What is your cupping protocol?

Coffee preparation techniques besides espresso like pourover.

#1: Post by EddyQ »

In the past year or so, I have learned the value of cupping. At first, I was tasting my coffees by simply pulling and espresso of a few and comparing. I found out quickly that espresso brews tend to saturate my taste buds and often one shot taste will blend in positive or negative ways with the next. AND, shots of espresso it is very difficult to relate taste to a drip brew or pour over if that is the intent of the roasted coffee. For quite some time I have cupped per SCAA protocol and pulled an espresso for taste evaluation.

Today, I cupped with SCAA protocol three roasts. One, I was pretty certain was underdeveloped based on espresso shot so I expected less extraction in the cup. And that is exactly what happened. The cup was very weak and I had a lot of trouble discriminating flavors. I pulled out my refractometer and it measured 1.02 TDS. Per SCAA brew standards, brews should be 1.25+/-0.1 TDS. SCAE is higher at 1.32+/-0.13. While my TDS was low, the EY computed to 18.6%. While low, this isn't that low for my LidoE and remember this coffee is likely underdeveloped. But it occured to me that if I achieved 20% EY, my TDS would also be low on SCAA scale. So why am I using SCAA cupping brew ratio of 18:1?? I'm considering dropping it to 16:1 from now on and I think my TDS would be more centered with brew standards. I'm wondering what others do to cup coffees? Do you use SCAA standard protocol or something else?


#2: Post by EddyQ »

I just thought I would follow up on a change to my cupping routine.
As said in my original post, I am finding the SCAA cupping standard with 18:1 brew ratio is a bit on the weak side for my old taste buds. And since I do not have a EK43 with 23%EY doesn't help. Just now, I tried a 15:1 brew ratio as found here: https://www.perfectdailygrind.com/2016/ ... ve-palate/

The resulting TDS was up around 1.35:1 with four cups an EY of around 20%. I can honestly say, I can discriminate flavors much better with these brews.

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#3: Post by another_jim »

I've used 15:1 for years; since all the pros I ever cupped with, including Lindsay Bolger, George Howell, and Geoff Watts use it. I always thought that was the standard. 18:1 is like 1950s diner coffee.
Jim Schulman


#4: Post by MikeTheBlueCow »

I don't exactly cup very often, but in general I've been using 1:15, and when I do cup it's 1:15 because it's my "baseline". I really can't taste much out of anything more diluted than that.