How to Taste Coffee



I guess i just enjoy the finer things in life :smile: pun intended :smile:

I think it’s really just about knowing your setup and creating the balance for the extraction you prefer. In the Ikawa SCA video I posted someone said that you roast for your grinder and the majority of my thought is that is simply untrue and IMPO a cope out, they were just not able to balance the brewing method (espresso) in order to extract for that flavor. This can be tested by smelling the fresh ground coffee, no matter the grind size. Whether French Press, Aero, V60 or turkish, if I smell berry in one I smell it in all. Now roasting for the water has IMPO scientific merit where the level of calcium and other things will affect the solubility and thus the chemicals extracted from the grounds and the water definitely can mute or express flavor.


Agreed = cop out!!!

following that argument — if my grinder is faulty (and does not grind fine enough), then I can only use darker roasts — as they are the only ones that are working properly…

NO NO NO - I will fix the grinder :wink:


OK I just did a shot with 22g of grounds after sifting (same roast) with the 350 to 600 range that @pavel suggested. And it extracted a fairly fast pour starting at about 2 bar and running (too) fast at 4 bar.

Shot tasted OK but was lacking crema and concentration.

OOPs the lower sieve was 300 not 350 by mistake = 300 to 600 range.


A question which is the best grinder from the profiles in this image?

In the past I would have thought the one with the highest peak was the best = brown, then red

However Matt Perger (in that video again) suggests that the one shifted most to the left is the best = BLUE (EK 43), then brown, then, red, and then green.



Perhaps a ball mill (they can grind to nano level = very fine) with a sieve in the drum? I think it would be rather slow grinding perhaps.

Certainly not as expensive as a roller mill :slight_smile: you can get small ball mill for $100???


I think it depends on whether you want to keep the fines or sift them out :slight_smile: Also the shift in the horizontal axis I think means they are not set to grind exactly the same (having the peak in the same spot) so … maybe EK being the best is not because its shifted to the left the most, but he just refered to it being the one most to the left? Not sure but from this plot I dont like it … as the bulges in fines are actually bigger - not sure why is that.

If I would be separating the fines at 200 I would pick Robur. From experience with my conical grinder I like how espresso tastes with the big burrs … and from the looks of it its the middle bulge is smallest and fines are smallest … I would pick that one though its quite wide in the main lobe.


Yes … ball milll … thats the one I was thinking about :slight_smile: Though - not really practical. :smiley:


I would ASSUME that they are all dialled in on the same coffee - otherwise the comparison graph is TOTALLY completely meaningless.

And I would further ASSUME that “better” indicates a higher TDS, and better flavour in the resulting coffee.

Of course if those things are not true - then this graph is just “fake news” or lies - and that would not be the first time…


To your shot @jmuir2009.

Looks like it works almost exactly as predicted (my guess was 4-5 bars shot), meaning its better, though still a fast shot.

So I think its very probably true that you get fractures and channeling … hmmm … So … because you can not grind any finer now … could you try keeping all the rest the same (same dose same tamp) but grinding coarser actually? I am not sure how many steps in the espresso range you have so I would say go in bigger steps now … maybe 4 steps and then again … and again.

It should be getting better, then again geting worse … when you find the point where its the best then in finer steps around it? Or even better if you choke it you know you are ont the right track :smiley:


You are probably right at what you assume … but … if they are set up based on same coffee what are they setup based on? Shot time? What makes them the same if the shots are different? If I was to make this plot … I would set the up the same based on the size of majority of particles, which should be the biggest peak … that is what I think should be compared. If EK gave higher TDS … thats very probable due to smaller particles right? But sure it depends on what did they want to compare and what did they want to pick. From my POV the are not set the same.


My guess would be they dialled them in to get the best possible shot.

But dialing them in to get the same TDS, and dialing them to get the same peak size are two other valid options. That should also be included in any valid comparison.

People are so casual - they want it easier than it is = KISS

Unfortunately it is usually simpler than reality = results are flawed…


Well … as I wrote I do not know what was their aim and what exactly were they comparing. I think best possible shot is very very subjective :smiley: but … it probably served them well, they sure had their reasons for the way the set it up. So it was probably very much ok for them, its only me not liking it :smiley: But I have say this all helps me quite a lot … I need to build some tests to perform for the hand grinders … so … thinking about this plot made me also think about what exactly do I want to do, what do I want to plot and why.


I will try as you suggest - but I don’t hold much hope. I initially started just a little coarser and it basically went through at almost no pressure. Which from my experience seemed to indicate too coarse… But it could have been anomalous…


Btw … Do you have a tripple basket @jmuir2009 ? If you do and if making a 25 - 30 g shots is ok with your coffee consumption … I would say when you have confirmed it gets better at some point when grinding coarser … use the tripple basket and grind even coarser :smiley: Its a bit counterintuitive but when I had Vario that also could not grind really fine (though fine enough for 21g with huge tamp force :slight_smile: ) I found out that tripple basket and shots from up to 30g are even better than 20 shots, and coarser grind means way more crema, and less problems with hard tamp.


Yes I have a triple basket.

And you are right that may work - more coffee and coarser - I have done that in the past. Basically just another way to present the ideal surface area for extraction.

I just suspect the best extraction spot (for this roast) at 20-22g would be a bit finer than the grinder is doing.

The pucks such as they are look like they are dissolving rather than channeling. Though it is difficult to tell much from pucks in my experience…


It may not work … but since without fines it went to 4 bar … there should be some room to go coarser with them, and if mz theory holds it just may work … this is just to test what it does when gradualz going coarser … so it depends on how much time and material you can throw away … you may go one step at a time or pick some bigger steps to check fast … I do think it should start getting better at one point, when the puck stops being fragile … but now if it will have enough resistance at that point? Do not know … I would bet there will be a point that chokes it at 22g, but thats just how I feel about it … not based on anything.

If it only gets a bit better but not good enough, then I would say go for tripple basket (that SHOULD work with quite coarser grind size) and use it before you get some grinder to use when you send Sette out for repair and calibration to factory.


It is worth trying.

But I would point out that a small amount of fines was removed. And a large amount of boulders. I would suspect that the reason for the improvement was removal of boulder - not removal of fines :slight_smile:

I might try a 22g with boulders (600) removed - but keeping the fines (before I do coarser). If that goes better then… I will try this and coarser probably tonight…

I will probably try coarser first as it is easier than sifting :slight_smile:


well … all my pucks are very compact and holding together when I get them out … I can manipulate the carelessly and they sort of “snap” when I break them … I think what you observe may be either really coarse puck (but from your measurement its does not seem to be coarse) or there is something else that makes the puck react differently when its flooded … my guess is its allready fractured and broken before the water comes and when it does it makes a mess … but I may be totally wrong. Yet … so far it holds up … because the shot was going better with the fine part removed. If it was too coarse before, it would be just a loose coffee in the basket after you removed the smaller particles (I tried really coarse grind once …not intentionally … and it was just a loose stuff in the basket :smiley: )


Yes that was the idea behind it … to find a point that will work as it is … sifting every shot would be a nightmare.


I pulled another shot on C-1 (finest coarse setting = 1 is finest) and F-EF (A=finest I=coarsest AF=middle) half way on the fine setting.

This shot ran at a “similar” (a little lower?) pressure to the sifted shot - but the extraction was much weaker (which screams at me “make it finer”). But at least it was not a gusher. I seems that the extraction was probably uneven across the basket (but I can’t tell easily without mirror or video) - as the extraction was very “spattery” (sprayed drops of coffee around) and did not merge quickly into a nice single stream…

Next I will try a shot at C-1 (finest coarse) and F-I (coarsest fine). This shot extracted at two bar rather than 4 bar like the previous - and has almost no crema. So it looks like this is definitely too coarse.

And here is a video: