About staling to create a generic taste, and then selling this with hyperbole, try Illy!If you are selling generic coffee, making it completely stale is a great way to ensure consistency and to cut raw material costs. Since most Italian espresso is generic, they stale it as a matter of course.... [also], that, of course, doesn't mean that the espresso manufacturers haven't been making claims like you report. The whole topic of coffee freshness is almost entirely made up of empty assertions, posturing, and obscurantism. Coffee is a market with lots of niches; each niche has its own freshness and storage practices, and each niche claims theirs is optimal. Therefore the claims contradict each other, and none make much sense.
Okay, it wasn't Italy but San Francisco a couple of weeks ago. A new coffee bar featuring Illy beans and their shiny branded machine opened on my block. The barista there (not Italian but claiming decades in the business) told me that coffee is a science and the Illy company, as the master of this, has determined that if they store their coffee in inert gas for 6 months, this makes the oil go back into the beans and ages it, something others don't do.
Michael Benis wrote:
I tasted the shot, freshly ground in a Super Jolly from these aged beans and it was very smooth and completely undistinguished. It gave me a reliable caffeine dose, was very low acid, and had a very mellow aftertaste that lingered. Kind of like a bottle of very inexpensive California table wine blended for softness and heavy bodied but having none of the complexity of fine wine. I described the pleasure I find of coffee sometimes reminding me of many different kinds of flavors, citrus, for instance. He would have none of it, saying that citrus flavor in a coffee must be either because they're adding it to cut bitterness -- yes, I've been introduced to rubbing lemon peel on the rim of the cup for that purpose, but he missed the point -- or, he said, it's a flaw in the coffee.You get what you expect. Not too bitter, not too bland, with a caffeine kick and a lingering aftertaste to see you on your way.
Then again, there does seem to be a difference between purposeful aging and the dreadful taste of ground coffee sealed in humid air and left to degrade for months. But that would be the subject of another thread.
To bring my part of the discussion back on course, dosers are also designed to remedy clumping and fluff up the grounds, aren't they? I've replaced the doser on my Super Jolly with a doserless funnel and now need to break up the clumps using the Weiss Distribution Technique (WDT) /weiss-dist ... nique.html. I'm aware of the discussions elsewhere here about doser versus doserless, WDT and clumping, so rather than invite that sort of discussion I thought someone might know the history of doser design for grind quality.