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Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
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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 Mon Feb 11, 2013, 8:08pm
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

CMIN Said:

Hario slim works great for coarse needs, I have one as well. That and fresh beans and the Chemex and you'll see a massive improvement in taste. You can go onto youtube and look up how people are using them and tricks etc, think Seattle Coffee Gear has a good video in it with hints.

You may just have to play around with the Hario in the beginning to figure out what setting (click) you need to use.

Posted February 11, 2013 link

If you don't want to spring for a gooseneck kettle (the BonaVita electric kettle would be your best option), you'll get better results with an infusion brewer like an Aeropress or Clever Coffee Dripper than with a pour-over like a Chemex. Which is not to discourage you from pour-overs—you can make great coffee in a Chemex—just be aware that they're not truly the low budget option they're touted as, unless you find a watering can or something that will serve as a makeshift kettle.
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roach56
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Jun 2010
Posts: 137
Location: USA
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Feb 12, 2013, 6:45am
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

Check your thrift stores for water kettles. I just found a really nice one, not a goose neck but I can pour into another receptacle to pour with.
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 2,947
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Tue Feb 12, 2013, 8:54am
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

I personally wouldn't discard the idea of using a Chemex just because I can't yet afford a proper pouring kettle.  Like others have said, you can substitute a makeshift acceptable vessel for the time being.  Sure, you'll appreciate a good pouring kettle over that, but until you can afford one, you'll still be able to enjoy good coffee.  Sometimes we (myself included) get caught up in where we've gotten to in terms of equipment, knowledge and enjoyment, and forget that we were reasonably happy with (dare I say) lesser stuff.

.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 2,947
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Tue Feb 12, 2013, 4:55pm
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

here, check this kettle out...

http://coffeegeek.com/forums/members/buysell/615262

.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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msboo
Senior Member


Joined: 10 Nov 2012
Posts: 243
Location: Kentucky
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Baratza Virtuoso, Capresso...
Drip: Technivorm, Bonavita
Posted Tue Feb 12, 2013, 5:05pm
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

Somebody mentioned using a Clever Dripper---that would be great, I would think easier as a beginner for you than pour over. Using a regular teapot you'd probably obtain more consistent results from the start (don't have to buy a gooseneck). Then again, as for pour over, I did very well when I had no clue as to what I was doing AND was also using a regular teapot----I preheated a glass-lined thermal carafe for 5 mins, measured my water and put on to boil, scooped out my coffee into a Melitta paper filter and filter basket....  I waited apprx 30 seconds off boil then proceeded to pour around slowly to saturate, when water barely covered the grounds I stopped and let it drip down then slowly pour more water, drip and so on til done. Considering how clueless I was at the time that coffee turned out pretty good. It's good to know you can make a good cup with the bare necessities! Today with just bare necessities I would start with a good grinder like Baratza Encore and good beans---you'll be satisfied and happy.
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barkingburro
Senior Member
barkingburro
Joined: 23 Nov 2011
Posts: 176
Location: Irvine, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Vac Pot: Trifecta MB, CafeSolo,...
Posted Wed Feb 13, 2013, 7:04am
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

So many people have responded to the question of proper grinding/brewing technique, and only a couple to the question of coffee/roast quality.  So, in the interest of balance, I have a remarkably similar experience to tell.

I was just at the point of upgrading both my brewer and grinder, but wanted to try a higher quality coffee.  So I went to the store and chose a medium dark blend from Peet's coffee.  When I opened up the bag, it smelled harsh.  Not actually foul, just unpleasant.  The resulting brew was no better.

I had a local Peet's shop, so I stopped in and asked them to make me something smooth and flavorful.  The guy behind the counter did a pour-over of a single origin Kenyan or something or other, and guess what?  It tasted extremely harsh--all char and smoke.

Over time, I tracked down a few SOs and blends from a reputable local roaster and a few good internet purveyors, and have acquired a better understanding of my own taste preferences.  Now-a-days, my coffee beans always smell heavenly, and their taste generally follows suit.

Moral of story: find a coffee you like before trying to grind and brew it correctly.

Corollary #1: Not all "better" brands of coffee will taste better.  Quite a few will actually suck.

Corollary #2: Most will disappoint.

 
- Michael
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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 Wed Feb 13, 2013, 7:51pm
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

barkingburro Said:

So many people have responded to the question of proper grinding/brewing technique, and only a couple to the question of coffee/roast quality.  So, in the interest of balance, I have a remarkably similar experience to tell.

I was just at the point of upgrading both my brewer and grinder, but wanted to try a higher quality coffee.  So I went to the store and chose a medium dark blend from Peet's coffee.  When I opened up the bag, it smelled harsh.  Not actually foul, just unpleasant.  The resulting brew was no better.

I had a local Peet's shop, so I stopped in and asked them to make me something smooth and flavorful.  The guy behind the counter did a pour-over of a single origin Kenyan or something or other, and guess what?  It tasted extremely harsh--all char and smoke.

Over time, I tracked down a few SOs and blends from a reputable local roaster and a few good internet purveyors, and have acquired a better understanding of my own taste preferences.  Now-a-days, my coffee beans always smell heavenly, and their taste generally follows suit.

Moral of story: find a coffee you like before trying to grind and brew it correctly.

Corollary #1: Not all "better" brands of coffee will taste better.  Quite a few will actually suck.

Corollary #2: Most will disappoint.

Posted February 13, 2013 link

I wouldn't consider Peet's a "better" brand of coffee. It's been my experience that a good roaster will ALWAYS produce a better cup (even when the flavors aren't to my preferences) than a mediocre or poor roaster. Good roasters source better coffees and have the ability and desire to make something good out of it. I've never gotten a bad cup from a high-level roaster like Verve, Ritual, or Stumptown. And there are some roasters that heven't ever supplied me with a good cup (no need to bad mouth too specifically).

And I've never been disappointed by anything I ordered off of GoCoffeeGo.

-Dave-
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JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,368
Location: Berkeley, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Elektra T1 - La Valentina -...
Grinder: Mahlkönig K30 Vario -...
Vac Pot: Yama 5-cup
Drip: CCD, Chemex
Roaster: No, no, not another...
Posted Thu Feb 14, 2013, 8:52am
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

As you've learned by now, a blade grinder is faster than, but no better than, taking a big chef's knife and chopping the beans repeatedly until approximately the right size . . .

Look at "the" list.

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
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dyqik
Senior Member


Joined: 7 Oct 2011
Posts: 383
Location: Cambridge, MA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Bezzera BZ07 PM
Grinder: Baratza Virtuoso Preciso...
Vac Pot: Cona D
Drip: Bona-Vita, CCD, Aeropress.
Roaster: Gene Cafe, Modded Poppers
Posted Thu Feb 14, 2013, 9:24am
Subject: Re: Upgraded to Freshground beans with no improvement in taste, please help
 

barkingburro Said:

Corollary #1: Not all "better" brands of coffee will taste better.  Quite a few will actually suck.

Corollary #2: Most will disappoint.

Posted February 13, 2013 link

Alternative Corollary #1 and #2:  Not everything that claims to be a better brand of coffee actually is.  Particularly if they produce enough volume to be available in every supermarket and to have multiple shops in every city and even more so if they sell anything in a K-cup or pod.
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