Our Valued Sponsor
OpinionsConsumer ReviewsGuides and How TosCoffeeGeek ReviewsResourcesForums
Coffee: Machines and Brewing Methods
Help me fix my cup of coffee :( - IT'S FIXED!! :D
Cafe Solutions
Commercial sales and service, nationwide installation, equipment leasing options.
www.seattlecoffeegear.com
 
Not Logged in: Log In to Postlog in
New Topics updated topics   New Posts new posts   Unanswered Posts new unanswered  
Search Discussion Board search   Discussion Board FAQ faq   Signup sign up  
Discussions > Coffee > Machines > Help me fix my...  
view previous topic | view next topic | view all topics
showing page 1 of 2 last page next page
Author Messages
nathanscupofcoffee
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Jun 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Fri Jun 22, 2012, 6:13pm
Subject: Help me fix my cup of coffee :( - IT'S FIXED!! :D
 

What's up guys? First time poster (hopefully I'm posting this in the right section - and hopefully this question isn't overly redundant!)

Lately, my coffee just sucks...

I've been making coffee at home for a while using a Melitta and a regular electric kettle. I was getting a "good" cup of coffee but I wanted to step it up a bit and see if I could do a little better. I got a Hario V60 dripper (size 2) and a Hario Kettle. I'm using a Kyocera manual burr grinder. Something changed though... because all of the sudden, I'm unable to get even a decent cup out of this. In fact, it's so bad that I can't drink it :( It has a weird sort of bitter ash-like taste. Right now I'm trying to brew a cup of coffee that's about 12 to 14oz. I'm using ~22 grams of coffee ground to about medium or medium-fine. The beans are fresh from a local place. Water is filtered and brought to about 200-205 degrees. I rinse the paper filter first, and then I'll usually poke a small divot into the grounds with my finger. I start blooming the coffee by covering the grounds with a layer of water and letting it sit and bloom for 30 to 40 seconds. Then I'll go in there and make a clock-wise pour slowly from the center, stop, and repeat a couple times until the cup is about 12oz full or so. Every time the coffee is freaking nasty. I've been trying for over a week. Tried different ground settings (from coarse down to as fine as possible), and I've tried different amounts. Right now, I'm just using some recommended setting but I'm still not getting it... so, is there something that I'm neglecting? I doubt that it's something small, because the results are too horrible. :/ The grinder is my most likely suspect but only by process of elimination. The grind seems to look pretty uniform and fine.

Any tips or insight? Pleeaase - I want to have a good cup of coffee again in the morning. :)
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
TheSunInsideYou
Senior Member
TheSunInsideYou
Joined: 16 Feb 2012
Posts: 206
Location: NJ and NYC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Breville BES900XL
Grinder: Laranzato HC-600, OE LIDO,...
Vac Pot: Yama 3
Drip: Hario V60, Chemex
Posted Fri Jun 22, 2012, 9:23pm
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

The bitters make me think that you're letting the coffee overextract, but if you've already tried to grind a bit coarser, then I dont know what to tell you. It sounds like you're doing it all pretty by the book. The only thing you didn't mention is how long your brew time is. It should be around 2-2:30min, adjusted to taste. Maybe try a slow consistent pour, without stopping, aiming for that brew time.

Hope it helps!

-Dave-
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
randytsuch
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Jun 2009
Posts: 578
Location: LA, Ca
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Expobar Office with...
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Roaster: Customized Alpenrost,...
Posted Fri Jun 22, 2012, 10:30pm
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

22 grams sounds a little high to me.
The Kyocero should be fine.  I might try taking it apart and cleaning it, but I doubt it will help.

Where are you getting your beans from?  Any chance they changed something?
Depending where in LA you are, there are good beans around.

Your technique seems fine to me, and it shouldn't be that hard to get drinkable coffee if you have good beans.

Randy
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
nathanscupofcoffee
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Jun 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Fri Jun 22, 2012, 11:43pm
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

Thanks for the replies. I feel like I was getting a better cup with the Melitta when I used less coffee and a finer grind - but I was also using a blade grinder then, and I wanted to do better. Inadvertently I've been doing much worse. I think the taste I'm getting might be more like "flat" than it is bitter... it's hard to describe, but it has this really ashy, lifeless taste, and the body feels a tad heavy. Hmmm I think I'll try a finer grind again. Maybe my technique wasn't right last time. I'm using two level Hario scoops, which are supposed to be approx 10 grams each. Most people I've talked to see to recommend between 20 and 25 grams for a 12 oz serving. I'll try timing my brew tomorrow and report back.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
al_bongo
Senior Member


Joined: 26 Aug 2008
Posts: 450
Location: Scotland
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Starbucks Barista
Grinder: Solis 166/Iberital MC2
Vac Pot: Cona
Drip: Chemex/Melitta
Posted Sat Jun 23, 2012, 4:51am
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

If I were you I'd switch back to the Melitta and see how you go. The Hario V60s are very popular though I'm not convinced they are the most consistent or easiest to use especially for single cup. Too easy to go wrong with only a small variation in technique.

I like the idea of ceramic more than the idea of the Hario cones. Single hole Bonmac might be worth considering assuming the Melitta produces a good cup using your current grinder etc.

If the Melitta makes a better cup for you I don't see the point of using the Hario, nor do I think the Hario is inherently capable of making a better cup than the Melitta.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
nathanscupofcoffee
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Jun 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Sat Jun 23, 2012, 9:38am
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

I tried again twice this morning -- going to try once more. 20 grams both times, tried a finer grind and timed it. Should the brew time include the pre-infusion and blooming? or am I supposed to start timing it after the 30-45 second bloom is done? I timed the whole thing and got about 2 min and 30 seconds including the bloom period. The grind was about "table salt" fine, but not near espresso fine. I did a slow continuous pour. Not really that bitter this time, but again zero flavor and hard to drink. :/ I'm going to switch back to the Melitta soon if I can't get this right. I've always gotten my coffee from Cafecito Organico in Los Angeles, and it has always been amazing - so I can't imagine that it's the coffee... ugh, this is getting frustrating.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
frank828
Senior Member


Joined: 23 Feb 2011
Posts: 581
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: GS3
Grinder: RoburE, Kenia
Vac Pot: Hario
Drip: Brazen, CCD, Aeropress, V60,...
Roaster: Behmor, Air Crazy
Posted Sat Jun 23, 2012, 11:17am
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

could be the coffee.  

the last bag of beans that i got from intelligentsia were terrible.  ugh.

see what the same coffee tastes like out of the melitta using the same technique you were using before.  


also a tip about the v60 that really helped me was to make sure to use enough water during the preinfusion.  after i started weighing my water(during brewing), my cup improved noticeably.   intelligentsia has a good starting guide for v60   http://www.intelligentsiacoffee.com/brewing-guides
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
nathanscupofcoffee
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Jun 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Sat Jun 23, 2012, 3:02pm
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

I tried the Melitta again this morning - crap. Undrinkable. Just to be sure I bought a small bag of Stumptown beans (Costa Rican) from a place downtown. Ground them at home and got the same results... really acrid tasting, flat, and sort of stale. The roasting date is about 4 days old, so this shouldn't be happening. I inspected the grounds carefully and noticed a lot of inconsistency. Lots of powder, along with the larger chunks. I took the remaining whole beans that I got from Cafecito back and had them grind it for pour-over. Brought them back and went through the process again. The grounds were much more consistent from the coffee shop's burr grinder. This seems to have improved my cup of coffee, but just marginally so. The same taste still lingers in the cup. Honestly, it's still not satisfying. At this point I am stumped. (??) But I guess my grinder is borked anyways...

The guys who sold me the Stumptown beans recommended 28 grams of coffee for my 12 oz cup... sounds like a lot - I'm still using around 22.

I tried timing it as well - about 2 minutes from the start of the pre-infusion to the end of the brew. Seems too fast, and am I shooting for around 3 minutes total? or 3 minutes after bloom?

Thanks much everyone

*spits out coffee* :(
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
TheSunInsideYou
Senior Member
TheSunInsideYou
Joined: 16 Feb 2012
Posts: 206
Location: NJ and NYC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Breville BES900XL
Grinder: Laranzato HC-600, OE LIDO,...
Vac Pot: Yama 3
Drip: Hario V60, Chemex
Posted Sat Jun 23, 2012, 6:04pm
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

I'm using about 25-28g, about a 45s pre-infusion and a 2-2:30 brew after the pre-infusion. I "stop the time" once the drips slow to about 1 every 2s or so. But it sounds like it's the coffee. A couple grams or a few seconds of brew or a few clicks in the grind isn't going to be the difference between awesome and undrinkable. If it's undrinkable, and you're doing it mostly right, it's probably just the coffee.

-Dave-
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
frank828
Senior Member


Joined: 23 Feb 2011
Posts: 581
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: GS3
Grinder: RoburE, Kenia
Vac Pot: Hario
Drip: Brazen, CCD, Aeropress, V60,...
Roaster: Behmor, Air Crazy
Posted Sat Jun 23, 2012, 6:08pm
Subject: Re: Help me fix my cup of coffee :(
 

im guessing that the shop updoses and grinds accordingly(coarser) to get a properly extracted and faster cup of coffee.

if you want to use less coffee, just grind finer and let it extract longer.  ultimately it'll be up to you to dial in what you prefer.

if you had cafecito grind all your beans for you, you can expect your coffee to start going stale very quickly.  That first cup after they ground the beans will probably be the best from those beans.  

personally, i start my timer from when water first hits the grinds.  Some bean newer beans i let bloom/preinfuse longer and i'll keep that in mind when i observe the final time.  


try grinding finer, those hand grinders usually do a much better job at the finer settings than coarse.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
showing page 1 of 2 last page next page
view previous topic | view next topic | view all topics
Discussions > Coffee > Machines > Help me fix my...  
New Topics updated topics   New Posts new posts   Unanswered Posts new unanswered     Search Discussion Board search   Discussion Board FAQ faq   Signup sign up  
Not Logged in: Log In to Postlog in
Discussions Quick Jump:
Symbols: New Posts= New Posts since your last visit      No New Posts= No New Posts since last visit     Go to most recent post= Newest post
Forum Rules:
No profanity, illegal acts or personal attacks will be tolerated in these discussion boards.
No commercial posting of any nature will be tolerated; only private sales by private individuals, in the "Buy and Sell" forum.
No SEO style postings will be tolerated. SEO related posts will result in immediate ban from CoffeeGeek.
No cross posting allowed - do not post your topic to more than one forum, nor repost a topic to the same forum.
Who Can Read The Forum? Anyone can read posts in these discussion boards.
Who Can Post New Topics? Any registered CoffeeGeek member can post new topics.
Who Can Post Replies? Any registered CoffeeGeek member can post replies.
Can Photos be posted? Anyone can post photos in their new topics or replies.
Who can change or delete posts? Any CoffeeGeek member can edit their own posts. Only moderators can delete posts.
Probationary Period: If you are a new signup for CoffeeGeek, you cannot promote, endorse, criticise or otherwise post an unsolicited endorsement for any company, product or service in your first five postings.
Rocket R58 Double Boiler
Rocket Espresso R58 Double Boiler -  Everything you need for the perfect shot!
www.seattlecoffeegear.com
Home | Opinions | Consumer Reviews | Guides & How Tos | CoffeeGeek Reviews | Resources | Forums | Contact Us
CoffeeGeek.com, CoffeeGeek, and Coffee Geek, along with all associated content & images are copyright ©2000-2014 by Mark Prince, all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. Content, code, and images may not be reused without permission. Usage of this website signifies agreement with our Terms and Conditions. (0.261029958725)
Privacy Policy | Copyright Info | Terms and Conditions | CoffeeGeek Advertisers | RSS | Find us on Google+