5 bag survival pack

Tell us about the latest beans you've discovered and blends you've tried

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Postby shm » Sat Jan 08, 2011 12:09 am

GMRK wrote:

I'm currently drinking some Black Cat a friend brought back from LA for me a couple of months ago, roast date is 21 Oct and even after the less than ideal conditions during the flight back and being stored in the freezer I'm still pulling shots with nice mottled crema.



I bought some intelligensia cups which arrived this week along with a bag of Black Cat classic espresso blend roasted a week and a half ago.

I'd be interested to find out how you're pulling the shots because I have rarely, in a 1/4 of the bag, got a shot that isn't undrinkable. its either underextracted or burnt tasting. It's not just me, my wife is finding the shots I'm pulling pretty unpleasant too. I'm beginning to think I'm incapable. I tried varying the temp (imprecisely as I have an HX machine) and dose size with inconsistent results.

(The cups are gorgeous, however)
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Postby CakeBoy » Sat Jan 08, 2011 6:07 am

Black Cat is a relatively dark roasted blend. If you usually drink coffees that are more medium roasted as is the general UK trend when compared to North America, it may be that your usual 'sweet spot' in flavour has been obliterated by the darker roast and you have subsequently over-compensated and thus underextracted. It may not be you at all. It could simply be that your ideal flavour profile cannot be extracted from the darker roast than you are used to using. We have experienced similar with darker roasted coffees.
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Postby GMRK » Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:05 am

shm wrote:I'd be interested to find out how you're pulling the shots because I have rarely, in a 1/4 of the bag, got a shot that isn't undrinkable. its either underextracted or burnt tasting. It's not just me, my wife is finding the shots I'm pulling pretty unpleasant too. I'm beginning to think I'm incapable. I tried varying the temp (imprecisely as I have an HX machine) and dose size with inconsistent results.


I'm using a Gaggia Selecta and Ascaso Innova grinder, I weigh 18-20g depending on the volume whichever blend I'm using produces after grinding (sometimes 20g is too much for the basket depending on the coffee) and pull two 30ml singles split between two 5oz cups if I'm making cappuccino, or a 60ml double into one cup if making espresso.

I'm just finishing some HB Xmas blend, I've got an unopened bag of Black Cat in the freezer I'll decant some in next couple of days and see how it is now.

I first tasted Black cat around 2008 and it was different then, very deeply flavoured and much more chocolatey, a friend commented it was like drinking hot chocolate in a cappuccino. The blend I have is still very heavy and complex but doesn't have the upfront chocolate taste, have a look at this thread on Home Barista:

http://www.home-barista.com/coffees/new-intelligentsia-black-cat-tomorrow-t15653.html


Postby tekomino on Nov 04, 2010, 6:12 pm

I'll wait for reports of return of Black Cat Classic aka Chocolate bomb. That's Black Cat.

Current Lemon rind incarnation, its not. Maybe Yellow Cat, but definitely not Black :D
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Postby shm » Wed Jan 12, 2011 9:13 pm

I went through the whole bag and could only get one or two drinkable shots. No matter what I tried it tasted burnt or underextracted, even when I used longer/shorter water flushes, smaller/larger doses, courser/finer grinds in various combinations.

It's true that I usually drink Hasbean blends and single origins and lately Squaremile autumn blend. For me BC Classic was an unpalatable disaster I won't repeat. I cannot imagine being able to taste what is described on the daily intelligensia twitter stream from these beans.

The only drinkable shots I got were after cleaning out the grind chute on the mazzer mini as it was tending to block up and clump. The drinkable shots weighed in around 17.8g but I was never able to repeat them using the same temp, grind and weight (and cleaning out).

After reading about intelligensia and the hype around black cat I'm left puzzled, more than anything else.

Sorry for wandering off topic.
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Postby Viernes » Thu Jan 13, 2011 1:02 am

shm wrote:

I bought some intelligensia cups which arrived this week along with a bag of Black Cat classic espresso blend roasted a week and a half ago.

(The cups are gorgeous, however)


Oh! I'm thinking of buying Intelligentsia cups too. Please, tell us more about those cups. Which ones did you get? Is the star red or orange? How about shipping costs?

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