer grind. If it tastes bitter or too strong, try less steep time or a coarser grind.

If, like most people here, you're using fresh coffee of geek-worthy quality, you should pretty quickly find some combination of grind and steep time that gives you a GREAT cup.

If you want to greatly speed up this trial and error process, buy either an inexpensive analog or more expensive digital refractometer as suggested by Alan. Using the same coffee:water ratio, adjust grind and/or steep time until the refractometer reads 1.5-1.6 (if the reading is low, make the grind finer or increase the time, and vice versa).

Of course Alan and Mark are using very different brew ratios and Alan likes a much lower water temp. With further experimentation, you too may want to change the basic parameters. But following the basic procedure outlined above has me brewing the best "drip-style" coffee I've ever made.

[edited on 10-2-08 to make small change to "recommended" refractometer reading]

 
-AndyS
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nicfortin
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nicfortin
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Posted Thu Oct 2, 2008, 4:12am
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

Thanks Andy.

andys Said:

My suggestion for the Aeropress is to start with coffee and water in a 1:16 ratio. For example: 12g coffee, and ~190g water a few seconds off the boil.  Start with a medium-fine grind (whatever that is) and try zero steep time, 30 sec steep time, 1 min steep time, etc. ...

Posted October 1, 2008 link

Curiosity : Where did you get that ratio 1:16 (weigh) ?
By experimentation?

andys Said:

If you want to greatly speed up this trial and error process, buy either an inexpensive analog or more expensive digital refractometer as suggested by Alan. Using the same coffee:water ratio, adjust grind and/or steep time until the refractometer reads 1.6-1.7 (if the reading is low, make the grind finer or increase the time, and vice versa)...

Posted October 1, 2008 link

Same curiosoty here where did you get that a good brew will have 1.6-1.7 on a refractometer? And are those easy to use, never seen one before looking at the link from Alan...

Thx again

cheers
nic

 
Enjoy your coffees with Respect  :^)
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
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Posted Thu Oct 2, 2008, 7:53am
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

nicfortin Said:

Curiosity : Where did you get that ratio 1:16 (weigh) ? By experimentation?

Posted October 2, 2008 link

According to various Web sites, the SCAA recommends a brewing ratio of 3.75oz coffee to 64oz water for drip coffee. So does Scott Rao, in The Professional Barista's Handbook. This results in a coffee:water ratio of 1:17, very close to Andy's recommendation of 1:16 for Aeropress brew.

Mark prefers a brew ratio of 1:12 for Aeropress brewing. The Aeropress scoop holds 12-13g coffee, and the instruction sheet recommends diluting 36cc of liquid espresso with 4oz water for an Americano. This results in a brew ratio of 1:12 to 1:13. This matches my personal taste preferences for AP brew, which tastes weak to me if diluted to a 1:16 brew ratio.
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andys
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andys
Joined: 10 May 2003
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Location: NY
Expertise: Just starting

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Grinder: EK-43,Robur, HG One, M3
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Roaster: PIDed Popper
Posted Thu Oct 2, 2008, 6:54pm
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

nicfortin Said:

Curiosity : Where did you get that ratio 1:16 (weigh) ?

Same curiosoty here where did you get that a good brew will have 1.6-1.7 on a refractometer? And are those easy to use, never seen one before looking at the link from Alan...

Posted October 2, 2008 link

RapidCoffee Said:

According to various Web sites, the SCAA recommends a brewing ratio of 3.75oz coffee to 64oz water for drip coffee. So does Scott Rao, in The Professional Barista's Handbook. This results in a coffee:water ratio of 1:17, very close to Andy's recommendation of 1:16 for Aeropress brew.

Mark prefers a brew ratio of 1:12 for Aeropress brewing. The Aeropress scoop holds 12-13g coffee, and the instruction sheet recommends diluting 36cc of liquid espresso with 4oz water for an Americano. This results in a brew ratio of 1:12 to 1:13. This matches my personal taste preferences for AP brew, which tastes weak to me if diluted to a 1:16 brew ratio.

Posted October 2, 2008 link


Hi Nic, hi John:

The results of taste testing by various coffee research groups, going back many years, seem to converge on fairly consistent parameters for the best brewed coffee:
  1. About 20% (by weight) of the original dry coffee matter should end up in your cup.
  2. Sufficient water should be used to dilute that extracted matter down to a strength of about 1.3% (IOW, 1.3% coffee "solids," 98.7% water).

So, to work those numbers through, say we started with 10 grams of dry coffee and 160 grams of water ( a 1:16 ratio).
If we adjust grind and steep time so that 20% of the dry coffee matter is extracted, that puts 2 grams of coffee solids in your cup and leaves 8 grams in the filter.
Now we know that the wet coffee grounds in the filter generally weigh about twice what the original dry coffee weighed: in this case, 20 grams.
That means that 12 grams of the original 160 grams of water stay in the filter (8 grams leftover solids + 12 grams water = 20 grams wet grounds)
This leaves 160 - 12 = 148 grams of water end up in your cup.
2 grams of coffee solids + 148 grams water = 150 grams of delicious, steaming hot coffee.
2 grams solids / 150 grams beverage = approx 1.3 % solids in your cup

Now most refractometers are calibrated for sugar content ("brix"), not coffee solids. When measuring coffee, multiplying the brix reading by 0.85 gives a close approximation of coffee solids content. So a brix reading of 1.5-1.6 is the equivalent of about 1.3% coffee solids.

Please note, Nic, I revised my original post down from a recommended 1.6-1.7 brix to 1.5-1.6 brix. That's a small change, but probably it's significant. Also, Alan's digital refractometer is easier to use, but probably not more accurate than an inexpensive analog refractometer. As he said, you'll get better results if you cool the coffee down to room temp before taking a reading.

Note that if you want to test this "recipe" for yourself, it's not enough to simply use the recommended coffee/water ratio. It's also necessary to extract the recommended amount of coffee solids from the dry coffee. This can be done by taste, or it can be done more reproducibly using an instrument.

Ultimately, of course, your personal taste is the final judge of what is optimum, and it's gonna vary for different coffees. Also, Mark and Alan seem to prefer a very different cup.  That's what keep this interesting.

 
-AndyS
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nicfortin
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nicfortin
Joined: 6 Nov 2006
Posts: 90
Location: Quebec city, QC
Expertise: Pro Barista

Espresso: Home: LaSpaz S1  -  Work :...
Grinder: Home : K30 Vario, Virtuoso...
Vac Pot: CONA : Junior Kitchen, 1950'...
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Roaster: Intelligentsia, Behmor
Posted Thu Oct 2, 2008, 7:16pm
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

RapidCoffee Said:

According to various Web sites, the SCAA recommends a brewing ratio of 3.75oz coffee to 64oz water for drip coffee. So does Scott Rao, in The Professional Barista's Handbook. This results in a coffee:water ratio of 1:17, very close to Andy's recommendation of 1:16 for Aeropress brew.

Posted October 2, 2008 link

I never visualized it that way... :-o
I've always used 60g per liter.
So 60g per 1000ml and 1000ml of water is aprox. 1000g  ---> 60:1000 = 1:16.666
Am I right to think that if I want to use a ratio in coffee brewing (or anyhthing else) both "side of the ratio should be in the same units?  1:17 --> 1g:17g or 1oz:17oz or 1lq.oz:17lq.oz  


RapidCoffee Said:

Mark prefers a brew ratio of 1:12 for Aeropress brewing. The Aeropress scoop holds 12-13g coffee, and the instruction sheet recommends diluting 36cc of liquid espresso with 4oz water for an Americano. This results in a brew ratio of 1:12 to 1:13. This matches my personal taste preferences for AP brew, which tastes weak to me if diluted to a 1:16 brew ratio.

Posted October 2, 2008 link

By using a 36cc (36ml I guess) diluted wouldn't it be a bit different than brewing 12-13g of coffee with 5.0-5.2oz(36cc + 4oz) of water ? Tastewise I mean.

cheers
nic (head full of questions marks right now...)

 
Enjoy your coffees with Respect  :^)
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BGA0531
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nicfortin
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nicfortin
Joined: 6 Nov 2006
Posts: 90
Location: Quebec city, QC
Expertise: Pro Barista

Espresso: Home: LaSpaz S1  -  Work :...
Grinder: Home : K30 Vario, Virtuoso...
Vac Pot: CONA : Junior Kitchen, 1950'...
Drip: Aeropress
Roaster: Intelligentsia, Behmor
Posted Thu Oct 2, 2008, 7:27pm
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

andys Said:

Hi Nic, hi John:

The results of taste testing by various coffee research groups, going back many years, seem to converge on fairly consistent parameters for the best brewed coffee:
About 20% (by weight) of the original dry coffee matter should end up in your cup.
Sufficient water should be used to dilute that extracted matter down to a strength of about 1.3% (IOW, 1.3% coffee "solids," 98.7% water).
....
That's what keep this interesting.

Posted October 2, 2008 link

That answer to lot of quesitons right now

THX!

cheers
nic

 
Enjoy your coffees with Respect  :^)
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BGA0531
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
Joined: 4 Dec 2004
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Posted Thu Oct 2, 2008, 9:11pm
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

nicfortin Said:

I've always used 60g per liter.
So 60g per 1000ml and 1000ml of water is aprox. 1000g  ---> 60:1000 = 1:16.666
Am I right to think that if I want to use a ratio in coffee brewing (or anyhthing else) both "side of the ratio should be in the same units?  1:17 --> 1g:17g or 1oz:17oz or 1lq.oz:17lq.oz

Posted October 2, 2008 link

Well, you can't use liquid volume measurements (liquid ounces) for coffee grinds. Use weight (mass) instead; i.e., grams or ounces.

nicfortin Said:

By using a 36cc (36ml I guess) diluted wouldn't it be a bit different than brewing 12-13g of coffee with 5.0-5.2oz(36cc + 4oz) of water ? Tastewise I mean.

Posted October 2, 2008 link

Sure. Any change to brewing conditions will change the taste. But the coffee:water brew ratio is certainly one of the most fundamental parameters. A widely accepted brew ratio standard would be a Good Thing. Not to follow blindly, but as a starting point for experimentation.

BTW, I computed the Aeropress brewing ratio using numbers from the instruction sheet. This ignores liquid retained by the puck. The "actual" brew ratio will be closer to 1:16, perhaps around 1:14 to 1:15. So I think we're all in the same ballpark.
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andys
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andys
Joined: 10 May 2003
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Location: NY
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Posted Sun Feb 22, 2009, 10:08pm
Subject: Re: Recapping the Summer by Mark Prince
 

AlanAdler Said:

I now routinely get 20% extraction with 175F water and about 30 seconds press time.  And with an even finer grind and longer press time I've gone as high as 26% extraction with 175F water.  

Interestingly, I did not taste any harshening of the flavor at 26% extraction.  I believe that was due to the 175F water and the relatively short wet time.

Posted September 23, 2008 link


26% solids extraction would normally result in a harsh/bitter cup. The reason you don't taste this is because you have a protocol for measuring extraction which is different from the usual method.

Everyone in the coffee world (SCAA, SCAE, NCC, GHCC, MRICBC, etc) uses a "standard" formula similar to:
Extraction percent = 0.85 x Brix x (beverage wt) / (input coffee weight)

Except you use your own wildcat formula:
Extraction percent = 0.85 x Brix x (input water wt) / (input coffee weight)

That is why your extraction yields sound high, but in fact they are not. Without seeing your data, I don't know what your  percentages would be using "standard" methods, but you could easily recalculate and tell us.

 
-AndyS
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