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Roasting Blends
lmclaren
Hi,
Please excuse me if this is a stupid question,

I am currently designing / building a fluid bed roaster. I am at the point in the construction where I am designing the feed hopper and I am wondering if I need to provide a way of introducing different beans at different times during the roast. So the question is when roasting a blend, do you:

a: add different beans at different stages during the roast?
b: roast the separately and then combine?
c: roast them all at the same time?

many thanks

Lee
Unta
When I blend, I roast everything separately. The only exception is the Indican Decafe, which is blended @ the farm. So I have no choice, everything has to go in at the same time.
I Blend after the roast, because of the way that I conceptualize a blend. I want to promote a combination of brewed coffee flavor profiles in the cup. So being able to roast each of them to their peak flavor is important.
I'm sure there are some with a different take, but that is how I have approached it.
Have fun with it, run some tests. Use the blend after technique or the roast together. I think that adding beans at different times isn't going to be very successful roasting with an air roaster, due to increasing heat over time.
The other day while playing with my drip brewer I was thinking about some other blending ideas such as blending brewed coffee, and layering grounds in the basket of differnet courseness or the way the temp of the water reacts with the grounds closest to the top of the basket. The other idea I was considering was blending after grinding. The potential advantage was if I were using different grind coarseness for different coffees in the blend, I could narrow down the flavor profiles
I was looking for, as the result of grind alone.Might make for some interesting flavor options from the same blend of coffee.
Enjoy!
Sean
Edited by Unta on 09/24/2011 1:05 AM
Sean Harrington
educate.
greencardigan
I've roasted blends using both options b and c. My choice is mainly due to practical reasons though.

When using my popper I'd roast multiple small batches and would blend after roasting.

Using a bigger (1kg) air roaster it's more practical for me to blend before roasting. Otherwise I must roast more than I can use.
lmclaren
Thanks Sean and GC,

Looks like I only need a single feed hopper, that will make it easier to build.



best regards

Lee
kencovending
Hi,

I have tried different machines for blending but one of the best is from kenco vending and i think that could solve your purpose.

Thanks,
Dan
I've never heard of anyone using method A. It seems counterintuitive. Granted, you might want different beans roasted to different levels, but that's the endpoint temperature. They both might need the same amount of time in the drying phase. Adding a second bean later means the profile will be different, too. Also, adding cold beans to an ongoing roast might stall the other bean.

To me, the best way to achieve variable roast using the same roasting session is to start all the beans at the same time, and then remove the beans as the reach the final temperature. Yeh, I know this is impossible except in theory.
jedovaty

Quote

Dan wrote:To me, the best way to achieve variable roast using the same roasting session is to start all the beans at the same time, and then remove the beans as the reach the final temperature. Yeh, I know this is impossible except in theory.


Just a little challenging and possibly impractical. Your roast chamber would need to be compartmentalized or accept multiple drums, popping stages, colanders, etc -- same heat source. Would make the roaster fairly large, and the heat source would have to be even greater to accommodate the increase in volume.

Edit - oooo drums within drums.. spin like a ferris wheel! Round and round and round...
Edited by jedovaty on 12/14/2011 9:32 AM
Dan
LOL! You took me seriously! I said it was IMPOSSIBLE. That's a little stronger than your IMPRACTICAL. LOL! I do like how you ran with the multiple drum scenario. Another idea would be side-by-side or tandem drums, like a bank of sample roasters.
GaryatGala
I'm a home roaster.

However, I do roast for friends and other people as well.
Doing back to back roasts allows me to post blend for best results.

So for example, I normally have a 4 bean blend. If a 4 kilogram ( do excuse my aussie metric system) is required, then i do a roast of 1kg of one bean, then another 1kg of another bean, and so forth, keeping in mind of 1kg roasted beans.
For each kilogram, i would need 1.2 kg green beans to allow for weight loss during the roasting.

After roasting is done, the beans are mixed thoroughly together to make one harmonious blend.

Also keeping in mind that each bean in a blend works best at certain color scales.
A Mexican would be best at C10 to highlight it's cocoa character, and the rest may work best at C9 to highlight both roast and origin characters that will work well as an espresso or give enough punch in white coffee.

In conclusion, Option B works.
Option A is too hard and challenging as Dan suggested.
Option C works if either the bean supplier supplies a pre-blended mix, or you know how to pre-blend beans that roast similarly to each other, so some knowledge of beans is helpful. Dry processed, wet processed, high grown , low grown, all has to be taken into account when pre-blending.;)

Gary at G
Edited by GaryatGala on 12/19/2011 8:32 AM
seedlings
I use option B. I like it because it allows changing of the blend every pot of coffee. Option C may be more practical, but in that roasting effort you will only be able to roast one bean to it's optimum. Option B allows you to roast each bean to it's optimum.

CHAD
Roaster: CoffeeAir II 2# DIY air roaster
Grinder: Vintage Grindmaster 500
Brewers: Vintage Cory DCU DCL, Aeropress, Press, Osaka Titanium pourover
JackH

Quote

seedlings wrote:
I use option B. I like it because it allows changing of the blend every pot of coffee.

CHAD


I do this too and it is nice to experiment and try 50/50 blends by the pot. I roast 2 pounds of different coffee and it's mix as you go. My latest blend was Burundi and Honduras.
GaryatGala

Quote

seedlings wrote:
I use option B. I like it because it allows changing of the blend every pot of coffee. Option C may be more practical, but in that roasting effort you will only be able to roast one bean to it's optimum. Option B allows you to roast each bean to it's optimum.

CHAD


In my past experiences when i roast 2 kilograms a week, the best method was to post blend.

For those who only roast smaller batches a week, this option is not viable, either you can try and use a smaller roaster or tweak/modify the current roaster to roast small individual batches independently, or, create a blend which the beans can roast evenly together harmoniously, and that may mean choosing high grown only, or dry processed together, but even then they may be different in character, so you will still get variations.

After saying all that, there's nothing wrong with different colour gradient beans in a blend. If you know how to get the best out of each bean, then it's not about the appearance, but the end result in the cup.

Gary at G:)
troposcuba
here's something I learned talking to my local roaster (and supplier) we were talking about his blends and how he develops them. he was talking about "wet blending". i learned that he takes several brewed cups and blends in the liquid form (one spoonfull at a time into a new cup. the good part about thisis that you get to tast and tweak as you go. The other good part of this method is that the ratio will be the same for beans as it is for liquid. I have not blended anything since the conversation, but will try his method next time.
Sean
ciel-007

Quote

troposcuba wrote:

"wet blending" ... he takes several brewed cups and blends in the liquid form (one spoonfull at a time into a new cup...


Thanks Sean. although I didn't know what it was called until now, "wet blending" is one of the techniques I used to come up with my current blend of 4 single origin coffees. I began with 12 single origin coffees and tasted them individually, and then in various "wet blend" combinations and proportions. This requires a lot of patience. After weeks of trials, I came up with a blend which my taste buds find very pleasant... some French wine tasters use the word "round" to describe certain wines that fill every part of the mouth with smooth flavors. Sweet and "round" are words that came to mind when I first "wet blended" my current favorite mix. Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK�NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
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