Le Nez du Cafe

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Le Nez du Cafe

Postby Jasonscheltus » Sun Jan 03, 2010 12:33 pm

I've been playing around with a small training kit we have, called Le Nez du Cafe (the nose of coffee, or rather, the aroma of coffee).

It's 36 tiny bottles containing various aromas of roasted coffee. It's a marvellous little kit, and it's been fun identifying and memorising the aromas from the vials, and I have no doubt it will help to describe coffee flavours to people.

The idea of a benchmark aroma is interesting. It's necessary to calibrate describing words with real aromas between tasters or customers and staff, as without clear communication words don't mean a lot.

I just disagree with some of them. Some of the aromas come across as too sickly sweet smelling, and there is also a continuing theme of metallic aroma or chemical. There are some lovely ones there; "blackcurrant-like" is sweet and rich, slightly aniseed-like, very perfumy. But the overall sweetness of it reminds me more of blackcurrant jelly powder, or that powdered energy drink stuff. And in this case, if I described a Kenyan coffee as having "blackcurrant-notes", I wouldn't mean the aroma of the vial.

I could actually write out what I think of all of them, but I'm not sure any of y'all are interested in THAT many!

Overall the kit has been fun, and it's gotten me thinking more about what the aroma of "that smell" is...

Just wondering if any of you have had a chance to have a play with the kit, and what your thoughts are.
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Postby GreenBean » Sun Jan 03, 2010 1:44 pm

This has been the subject of previous threads here and here.

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Postby Jasonscheltus » Sun Jan 03, 2010 10:33 pm

ah, I did a search for it, but nothing came up!
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Postby Jem_Bean » Tue Apr 06, 2010 2:19 pm

Just finished a CQI Q-Grader course in London, and one of the exams was to identify and match these vials in a darkened room. I agree with you on the aromas - they were all a little unrealistic for me and i just would not have associated some of them with what they were supposed to be.

Having said that though, we ARE able to determine somewhere between 1000 and 2000 individual aromas, and the combinations of these make olfactory a far more varied sense than taste. I think the Le Nez kit is just a small set of the most common aromas found in coffee (i think a 2000-piece kit would be a little excessive).

I don't think i'd use the kit in any professional capacity here, but just using it as a calibration and training tool was very useful (IMHO).

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Postby Bombcup » Thu Apr 15, 2010 7:48 pm

Had a play with this today, was fun. I agree with Jason that many of the aromas are quite synthetic, and the exercise I did yielded only 4 out of 36 aromas correctly identified, I can see its use as a calibration tool to get groups of cuppers all speaking the same lingo. The aromas are close enough to be able to detect them in the natural environment of a cup and helps sort one man's cedarwood from another man's leather.
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