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Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
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frank828
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Joined: 23 Feb 2011
Posts: 581
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: Professional

Posted Wed May 16, 2012, 9:16pm
Subject: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

Hello hello!

well ive been practicing with my via venezia with naked portafilter with these beans.   I think i'm getting pretty decent results.  The extraction is looking pretty good and the taste is what i remember from when i had it pulled from their Strada in the cafe.  

Thing is, even at the cafe, i never really enjoyed this espresso.  :\  At the time, i figured i would just have a properly pulled shot from the cafe and then take the beans home to get as close to the same results.

So yeah, i have about 3/4 of a lb left to play with this stuff until i move on to something else.


Any of you have any experience with the current classic black cat?  what do you think about it?  

I may give their Honey Badger 2.0 a try.  It's supposed to have kenyan and rwanda beans in the blend and supposed to be a lot fruitier and brighter with a butterscotch finish.  This is the type of drip coffee i typically prefer so i hope i like it better.
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JasonBrandtLewis
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JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,461
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 May 17, 2012, 6:31am
Subject: Re: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

I'm not a big fan of Black Cat.  I find it very temperamental to use (something I never found true of Vivace's Dolce, despite its reputation), and never thought what I pulled came close to what I had at Intelligentsia in Silver Lake . . . or Chicago, for that matter.  Then again, the last couple of times I was in LA, I wasn't happy with the Black Cat that the people at Intelligentsia were pulling either, so . . .

I have dropped Intelligentsia from my personal list of roasters that I cycle through at home.  I still think they are a quality roaster, and I still recommend them to people, but with the proviso that they aren't to my taste and that people should judge for themselves.  

But I'm at a loss:

frank828 Said:

Thing is, even at the cafe, i never really enjoyed this espresso.  :\  At the time, i figured i would just have a properly pulled shot from the cafe and then take the beans home to get as close to the same results.

Posted May 16, 2012 link

So, if you didn't enjoy this espresso at the café, why did you buy it to begin with???

JasonBrandtLewis: puzzled.gif

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
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frank828
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Joined: 23 Feb 2011
Posts: 581
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: Professional

Posted Thu May 17, 2012, 9:44am
Subject: Re: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

JasonBrandtLewis Said:

But I'm at a loss:

So, if you didn't enjoy this espresso at the café, why did you buy it to begin with???

Posted May 17, 2012 link

i'm chaulking this up as a live and learn moment.  :P

i think my lack of experience also played a factor in this.  Before this shot, i had probably only had about 10 shots of espresso in my life.  I think i was trying to force myself in believing that because this is "intelligentsia" it must be correct or good.  i should have known better.  D'oh!

i was also in desperate need of some espresso beans at the time and there wasnt anywhere else i could think of to go locally at the time(7:50pm on a tuesday).
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signal15
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Joined: 2 Jan 2006
Posts: 115
Location: Brooklyn Park
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Mon May 28, 2012, 9:10am
Subject: Re: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

I have also found Black Cat to be very temperamental.  So much so, that's I've stopped buying it altogether unless I happen to walk by one of their shops, and then I get a cap made by them.  Maybe some people can get consistently good results with it, I can't.
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CMIN
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Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,449
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Wed Jun 27, 2012, 9:03am
Subject: Re: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

I just found this thread, though I've seen others mention issues with Black Cat as well. I thought it was me at first, b/c I read so many raving reviews. Different grind settings, different dose, different temps etc.... just did not like the taste of it. Has a sour twang to it no matter what which others mention, and just not that flavorful. I have a shop here that stocks them and Anodyne fresh along with some others, greatly prefer the Anodyne espresso blend.

The other thing I thought was odd was Intelligentsia recommends around 195 degree's which just sounds strange to me with espresso, I tried that and it was pry the worst shot out of all the temps, 200-204 was better but still didn't like the taste. Even the barista at the place doesn't like it and prefers the Anodyne blends himself, but they keep fresh roasted orders coming in b/c people seem to buy it a lot especially for milk based drinks.
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roastbear
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roastbear
Joined: 6 Sep 2009
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Location: Wilmington, NC
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Espresso: Rancilio Silvia V3 with...
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Posted Sun Jul 1, 2012, 4:18pm
Subject: Re: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

I just finished up five pounds of Black Cat and thought there was a little more roast flavor than anytime previous. Wasn't quite as sweet. But it will be again I'm sure. I buy regularly from 4-5 roasters and by the time Intelligentsia is next on the the "order from" list, it will be different. I was getting some inconsistent shots, but drinkable. I assumed it was just me.
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JimmiCliff
Senior Member


Joined: 29 May 2012
Posts: 11
Location: Toronto
Expertise: Pro Barista

Posted Tue Jul 3, 2012, 10:42am
Subject: Re: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

CMIN Said:

The other thing I thought was odd was Intelligentsia recommends around 195 degree's which just sounds strange to me with espresso

Posted June 27, 2012 link

You're mistaken about that, right now they're recommending 199, and I've only ever seen it between 198 and 201.
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,449
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Tue Jul 3, 2012, 10:51am
Subject: Re: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

JimmiCliff Said:

You're mistaken about that, right now they're recommending 199, and I've only ever seen it between 198 and 201.

Posted July 3, 2012 link

Weird I could swear I saw 195 to try on mine,  maybe that was an old rating people were talking about? Either way tried it and ever temp up to 204 and still didn't like it. Funny I was just chatting with someone the other day as to what blends they were using, and asked if they tried Black Cat and they said the samething, they found it too sour tasting no matter what changes to temp or dosing.
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morik
Senior Member


Joined: 20 Jul 2012
Posts: 25
Location: Los Angeles

Espresso: QM67/Twist
Grinder: Vario-W/Preciso/SlimMill
Drip: V60/AeroPress
Posted Sun Aug 5, 2012, 10:37am
Subject: Re: Current Intelligentsia Classic Black Cat (roasted 5/14)
 

Black Cat is our house favorite currently, we go through at least a pound a week. I am lucky to live near enough that I can pickup fresh beans as well as taste shots locally to compare, and has been an extremely forgiving blend to pull from my modest home equipment. Taste for me is a syrupy sweet dark chocolate bomb that blends really well in cappas and short lattes, definitely not a sour shot for me.

Here are the current recommendations from their website:
Temp. 200 F
Dose 18 - 19 g
Time 23 - 26 seconds with 5 second pre-infusion
Volume 36 - 40 ml with crema (26 -31 g)
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