Robusta

Postby farmroast on Mon Oct 04, 2010 12:35 am

I just saw Jim's post in "coffees" Thoughts on Italian espresso blends I'm interested in his thoughts of looking at roasting and aging a robusta separately for a blend with fresher roasts of arabica. Since the conversation was more about the taste I thought I'd start this thread for the roasting aspect. I have a few lbs packed away and am going to think about it for a few days.
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Postby another_jim on Mon Oct 04, 2010 9:55 am

I never did anything special with Robusta. But given my experience with the Miscela Masini, I have a few ideas I'd like to try out.

1. I'll roast it like an Indo, with a ramp a few minutes slower to the first and a minute faster finish than normal.

2. I'll play with the roast dates, so that the Robusta is two weeks older than the Aribica when I use it. That is, a blend using two week old Robusta and a fresh Arabica may work better, once the Arabica is aged normally for espresso, than when both components are the same age, fresh or stale.
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Postby seedlings on Mon Oct 04, 2010 2:03 pm

+1 on waiting 2 weeks before robusta blending. Sweetness shows up after 10+ days, and the burned rubber flavor is muted (a little bit).

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Postby farmroast on Mon Oct 04, 2010 9:20 pm

another_jim wrote:I never did anything special with Robusta. But given my experience with the Miscela Masini, I have a few ideas I'd like to try out.

1. I'll roast it like an Indo, with a ramp a few minutes slower to the first and a minute faster finish than normal.

2. I'll play with the roast dates, so that the Robusta is two weeks older than the Aribica when I use it. That is, a blend using two week old Robusta and a fresh Arabica may work better, once the Arabica is aged normally for espresso, than when both components are the same age, fresh or stale.

That makes sense to me. I was thinking to stretch the later 2/3 of the ramp. Are you going to try a light and a dark roast as you saw in the blend? Had the light roast smoothed out? How far into 2nd was the dark? What Arabica are you thinking of trying?
I just got some of SMs Colombia Peaberry Los Caracoles del Sur
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Postby endlesscycles on Mon Oct 04, 2010 11:54 pm

I was thinking about buying my robusta off the shelf at the grocery store to blend into my espresso. What store bought swill is / is not 100% robusta?

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Postby another_jim on Tue Oct 05, 2010 11:10 am

farmroast wrote:Are you going to try a light and a dark roast as you saw in the blend?


I'll need to stock up. After a lot of tasting, I'm thinking the darker roasted beans are a Ugandan Robusta and some sort of low grown Bourbon. The lighter roast is an Indian Robusta and a Brazil. The blend is roughly 50% Robusta.

What's odd is that this blend is actually built around the Robusta flavors, while the Arabicas are used just to sweeten and soften the taste. This is a fairly premium blend, sort of a Peet's or Starbiuck's equivalent; which shows how different the Italian atitude towards Robusta is.

Not having any good Robusta on hand, I tried combining this blend with some high acid, fruity SOs. That didn't just taste bad, but bizarrely hideous. So unless I missed a trick, I don't think Robustas can work in a blend with high acid or ultra-fruited Arabicas.
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Postby Espin on Tue Oct 05, 2010 3:33 pm

endlesscycles wrote:I was thinking about buying my robusta off the shelf at the grocery store to blend into my espresso. What store bought swill is / is not 100% robusta?

Already aged!!!



If you want to use robusta for good coffee, use specialty robusta instead of commodity robusta. There really is a difference.
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Postby farmroast on Tue Oct 05, 2010 4:51 pm

another_jim wrote:Not having any good Robusta on hand, I tried combining this blend with some high acid, fruity SOs. That didn't just taste bad, but bizarrely hideous. So unless I missed a trick, I don't think Robustas can work in a blend with high acid or ultra-fruited Arabicas.

Turns out I only had a small amount of Robusta and some Liberica so I'm going to have to get something to try.
I'll pick-up some of the Masini also.
I was considering that Colombia lot and some Brazil, generally got me thinking S. American like with bourbon sweetness.
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Postby seedlings on Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:16 pm

I have some Madagascar Robusta I roasted about a month ago (used for adding a kick to SO espresso every now and then). Last night I tried some 50/50 with fresh Harrar (drip brewed) and it added HUGE caramel and no rubber/bitter like when it was fresh-roasted.

I'm thanking your thread here, Ed.

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Postby endlesscycles on Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:03 pm

Espin wrote:If you want to use robusta for good coffee, use specialty robusta instead of commodity robusta. There really is a difference.


I do, and I would. Problem is, I need to buy in 15-20lbs at a time. Know of a source?
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