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After some hectic months with moving the roastery and opening our bar/shop, it felt really great too take a week off visiting the farmers doing the tremendous job providing us with flawless and superb green coffee. This time Nicaragua, Jinotega.
The majority of my travel was spent on bumpy roads, visiting numerous of farms, cooperatives, wet mills and dry mills in the area. All were of varying scale and sophistication, and I was therefore able to appreciate some of the complexities faced at origin, evaluate the benefits and limitations of co-operatives, and experience first hand some of the challenges that exist in delivering quality.
You can read every book on the subject, but it is not until you actually taste the coffee cherry, feel the sticky mucilage that covers the bean, see the processing in action, smell the deliciously rich jasmine aroma from the flowering coffee plant, hear the farmers tell their story, that you can really start to appreciate the hard work and understand what is involved in getting a cup of superb coffee.
Last week we held a workshop on ideal roasting lenghts. We brewed espressos with coffees that had been roasted different lengths of time.
This is one of the steps that we do every time when we build a new espressoblend.
For this workshop I had roasted 3 different versions of the same coffee ten days before.
The coffee comes from the Daterra farm in Brazil and the bean we used is their “sweet yellow”.
All three samples were roasted to the same degree, just before the second crack, and were agreed by everyone to be the same roast degree.
The first sample was roasted 12 minutes, the second 13 minutes, and the third 14 minutes.
We brewed a total of 32 espressos and the conclusions as follows.
The 12 minute coffee was quite acidic, like a granny smith apple acidity. It was quite sweet, and we found nutty bitterness as well. However, everyone found it a bit violent and the mouthfeel was not that good.
The 13 minute coffee was a bit less acidic, or at least the acidity felt more integrated into the coffee being more citrus-like compared to the “granny-smith”-acidity. This roast was sweeter than the 12 minute coffee and some of us found a lot of marzipan nuances in the shots. Some of us held it as the best coffee, but for some it was still a bit violent as every component wasn´t fully integrated into the coffee. Of all the three coffees this one had the most fruitiness.
The 14 minute coffee was the sweetest coffee of all. The coffee also showed a lot of nuttiness. The acidity was the lowest, and was very well integrated into the coffee. Many found this coffee to be the best, but some thought is lacked some of the fruitiness of the 13 minute coffee, and was not that special. This was also the coffee that had the least difference between the shots we made. The other two coffees tasted more different in every shot, and can maybe therefore be more difficult to brew then the 14 minute.
Concerning the brewing method, espressos bring fort every nuance and difference in the coffee -as this test partly shows. Some do perhaps not expect the coffees to taste that different, as the coffees used were of the exactly same quality, type and roastdegree.
Thanks to everyone who joined the workshop, and hope this helped (or perhaps confused even more) everyone understand coffee better.
Last week we had a workshop regarding water temperature.
Our aim was not to figure out exactly the best temperature to brew coffee, but to understand how temperature affects the taste of the coffee. According to my experiences every coffee needs a specific temperetaure (that can differ between different coffees) to be most enjoyable.
-We used a course grind that has been tested good, grounded on our ditting grinder.
-The brewing time was held at 4 minutes.
-The presspots were preheated before use
-We used Bodum Chambord 8 cup presspots
-We used our domincican rep, juncalito coffee, roasted 9days ago.
-We used 6 grams of coffee per dl.
-We brewed the coffee using Tim Wendelboes method
In the first run we had tree different presspots. In the first one we used boiling water, in the second we had 90 degrees Celsius, and in the third we had 80 degrees Celsius.
Just so the coffees would have the same tasting temperature we brewed the coffees with 2 min 30sec difference, starting with the hottest one. The tasting temperature was within 2 degrees, so it should not have affected the taste that much. There was four people that cupped, and by everyone the conclusion was:
-The coffee brewed with boiling water tasted ok, but it was a bit bitter, and lacked sweetness.
-The coffee brewed with 90 degrees Celsius tasted best, and had a very pleasant acidity and had the most aromas, and had the best mouthfeel as well.
-The coffee brewed with 80 degrees lacked acidity as well as the aromas. It was still quite sweet, but tasted more like bread.
The next round we narrowed the temperatures a bit. We had 3 different temperatures this time. The first was 95 degrees, the second 91 degrees, and the third was measured 86,8 degrees. We brewed the coffees with 1 min difference, starting with the hottest one
-The coffee brewed with 95 was better than with boiling water, but was still a bit bitter and lacked finesse.
-The coffee brewed with 91 tasted best in this round and showed a lot of fruitiness.
-The coffee brewed with 86,8 degrees was sweet, but lacked the acidity and fruitiness.
We can´t really conclude anything as to what is the best temperature to brew coffee with, but this can maybe work as a guideline when you try to find the optimal temperature for a specific coffee brewed in a presspot. What we can conclude is that water temperature makes a BIG difference!!
In our first ever workshop we tried to figure out the best way to prepare a presspot.
At our coffebar we use pretty much the same method as Stumptown coffee, but we argue a lot how every step effects the taste.
Just so we wouldn’t have to sit the whole night, and drink liters of coffee we had some parameters that we held the same through out the whole test.
-We used a course grind that has been tested good, grinded on our ditting grinder.
-The water temperature was 92,5 during the whole test.
-The brewing time was also held at 4 minutes.
-The presspots were preheated before use
-We used Bodum Chambord 8 cup presspots
-We used our El Salvador, El retiro coffee, roasted 10days ago.
-We used 6 grams of coffee per dl.
James Hoffamn has a great video of another brewing method that´s very different, and was originally created by Tim Wendelboe. James has left away one part of the brewing method, that we felt we wanted to have in our test. This is the part were you stir the presspot firmly after pouring 1/3 of the water. After stirring you pour the rest of the water. This helps the coffeecake to get evenly wet.
The coffee on your right side is stirred firmly after pouring 1/3 of the water.
We compared Tims one and the Stumptowns method to the more traditional method were you pour water over coffee and wait 4 minutes, and then push the filter down.
Here is a short conclusion about the first round:
-The traditional version resulted in a full bodied cup, but it had a somewhat dry mouthfeel and it was a bit bitter.
-The stumptown method resulted in a bit cleaner cup with more fruit and a bit more pleasant cup.
-Tims version resulted in the most pleasant cup, with good amount of sweetness that we couldn’t find in the other cups. This was also the most balanced cup.
Here you can see the difference in a skimmed coffee (right) and o coffee not skimmed (left).
The conclusion was that Tim Wedelboes method resulted in the best cup.
We figured out we had to make a new run just to figure out what made the cup better.
We divided his method in to 2 different phases just to see what affected the cup the most.
In this run we compared Tims original method against two other methods.
1.The first method was the same as Tims, but we did not skim or clean the pot after braking the crust.
2: The second method was the same as Tims original method, but we did not brake the crust before skimming or cleaning.
The result here gave us some conclusions. The coffee that was not skimmed was bitter and not as pleasant as the rest.
Tims version gave a pleasant and full bodied cup with a lot of flavours, but the sweetest cup came from the method that was skimmed without braking the crust. It maybe lacked some of the finesses that Tims version had, but it was agreed to bee the sweetest cup.
The biggest conclusion we could make of the whole test was that skimming or cleaning the pot before pressing down the filter resulted in a sweeter and more pleasant cup.
I would really like to continue this test, just to get a clue on what really affects the coffee. We just got the Extract Mojo that maybe could explain something too.
Thanks to all coffein addicts who assisted in this workshop!
I’m sitting in our new place with a smile on my face. Benjamin and Kalle are managing the bar this morning, and I will soon start roasting. I really don’t matter that there is still much to do before everything is ready. It just feels good to finally open. I’m just about to start planning some future workshops. We will have a small workshop every Thursday at 1pm. The main idea is that is should be educating. I will post every week conclusion about the workshop on our blog. There will be the possibility for two persons to attend the workshop every week. The persons attending will get hands on practice, but will also help to get everything to work. It will not cost anything. You may book your self to a workshop or make a theme-suggestion by e-mail to info(at)kaffaroastery.fi.
We would like to wellcome every coffee enthusiast to our new Espressobar in Punavuori. We will open our doors 7.30 am Monday to Friday and close at 5PM. For all working folks we will also be open Saturdays from 10.30am to 3pm. This Monday (11.01.2010) we will have guided tours in the roastery every hour starting at 11am. In the beginning the shop will mainly focus on our coffees and some coffee tools as presspots and ceramic filters. Soon we will also sell Reg Barber tampers, Motta milk pitchers and other cool stuff.
We just got our two specially manufactured Anfim Super Caimano grinders with dosers as well as grind on demand timers. We are also proud to be retail agents for Anfim in Finland.
We were thinking of getting the automatic mazzer roburs that we have in La Torre, witch are super fast and great grinders. We did go for the Caimano because of their great dosers. The doser (compared to the electronic mazzer without a doser) makes the coffee fluffier and prevents the coffee from clumping. Now it will be easier to fill a double filter with less coffee. Most of our customers use about 15-20 grams of coffee (double shot) for each shot, and we feel it is important that our blend works with these amounts as well as 20+grams of coffee witch we use in La Torre. In the future we will also try to give a suggestion for dose size, temperature, and extraction time for every espressoblend. For easily making a temperature suggestion for every blend we feel we need a new espressomachine with separate boilers for every grouphead, so that will hopefully be our next investment in our bar.
Things are evolving in the new roastery, and we expect to open the 11:th of January. In the shop we will have all our coffees for sale, as well as some nice coffee tools.
In the bar we will in the beginning serve our espresso as well as our latte blend for milk based drinks. In the future there will also be a single estate espresso available. We will also serve filtercoffee and coffee made from presspots. Most coffees will probably be sold as take away as we only have 6 seats in our bar. For those who want a bite as well are welcome to sit at Moko Café were there is a nice selection of small bites.
Our roasters have now been testroasted for some 20 hours, and we are very pleased with the results. The airflow is very good, and much better then on Kelatie. The coffee may differ somewhat in taste from the old roastery, but we are in the middle of the process of cupping and examining how everything contributes to taste here in Punavuori. We hope to have it easier to find the right roastprofiles for each coffee at our new roastery when we have more airflow options.
Last week we had the final health inspection, and everything is ok. Under the whole planning process it felt like we were under quite tight inspection. This is understandable as the trend in Helsinkin has been to try to get roasteries out of the center, not back in. As people understood our business and the small scale of it compared to for example Meira, they got more positive about it. We have also very good relations with the property owners who have seen us as something that can make the property more alive. At least we can contribute with coffee that can keep the people more awake 😉
We have kept our moving plans until now as a little secret. It has been a long process of getting all necessary permissions, but now everything seems in order. Hopefully next week we will open a coffee shop and espressobar inside Moko Market in Punavuori. Our entire roasting plant will also be in the same space, and you can get a glint of it through a glass wall. The roasters actually already stand there, and we are just waiting to get to test roast some batches.
In the coffee shop we will have some cool new staff, for example ceramic drippers from BeeHouse, japan, as well as necessary cooffeetools like presspots, tampers etc. We will post some pictures from the new place as things evolve.
Skanno is also moving to their new locations near Erottaja, and they sold all their “old stuff”. We bought this bar to our new place. We tried our selves to paint it, but now it is in the hands of professionals, as it was quite hard to paint evenly with Bauhaus cheapest pressurepainter. Hopefully we will get the bar in action next weeks, as well as the rest of the place.
Today we moved the last bit of our stuff from our old roastery at Kelatie, and cleaned it for the new guests who will start renting it from tomorrow. Goodbye Kelatie, here we come Punavuori!