How do you brew? What are your thoughts on grind, temp, dwell time, filter speed, retailing, etc? What your shop's/personal cup count? Do tell!


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Rather than having you verify your claim, i'd be more interested in hearing your thoughts on grind vs. grams vs. volume vs. time vs. temp. There are a lot of theories out there, each one dependent on the specific bean being brewed. But a solid starting point would be nice.

I'll help you get started;

* cone grind
* 31 grams
* 12oz
* 41sec
* 203F

Your thoughts? Stirring techniques will be my next question. By the way, the clover keeps track of the number of times it's brewed. But as a certified tech you probably know this...
"By the way, the clover keeps track of the number of times it's brewed." It also keeps track of cup volume vs total volume, so you can always check up to make sure your baristas are running rinse cycles between every cup.

Mike -

There are a number of factors at play in how a Clover brews, and I am just now beginning to understand a few of them. When brewing try to keep in mind that there are two ways that flavor extracts from coffee: in the dwell (water not moving) and in the filtration (pressure change = temperature change). If you change your grind or dosage you are, of course, changing the surface area of the grounds but also changing the total time of filtration and hydraulic pressure difference in the area of the filter. To further experiment with this, go into the Tech Menu and adjust the filter move speeds and filter pauses.

Too low of temperature will give you sour coffee regardless of your brewing technique. Some say that darkness of roast and temp are inversely related: lighter roast = higher water temp. I'm not so sure of this.

My philosophy for stir technique is this: worry about achieving homogeny before avoiding over-stirring. If a barista's technique on the bar is bad, at least let it be consistent.

Is that enough to get you started?
yeah, i just brewed a 12 ounce of brazil two different ways: i dosed 34 grams at grind setting 3.5 on the guatemala (between "MELITTA" and "DRIP") and 25 grams at 1.5 (finer than "ESPRESSO"). The cups are very very similar. They seemed to have about the same filter time (from when the filter starts moving until the bubbles on top of the puck suck through), but the finer grind is maybe just a little bit bitter. The fine grind is a little bit more reddish and has enough body to choke a horse - it's like drinking whipping cream. The coarse has bell pepper tones where the fine has subtle freshly ground black pepper.

Has anybody else played with this?

[[[Several minutes later]]]
Ah yes, but as the cups continue to cool they seem to be diverging. The coarse grind is becoming light and playful on the tongue while the fine is taking on incredible stout beer-like qualities. Both make me giddy like a schoolgirl.
I've been thinking about purchasing a Clover (maybe next year) but I'm curious...

What are you guys pricing per-cup?
What's your rate of return on the investment?
Have you had to increase staff to manage another machine?

Thanks.
it's all fun and games until somebody gets their eye poked out by a squeegee. how would one organize such a throwdown? first one to one hundred cups on as many machines as you can handle? i think i could, with a preset volumetric scoop (not weighing), handle four at once. five would be pushing it.

oh yes, i knew that if anyone can best me in cup count it's a barista from grumpy. do you guys have your machines set to filter wipe before or after dispense? i am yet to see a clover installation that is busy enough to justify pre-dispense wiping, but i hear that they're out there. my only concern is that, in a slow location, having the piston sitting at the bottom for more than a minute may cause inconsistent brew chamber temp.

tell your coworkers that i'm up for the challenge; throw some big numbers at me.
I have had not one. There is not a Clover to be used anywhere near me, in no neighboring states.....
Jason, I know Intelligentsia has one...
Mike..

As a confirmed coffee-geek..there is nothing like the Clover..as a roaster, it's an invaluable tool in determining the profile of your coffees-1 second of dwell time either way can give you a whole new cup of coffee-I would love to take the same coffee and brew it 3 times with slight variations to show the differences in the same cup of coffee. The best way to utilize it in a shop setting is to have a menu built around it featuring single-origin and estate coffees and sell them for a buck more than a regular cup-the folks at Clover have a sheet on how to earn your capitol outlay in less than a year...but you do have to work it...create the buzz...get some press..the idea is that the individual cup of coffee is ground and brewed to order...just like an espresso drink, it takes about the same amount of time to brew as it does to make a latte or mocha and once people start to try the nuances in truly great coffees, like COE coffees, Konas, JBM-all of the coffees that people have heard about but never wanted to pay the 30.00-40.00/lb but are willing on a weekend to pay 5.00/cup for something special...and it IS something special.
Steve, i'm well aware of the subtleties involved in adjusting various parameters on this machine. My motivation in commenting originally was to bring the discussion away from "how many have you brewed" to "how do you brew", for precisely this reason. This machine is complicated and it takes many many cups of coffee to dial in each unique bean.
Mike, I was actually responding to Mike Shipley's question regarding bringing a Clover into his shop...I agree with you 100%, when I spoke of "3 cups" that was talking about demo-ing not dialing in the machine-sorry for the confusion.
Cheers, Steve
whoops. sorry Steve. I'm about 3 hours into a tasting session right now actually. Guess i'm a little jumpy.

carry on.

MW
No Worries

Cupping anything good?

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