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Aida Battle El Salvadore SHG

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  • Aida Battle El Salvadore SHG

    Hi all,

    I bought these on a whim because Aida lived in Nashville where I lived for a while - I'm still learning roasting but I've done these 8 times to different levels (mostly popper roasts with a couple of disastrous "left paddle stopped rotating" Corretto's) and I keep getting sour and "hollow" taste. Did one today into rolling sc and tried it as soon as it cooled(way too early to tell, I know) and just didn't get a flavour I liked even taking into account it might be too dark and too young. I'd put it down to bad roasts but every Ethiopian Gambella I've done(some of my first as it was from the starter pack so not much quality control) has been beautiful, by far my favourite cups including local roasts I've bought. What's been other's experience with the SHG? Is it more likely I just don't like it or that I'm roasting it wrong? Do you blend it or use it as a SO? I mostly brew in an Aeropress and only judge my roasts by that as I'm still hit or miss with espresso.

    Thanks for any advice.

  • #2
    This was a stunning Central American coffee, but it is also pretty much the exact opposite to the Gambella so the problem might be a mixture of both your roasting and your flavour preference.

    The Aida is fairly acidic, so it might be that that you don't like... it's also a fairly dense bean so will take to a slower roast (which is hard to do in a popper).

    If you have had other Central American coffees that you have liked then I would persist and see if you can slow a roast down. If what you tasted was in fact sour (not acidic) then I would suggest you have under roasted or roasted too fast.


    • #3
      Thanks Andy, I'll definitely persist - I have had Guatemalan that I quite liked (not as much as the Ethiopian) but the taste is not at all similar so maybe it's my roasting. I have an unmodded bread maker that will only roast for 15 minutes unless I use the intermittant 4 minute cycle and the popper wasn't getting the temps high enough so I've tried starting out slow then putting it in a box late in the roast to get to 230c or so. My longest roast was 11:32 but that only got to 219c, I'll try the one I just did in a few days but I think I scorched it. I've just gotten my thermo probe and done a few small roasts so I might be a bit more confident to try another and slow it down. If it does turn out to be the acidity I don't like any recommendations for an interestiong SO bean that I might also blend with this?


      • #4
        To answer my own question it was the roast, way too light. As the weather got colder I was still using long extension cords and power boards to stretch it and wasn't getting anywhere near second crack temperatures even with longer roasts. I tried the "scorched" one today (there are black circles on some of the beans) and it was quite nice, good body and maybe chocolate though I'm not that good at picking flavours. Waiting for the rain to go away so I can try a bigger roast in the bread maker.


        • #5
          Too short and sour makes some sense. In this colder weather I would suggest using less coffee in the breadmaker and applying the same heat profile. It's true for all roasters (home brew, domestic and commercial) as they are sucking in cold air that needs to be heated to get to the same point as a higher ambient temperature during the rest of the year. The exception to that rule is the Snobbery roasting room, it's insulated and runs a reverse cycle air-con that keeps the room at 24C all year round... that's my little roasting luxury for BeanBay orders.

          Think of coffee roasting as a scale of flavours.

          Green - Grassy - Sour - Acidic - Sweet - Cocoa - Bitter - Burnt

          As you roast through the scale the more you get of that attribute and the less there is of the previous ones.

          Your fast, shorter roast was sour and maybe acidic (hard to guess without me tasting it). Your darker roast sounds like it was early in the cocoa scale... take it further and it will start to burn off both the sweetness and the cocoa and you will get bitter then ashy... bbq then charcoal.

          As a home roaster you need to learn where on the scale your previous roast was and make the small changes to move it to the part of the scale you like/want/need. Stick to one roaster (toggling between popper and breadmaker makes it hard to get a baseline) and adjust to taste.



          • #6
            Finally got these right
            The roast before this was too dark, I did some other beans then went back to the El Sal in the Corretto last Friday.

            Unfortunately the battery in my thermocouple was dead and the app I use to time/graph the roast wasn't ready when I started but at least I know the level to aim for (around CS9 for me). Roast was a bit fast, stopped it well before rolling second and it's peaked in flavour at 7 days, lots of body, between sweet and cocoa with maybe some caramel, brewed in the Aeropress and left me wanting another cup.