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Bunn Phase Brew - Help Coffee Quality
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Discussions > Coffee > Machines > Bunn Phase Brew...  
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Stringbender
Senior Member
Stringbender
Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 11
Location: Cincinnati
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Hamilton Beach
Grinder: Kitchen Aid Pro-Line
Drip: Bunn Phase Brew HG
Roaster: Popcorn Popper
Posted Mon Dec 17, 2012, 11:31am
Subject: Bunn Phase Brew - Help Coffee Quality
 

Really been trying to figure this one out..

I've searched, and closest I've come is this post...
"Re: Bunn Phase Brew™ - New Bunn Brewer"

I've had a few runs of Phase Brew HG issues, and I'm on my 3rd machine... I'm having lots of trouble getting the brew to be right on this one and I wanted some advice before I called customer service again, if possible. I contacted them recently and I requested a restricted flow showerhead and was told the HG already has one...

My coffee just isn't right.... I'm the only coffee drinker at home, and I typically brew a 6 cup (30 oz) pot. I've been using fresh beans, both bought locally and/or roasted myself. I've also tried Char$ Christmas blend... I use a KitchenAid grinder and have tried varying the grind setting from 5 - 7, heck I don't go much finer than 7 for my espresso... and I always use filtered water and I use Bunn paper filters. Water temp seems good from the Bunn.  I have a scale setup right beside my grinder and I have been weighing the beans before I grind them.  Going by the chart at Black Bear http://blackbearcoffee.com/resources/83 for my 30 oz of water I've been measuring out around 50-55 grams of beans, and frankly the coffee has been coming out smelling and tasting 'grassy' or bitter or flat or you name it. Just not a good result. When I tried a Sumatra from the local guy it was flat out undrinkable....

HELP!

What am I doing wrong? I'm trying to analyze this before I blame the HG, cause I like the design of this one, but I just can't seem to get the coffee right.

Any Suggestions?
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Stringbender
Senior Member
Stringbender
Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 11
Location: Cincinnati
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Hamilton Beach
Grinder: Kitchen Aid Pro-Line
Drip: Bunn Phase Brew HG
Roaster: Popcorn Popper
Posted Tue Dec 18, 2012, 7:41am
Subject: Re: Bunn Phase Brew - Help Coffee Quality
 

No suggestions?

Should I go up to 60g, that would put me at a ratio of 1.35 instead of the 1.24 that the 55g is supposed to give me.

Should I grind finer or coarser? 2 filters to slow the drip?

I don't recall having this issue with the 2 previous HG's that went bad...

The Phase Brew thread mentions a black shower head, mine has a green one...
Thoughts?
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Lee_M
Senior Member
Lee_M
Joined: 2 Dec 2012
Posts: 51
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: I live coffee

Grinder: Baratza Encore
Drip: V60
Roaster: Popper
Posted Tue Dec 18, 2012, 8:18pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Phase Brew - Help Coffee Quality
 

That's a reasonable ratio. I would experiment with grind before changing your dose. If 7 is an espresso grind, try grinding coarser, unless you're getting boulders at <5. Make sure your grinder is clean.

Do you enjoy the coffee you're using brewed by other methods? Grassiness usually indicates under-roasting.

Have you measured the water temperature in the brewer? Does the bed of spent grounds look even?

If your water is picking up off-flavors along the way (due to dirtiness, bad plastic, etc), that could be a problem. Try using the brewer with no coffee, just water. Let it cool and taste.
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Stringbender
Senior Member
Stringbender
Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 11
Location: Cincinnati
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Hamilton Beach
Grinder: Kitchen Aid Pro-Line
Drip: Bunn Phase Brew HG
Roaster: Popcorn Popper
Posted Wed Dec 19, 2012, 8:43am
Subject: Re: Bunn Phase Brew - Help Coffee Quality
 

Thanks Lee, I'll try just the water through the brewer, see how that tastes.

Temp is hot, but I've not put a probe to it yet, I had measured the previous 2 HG's and they were good, temp wise, but then I didn't have this problem with them before they died, don't know why I've not tested this one! DOH! Go figure, I'd looked at about everything else. Spent grounds are even, with nothing looking out of sorts there.

The bad taste has been with every bean I've used in this machine, my home roasted dark roast, Starbucks Christmas blend, and others. The grassy part was with the local guys Sumatra, and I think it probably was under roasted.

The variety of beans I've used have been good in pour-overs and French press, well except the Sumatra, but I can't get a good pot out of the HG. One French Roast bean that I'd been buying for a long time, I'd just bought a new bag when I got the brewer, and I (privately) blamed the roaster of changing his bean and process when they tasted and smelled different. In retrospect, I'd just got the machine in when I'd gotten the new batch of beans...

Thanks for the reply.
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Stringbender
Senior Member
Stringbender
Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 11
Location: Cincinnati
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Hamilton Beach
Grinder: Kitchen Aid Pro-Line
Drip: Bunn Phase Brew HG
Roaster: Popcorn Popper
Posted Wed Dec 19, 2012, 6:06pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Phase Brew - Help Coffee Quality
 

Temp came out at just touching 190... using an instant read thermometer water out of the shower head hit 192 max....  but the real kicker came as plain water heated... the smell was there, and then when the water was cool enough to drink it had a VERY heavy plastic taste. Sounds like another bad HG.... made a pour over with the same beans I used this morning, same 50-55g of coffee and 30oz of water and the brew was fine.

Contacting Bunn on yet another one.
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Stringbender
Senior Member
Stringbender
Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 11
Location: Cincinnati
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Hamilton Beach
Grinder: Kitchen Aid Pro-Line
Drip: Bunn Phase Brew HG
Roaster: Popcorn Popper
Posted Tue Dec 25, 2012, 10:02am
Subject: Re: Bunn Phase Brew - Help Coffee Quality
 

Customer service is great as always... I have another one in route.
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Stringbender
Senior Member
Stringbender
Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 11
Location: Cincinnati
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Hamilton Beach
Grinder: Kitchen Aid Pro-Line
Drip: Bunn Phase Brew HG
Roaster: Popcorn Popper
Posted Sat Dec 29, 2012, 10:01am
Subject: Re: Bunn Phase Brew - Help Coffee Quality
 

Just an update...

Got the new Phase Brew in, and all I can say is the other ones I had must have not been exactly right to begin with... This one makes coffee better than any of the others I had, spray pattern and dispersion is perfect, temp measures at 205 and the flow through rate is spot on with the grounds being fully drenched and, with bloom, the level of grounds coming up to about 1/4-1/2 inch below the top of the filter.

I get a better tasting cup than I've gotten with any of the phase brew machines that I had to return, and it makes a great pot of coffee.

Well done Bunn, this is what I was looking for when I bought the Phase Brew to begin with.
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