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HasBean beans- 3 tried- my feedback

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 2:49 pm
by mankini
Ok, so I already mentioned my feelings about Jailbreak..
I have now tried 3 variants from HasBean...

1) Jailbreak: terrible, bitter dirty flavour with a thin paint stripping finish. would never buy again.

2) Kicker: too bitter for me, better finish than jailbreak and smoother but would not buy again.

3) Blake: more cojones, richer flavour, great for macciatos, a little too astringent as an espresso but still tastier than the other 2. Will buy again.

Disclaimer! :) I like bold, rich coffee flavour. I hate astringent acidy flavours. My ideal coffees are the beautiful back street of Naples espressos (where they still use those awesome antique lever machines) and the kiwi double macchiatos. I do not like milk flavoured coffee. I want to taste the stuff. and I want it to be smooth, creamy.
None of the above coffees is the best I have tasted but you dont know unless you try.

RE: HasBean beans- 3 tried- my feedback

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 3:25 pm
by mankini
Forgot to mention. I use a Mazzer mini grinder and use a Bacchi stovetop and Rocket Cellini. The results are the same on both machines so its not poor extraction problems or grind problems.

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:14 pm
by Bombcup
Given that you have a preference for traditional Italian blends, and the Hasbean website making it quite clear that the Kicker blend is bright, acidic and difficult to get right (which I'm sure you did given your unimpeachable technique), did you not expect the blend to be somewhat contrary to your tastes?

Props for trying something at the other end of your spectrum, but seeing that you would hardly be surprised that you didn't like it, perhaps you might moderate your language to something more along the lines of "it's not for me" rather than "terrible, dirty, definitely would not buy".

I think anybody who has enjoyed a cup of Kicker or Jailbreak would raise an eyebrow at the validity of this review as your descriptors don't ring any bells at all with me. Have you cleaned your kit lately?

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:23 pm
by mankini
Hahaha.... crikey mate... touchy touchy...
The first thing you notice on your website is your slogan "coffee can always be better"
And you have the audacity to whinge? Get a grip.
Where are your reviews of coffee available in the UK? Dont shoot down people for having an opinion. I can use whatever language I like when I review my experiences with a coffee.
And no, my kit isnt dirty. Is yours?

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:32 pm
by bruceb
I wrote a comment about Jailbreak a couple of hours ago, then deleted it because I had written it in a hurry and I think it was too terse.

I was sent a pound of Jailbreak by a friend in the UK after he acclaimed it as excellent. It came this morning and I immediately made a double espresso of it, then after lunch a cappuccino and later this afternoon an AeroPress. Regardless of extraction method I found it delightful, very clean, balanced and chocolaty. I would like to try it with a bit darker roast. I'm not used to drinking other people's roasts anymore.

It goes without saying that taste is subjective, but I cannot find any of the characteristics mentioned in the post above. I have no personal interest in defending this coffee, but I am rather baffled that taste can vary this much. Certainly, the bitterness must be the result of too high an extraction temperature. My machine is set at 92°C and there was no bitterness detectable.

Edit: As an afterthought, is it possible that the beans were somehow subjected to adverse shipping or storage conditions?

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 9:29 pm
by Gouezeri
Now now fellas. We're all entitled to our own opinions and tastes, but can we please express them with some respect for one another at the very least. I also think we should be careful with the language we use when somebody's honest livelihood is at stake. The internet has a long memory!

Mankini, perhaps you could tell us what you do like, as in particular roasters and coffees/blends, which might allow us to direct you towards other coffees that you might enjoy. You're not the first person to comment on the forum that they find certain coffees too "acidic" and I'm using that descriptor very loosely. Dare I say it, there is a trend in the UK towards brighter more unique coffees at the moment, which may not be to everyone's taste. I think most roasters have been very fair about this and stated outright that some people might not enjoy them. However, thank God they are trying something new, something different. How boring would it be if they stuck to the same blend from one year to the next, as this would likely reduce the coffees down to their lowest common denominator, in order to maintain consistency.

Let's face it, we all have different tastes which are the result of our own experiences, I see little point in judging people due to their personal tastes and preferences. If somebody likes and enjoys something, then who am I, or anyone else, to tell them they are wrong? Personally, I have travelled from North to South and East to West in Italy, and never had a decent coffee there once (despite trying), it just doesn't suit my taste. I don't however go around trying to tell them that their taste is wrong. I just take my own coffee with me... and get weird looks when I pull out an aeropress at 4500m.

I don't want my comments to hinder people giving their honest opinions on this site, but I do believe that it should be done respectfully

Can I go back to sleep now?

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 10:57 pm
by icke
before you go back to bed... :lol:

Gouezeri wrote: when I pull out an aeropress at 4500m.
just curious: at 4500m the boiling point of water is at about 85C. how does that affect the brew???

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 10:59 pm
by CakeBoy
icke wrote:before you go back to bed... :lol:

Gouezeri wrote: when I pull out an aeropress at 4500m.
just curious: at 4500m the boiling point of water is at about 85C. how does that affect the brew???

Hot, hot, hot ;) :lol:

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 11:11 pm
by Gouezeri
Hah! To be precise it was 4554m (see if anyone can guess where that is) and given that I had just walked for 5h and had a further 8h to walk that day, I decided not to carry my k-type thermocouple with me! I cheated on the water too, somebody else boiled it for me. From memory it was some Machacamarca that I was brewing. Given that I was knackered, dehydrated, and tend to brew with my AP on the low side, the coffee was a welcome relief. Unfortunately the coffee had been roasted a good 2 weeks prior and ground back at base camp a little over 24hrs earlier (I've since bought a hario slim for ocassions such as these). So I certainly wouldn't say that it was the perfect situation for a cupping... however, it was certainly better than the cappuccino I'd had the night before at 3585m I'll see if I can find a pic!

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 11:25 pm
by icke

i guess a stale bolivian, brewed at max 85C still beats a sachet of instant... :)

PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 11:32 pm
by mankini
Quite amazing how reluctant folks on here are to receive feedback that differs from theirs. I am disappointed that honest feedback is so arrogantly dispatched. Nothing to do with ruining someones livelihood or dirty machines... I just dont think they are 5 star worthy beans. Thats all. Sometimes tinkering and producing 'bespoke' blends yields crap results. Good coffee is good coffee, so fluffing around doesnt always make it better.

PostPosted: Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:03 am
by CakeBoy
There are all sorts of coffees out there, some on the acidic side, others chocolatey and so on. All beans are capable of yielding a dark roast flavour. Just roast them until the charcoal overcomes the natural flavours. Good coffee to one is not always good to another. I would not like to label any coffee crap because I respect that others enjoy it and it is only my opinion. Subjectivity is rarely well presented as fact.

We all like different things. I like that there is a choice so that everyone can have what they want, and even try things that they perhaps are not so keen on. I also like that most good roasters today are open about the profile of their blends and invite people to try unusual ones with accurate tasting notes.

Do people object to feedback that differs from their own opinion? Why would they? Respect for others and their opinions is all I have found that most people feel strongly about.

Bitter, dirty and astringent are not terms most would associate with constructive criticism or respect that others may feel differently.

PostPosted: Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:13 am
by lsjms
I'm not sure that's what is going on here. I see three options;
1. OP can't brew espresso/dirty kit/.
2. OP enjoys burnt triage/some other weird stuff.
3. All of Steves espresso sucks

I can assure everyone here that 3. is not the winning pick. Mankini, you do not get to review coffee. Only Nescafe sell bold, rich coffee. If Bombcup did review coffee we might actually listen, given the fact that, like Hasbean, he is a board certified ukbc s**t kicking roaster. They both produce coffee we enjoy, so are also not really qualified for reviewing :wink:

PostPosted: Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:16 am
by Gouezeri
Italian coffee at its finest... cappuccino in a plastic 'cup' brewed at 3585m on a 2 group Gaggia (from memory). Oh, and Icke, don't let an Italian hear you call it that!
On the topic of "crap coffee", that reminds me of the Balmadi natural processed... now there was a coffee that challenged descriptors!

PostPosted: Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:22 am
by CakeBoy
I liked the Balmadi you git! How dare you ............. ;)