Nucleus Paragon - looks like a whisky rock for pourover? - Page 2

Coffee preparation techniques besides espresso like pourover.
Jonk
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#11: Post by Jonk »

Perhaps the first video not directly from Nucleus?
One tidbit is that the "rock" is supposed to be good for several consecutive brews. The one I have, filled with water, is not.

I've tried the DIY method a bit more, both chilling the first pours and the whole brew. No blind testing - so who knows, perhaps I'm fooling myself - but it's not difficult for me to believe they've got science to back this up because there seems to be an obvious difference in flavor.

For now I'm using an upside down egg cup to prop up the ball in the middle of a server. I'm sure a cube or several small whiskey rocks of some kind would work as well, the trick being to add just enough to efficiently chill the brew but not actually make it cold.

Another impression is that there might be a need to dial in a chilled brew differently to a regular hot brew.. adding more complexity to comparisons.

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baldheadracing (original poster)
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#12: Post by baldheadracing (original poster) »

The one thing I thought of about the video is that the regular-brewed cup will always be hotter than the rock-brewed cup. Regardless, it is a bad experiment, just some fun. It tells me nothing that would affect whether I spend money.

I did find some 40mm gel-filled stainless steel spheres, but then I realized that I always drink my whisky at room temperature so I'd have no use for them otherwise. I have put my copper Kalita 155 in the freezer so I'm going to try having a glass V60 (without plastic base) on top of the frozen metal Kalita and brewing that way, vs. just a glass V60 (with the plastic base). Now I just have to roast some test coffees.

To test I'll decant each brew into a couple of four oz. Mason jars, seal, and put the four sealed jars (with blinded labels) into a sous-vide bath to equalize temperature. Then taste, then refract two samples from each of the four jars to make sure that I'm not just tasting differences in strength. Then repeat the whole test the next day, then repeat the two tests with a second coffee. It isn't a good experimental design, but if I find that I can reliably split the four jars in each test, and also consistently prefer the two jars with the partial-cold extraction over the four tests, then I think that'll be enough for me to decide to buy some rocks - or maybe the Paragon.
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada

Jonk
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#13: Post by Jonk »

Right, it's not so easy to account for the variables. I wonder if a frozen Kalita will be effective.. On the other hand, my intended use for the steel balls was with cocktails - to prevent watering down - but they're nowhere near as efficient as regular ice and turned out to be useless for that purpose.

Just to be clear, I don't think it's supposed to be a cold extraction (a glass brewer might even shatter if it's allowed to cool some). Either way, I look forward to more reports about this method :D

Update:
So I brewed 3 consecutive '3-cup' 12g:200ml Chemex cups*. One regular, the second one chilling the bloom water (3x the dose, two 1 minute blooms like Hedrick's Kono recipe for a total of bloom of 72ml) and the third chilled during the whole brew. 4:19-4:27 brew times and the resulting temperature was 45C, 44C and 43C when all done so close enough.

Put the cups on a rotating tray for a quick blind tasting. I was able to tell the regular brew from the other two quite easily. This was a medium light Bourbon from El Salvador described as having notes of peach, chocolate and good body. The grind I was using was a bit finer than normal in hopes of taming the extra acidity I've come to expect from chilled brews, but the result was more of everything and they both tasted harsh in comparison to the regular brew.

So, if chilling retains more compounds, it doesn't always have to be desirable ones 8). When the coffee was cold it was possible to tell the difference on scent alone. The partially chilled brew had a bit less harsh flavor and a lot less pungent aroma.

*I like how it's easier to aim the flow from a Chemex.

malling
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#14: Post by malling »

Jonk wrote:Perhaps the first video not directly from Nucleus?
video
One tidbit is that the "rock" is supposed to be good for several consecutive brews. The one I have, filled with water, is not.

I've tried the DIY method a bit more, both chilling the first pours and the whole brew. No blind testing - so who knows, perhaps I'm fooling myself - but it's not difficult for me to believe they've got science to back this up because there seems to be an obvious difference in flavor.

For now I'm using an upside down egg cup to prop up the ball in the middle of a server. I'm sure a cube or several small whiskey rocks of some kind would work as well, the trick being to add just enough to efficiently chill the brew but not actually make it cold.

Another impression is that there might be a need to dial in a chilled brew differently to a regular hot brew.. adding more complexity to comparisons.
This is one of the things where it's hard testing purely from normal scientific standards, one will have lower temperature etc. so there certain things you need to counter for, that said it's probably also more of those things that are fun to do, like chilling a carafe etc, using a chilling plate etc. that I played with them something that is really practical in your daily routine. I understand in competition it serve its purpose, and it's always interesting to see what different techniques do as it dos contribute to better understanding in the end. But most isn't really something that is worth battling with in our normal brewing routine.

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Phobic
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#15: Post by Phobic »

Jonk wrote:Perhaps the first video not directly from Nucleus?
video


it makes sense to me that the paragon wouldn't be as aromatic if the rock was doing what you wanted it to and retaining the volatiles in the brew.

I've been reading a bit about aromatics in coffee and unsurprisingly cold brew retains the most https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8230519/

I think the science behind immediate cooling of brewed makes sense, the less time the coffee has for the volatiles to escape, the less volatiles will escape over time.

I'm finding myself warming to the idea of buying 1 of these (any points for my pun?).

I wonder if just putting whiskey rocks into the carafe might not just be an easier option? I don't like the idea of chilling the carafe, think you'd need to freeze it and the thermal shock might shatter it.

Milligan
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#16: Post by Milligan »

Curious if running the entire brew through/over a copper/aluminum heat sink type material to cool it would be better than adding the extra step of having to chill something? Maybe getting it from brew temp immediately to "drinking" temp would be beneficial.

It was interesting to note that they only use the chilled ball for part of the brew.

Also fascinating that members are reporting clear differences. I have a few whiskey cubes so I'll give it a go eventually. I'd want to brew several pour overs back to back to make sure of consistency before doing an A/B test though so it would be an extended session.

Makes the coffee hot plates extra cringe worthy if this pans out over time.

frankqxq
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#17: Post by frankqxq »

For alternatives, why not just 1) put a metal ball in your brewer cup, just let it sit in the cup through the entire process, so it should cool the cup effectively. 2) or if you don't have a metal ball, just put the brewed cup in a cold water bowl or something. The first method, I feel, definitely will be more effective than the second though.

Jonk
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#18: Post by Jonk »

The problem with suggestion #1 is that it could chill the coffee too much - fine if you want to serve it with ice, but if you want warm coffee you'd have to use a much smaller 'whisky rock'.. that might not be effective enough to quickly cool down the bloom water. Which also goes for suggestion #2. But please, try it and report back! :D

bobR
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#19: Post by bobR »

frankqxq wrote:For alternatives, why not just 1) put a metal ball in your brewer cup, just let it sit in the cup through the entire process, so it should cool the cup effectively. 2) or if you don't have a metal ball, just put the brewed cup in a cold water bowl or something. The first method, I feel, definitely will be more effective than the second though.
I made a small improvement in the way I do things a few weeks ago. I previously rinsed my filter into my serving cup and then discarded the water. So both my dripper and cup were preheated to some extent. I switched to rinsing the filter into a separate cup. So the first coffee hits a room temperature cup and the overall temperature at the end is a bit cooler (which I like). This certainly does not go nearly as far as a whiskey rock approach. As a next small step, I may try adding cold water to the brewing cup and discard it just before brewing. If I like those results I could go further with more intense cup chilling but I expect the coffee would be too cool in the end.

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baldheadracing (original poster)
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#20: Post by baldheadracing (original poster) »

Jay from SproCoffee.com makes his "poor man's setup" and even references this thread in his video :D.

Unlike most of(?) us, Jay knows the Prof. Dr. MBA Chahan Yeretzian, head of the Coffee Excellence Center at ZHAW, and so is able to get more info.

11 minutes. tl;dw: it makes a difference, worth trying if you're into coffee.
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada