Finally Found A Way To Enjoy Geisha, Blended

Discuss flavors, brew temperatures, blending, and cupping notes.

#1: Post by Rustic39 »

I have been fortunate I suppose, in that I have Panamanian friends who bring me green Geisha beans when coming up to visit. I was however, never enthusiastic with the geisha flavor profile, finding it generally too light and floral for my tastes in a coffee. I can overcome much of that by roasting upwards of Vienna, but even then, it never pleased me as an espresso. I found a similar issue with a Northern Sumatran bean I acquired, but at the opposite end of the taste spectrum. Went through a whole Lb. of these Sumatran beans I had roasted to Vienna, without anything hardly drinkable, and all too much like Starbucks yuck.

It occurred to me one day recently, that these two extremely different beans, might balance each other out as an espresso, as long as I was able to roast them to a comparable degree. I gave it a try, stopping at the first hint of second crack on each one, then blended them at a 1:1 ratio. At 3 days past roasting, I dosed 18 gr and pulled a 1:3 ratio espresso shot, temp at 95 C. It was a long pull consisting of 10 sec pre-infusion followed by an additional 43 sec after first drops. 8.5 bar max, declining to about 6 bar after 30 seconds.

Results were a generous crema, pleasant savory and fruit jam aroma. Taste was balanced, with extreme sweetness, and lots of body, without the brightness I normally get from the geisha, nor the harsh almost bitterness I was getting from the Sumatran. Chocolate milkshake up front, with a slight cherry finish. No astringency or bitterness. It left me with a since of "classic" espresso tastes, but with more layers of flavors distinct from one another. I thought, wow, one of those great shots I'll never reproduce. I was wrong! I pulled three more in a row that morning, all just as good! The next couple days were similar, though not dialed in so perfectly. All in all though, I have been struck with optimism that I will after all, be able to enjoy both of these beans, which I had previously dismissed as simply not for me. This sort of win keeps me trying new beans and roasts time after time.