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02/08/2023 1:20 AM
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Techniques for roasting low acid coffee.
Hi everyone, I have recently started roasting my own coffee and have been having a lot of fun doing it. I am really liking the control I have over the coffee and am very happy with the results.

Coffee tends to upset my wife's stomach and prior to my roasting coffee, we searched for low acid coffees that do not bother her stomach. There are very real differences in the coffees we have tried. The very best in terms of not upsetting her stomach come from Bella Rosa Coffee Company. They are known for producing low acid coffees that do not upset your stomach. I can verify that it is not hype. They really are easier on your stomach.

I have been roasting coffee for my wife, choosing beans with "low acid" in the description. Based on the web page linked above, beans with low perceived acid may have nothing to do with the potential for upset stomach.

Finally, getting to the actual question. Are there techniques that can aid in the reduction of CQA in the coffee? Bella Rosa mentions convection roasting. I am using a little SR800 fluid bed roaster. Is that the same thing as "convection"? I think roasting darker helps lower acid, and I have been certainly roasting dark for my wife. As in all the way through second crack.

My wife has been enjoying the coffees I have roasted for her, but they still do bother stomach more than the Bella Rosa coffees.

Typically, I have been starting first crack around the 7-minute mark and second crack is finished around 12 to 13 minutes. My wife uses lots of milk and actually likes the French Roast flavors.

Wondering if certain phases of the roast should be extended or shortened to minimize CQA.

Thanks for any insights or suggestions.
Yes, fluid bed roasting is convection on steroids.
But too much convection means fast roasting, means acidic roast.
Roasting for (too) long led to lower acidity, because chlorogenic acid (sour) are transformed into quinic acid (bitter)
Unfortunately a FB machine don't let you modulate roasting time as freely as other convection designs.
With a moderate convection combined with some infrared, as a turbo oven machine you can play with beans from 8 to 15 minutes roast times, and clearly feel how the acidity fade as the roast time is extended. Not sure if a FB can do this...

Wondering what "patented state of the art convection coffee roaster" is bellarosa using...
Maybe a turbo oven style monster, made using a washing machine drum... :kidding:
There are something like eight different types of acid in coffee, so it's actually a pretty complicated thing. I haven't looked into it enough to know which acids cause stomach problems, but I'm sure that not all of them do.
And I've read that it's not actually the acids the cause stomach upset but the oils (not completely convinced of that).
Here is a coffee acidity wheel with sixteen different descriptions of coffee acidity:
AeroPress, Capresso On The Go single cup drip, Moka Pot
DIY Gas Fired perforated drum using TermoPro meat probe as bean probe (very accurate), Aillio Bullet R1 V2
A morning without coffee is like a marriage without a honeymoon.
Hello dwertz, I use a modified popper and want to control the Acidity as much as I can.

This is what I read, extraction has an effect on the acidity of the coffee.
Roasting Hotter/faster and longer/darker can lower the acidity.
Use lower acidity beans.
Countries which grow low acidic bean are Brazil, Sumatra, and Nicaragua.
Try to find beans grown around 3000 feet or below.
Last resort add a very small amount of baking soda. 1/4 teaspoon for full pot brewed. I would start with less as I don't like this in my coffee.

So far I tested different water.
Brita filtered is 180ppm, this was nice and drinkable still some acidity.
I added .5 tablespoon of almond milk to see how it effected the acidity, dropped the acidity by half in the Brita water mix coffee but you have a little almond flavor. Probably not for everyone.

My water mix at 120ppm the acidity is overwhelming, drank it but it needs help.

I did two more roasts of the same bean to compare to the control and time will tell.
The control: Chew a roasted bean- taste great but brews acidic.
Second roast is hotter longer, developed 1min 50 sec taste of chewed bean is fairly bitter. Will brew in a few days.
Third roast hotter/faster developed 1min 40sec chewed bean is less bitter then last roast. Will brew in a few days.

Brewed in a Breville precision brewer.
So the water has a huge effect on the acidity. (extraction)
Almond Milk, is slight adjustment, reported to be alkaline.
I had 3 roasts of this Honduras bean. Roasting hotter is making a difference in the level of acidity for sure.

Control Drop at 65% heater 42% fan
This was terribly acidic, just overwhelmed everything.

Second roast 80% Heater 42% fan 1:50 development
About a third of the acidity but had a astringency I don't like.

Third roast 85% Heater 41% fan 1:40 development
This was lightly acidic, slight bitterness and no astringency.
This is my favorite so far.

I have no idea why that second roast is astringent? any advice?
I read this could be under developed?
Now it had a bit of oil on some beans after the rest time the other two do not. I would say it was the most developed.

Going to try one more roast 83% heater 41% fan and develop to 1:30 and see how that goes.
Most developed or too fast too much heat.
Uniform oil film on most beans it's ok, means going into SC at a good rate.
Random drops of oil means roast defect, bean structure damaged in that point.
It's only a few sporadic oil spots, so I was thinking close to SC.
All three roast are after first crack, this one I think is the most developed based on the oil but the third roast taste the most developed (Slightly Bitter).

The third roast is hotter and faster and the one before is a slower roast.
Strange results.
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