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Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
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squaremile
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Posted Sun Mar 23, 2014, 11:16am
Subject: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

I lined up my steel Kalita Wave 155, small ceramic Beehouse, and small plastic v60 this morning and found some interesting results. I brewed them all with 12g of coffee (Heart - Columbia La Palmera roast 5 days ago), 207 degree water (between 198-200g of brew water), and got them all within the same TDS/Ext range on the VST refractometer (1.28 - 1.32; 19.00 - 19.50), and did the same filter washing and staged brewing process for each.

For grind, the Wave (15) used one click coarser than the Beehouse (14), which was one click coarser than the v60 (13) on the Virtuoso. In order of finishing, the v60 was the fastest (2:25), then the Beehouse (2:30), and then the Wave (2:45). In terms of taste, the Wave had a really pronounced acidity without much sweetness, the v60 was somewhat muddled and had an earthy note that was not in the others, and the Beehouse was the sweetest and most balanced.

I preferred the Beehouse cup, then the Wave, then the v60. There are obviously small differences in the TDS/Ext, that I did not believe accounted for the taste differences. What I really may be taking from it, however, is that maybe each of these features a different aspect of the coffee. I'm also going to imagine the filter paper differences account for a lot of the variation.

Anyone else ever do this? I hope this breakdown might be helpful for future readers thinking about which of these to buy.
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MWJB
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Posted Sun Mar 23, 2014, 12:52pm
Subject: Re: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

Very interesting Will, I've never done exactly what you have done, but I have used various drippers & papers as secondary filters for steeped brews. Obviously this changes things somewhat as there's no bed to also act as a filter medium, so my perceptions were of the different papers alone.

Were your wave papers the bleached white ones? I found these to be quite sweet. The V60 papers gave the impression that the extraction was a little further along (least sweet, darker, drier flavours, more caramel - not my first choice for secondary filtering), white bleached Filtra/Filtropa Melitta style papers were balanced & sweet. Chemex paper was  the closest to the control, a creamier, more viscous mouthfeel than the other filter papers & usally some pithyness (not necessarily unpleasant), but less sweet than white Wave & Filtropa. Aeropress seemed to push choc & juicy acidity...which I now can't hellp but recognise in all my Aeropress brews, despite wildly differing methods.

Have you got a Swissgold to compare to the Beehouse paper?
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squaremile
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Location: Portlandia
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Posted Sun Mar 23, 2014, 6:52pm
Subject: Re: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

Good Q. I used the bleached Wave papers, the regular Hario papers, and Melita #2 bleached white for the Beehouse. And no, I do not have a Swissgold
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MWJB
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Posted Mon Mar 24, 2014, 4:09am
Subject: Re: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

Cheers, I only ask as I have questions about how much the paper itself contributes to perceptions (rather than measurements) of over/under extraction? Also I wonder whether metal/permanent filters (with good protocol & reasonable solids in the cup) allow any leeway, or skew preference points...aah, so many questions, so little time...

One more though, with the flat bottomed Wave paper, is there a possibility that the preference point shifts up slightly, compared to the cones?
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squaremile
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Location: Portlandia
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Posted Mon Mar 24, 2014, 12:48pm
Subject: Re: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

In terms of extraction? I could def try it out, any zone you are thinking of specifically? I'd also be interested in hearing the rationale.
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MWJB
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Posted Mon Mar 24, 2014, 1:19pm
Subject: Re: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

My hunch is that the flatter bed should extract more evenly, than a cone, perhaps get to it's peak of sweetness around 20% or a tad higher? I did some drip brews in an Aeropress, lightly tamped bed so I could control drip-through better, the plunger kept a more consistent flow rate through the bed than relying on gravity & I found there my preferred extractions were ~21% (no esoteric grinders involved).

Just to be clear, I'm not saying these brews were "better" tastewise than a cone brew, nor that it was related to 21% specifically, just that was where these brews seemed to peak, 19% was typically a little unripe with this method. Wonky beds really played havoc with this, but if the bed stayed flat they were very predictable. 22% was a push too far.

I have also had some (unintended) 23-24% brews in a flat bed brewer that were on the high side of normal tastewise, even with good sweetness, these extraction levels would have been sink jobs with my paper cone brewers. But there were other differences there, between that and the Wave.

Don't knock yourself out unless you're particularly curious ..I have a couple of wave brewers but they're just a bit neglected at the minute, I should really get off my ass & test out my own theories ;-) I'm just a bit lazy & steep almost everything these days.
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MWJB
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Posted Wed Mar 26, 2014, 12:24pm
Subject: Re: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

Will, try the Wave 155 at <21%, see what you think? Gentle stir at draw down to keep the bed flat.
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clm
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Posted Wed Mar 26, 2014, 10:45pm
Subject: Re: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

I'm always looking for a good pour over method.  Have you done the same test with identical papers in each brewer?  I've read that many prefer cloth to paper filters, but my experience with cloth hasn't been great.  I can't get a hot enough pour over finished brew using a cloth filter - I'm not sure if this is due to the container or the slower drip time with cloth.   I fall back to paper, but your tests with different brewers is really interesting.  Please excuse my ignorance, but what do you mean by 21% to 22%?
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MWJB
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Joined: 1 Jun 2013
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Location: UK
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Grinder: Rocky, Lido, Porlex, Hario...
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Posted Thu Mar 27, 2014, 2:45am
Subject: Re: Pourover comparisons: Wave v Beehouse v v60
 

All the pour over methods I have tried can produce a good cup, I've never tried a cloth filter though, nor am I really too concerned about having hot coffee. Are you pre-heating the carafe & cup?

"21% to 22%" refer to extraction yield measurements, the mass of the coffee dose that is dissolved into the cup (proportional to the dose...so 21% of 12g of coffee). Unfortunately you need to dehydrate your coffee samples, or use a coffee refractometer to identify this percentage, but going by taste is perfectly feasible - stick to a brew ratio and adjust grind and/or pour regime (pour in smaller pulses to achieve higher extraction, or in larger pulses to reduce extraction) whilst aiming for a sweet & balanced cup.

We only got on to the subject of Ext Yield specifically due to queries I had about the point at which the brewers might shine relative to each other, if you focus on one brewer at a time & are consistent you should be OK.
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