Category Archives: blog
First, check out this video. It’s just 1 minute and 45 seconds.
What do you think? This does have some potential, don’t you think? This was only my second time trying to fiddle with the brew like this, but I thought I’d get this out there for people to play with and see if you see any value in this type of brew manipulation… so you’ll see that my technique is completely rough.
A semi-quick post about filter coffee brewing and measurements. I’ve been seeing some Twitter activity from both ExtractMojo’ed and not-yet-Mojo’ed folks, who are exploring metrics related to brewing.
There are a shit-load of variables to wrap your brain around, but on the analyzing-the-resultant-brew side of things, three big ones pop out: Yield, Strength, and Ratio.
If you’ve ever looked at the good ol’ Brewing Control Chart and been a little confused, or never bothered to look at it too closely, it’s about damn time that you did.
It really boils down to three questions:
1) Yield = How much did you get from the grounds?
2) Strength = How much ended up in the cup?
3) Ratio = How did you get there?
I have a question for you brewing nerds out there. I’m having trouble wrapping my brain around something and maybe y’all can help me figure it out.
Currently, we measure the mass of the water being used (which initially makes sense), but not all of it ends up in the cup. So my question is: How does the mass of the water that is retained in the grounds (or otherwise does not end up in the cup) relate or pertain to the calculations for extraction yield?
I wasn’t gonna do it, but I’m gonna have to put my two-cents in on this little article by illycaffe barista, Giorgio Milos. Or, more specifically, some of my friends’ reactions to the little article.
First: Industry folks seem to be up in arms about the statement, “I’m talking about 20 to 25 grams of coffee for a single espresso shot!” Folks on blogs and such have objected to that claim, denying that it’s even possible. Between y’all and Giorgio, for better or for worse, you’re both right and both wrong.
Intelligentsia’s dynamic Monadnock video is a provocative one, for sure.
On the positive side:
(1) It’s a great way to introduce retail customers to the world of coffee flavors and origins.
(2) It’s also an ideal way to sell beans, kettles, grinders and single-serve brewers. The customer observes the process, thinks of their morning ritual at home and says “I can do that!”
(3) The fact that the baristas are sweating the details of each cup helps convince people to pay and tip a little extra in recognition of the effort involved.
Perhaps more than the technical or sensory aspects of coffee, I’ve always been more interested in the way that coffee fits into our lives, our cultures, and our psyches. It’s absolutely what attracted me to coffee in the first place.
I haven’t picked up this book yet, but I will be very soon: “The Authenticity Hoax: How We Get Lost Finding Ourselves,” by Andrew Potter.
Similar in subject matter to David Brooks’ “Bobos in Paradise,” Potter delves into issues that are clearly relevant to the culture around specialty coffee, particularly in North America. Check out this transcript or audio of an interview with Potter yesterday on NPR for an overview. Doesn’t it sound like he’s talking about certain issues that we talk about in the specialty coffee industry?
Jim Schulman recently posted a brief guide to tweaking the flavor balance and texture of your espresso shots on home-barista.com.
So my question is: who else has published stuff like this? It may be my imagination, but it seems very, very hard to find similar guides from other sources. Why is everyone so secretive on the subject?
iPhone and iPod and iPad users, take note:
Extractmojo coffee and espresso software is now available for you, too. Vince Fedele has developed a very portable, powerful version of his extraction analysis system that will likely improve the quality and consistency of your beverages.
David Walsh has provided an excellent description of the app on his blog.
“Resistance is futile, you will be assimilated.”