Siphon coffee tasting bitter/burnt - Page 2

Coffee preparation techniques besides espresso like pourover.
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TomC
Team HB

#11: Post by TomC »

Peppersass wrote:I agree that the primary problem is the coffee: Black Cat isn't going to work well in vac pot. Use a coffee specifically roasted for brewing. I've successfully brewed light-roasted SO espressos in my vac pot, too. Whatever you do, use fresh coffee properly rested after roast.

<snip>

Hope this helps.
Wow, awesome! Thanks!

bigbad (original poster)

#12: Post by bigbad (original poster) »

John P wrote:Use coffee, not espresso. While Black Cat is an excellent espresso, most espresso, if any, do not fare well as a siphon brew. Siphon shines with single origin coffees. The better the coffee, the better the siphon. It's not just about the quality of ingredients, it's choosing the correct ingredients as well.

Your brew time is too long for that kind of grind.

I recommend a ratio of 17:1 water:coffee (by weight, not volume). YMMV. Grind should be adjusted to yield correct extraction ratio.

For the Japanese methodology: Grind should only be a hair coarser than espresso, and brewing should be 35-40 seconds. Brewing longer than 40 seconds will not increase flavor extraction, it will either have no effect or overextract. As a general rule, keep stirring to the barest minimum until you have perfected your basic brew.
Thanks, today's my day off, so I'll try brewing the coffee to within 40 seconds.

Question: What does YMMV mean?

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bigbad (original poster)

#13: Post by bigbad (original poster) »

Peppersass wrote:I agree that the primary problem is the coffee: Black Cat isn't going to work well in vac pot. Use a coffee specifically roasted for brewing. I've successfully brewed light-roasted SO espressos in my vac pot, too. Whatever you do, use fresh coffee properly rested after roast.

<snip>

Hope this helps.
Thanks a ton.

I'm gonna brew 21-24g (3 cup) for 40 seconds and see what happens.

I still have some Black Cat left over, so I'll just use it anyway as practice. When I get the time, I'll probably head over to Handsome and pick up some stuff there. I've been meaning to give 'em a shot.

bigbad (original poster)

#14: Post by bigbad (original poster) »

JohnB. wrote:You won't get a funky taste from using cloth filters if you use clean filters each time you brew. I keep 4 cloth filter assys. in use with each getting used only once before a thorough cleaning with Oxyclean Free in boiling hot water. I prefer the richer taste of the cloth filtered brew over paper filtered which removes more of the oils.
I just scrubbed the cloth filter under hot water, and then I just left is soaked in a cup full of hot water + dish soap, and it seemed to do the trick.

bigbad (original poster)

#15: Post by bigbad (original poster) »

Wow, I didn't know the stirring motion had to be done by the motion of an "N," as opposed to circular. Nobody else has ever brought this up.

Also, 55 seconds seems a bit long. I don't know. I'll try it out today, but I think it'll burn the coffee if I stir it three times and keep it there for 55 seconds... seems to go against what everyone else is saying here... (35-40 seconds).

27-30 mark on the Rocky seems really coarse, as well. I just grind it on the 15 mark.

Thanks though, I'll try these out later tonight.

User avatar
TomC
Team HB

#16: Post by TomC »

bigbad wrote:Thanks, today's my day off, so I'll try brewing the coffee to within 40 seconds.

Question: What does YMMV mean?

= Your Methods May Vary

bigbad (original poster)

#17: Post by bigbad (original poster) »

T
TomC wrote:= Your Methods May Vary
Thanks, I tried brewing 21g for three cups in 40 seconds, and it came out tasting really bitter. It tasted far less burnt, though, so I guess I'm getting better?

Not sure if this is a sign of under or overextraction, as far as siphon goes.

Also, I tried using the N-shaped stirring method advised by ex trahere, and it really didn't work well. It got really clumpy, and I don't think all the grounds got saturated. I could tell this technique requires a lot of practice. I've yet to see a video of anyone practicing this technique. Everyone seems to just do a basic circular stir.

When I turned off the butane burner and removed it from underneath the siphon bottom (is there a term for the bottom and top?), it took around 30-40 seconds for the brew to filter down. Also, I noticed that the grinds were sitting flat on the siphon top, as opposed to the dome I got with my previous two attempts when I stirred the grounds in a circular motion.

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Alan Frew

#18: Post by Alan Frew »

Change the coffee you're using. I've brewed more syphon coffees than any living member of HB (+100/day for 11 years commercially, every day for 30 years for breakfast) and never had any trouble with taste that wasn't directly coffee related.

I use a model "A" Cona, glass rod filter, on a gas stovetop. Fill bowl with tap water (230ml), put on low gas to heat. 2 x 7g scoops of plunger (coarser than drip filter) ground coffee into funnel. When water boils, insert funnel into bowl, stir continually as funnel fills and for 40 seconds afterwards. Remove assembly from heat and place on granite benchtop. Drawdown takes about 30 seconds.

Frankly, discussions about syphon brewing "technique", stirring patterns etc. are just BS. Brew temperature, grind particle size and brew time determine extraction. You stir because it's the only way to get all the fresh blooming coffee grounds into contact with the water, as long as that happens how you stir doesn't matter.

Alan