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Adding milk to drip coffee
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alvinfks
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Joined: 7 May 2012
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Posted Thu May 17, 2012, 1:39am
Subject: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

Hi all, I find that while mixing the drip coffee with milk,

Pouring the milk and coffee at the same time in to a cup taste a lot better than pouring milk into a glass of coffee or vice versa.

I tired it a few times and very much prefer the former. Why is that?
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cerridwyn
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Posted Thu May 17, 2012, 5:13am
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

I would imagine it changes the temperature lowering it a bit more but I could be wrong. And that it likely gives a more even distribution. While I know some who add whitener stir it a lot, others just put a blob on top and let it diffuse. The latter would lead to a very uneven distribution.

It has been over 40 years since I whitened my coffee, but that's an interesting observation.

 
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calblacksmith
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Posted Thu May 17, 2012, 6:14am
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

I really can't see why it would make any difference but if you can taste the difference then just do it your way. Sometimes we think something is true but in truth, it makes no difference.

To find out for sure, have someone else make your coffee for you for a few weeks and have them mix up the methods of making your coffee and you then say which is which. If you can pick out the different ways it is made consistently, then it truly makes a difference.

However it goes though, drink it any way you want to and enjoy!

 
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Wayne P.
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__________
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Posted Thu May 17, 2012, 8:32am
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

The formal way to serve cafe au lait is to use 2 matched pots - one for coffee and one for hot milk - one in each hand and pour them at the same time.  

Don't know if it affects the taste, but it does look stylish.

It's also tricky to do without some practice.
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emradguy
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Posted Thu May 17, 2012, 10:33am
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

I agree with Wayne.  I can't see any reason for the order of mixing to make any difference at all.  It would surprise me, if you can really tell the difference in a blind taste test.  My suspicion is you're ratios are slightly varied.  Maybe the color change (assuming that's your cue) causes you to reach the mixing endpoint at different times depending on whether you start with coffee, or milk or together.  You might want to try using measured aliquots and then do the different mixing orders, especially if you have difficulty finding someone to run you through the blind test.

 
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VernS
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Posted Thu May 17, 2012, 8:36pm
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

Alvin, your preferred method will minimize the temperature fluctuations that your coffee and milk mixture experiences during the pouring cycle.
I am making the assumption that your coffee is hotter than your milk. When milk is added to hotter coffee the initial portion of the milk will experience a greater temperature shock than the final portion since the coffee and milk mixture is cooled as more milk is added. This method will also result in a very  slightly lower temperature when the pouring is completed. This is because, if other factors are the same  , the rate of heat transfer depends on the temperature differential, and the temperature difference between the hot coffee and the cup or surrounding air is greatest before the milk is added.
I do not know if I can taste the changes these temperature differences make, but certainly when taken to extremes hot temperatures permanently change the taste of milk.
Your method also maintains an almost identical coffee to milk ratio from beginning to end. I do not know if this could change the taste but I would be very interested to hear any theories.
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emradguy
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Posted Fri May 18, 2012, 10:37am
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

VernS Said:

Your method also maintains an almost identical coffee to milk ratio from beginning to end.

Posted May 17, 2012 link

that's a big leap.  the ratios will be highly dependent on the pour rate with each hand.  I can't believe that his pour rates don't differ between his two hands from time to time.  I think to establish that fact, he needs a method to quantify the amount of coffee and milk in each pour...then you can comment about indentical/consistent ratios.

 
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Silas
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Posted Fri Aug 3, 2012, 7:00pm
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

__________ Said:

The formal way to serve cafe au lait is to use 2 matched pots - one for coffee and one for hot milk - one in each hand and pour them at the same time.  

Don't know if it affects the taste, but it does look stylish.

It's also tricky to do without some practice.

Posted May 17, 2012 link

The only proper way to observe the masters of this is to come on down to New Orleans to the Cafe DuMonde across from Jackson Square and watch it being done.  Old hands at it.....and, of course, you get the proper "ambient aromas" of nearby horse manure, stale liquor, urine, and other stange scents wafting from the street.

 Having lived in New Orleans a few years, it became a ritual.  Oh.....and don't INHALE as you bite into a powdered sugar coated beignet!!
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__________
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Posted Sat Aug 4, 2012, 12:57am
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

Oh, I dunno - I'm now pretty good at serving the mix people ask for without having to go to New Orleans ;o)  And of course, to do it properly the right pot pours into the left side of the cup/bowl and vice versa.

It is easier with pots that have longer fairly narrow curved spouts, rather than those which have more of a jug type lip.  Some cafe au lait sets have one of each style, and the rate at which they pour differs.  The best ones to use are those where both pots have the same shape spout.
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NobbyR
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NobbyR
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Posted Sat Aug 4, 2012, 3:17am
Subject: Re: Adding milk to drip coffee
 

This discussion seems to me like the old British question: tea or milk first?  ;-)

 
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