Behmor Brazen tips

Coffee preparation techniques besides espresso like pourover.

Postby namelessone » Jun 08, 2019, 4:43 am

I recently got this brewer and intend to use it for 500-600ml brews and occasional full batches when there are guests. Do you have any tips regarding grind size / temperature (for light - filter roasted coffees) and the process? The pre-infusion feature is nice, but the volume for pre-infusion seems to be intended for a full batch (I measured it to be 130-150ml), is it worth removing the carafe during this period?

I did only a few brews so far, one was quite good but the second one at same grind and settings came out rather overextracted, not sure why. I'm using 30g/500g and the Kalita Wave 185 filters directly in the basket. The coffee bed looks pretty flat afterwards.

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Postby yakster » Jun 09, 2019, 6:20 pm

My normal batch size is 700 ml to share with my daughter in the morning, but I've gone down as low as 500 ml with good results. I think that even though the pre-infusion is scaled for full batches, it is worthwhile using it for fresh roasts that need some time to bloom. Sometimes I remove the carafe but mostly I don't. I use 30 sec - 1 minute pre-infusion timings.

For sweet Ethiopian coffees, I tend to brew at lower temperatures around 196 - 198 F.

I clean with Urnex Tabz (one Tabz in the mesh filter inside the basket) with max temp and pre-infusion (210 F and 4:00) putting the carafe in just before the pre-infusion interval is over. I find that it's best to clean the pot at least once a week and I try and dump and rinse and do a quick scrub with water when I'm done brewing each batch to minimize any coffee oil buildup.

I use the cleaning liquid from the carafe to then do a quick soak of my chaff filter and impeller fan from my Bullet which works great to remove the coffee oils. Too long a soak may eat away at the metal so I just soak long enough so it's clean and I don't have to make up a separate batch with espresso machine cleaning powder just for the roaster.

LMWDP # 272


Postby namelessone » Jun 10, 2019, 9:06 am

Thanks, I haven't noticed much oil build up when using a paper filter - as I guess that removes most of the oils?

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Postby yakster » Jun 10, 2019, 10:24 am

I always use paper filters, but still find weekly cleaning works best for me.

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Postby IMAWriter » replying to yakster » Jun 10, 2019, 11:02 am

Yes, cleaning the carafe AND especially the top of the carafe thoroughly is recommended. I also recommend an every 3-4 month (depending on your water hardness) descaling of the machine...especially if you see some white residue, or notice the brewing process slow down.
DO NOT use vinegar. Use a mild citric acid powder first dissolved in warm water. I like to stop the "brewing" of the solution mid way to allow the machine to let the solution work. Again, do not make the solution too strong.
LMWDP #187


Postby namelessone » Jun 12, 2019, 9:25 am

yakster wrote:I always use paper filters, but still find weekly cleaning works best for me.

Which filters do you use? I tried with Kalita filters, but they seem little too small?


Postby DrugOfChoice » Jun 12, 2019, 12:02 pm

My only experience is with full 1.0-1.2 liter pots, but I use a 15:1 or 16:1 ratio and a medium fine drip grind. For light to medium roasted coffees I tend to use higher temps (mainly 204) because I hate sourness or too much brightness, but like the flavor profile of a medium light Ethiopian natural brewed hot.

For filters, I use Bunn filters, which are taller that standard flat-bottom filters (I have not tried Kalita Wave filters). This might not matter if you are not doing full pots. If you are using 80g of fresh coffee for a 1.2L pot, it makes a difference.

I usually use :45-1:00 pre-soak time, although occasionally a very fresh and gassy coffee needs a little more time to avoid some bloom overflow. I don't keep the carafe out during the pre-soak, since my primary purpose for using it is to avoid having blooming grounds get on the showerhead and around the top of the basket.

The inside of the carafe does become discolored over time, even with paper filters and daily brushing with soap and water. I periodically dump some oxyclean in there with hot water and it removes the discoloration without any effort. A regular soap and water brush-out easily removes any detectable trace of the oxyclean.

The big annoyances of the Brazen Plus:
--Very drippy/splashy pouring, more so than any other carafe I've ever used (and the original Brazen was supposedly worse).
--Water gets inside the carafe lid when you wash it. The only way to really get it all out is to unscrew the parts to get at the space in between, but I no longer bother and just get as much out as I can with violent shaking over the sink. Any wash water that might remain in there is out of the path of the coffee.
--Water also gets inside the filter basket when you wash it, but there is a weep-hole between the parts, so it is easy to shake the water out.
--The carafe also seems to get a little water in various voids and seams with normal washing. If you violently shake the carafe, drops come out of odd places.
--The carafe is not a great insulator, but I always preheat it, and it generally keeps the coffee acceptably hot for the time it takes me to drink a pot. But it's nothing like a real Nissan Thermos.
--The showerhead retains water so that after you remove the filter basket, it drips a lot. And if you blot under the showerhead with a paper towel, a lot of water comes out -- enough to saturate a full sheet of Bounty.

But overall I'm happy with the coffee it makes, and the positive features outweigh the annoyances.


Postby namelessone » Jun 12, 2019, 12:25 pm

After a few attempts it seems the basket and the machine is really designed for bigger batches, for smaller batches it seems to disperse too much water too fast, causing uneven/underextraction. The showerhead doesn't create much agitation so if you don't have enough bed depth, the water just drips through. Brew time seems to be less than 3 minutes for 500ml even including 45 sec of preinfusion. Grinding finer doesn't seem to fix the issue. For brewing small batches, using the manual option might be a good idea.

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Postby jbviau » Jun 12, 2019, 12:47 pm

namelessone wrote:Which filters do you use? I tried with Kalita filters, but they seem little too small?

These ones by Bunn are nice and tall (BCF100B):
"It's not anecdotal evidence, it's artisanal data." -Matt Yglesias


Postby namelessone » Jun 15, 2019, 5:08 am

I finally had good results after ditching the filter basket for 500ml brews and used a Kalita 185 w/ Wave filter. Much better flavours, no bitterness and finally able to hit ~18-20% EY without having to use a very fine grind. The total brewing time is still very short - brew is pretty much finished by 2:30 and this is including the :45 sec preinfusion. Still works well even when using a grind coarser than I would use for a V60 (6 o'clock on EK43 S).