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Coffee Report

I obtained a burr grinder some time around Christmas eve and an Aeropress a few days before that. I didn’t start using them until about a week after that, when I purchased a 250g pack of Starbucks Kenya. I wouldn’t have wanted anything else for my first package of whole-bean coffee.

It lasted me about a week, which is about right. The fragrance was amazing, as expected, and with the Aeropress it was hard to go wrong with the brewing either. Perhaps the only time it disappointed was when I carried some beans along with me in a less-than-airtight container for a few hours to another location. The beans don’t keep well at all outside of an airtight container.

I spent a long time searching for my second package of whole-bean coffee. I was looking for UCC ones, but I haven’t found them as yet. In many supermarkets I’ve visited, they only stock ground coffee. In the others, the whole bean ones are either all from Boncafe, or ridiculously expensive (i.e. more expensive than Starbucks, in which case I trust Starbucks more).

I held off buying a new pack until I got back from Hong Kong, but I eventually ended up with a 250g pack of Boncafe beans (the ‘Espresso’ variety; it lasted until a few minutes ago, about 8 days from opening, but it’s been kept in an airtight bottle). My main problem with it was the extraction. I think I generally took too long with it when I did use it, until today, when I let it infuse for only about 45 seconds before pressing. I also ground it slightly finer today, because I was working with less than 2 shots’ worth of grounds (the last of my beans). The result was cleaner than what I’ve been getting, but definitely not watery for the slightly reduced infusion time. Today’s was definitely the best result.

I probably took slightly too long with the Kenya as well, but I suspect I didn’t have a problem with extraction because I started with a slightly coarser grind. I ground the Boncafe ones finer, though, because the Aeropress can cope with it, at least when I’m only making 2 shots’ worth. I think I might stick with the coarser grind when I am brewing Starbucks Kenya, though, because I just think it’s a waste making espresso from espresso-ground with those.

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  1. 20 February 2011 at 9:13 am

    This seemed like the best place to leave a note. Pre-ground coffee works, even Vietnamese, provided you let it soak up a bit of cold water first before adding hot. Ameliorates the bitter and makes it taste fresher even if it isn’t. This comes from my latest reverse-press Aeropress experiments. :)

    • 21 February 2011 at 4:10 pm

      Thanks for the tip! I just tried a reverse-press one with pre-wetting. I compensated for the cold water pre-wet with slightly reduced hot water time, and the extraction was good. Fragrance seemed a bit more heavenly than usual. Guatemala Casi Cielo this time.

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