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Thread: not what i expected

  1. #1
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    not what i expected

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Boy I am new to all this! but do like a good cup of coffee well I thought I did.
    I purchased a starter pack from coffeesnobs to go with a new super saeco expresso machine, Talea Ring model.

    It grinds and brews as advertised but I found trying to set up the machine the first day I suffered caffeine overload and had 2 sick days! getting over it!

    Back on deck now but I still find the extraction seems too strong for my taste, Ive tried a shot in a cup then added frothed milk, not bad a shot with hot water and a little milk but Im missing that true coffee taste, is this a case of experimenting with beans or am I doing something fundamentally wrong?
    No good suggesting I get a different machine, because that is not going to happen, and after my caffeine overdose Im wary and have to limit my intake.
    Any advice for a new coffee nut would be a help

    David

  2. #2
    Senior Member Koffee_Kosmo's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Hate to say it David but
    Super Automatics dont make good coffee

    Medium roasted beans without oil sheen is best and make sure they are fresh

    Try adjusting the grind I think this model allows one to do so

    Thats about it mate
    KK

  3. #3
    A_M
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    Re: not what i expected

    Quote Originally Posted by 323C3B3924313738560 link=1263562214/0#0 date=1263562214
    Boy I am new to all this! but do like a good cup of coffee well I thought I did.
    I purchased a starter pack from coffeesnobs to go with a new super saeco expresso machine, Talea Ring model.

    It grinds and brews as advertised but I found trying to set up the machine the first day I suffered caffeine overload and had 2 sick days! getting over it!

    Back on deck now but I still find the extraction seems too strong for my taste, Ive tried a shot in a cup then added frothed milk, not bad a shot with hot water and a little milk but Im missing that true coffee taste, is this a case of experimenting with beans or am I doing something fundamentally wrong? *
    No good suggesting I get a different machine, because that is not going to happen, and after my caffeine overdose Im wary and have to limit my intake.
    Any advice for a new coffee nut would be a help

    David
    1: Ya dont have to drink the whole shot...

    Taste and spit... Then a sip of water... Not unlike Wine tasting...

    2: Problem with Autos is that you may not always be able to make teh adjustments you need.

    It will be a combo of Dose level and Shot time...

    The trick is to get it to have a good double shot dose... But pull it at a single shot... ie. About half the volume that you would have got if ya let it do a true double shot...

    Thats about all from me... Without it in the hand and a manual and 1kg of beans to play with... Not much more I can offer..

    Oh... Dont get an Auto if ya dont want to drink what they dish out...

    Welcome to CS... 2 + 2 = 5 and that is good coffee...



  4. #4
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    Re: not what i expected

    I guess I knew you would say I had the wrong machine! it always seems the way with things I do!

    Ive looked here at coffeesnobs but they dont seem to offer a service of a variable roast such as medium, the pack I originally got I would say was a dark roast, so how and where could I get medium roasted beans which seems to me to be what I need.

    Yes I can adjust the grind on this machine, does a finer grind provide a different taste?

    Thanks
    David

  5. #5
    hazchem
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    Re: not what i expected

    Quote Originally Posted by 5F7B727271714B5F7B67797B140 link=1263562214/1#1 date=1263562673
    Super Automatics dont make good coffee *
    you know, Im no fan of Super Autos, but thats a personal preference. I dont think that we can say unequivocally that they dont make good coffee. I am certain that a Super Auto can make a good cup of coffee. Can it make one AS good as a manual machine? To most peoples way of thinking thats a no.

    Lets not try to forget that we ALL start somewhere... Ive said it before I STILL remember when I thought preground Lavazza Crema e Gusto was the ducks nuts. Just because someone is at a different point in their coffee journey doesnt mean they are in a bad place ... Some of us could do well to remember that.

    Hi David and welcome to coffeesnobs! I hope you are enjoying your shiny new machine - whatever form it might take. In many respects, caffeine consumption is like alcohol consumption - drink too much and itll make you sick. Drink it consistently and youll build up a tolerance. *:D

    Exploration and learning the limits of your equipment and yourself is a great start, so youre on the right track. As AM has suggested, just take a sip - like a wine tasting really - to ascertain if you like the flavour or not, but dont feel compelled to consume the whole beverage. Maybe try milk drinks first like a latte, or piccolo latte if you are just starting out as many people can find straight shots very strong in flavour. Caffeine levels will be the same either way though.

    Making espresso is (to a large extent) about controlling variables, and having control over how coarse or fine the grind is can have a huge impact on the flavours that you extract into the final beverage. So YES, changing the grind setting can impact on flavour.

    A piece of advice from one of my competition judging colleagues interstate - have some bananas on hand. If you start to feel a bit woozy after a few brews, have a banana and a bit of a break until you feel ok again, then back into it!

    Enjoy your coffee journey!

  6. #6
    Senior Member GregWormald's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Ive never used a Saeco super-auto but I do have some experience with a DeLonghi. Maybe they adjust similarly. 8-)

    Try and set the machine up to express about 50 ml volume (to start) for a double. Then set the grind so that the 50 ml takes about 25 or 30 seconds to come out of the machine after you press the button. The extraction should come out as a thin stream, often breaking into a continuous series of drops close to the cup. Hopefully the Saeco will grind that fine--the DeL would barely make it on the finest grind and the strongest extraction. (All beans grind somewhat differently!)

    If you have options about how strong to make the coffee I suggest you make it as strong as possible!! I know this sounds counter-intuitive, but this adjustment usually gives the best flavour. Using a small amount of grounds (the way super-autos usually manipulate strength) with give not only a weaker coffee but a much poorer tasting extraction. A better way of making milder coffee is to run less water through the grounds--more on this later.

    The major issue I had with the DeL was that just a tad too fine with the grind and the machine would generate an error condition and refuse to extract at all!! It was a real balancing act to make the grind fine enough to extract maximum flavour with minimum caffeine and still have the machine finish its task!

    Once the 50 ml of coffee in 30 sec or so is achieved, watch the extraction as it comes out and measure how much comes out before the colour of the coffee turns from black/dark brown to a lighter brown and then becomes sort of transparent-looking. *Set the water volume to stop in the middle of the browning and well before the blonding and see how that fares in your mouth. Ideally this would be at the 20 or 25 second mark, with an extraction volume about 30-40 ml.

    In general, I find the Central and South American beans to be the mildest tasting, followed by most of the Asian, with the African beans being the most flavourful. What I like is the full taste without too much caffeine and the restricted flow advised above usually delivers this.

    If it is still too strong, then put in more milk/water after the coffee is made, or pour off some of the shot and reserve for iced coffee (or treat someone else!). The roast level more usually affects the taste characteristics and not the real strength of the coffee.

    Please ask away if this is not clear. There may be someone here who has tweaked your actual model for best flavour. Once it is set up then it should run fairly consistently. Keep enough beans in the hopper to feed the grinder easily but not so many that they sit for more than a day or so and go stale.

    Greg

  7. #7
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Quote Originally Posted by 6C657E676C6169040 link=1263562214/4#4 date=1263564556
    Lets not try to forget that we ALL start somewhere... Ive said it before I STILL remember when I thought preground Lavazza Crema e Gusto was the ducks nuts.
    I bet now you think it tastes like ducks nuts too.

    Quote Originally Posted by 6C657E676C6169040 link=1263562214/4#4 date=1263564556
    Just because someone is at a different point in their coffee journey doesnt mean they are in a bad place ... Some of us could do well to remember that.
    Agreed.

    Quote Originally Posted by 606E696B7663656A040 link=1263562214/3#3 date=1263563376
    where could I get medium roasted beans which seems to me to be what I need.
    Tell us where you are and well try point you to a local roaster.

    P.S. Welcome to Coffee Snobs

  8. #8
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    Re: not what i expected

    Thanks for the Welcome and help.

    I live on the Gold Coast sunny Queensland (Tugun)

    The Saeco has many, many control mechanisms, I have got it set to what Greg suggested 50Ml in 27 seconds, I do find Im getting much more flavour and it is nicer on the palate than when I first started brewing, so a number of things could have occurred mainly operator error I think, I never realised just how caffeine could affect you! never worried about it with instant ;D

    So back to my set up, initially the machine program pushed out 50ml in about 35 seconds but I can program it, which I did, back to 27 seconds, the stream is constant then breaks into drops and lighter, I think you call it creama!

    I can also program the volume of the grind which I will do when I have finished this, I can also set a grind texture of fine, medium and course, it is presently on medium and I can adjust intensity, this has been on low after my overdose but following Gregs advise Ill crank that up.

    Now in the volumes were talking about, the 50ml is that a shot for a single cup of coffee or two? Im only making coffee for myself and normally use a mug, Im not really into milk drinks and order flat whites in a coffee shop! I have found that most of the other world doesnt know about flat whites preferring to call them americanos or some such thing.

    Anyway, again I do appreciate the help and gentle fashion you have gone about helping me.

    David

  9. #9
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Quote Originally Posted by 06080F0D1005030C620 link=1263562214/7#7 date=1263631466
    I have found that most of the other world doesnt know about flat whites preferring to call them americanos or some such thing.
    :-?

    I drink flat whites all the time.
    Asking for one is never a problem in Sydney.

  10. #10
    Senior Member trentski's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Quote Originally Posted by 494740425F4A4C432D0 link=1263562214/7#7 date=1263631466
    Im only making coffee for myself and normally use a mug, Im not really into milk drinks and order flat whites in a coffee shop! I have found that most of the other world doesnt know about flat whites preferring to call them americanos or some such thing.
    You say you dont like milk drinks but order them at coffee shops :-?

    an Americano is a long black, a flat white is a milk drink

  11. #11
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    Re: not what i expected

    A flat white to me is a coffee with a little bit of milk in it, try to order a flat white in London and you get a blank stare!

    Right, that should end the flat white herring in favour of getting on to my real issue ::)

  12. #12
    Senior Member Koffee_Kosmo's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Quote Originally Posted by 7F717674697C7A751B0 link=1263562214/7#7 date=1263631466
    Now in the volumes were talking about, the 50ml is that a shot for a single cup of coffee or two?
    It should be 25/30 ml per single shot

    KK

  13. #13
    Senior Member GregWormald's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Some more suggestions interspersed:

    Quote Originally Posted by 7A7473716C797F701E0 link=1263562214/7#7 date=1263631466
    The Saeco has many, many control mechanisms, I have got it set to what Greg suggested 50Ml in 27 seconds, I do find Im getting much more flavour and it is nicer on the palate than when I first started brewing, so a number of things could have occurred mainly operator error I think, I never realised just how caffeine could affect you! never worried about it with instant *;D
    Im glad its working out for you. In general a well-made espresso has less caffeine than an equivalent instant, and a ristretto has less caffeine again. However, this applies to freshly roasted, freshly ground coffee only. Supermarket blends (and some other commercial blends as well :( ) often have a fair percentage of high-caffeine robusta beans.

    So back to my set up, initially the machine program pushed out 50ml in about 35 seconds but I can program it, which I did, back to 27 seconds, the stream is constant then breaks into drops and lighter, I think you call it creama!
    Crema is actually the oily foam that floats on top of the extraction. It is much more prominent with fresh coffee; with supermarket pre-ground it is non-existant. ;D When the extraction is pushed through the little hole in the pressurised basket it produces a false crema which is nothing more than frothed coffee!

    I can also program the volume of the grind which I will do when I have finished this, I can also set a grind texture of fine, medium and course, it is presently on medium and I can adjust intensity, this has been on low after my overdose but following Gregs advise Ill crank that up.
    The grind texture and quantity are correct when the machine pumps out the right amount of extraction in the right time with the right flavour. *8-)

    Most coffeesnobs would recommend the maximum volume of grounds (high intensity), and then adjust the grind texture to get the right extraction time and volume. Grind too fine and the blonding occurs early and the result is bitter; too coarse and the coffee flows very quickly and tastes sour. When all works well the ristretto described in my last post has most of the flavour of the double and less caffeine, and can be used for one drink or two.

    Now in the volumes were talking about, the 50ml is that a shot for a single cup of coffee or two?
    Technically that is a double.

    Im only making coffee for myself and normally use a mug, Im not really into milk drinks and order flat whites in a coffee shop! I have found that most of the other world doesnt know about flat whites preferring to call them americanos or some such thing.
    As trentski says, an americano is a shot or a ristretto diluted with hot water, a flat white is a milk coffee.

    A mug containing a double (doppio) ristretto would look very empty. I drink my ristrettos out of a half-full 60 ml cup!

    Anyway, again I do appreciate the help and gentle fashion you have gone about helping me.

    David
    You are welcome,

    Greg

  14. #14
    Senior Member trentski's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Quote Originally Posted by 67696E6C7164626D030 link=1263562214/10#10 date=1263648249
    A flat white to me is a coffee with a little bit of milk in it, try to order a flat white in London and you get a blank stare!

    Right, that should end the flat white herring in favour of getting on to my real issue *::)

    You are always going to be in trouble if you give your own definitions to commonly used terms ;)

    This might help, its from an american source hence the reference to half and half, not sure about the whipped cream in a Caffe Mocha but otherwise its pretty good


    You are only going to be able to go so far with your machine but with care you should still be able to best those cafes that make their espresso without love, good luck with it :)

  15. #15
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Quote Originally Posted by 393730322F3A3C335D0 link=1263562214/10#10 date=1263648249
    try to order a flat white in London and you get a blank stare!
    Try to order a "lemon, lime and bitters" in Wales and they ask why you want lemon and lime in your your beer. *::)

    Quote Originally Posted by 292F3833292E36345D0 link=1263562214/13#13 date=1263685865
    This might help, its from an american source hence the reference to half and half, not sure about the whipped cream in a Caffe Mocha but otherwise its pretty good
    Id add thet the picture of the flat white is the only "incorrect" one as far as Aussies go.
    It needs a little milk foam; half as much as on the caffe latte.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Shotgun's Avatar
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    Re: not what i expected

    Id just like to say welcome too and maybe offer some encouragement. When I first started I had absolutely no idea what I was doing but after some months of practice, I do know something... Not very much... but something.

    The good news is that if you listen to the wise old owls on CS, youll eventually get there.

    Ive gone from almost undrinkable coffee to quite enjoyable coffee thanks to these guys.

    Cheers
    Tony

  17. #17
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    Re: not what i expected

    WOW! thanks Trentski Ive just realised I have spent most my life drinking a beverage nobody knows about, mine is like an Americano but finished to the level of a flat white and topped off with milk! might call it a morgano :D

    But on a serious note, everyday the coffee gets better, this morning I actually tried a milk coffee 1 shot of expresso with milk and froth I cant tell you if it was a flat white, Cappuccino or Caffe latte but it tasted good 8-)

    So again thanks for all the helpful advice and comments

    David

  18. #18
    hazchem
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    Re: not what i expected

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    Quote Originally Posted by 595750524F5A5C533D0 link=1263562214/16#16 date=1263700119
    but it tasted good
    thats great news David! after all, regardless of definitions or how drinks are made, its what in the cup that counts. If you like it, thats THE most important thing.

    One of the great things about coffee is that the learning, and improvement will last a lifetime. It just keeps getting better! :) :)



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