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  • Updosing and grinders

    Ive been having a recurring conversation lately that Im sure will spark good debate/discussion here.

    When Bassett won the WBC in 2003 it sparked the whole up dosing revolution. A lot of barista jumped on board and in the last 6 years it has become very common amongst specialty coffee folk to utilize this technique. Over the past year or more I have noticed barista experimenting with down dosing and when Scotty released his dosing tools the idea started developing at a higher rate. At Pioneer we down (regular) dose for our blends and only really up dose for certain origins.

    What a lot of people have not thought about is the grinder and its role in this scenario. The popularity of conical burr grinders started gaining momentum around the time that up dosing did. Bassett developed the up dosing technique around the conical burr grinder. So now that a lot of barista are down dosing again, do we need to look at big flat burr grinders? I was talking to Sal from ECA yesterday and he had some interesting thoughts on this. They are looking to bring in some 84mm Flat blade grinders with ceramic blades from anfim, which is mazzer major burr size. We are about to start playing with our Malkhoning flat burr deli grinder with our espresso machine to see what happens.

    Has anyone done any experimentation on this? I can see this becoming a hot topic...

  • #2
    Re: Updosing and grinders

    Yeah good topic! One of the first variables I play around with when I get a new coffee is alter the dose/grind to see what plays better.

    What is your reasoning for having a lower dose for the blends and not the single Os?

    One of the other things associated with down dosing with a finer grind is the freshness of the beans. Ive heard around the tracks that to get the best out of uber-fresh beans is to fine it up and down dose.

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    • #3
      Re: Updosing and grinders

      Yes an interesting approach and topic...

      However to play the skeptic and to understand more.....  Questions have to be asked...

      A:  Some one..... some where, came up with a Dose Volume, a grind size and along with some other factors (Temp etc) agreed that  30ml in 30sec obtained the optimum from the coffee grinds.

      1:    Flavor / Cost  / Technology / Puck size / Time  Vs market and profit?

      2:    Physics clearly demonstrates in many fields that Surface area is important...  Finer grind = more surface area thus the water has more opportunity to provide a carrier / transport function for teh oils.

      3:    Trade off =  carrier / transport function is still subjected to physics.  Tamp and  Heat  has a direct impact on the ability of the water to flow, and the grind sizes being smaller means the heat has more profound impact on their mass.... and their ability to release oils.

      4:   It also means that as the grinds are smaller, they can be stripped of their oils quicker and thus over extracted...  A deep puck can and will show a color difference from top to bottom...  You may need to look with a system that enhances you eye sight...  But I could see a marked difference under a microscope of the grinds in the top layer Vs the bottom.

      5: For me a true under dose ends up with a sloppy puck  :

      I guess the story is about breaking the rules  8-)  and trying different things to see what works best...   AND then there is the scientist in some of us, that needs the deeper explanation to assist in understanding what is going on..

      For me....  I have been grinding finer for some time and tamping light, with a full dose...   BUT I also pull most of my shots short...

      What I have just started to do is use a single basket and grind even finer with a full dose..

      NOTE:  Having used some of the small units...  I would again have to suggest that there is a pronounced difference between the small diameter and depth of the PF   VS  a large dia but shallow PF in the commercial systems..   Again it comes back to teh physics and the chemistry that impacts on the carrier / transport function of the water...


      Up dose / down dose / grind size / water temp / beans... they are all variables and dynamic...  Thus one has to play continually to get the output one wants...  

      Bloody  )(&&*  coffee road is #$%6  long and ^%#$# windy,    good thing I am not in a %#@%% rush ;D

      [edit]Tried to correct speeling but some words do not work correctly  [/edit]

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      • #4
        Re: Updosing and grinders

        Sorry to revive such an old thread, but did anyone notice the grinder Scottie was using at the national comps. 2 big flat burr grinders. While talking to Scottie backstage he said that he just couldnt get the flavours he wanted out of the BNZ or Robur.

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        • #5
          Re: Updosing and grinders

          Originally posted by 566F69686363745954696775726374060 link=1238106913/3#3 date=1265238456
          Sorry to revive such an old thread, but did anyone notice the grinder Scottie was using at the national comps. 2 big flat burr grinders. While talking to Scottie backstage he said that he just couldnt get the flavours he wanted out of the BNZ or Robur.

          It was an Anfim supplied by site sponsor ECA

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          • #6
            Re: Updosing and grinders

            Not to mention Anfims have awesome dosing chambers. Im looking at you Mazzer!

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            • #7
              Re: Updosing and grinders

              Reading over the past few months on the WWW
              The Anfim Super Lusso has titanium blades

              Will this have an grind impact or is it that they stay sharp longer
              (could be both?)

              I dont over or under-dose at all

              KK

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              • #8
                Re: Updosing and grinders

                Originally posted by 457C7A7B7070674A477A7466617067150 link=1238106913/3#3 date=1265238456
                Sorry to revive such an old thread, but did anyone notice the grinder Scottie was using at the national comps. 2 big flat burr grinders. While talking to Scottie backstage he said that he just couldnt get the flavours he wanted out of the BNZ or Robur.
                I was also impressed that Scott showed that he still remembers how to free dose and do so consistently!

                I think its a skill which is in danger of danger of disappearing with the electronic grinders

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                • #9
                  Re: Updosing and grinders

                  Originally posted by 6E5B56516579555C5C5F5F3A0 link=1238106913/7#7 date=1265260427
                  I was also impressed that Scott showed that he still remembers how to free dose and do so consistently!
                  Whats "Free Dosing" Chris?

                  Mal.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Updosing and grinders

                    Originally posted by 06333E390D113D34343737520 link=1238106913/7#7 date=1265260427
                    I was also impressed that Scott showed that he still remembers how to free dose and do so consistently!
                    Its not something he would forget.

                    Scottie counted the clicks on the grinder.
                    26 for espresso & 27 for cap if my memory serves me correctly.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Updosing and grinders

                      my missus counted em.....amazing, very thorough is Scottie, a perfectionist for lack of a better word.

                      Mal i could be wrong(and im sure someone will correct me if im wrong )but, i believe free dosing is just hitting go on your dosered grinder and twacking straight away as teh coffee is ground, the coffee falls basically straight through the doser, essentially using the doser purely to break up any clumps? so basically what we try and do everyday.......

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Updosing and grinders

                        Originally posted by 797D5B424247584F402E0 link=1238106913/10#10 date=1265278163
                        my missus counted em.....amazing, very thorough is Scottie, a perfectionist for lack of a better word.

                        Mal i could be wrong(and im sure someone will correct me if im wrong )but, i believe free dosing is just hitting go on your dosered grinder and twacking straight away as the coffee is ground, the coffee falls basically straight through the doser, essentially using the doser purely to break up any clumps? so basically what we try and do everyday.......
                        This is what I do - didnt know it was called free dosing but anyway I almost have the hang of it... grinding and dosing exactly what I want without leaving dross in the doser. Not easy with a Faema EPN monster.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Updosing and grinders

                          Originally posted by 3632140D0D0817000F610 link=1238106913/10#10 date=1265278163
                          Mal i could be wrong(and im sure someone will correct me if im wrong  )but, i believe free dosing is just hitting go on your dosered grinder and twacking straight away as the coffee is ground, the coffee falls basically straight through the doser, essentially using the doser purely to break up any clumps? so basically what we try and do everyday.......  
                          So all this time I have been free dosing and I thought that it was just normal  

                          Originally posted by 0D041704130213040C00610 link=1238106913/11#11 date=1265279517
                          I almost have the hang of it... grinding and dosing exactly what I want without leaving dross in the doser. Not easy with a Faema EPN monster.  
                          This thwacking while grinding method is what prompted me to make the doser exit chute on my Mazzer Major to guide the ground coffee straight down into the basket

                          KK

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                          • #14
                            Re: Updosing and grinders

                            Originally posted by 7144494E7A664A43434040250 link=1238106913/7#7 date=1265260427
                            I was also impressed that Scott showed that he still remembers how to free dose and do so consistently!

                            I think its a skill which is in danger of danger of disappearing with the electronic grinders  
                            I think what Chris might mean by free dosing is the ritual associated with a manual doser ie dose, tap, distribute/level, etc. and how with an electronic doser this is not necessary. You simply use the timed electronic doser to dispense your dose (once youve worked out the amount) and then just tamp the mound. No distribution, levelling, yad, yad, yad. Im sure Chris will chime in (and correct me  ;D).

                            Javabeen

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                            • #15
                              Re: Updosing and grinders

                              But getting back to the topic  :

                              Ive moved to down dosing simply because I find the bigger conical Kony-e produces a much brighter cup. By down dosing (16-17g doses) I get a sweeter more balanced cup.

                              Having said that, with the Kony its opened my eyes to play around with the dose depending on the bean/roast profile and age of the bean ie younger roasted/less rested beans pour better and taste less bright at lower doses as do lighter roasts. As they age I can increase the dose (slightly) if I notice the flavors dropping off.

                              Darker roasts on the other hand are OK at higher doses ie produce less acidity however they still taste sweeter at a lower dose.

                              At least this has been my experience in the past 3 months with the Kony. Interested to hear others peoples experiences with playing with dose levels...

                              Javabeen

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