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What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
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jpender
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jpender
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:49am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

boar_d_laze Said:

Rather than testing me, you take a turn:
Write an hypothesis which explains the known data, predicts new data, and post it here; then
Brew a few pots of immersion, and a few of pour-over at similar grind levels under similar conditions (including brew water temperature), and post your results.

Posted April 1, 2014 link

I have neither data nor hypothesis. I was simply trying to understand what you were saying.

I have to apologize because I realize now that I was reading what you had written backwards. I thought you were suggesting that fresh water would extract faster than water laden with dissolved solids. But if you're saying that you need to grind finer for a pour over then you're suggesting something else entirely.
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boar_d_laze
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:04am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

jpender Said:

... if you're saying that you need to grind finer for a pour over ...

Posted April 2, 2014 link

Yes, I am, but with a lot of qualifcation, caveat and quibble.  

If you want to get the same "degree of extraction," (not an official term, meant to refer to a location on the continuum of under to over-extracted), from given masses respectively of coffee and water, in a similar amount of brew time, at the same temperature, you'll need to grind finer for the pour over than for the immersion brew.

By way of a practical example, I grind 60g of coffee finer for my Chemex + Kone, than for my Espro (a press variant), use 1L of cold water heated to 200F, and around 4min total brew time (including bloom), at 200F to get coffee which splits the difference -- as exactly as I can get it -- between under and over extracted.  

Rich
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MWJB
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:18am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

boar_d_laze Said:

Yes, I am, but with some qualification (real men quibble).

That is, if you want to get the same "degree of extraction" (which, btw is not an official term), from an equal amount of coffee and water, in a similar amount of total time, at the same temperature, you'll need to grind finer for the pour over than for the immersion brew.  

Rich

Posted April 2, 2014 link

I've not found that to be the case, in fact the reverse is much more likely.

Coarse grinds can clamp extraction limit in immersion brews, you can still overextract coarse grinds in pourover if you slow the flow through the bed enough.
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boar_d_laze
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:25am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

MWJB Said:

I've not found that to be the case, in fact the reverse is much more likely.  Coarse grinds can clamp extraction limit in immersion brews, you can still overextract coarse grinds in pourover if you slow the flow through the bed enough.

Posted April 2, 2014 link

Mike,

You're changing one of my parameters, or at least stretching it ad absurdum, and then disagreeing.  Make up our minds.

Rich
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MWJB
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:32am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

boar_d_laze Said:

Mike,

You're changing one of my parameters, or at least stretching it ad absurdum, and then disagreeing.  Make up our minds.

Rich

Posted April 2, 2014 link

Sorry Rich, perhaps I'm misunderstanding...you seem to be saying that you need to grind finer for drip to reach equivalent TDS/Ext Yield, than for a French press using the same brew ratio, quantities & time?

Regards, Mark.
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jpender
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:36am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

boar_d_laze Said:

If you want to get the same "degree of extraction," (not an official term, meant to refer to a location on the continuum of under to over-extracted), from given masses respectively of coffee and water, in a similar amount of brew time, at the same temperature, you'll need to grind finer for the pour over than for the immersion brew.

By way of a practical example, I grind 60g of coffee finer for my Chemex + Kone, than for my Espro (a press variant), use 1L of cold water heated to 200F, and around 4min total brew time (including bloom), at 200F to get coffee which splits the difference -- as exactly as I can get it -- between under and over extracted.

Posted April 2, 2014 link

So "degree of extraction" is by taste, right? Fair enough. But you had earlier posted a hypothesis that this difference in optimal grind is due to the shorter contact time of each small parcel of water with the grounds in a pour over. That's what I don't understand.
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Frost
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Frost
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:36am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

MWJB Said:

Don't we already have an idea of what the difference would be? Hence Vince Fedele's concept of immersion yield? The immersion will be at a lower %TDS for the same time, grind, water & dose.

In practice, this is a tricky excercise to normalise things like %TDS, dose, grind, presence suspended solids, effect of paper filters etc. Comparing a paper drip to a French press seems too much of a stretch to me to get anything vaguely meaningful.

For the same dose & grind it wll take an awful lot longer for the immersion to hit the same/similar %TDS as the pourover...go too coarse & it simply may never do.

Today's excercise, take from it what you will...
2x Clever Drippers - 1x pourover, 1x immersion, 20g coffee (same coffee, same grind), 351g water, both using V60 02 papers (due to fine grind & I didn't want to clog a Filtropa on the immersion and cause a big deviation in %TDS). Immersion brew also utilised a Swissgold so that hopefully less brew had to drain through the bed (possibly driving up %TDS, new Clever can hit 23-24% Imm Yield easily with just the paper) & the filter paper, hopefully, largely just caught the fines.

Pourover - 1.21%TDS 19.5% Ext Yield. 3:30 brew time.

Immersion - 1.25%TDS (overshot a tad), 23% Immersion Yield (correcting for typical retention this equates to an Ext Yield of 19.8% FWIW, given that Ext. Yield is less pertinent to the taste of immersions). Brew time 30minutes (determined by taste comparisons with the pourover, off the top of the brewer), plus draw down. Samples of the Immersion were rapidly cooled so that A/B comparisons could be made with the pourover.

Pourover a tiny bit juicier, a little tangy cooled. Immersion a tiny bit sweeter, more balanced, no tang in finish when cooled.

Is this down to immersion vs drip, is it down to slightly higher strike temp in the pourover (water added first in immersion as I didn't want any percolation to take place)? They are close enough to be recognisably the "same" coffee, tasted independently you'd be hard pressed to split them, very similar, but they are not quite the same...which is perhaps explainable by the measurements.

Why does the pourover extract faster? Flow through the bed of clean, coffee TDS  hungry, water washing out the grinds at a more uniform rate (ideally anyway...not so much in my example), whereas you get a big boost early in the immersion as grinds & water are combined, then extraction tails off fast, but doesn't quite stop...but hitting max concentration (~23% Imm Yield for brewers that don't drain through the bed) takes a fair bit of time. Whereas the pourover can be extracted to the absolute max (~29%) in just a few minutes.

The idea here was mainly to show that meaningful comparisons (same brewer, paper, coffee, dose, brew water weight, etc.) aren't as simple as people tend to think when generally comparing drip to steep.

I may try again, to nail identical TDS, but it'll have to wait until I'm in a more experimenting mood again.

My biggest 'take away' from this.... is that I make way too much mess & washing up! ;-)

Posted April 2, 2014 link


Thanks for doing this and reporting your findings and tasting. I appreciate the effort it takes.

(...not to derail the subject...but)
I'm surprised (or not...) there is not more interest in 'cafe crema' type of extraction from espresso machines.
I don't have much experience here, but astonishing what a great tasting, nuanced, balanced cup of coffee this type of extraction can make.
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MWJB
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:46am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

Frost Said:

Thanks for doing this and reporting your findings and tasting. I appreciate the effort it takes.

(...not to derail the subject...but)
I'm surprised (or not...) there is not more interest in 'cafe crema' type of extraction from espresso machines.
I don't have much experience here, but astonishing what a great tasting, nuanced, balanced cup of coffee this type of extraction can make.

Posted April 2, 2014 link

Cheers.

David Walsh, Ben Kaminsky & Matt Perger have been making filter strength coffee from espresso machines, similar in broad principle to the Caffe Crema & Belgian Traditionel. Kaminsky & Perger going even longer on the beverage and pushing for higher & more even extraction. Google "EK-43 coffee shot".
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Frost
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Frost
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:58am
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

Well, Duh; The 'Coffee Shot'. Good to hear this; I guess it shows I don't get out much. Thanks, It's been a while, but maybe it's time I revisit, (and re-name) the cafe crema. I've mostly been doing this sort of thing with the aeropress, using a fine mesh filter. It's my 'emergency coffee' when power is out or can't take the espresso machine.
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jpender
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jpender
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Posted Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:04pm
Subject: Re: What is the relationship between the grind setting and coffee flavor?
 

Frost Said:

(...not to derail the subject...but)
I'm surprised (or not...) there is not more interest in 'cafe crema' type of extraction from espresso machines.
I don't have much experience here, but astonishing what a great tasting, nuanced, balanced cup of coffee this type of extraction can make.

Posted April 2, 2014 link

Subject derailment is fine with me.

I've never had a cafe crema but I will be in Switzerland later this year and look forward to tasting them. It sounds like my kind of coffee.
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