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Roaster Design and Coffee Flavor
ciel-007
Is the flavor of the coffee in your cup affected by the type of roaster used?

This question is addressed to a select group of HRO members; those with roasting experience on more than one type of roaster. For example, in what way might the flavor of the beans prepared in a fluid bed roaster differ from those prepared in a drum roaster, or perhaps a hybrid roaster?

I've heard it said that drum roasting tends to mute acidity... possibly because that form of roasting takes longer, and the sugars have more time to caramelize. On the other hand, I've heard it said that air roasting enhances acidity, and yields brighter flavors... possibly because roasting in this manner is faster, and caramelization has less time to develop.

Further, if it were possible to hold the profiles constant across various types of roasters (drum... air... etc...) might there still be an observable difference in the flavor of your cup? Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK´┐ŻNIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
snwcmpr
Popper, then HotTop (B) ..... much improvement. I used it for a couple of years.
Then I seemed to ascended to heaven, because the 1 lb fluidbed I got produces exceptionally flavorful coffee repeatedly, I never got that from my HT no matter what I tried.
But, I am not an expert, and it is probably operator error with the HT, because others do it well.

Ken in NC
--------------
Backwoods Roaster
"I wish I could taste as well as I wish I could roast."

As Abraham Lincoln said "Do not trust everything you read on the internet".
Ringo
I started with a IRoast 2, it made great coffee but the size of the roast was too small. Then went to a Behmor and I think its a great roaster almost as good as the IRoast but lots bigger batch size. Then I built a propane fired drum roaster. Early on I cupped it against the Behmor roast and the behmor would win. After a few months of profile tweaks the drum is better than the behmor. The air roasters I used gave me a better acidity but the drum roaster will give me better body and more complexity. The air roaster had very few adjustment but the drum is adjustable on air and heat. I believe any style roaster will give you great coffee if you can control the profile. I have been gathering parts and want to build an Air Roaster at some point that is controllable. For espresso I prefer coffee that is roasted in a drum, the acid can be muted with longer roast time and I can get more complexity. For drip I suspect coffee roasted on a good quality air roaster would be better for me becouse I like lots of acidity.
All you need in life is ignorance and confidence, and then success is sure. Mark Twain
snwcmpr
Very good points Ringo.
Ken in NC
--------------
Backwoods Roaster
"I wish I could taste as well as I wish I could roast."

As Abraham Lincoln said "Do not trust everything you read on the internet".
ciel-007

Quote

snwcmpr wrote:

... I never got that from my HT no matter what I tried ...



Ken have you experimented with the following trials in your HT?

- In order to enhance brightness, have you tried skipping the bean drying phase and roasting at full power from the time you drop the beans until FC?

- In order to enhance acidity, have you tried making a partial dump of the beans shortly after FC, and then going on to roast the remainder at a higher BMT until the final bean dump?

ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK´┐ŻNIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
RAG

Quote

ciel-007 wrote:

This question is addressed to a select group of HRO members; those with roasting experience on more than one type of roaster. ... Ciel


Does Whirlypop and HT count;-]. So I know I haven't a clue. That said, I loved he whirlypop and have yet to figure out how to obtain my best roasts on it on a Hottop.
(I also know that all that keeps me from achieving that is my own knowledge, and lacking that, every roast is good while I' figuring it out.) For my taste, roasting for brightness is what I prefer. I prefer my coffee straight espresso. These discussion help me learn how to concentrate my efforts in roasting modification to find the best roast for me.

Thanks
allenb
Note, I made a mistake and originally posted this in the wrong thread.

I've read lots of articles from various "coffee experts" who continue to claim the Fluidbed=bright+less body and Drum=more body and less acidity. With many years of experimenting with several drum designs and fluidbed designs, I've never noticed this to be true when using similar profiles in both roaster types.

I think the reason for the fluidbed's reputation for being brighter was in the early years when small home fluidbeds were not controlled and produced the 4 to 7 min whiz roasts you naturally ended up with a brighter cup and I can produce the same brightness if I do a quickie in my drum roaster.

I never noticed an elevated acidity or lack of body when roasting in a 1 bag Sivetz fluidbed and most profiles were ending in less than 13 minutes.

Allen
1/2 lb and 1 lb drum, Siemens Sirocco fluidbed, presspot, chemex, cajun biggin brewer from the backwoods of Louisiana
snwcmpr

Quote

Ken have you experimented with the following trials in your HT?

- In order to enhance brightness, have you tried skipping the bean drying phase and roasting at full power from the time you drop the beans until FC?

- In order to enhance acidity, have you tried making a partial dump of the beans shortly after FC, and then going on to roast the remainder at a higher BMT until the final bean dump?

ciel

1) Skipping dry phase??? No I didn't. Drop at 375 on HT readout. 100% to 300 then 70% to FC. I have put my profile on HRO in the past.
High heat through to FC? Seems counter intuitive to me.

2) Not sure what you mean here. Partial dump.

Like I said, I have the HT on a shelf. Several years of experimentation, I just didn't find it works for me. It was an improvement to the popper. I really like the fluidbed I have now.
So with that one working, I am not going to do too much to experiment with the HT. I don't have a lot of free time to do that. "If it works, don't fix it"

Like I said earlier, it may be 1 of 2 things.
1) The HT heating elements are not up to HT standards. Machine is past warranty if that is the case.
2) Operator error. I am no expert here.

Ken
--------------
Backwoods Roaster
"I wish I could taste as well as I wish I could roast."

As Abraham Lincoln said "Do not trust everything you read on the internet".
JETROASTER
Has anyone ever detected a difference in the rest period of drum vs air? -Scott
ciel-007

Quote

snwcmpr wrote:

... Not sure what you mean here. Partial dump ...



Ken, an example of what I mean was presented earlier in a post entitled: " Tryer Function and Partial Bean Dumps During Roasting ".

http://homeroaste...post_40019

This is also referred to as "MÚlange Roasting".

Given that this technique has such an amazing impact on roast flavor and balance, I am surprised that it is not discussed more often.
ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK´┐ŻNIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
snwcmpr
That's very cool. But, I would never do that much mod to the HT. Partial dump, I thought it would activate the full eject, would require a cooling mod. I guess I don't like the HT enough to work on it. I have too many other things to do to get into that.
1) A neighbor dropped 2 huge oak trees, so we get the wood. The last 4 weekends were taken up getting one of them cut, split, and stacked. And there is still one more tree down. My 20" chain saw won't cut all the way through the base.
2) I collect old vintage stoves and have a stack of them to fettle and photograph for the Classic Camp Stove forum. http://www.spirit...
3) The fluidbed I got works awesome as is. Thanks Allen.

Sorry to have taken this off-topic. Or not. The fluidbed gives me the flavor I want.
I just hope I don't come across unappreciative, Ciel. My writing lacks proper communication.

Ken in NC
--------------
Backwoods Roaster
"I wish I could taste as well as I wish I could roast."

As Abraham Lincoln said "Do not trust everything you read on the internet".
allenb

Quote

snwcmpr wrote:

That's very cool. But, I would never do that much mod to the HT. Partial dump, I thought it would activate the full eject, would require a cooling mod. I guess I don't like the HT enough to work on it.

Ken in NC


It's unfortunate that with any roaster design/type there will always be some of us that don't achieve excellent results for this or that reason. Years ago I struggled with small fluidbeds and just couldn't get a decent roast out of them but others were consistently producing remarkable coffee. At that time I was sure it was the roaster but later found it was my technique.

The Hottop is capable of consistently producing excellent roasts as evidenced by a huge number of fans. Your comments unfortunately can be taken very negatively to a Hottop owner and appear as a rain on a parade.

Let's make sure our comments, when critical are constructive at the same time. ThumbsUp

Allen
1/2 lb and 1 lb drum, Siemens Sirocco fluidbed, presspot, chemex, cajun biggin brewer from the backwoods of Louisiana
snwcmpr
I didn't mean to. I tried to just say that I don't like it. It is obvious that a lot of roasters like it.
Sorry if it was misunderstood.

Ken
--------------
Backwoods Roaster
"I wish I could taste as well as I wish I could roast."

As Abraham Lincoln said "Do not trust everything you read on the internet".
ciel-007

Quote

snwcmpr wrote:

... I would never do that much mod to the HT. Partial dump, I thought it would activate the full eject, would require a cooling mod...



Ken, you can actually try Melange Roasting on your HT without the need for any modifications whatsoever. At any time, you may pull on the Emergency Eject Knob for a second or two and let it go; that action causes a tiny quantity of hot beans to be ejected from the roasting chamber (similar to a Tryer on a Commercial roaster).

Further, when you eject only a small quantity of beans, you may simply allow the beans to drop into the inactive cooling tray (there's no need for the cooling tray mod for a tiny amount of beans).

As it turns out, you don't need a large amount of beans ejected at a lower BMT in order to add a wonderful touch of acidity to your cup.
ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK´┐ŻNIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
snwcmpr
Thank you, I did think the mod was necessary.
But, that brings up another point.
The other coffee drinker in the house doesn't like what 'brightness' is already there. I don't think I can get away with adding more.
I learn so much here. Thank you.

Ken in NC
--------------
Backwoods Roaster
"I wish I could taste as well as I wish I could roast."

As Abraham Lincoln said "Do not trust everything you read on the internet".
ciel-007

Quote

snwcmpr wrote:

... then I seemed to ascended to heaven, because the 1 lb fluidbed I got produces exceptionally flavorful coffee repeatedly, I never got that from my HT no matter what I tried...


Ken, would it be possible for you to post both profiles?
- the profile you were using with the HT, and
- the profile you are currently using with the FB?
ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK´┐ŻNIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
snwcmpr
I thought I had.
I know I put the HT profile up several times. I know one time was the "Elusive 4 minute drying phase".
And the FB profile recently.

Ken in NC
--------------
Backwoods Roaster
"I wish I could taste as well as I wish I could roast."

As Abraham Lincoln said "Do not trust everything you read on the internet".
ciel-007

Quote

Ringo wrote:

... I believe any style roaster will give you great coffee if you can control the profile.


Ringo, your insights are most helpful; they allow us to challenge what appears to be an unfounded position held by countless roasters for many years.
Thanks. ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK´┐ŻNIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
ciel-007

Quote

allenb wrote:

... I've read lots of articles from various "coffee experts" who continue to claim the Fluidbed=bright+less body and Drum=more body and less acidity. With many years of experimenting with several drum designs and fluidbed designs, I've never noticed this to be true when using similar profiles in both roaster types...



Allen, thanks so much for sharing the lessons gleaned from innumerable hours spent at the helm of various roasters. Your wealth of experiences is most helpful for less accomplished roasters like me.
Much appreciated! ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK´┐ŻNIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
ciel-007

Quote

snwcmpr wrote:

I thought I had. I know I put the HT profile up several times. I know one time was the "Elusive 4 minute drying phase". And the FB profile recently.


Ken, perhaps you may have misunderstood my earlier invitation for you to post both profiles here in this particular thread.

My original question asked if there might still be an observable difference in cup flavor if it were somehow possible to use the very same profile for different roaster types. If I understand them correctly, both Allen and Ringo have posted replies that are most encouraging in that regard.

Ken, this is your chance to post both (HT and FB) profiles here, side by side, so that others may learn and benefit from your unique experiences.
ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK´┐ŻNIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
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