New Ikawa Home Roaster - 100g capacity - Page 45

Discuss roast levels and profiles for espresso, equipment for roasting coffee.

#441: Post by GDM528 »

Chert wrote:"bag hit"

LoL. So, arranging bags of four different roasting profiles and consecutively huffing each one of them would be "doing a line of bags"?

I confess the aroma can be addictive - but hopefully not worthy of anyone staging an intervention over it. It wasn't until I started using bags that I really noticed how the aroma changes in just a couple seconds to a more generic, and less informative roasted-coffee smell.

Running multiple tiny-batch experiments in a single roasting session has trained me to smell the difference between a declining RoR and stepped roast, or a 5C shift in peak temperature. My ongoing challenge has been to link what I smell to what I taste in an espresso shot...


#442: Post by dale_cooper »

GDM528 wrote:Congrats! You can now adjust your roast every 2-3 shots. Depending on your rate of consumption, that means you can try nearly 150 different roasts every year.

Ziplock bags (quart size) became my new best friend for managing lots of small batches. More than one way to deal with small batches, but this became my favorite: They're relatively cheap (Costco!), easy to write roasting notes on the bag, and you can push out all the excess air when sealing it up. The bags expand as the beans outgas, and the rate/volume of the expansion gives a quick visual indication of how the post-roast rest is progressing. The concentrated aroma immediately upon opening the bag after 24 hours (one or two whiffs and it's gone) has been training me to link the aroma to the specific roasting profile.

I made an under-cabinet bag hangar so I can arrange them in chronological order (OCD, much?) and see at a glance when it's time to replenish the queue. I can either consume them in order or assemble a blend on-the-fly from multiple bags. This cured my hang-ups over the small batch size - now it's an asset.
haha - in lieu of any small containers - I'm actually using sandwich bags which were in the kitchen drawer! You're using a quart size bag for a 100g or less roast? Even the sandwich bags are far too big for my 50g batches. I'm roasting as we speak :) Did a couple kenyan roasts, and now I'm trying to craft a medium/dark sumatra roast.

Sidenote: sniffing the beans every day is one of my favorite parts of roasting LOL. sounds weird but I"ll bury my face/nose in my larger bullet batches :lol:


#443: Post by GDM528 »

dale_cooper wrote:Even the sandwich bags are far too big for my 50g batches.
Once all the air is squeezed out of the bag, it's exactly the right size for the beans. Essentially a disposable version of an Airscape, but 1000x cheaper. I've been using quart size simply because that's what Costco sells in bulk, and it's priced below the diminishing-returns threshold to find anything cheaper.

I did try FoodSaver vacuum bags for a while, but the oils from darker roasts degrades the seal quickly, and the difference between drawing a vacuum and simply pressing out all the excess air was trivial relative to the few-days life span of the small batch of beans.

A rack/hangar is really helpful. I made my own, but there are commercial versions out there (search "Zip n store").


#444: Post by Milligan »

I used 8oz (1/2 pint) jelly Ball mason jars to store my 100g roasts (green weight.) Burp the top after 24-48hours. They kept plenty long for me to go through them and are ready to pop in the freezer if I wasn't going to get to them in awhile. I just washed them in the dishwasher with everything else after use. Two flats were plenty for a full rotation of bean experiments.

I did run into them being slightly undersized for darker roasts after 2nd crack.

I use quart freezer bags for 1lb roasts and they fit perfectly without much wasted space. You can also use a metal straw to close the bag all the way onto the straw on one end. Then suck on it to pull all the air out. As you are sucking, pull the straw out and zip it the rest of the way in one go. It gets it pretty tight. It'll puff up again over time with CO2 but at least it gets some oxygen out.


#445: Post by GDM528 »

Speaking of "freezer bags"...

The thicker plastic and more secure zipper design makes freezer bags suitable for...
Sous vide! In case you were thinking: "I need more variables that affect the taste of my coffee", you can use the bags + sous vide to rapid-age and/or pre-warm before grinding.

Supporter ❤

#446: Post by mgrayson replying to GDM528 »

I spend my life waiting for roasts to age. What's the sous vide recipe?


#447: Post by GDM528 replying to mgrayson »

Don't have a recipe - still formulating how to test this. Open to suggestions - but that probably belongs in a different thread.


#448: Post by LindoPhotography »

I got a used Ikawa Home, I thought it was kinda weird for a high end roaster to be so app dependent, yet they had very different apps giving you very different experiences. I figured it out based on my friends screenshot of his app (on iPhone) noticed my Android app was very different.
The Android version is apparently the older version of the app, they haven't bothered to update it which may be a good or a bad thing depending on what you like.
The iPhone version looks nicer, and roast profiles are more organized by the coffee bean type. It also gives you more helpful information on how roast development might affect things, and gives you an idea of what to expect from different roast profiles in terms of acidity, body, bitterness etc. it also allows you to select a profile and tweak it to be lighter or darker roast as well as control the development time from low, medium and high indicated by +, ++, and +++, (some profiles seem to react weirdly to adjustments and look like a different profile to me though). But this is a much nicer system for newbies. It offers some sustainability and explanations while being guided.
The Android version seems better for more experienced people because it has more manual profile editing control allows you to set a few points manually up to the certain limitations like max temp i think is 550f which is plenty. There's also a min fan speed setting I believe. But you can control fan speed, temperature, and roast length (up to a point, probably to prevent potential fires).

I told them this doesn't look good and doesn't give the end user a unified experience with their product, and hopefully if /when they do update the android version they'll keep the feature that allows the manual profile adjustment for those who are wanting to do that.
For them to charge so much for their roaster, then ask for iPhone users (who had the older version with manual control previously i believe!?) to not only pay for the app upgrade, but pay for a monthly SUBSCRIPTION fee seems like pretty poor customer treatment. Like 'oh they're iPhone users, they bought an Ikawa, they can afford another $5 USD monthly right!?' :D

Also I don't love that they have profiles for other roasters coffees for the PRO version but basically just have pre-set profiles for Ikawa's own green coffees for the Home version, so you need to use something that seems similar, or just go with the basic default profile it gives you and modify it from there. It would be nice to have some more specific yet generic roast profiles like for a natural Ethiopian, washed Ethiopian, Anaerobic processed Colombian, etc.

Anyway, I managed to get an slightly older but still nicely working iPhone so I have the best of both worlds. I suggest doing that if you have the Ikawa home. Make sure it's not super old because currently the iPhone Ikawa home app looks like it needs iOS 13.0 to work.
Works on the iPhone 6s I got, but not the iPhone 4.

Other than the silliness with the app. The roaster is really neat how it collects the chaff in the cup, you swap the cups at the end of the roast and it blows all the coffee out into the other cup.
It seems to roast really quickly, like I don't get much development time after first crack before it goes into cooling, yet so far no roasts have really been bad or anything, I'd expect that it would taste grassy / sour or under roasted but that hasn't really happened.

One thing I've been meaning to experiment with is doing a longer running profile where I can kinda manually control the roast by hitting the power button and stopping it prematurely, (not prematurely, but when it's gone through enough development time and it was at a roast level that looked good) apparently it will go into cooling mode if you press the button mid roast, which is good. I had to ask Ikawa and a facebook group to find that info, because it wasn't clearly mentioned anywhere else what happens if you try that.

Anyway, much like Weber, I think I like the product, but not the company or how they do things. They CAN do better.

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#449: Post by drgary »

Hi Ben,

Thank you for the detailed post on your experience with the IKAWA Home and its apps.

We are just now rolling out an in-depth review, and the posts that deal with the apps and experimentation will soon be posted. After my initial review, other Team HB members will participate in the review. When my review is fully posted, I'll start a thread for comments on the review.

IKAWA Home Roasting System Review

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!