Tuesday, December 8, 2009

second use of Poppery II

The Poppery II does work better with more beans. The first attempt was with four ounces of Moka Kadir; the second was with six. In eight and a half minutes it produced a glossy dark roast with plenty of smoke and cracking. Final weight was 4.87 ounces, or 86% of original weight. That's an interesting result. I usually see something closer to 80%.

The main problem is that while the beans are heaviest they aren't getting much agitation. It takes a few minutes before any degree of fluidization is evident. Some of the beans at the bottom were done very quickly. Giving it a shake now and then seems to help.

Tipping it back doesn't appear to be a good idea. It seems to interfere with the fluidization. A few beans do pop out when it's level, but not as many as I'd feared.

This roast ended up slightly uneven, but I think it will be better next time. Things to try:
  • no tilting
  • occasional manual agitation
  • five ounces
The immediately-pulled shots were an improvement. Lots of crema, though not the foaming torrent from the last roast. The under-roasted flavor is gone and the solvent notes are faint. It's still pretty bad, as experience suggests will be the case before resting for a couple of days, but I think it may turn out all right.

After resting for a day there was some improvement. It's darker than I usually take Moka Kadir, with a bit of char. Aroma is nice, with chocolate dominant.

Update: It's not improving. It's not producing good espresso at all, in fact. I wonder whether I just need to clean the espresso machine.

Update: Indeed. That thing was disgusting. It's now decalcified and every user-accessible component is spotless. Whisked out the grinder, too. Pulled shots pretty close to the ideal time/volume. The result is a much cleaner-tasting cup. My main objection is probably the darkness of the roast, which I think has destroyed some of the fruitiness that I've tasted in Moka Kadir in previous roasts.

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