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Author Topic: Coffee Help please.. 2 Years Later  (Read 1701 times)
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JuniorDan
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« on: October 20, 2009, 03:45:10 AM »

Ok hear the deal I have always hated the smell of coffee and the one time I tasted it, it was like taking a really good laxative. I will admit I had know idea what I was doing and more than likely did not mix it correctly.
For the past 2-3 years I been boosted aweak by 5 hour energy and when its cold some lipton tea with a side of 5hr energy.
Just last week at a doctors visit he advised me to stop taking 5hr energy because it is over working my heart so much so to the point I have to go back in a week or so when it is flushed out of my body so he can get an accurate read on my heart beat. My wife whom have been saying that I am addicted to 5hr and constantly advise I stop taking it for months now. have become the parole officer making sure I stick to doctor orders. It is more than certain I will not be allowed to touch 5hr ever again. I have turned to coffee to satisfy my body need for caffeine, I rather not drink soda if your wondering. Its been 7 years Soda free excluding the occasional mix drinks (Rum and Coke for the WIN). To the point.
What is the best Coffee for beginners? Brand? type and Flavor Creamers? type of roast? and how exactly is the best way to mix it.
I rather not be grinding any beans right now Thankyou. At work they have a Maxwell house in a Blue bag, and when my mother in law visits she gets eight o'clock brand Brown Bag.
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« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2009, 04:42:36 AM »

I'd start with a flavored coffee, like hazelnut or vanilla or cinnamon -- whatever appeals to you. Assuming you're using a drip coffee maker, use about one heaping tablespoon of grounds per 8 oz. of water. Once you develop a taste for the flavored stuff you can branch into good unflavored coffees and discover what kind of roasts you like. In the flavored coffees the brand doesn't matter very much -- I buy whatever's on sale.
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« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2009, 04:44:42 AM »

If you drink something like Maxwell House, you'll hate coffee.

Go with a major brand, they're popular for a reason.  For a "beginner" I would recommend something light, like a breakfast blend or something from Latin America.  You'll find the coffee from there a little more playful with bright acidity.

If you're looking for a unique coffee, look for something from Africa.  Blends from Africa tend to usually have subtle fruit notes, from citrus to berries.  Ethiopia Sidamo from Starbucks really defines that African coffee taste (I drink primarily Starbucks, so that's all I will be referencing - my g/f gets free coffee from there biggrin).

I prefer dark roasts, which are probably going to turn you off until you get a real taste for coffee and develop a palette.  Gold Coast is my favorite blend.  If you're looking for an intense blend to wake you up, go Gold Coast.

A lot of people new to coffee like adding cream and sugar just for that flavor of coffee that isn't so in-your-face.

Grinding beans does offer the best taste, so your decision to skip this portion kind of puts you at a disadvantage right off the bat, but you'll get there!
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« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2009, 12:19:17 PM »

Quote from: JuniorDan on October 20, 2009, 03:45:10 AM

I have turned to coffee to satisfy my body need for caffeine

As far as I'm concerned, your body doesn't actually have a need for caffeine. I kicked caffeine to the curb 8 years ago and I'm better off for it.
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PeteRock
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« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2009, 03:04:54 PM »

Quote from: coopasonic on October 20, 2009, 12:19:17 PM

Quote from: JuniorDan on October 20, 2009, 03:45:10 AM

I have turned to coffee to satisfy my body need for caffeine

As far as I'm concerned, your body doesn't actually have a need for caffeine. I kicked caffeine to the curb 8 years ago and I'm better off for it.

Very true.  Before I lost my job I had a coffee maker with its own grinder in my office.  I drank a pot a day.  But shortly after losing my job we started major renovations in our house and my coffee maker was packed away for over two months.  I went through almost the entire process without a single cup of coffee and wasn't any worse for the wear.  No caffeine headaches, no withdrawl symptoms, and no cravings (probably in part because I had so much to do from the moment I got out of bed).

I am back to drinking coffee, but primarily because I like it, not because I need it.  My advice to develop a taste for coffee is to start with a dash of cream and a bit of sugar.  It cuts back on the "bite" and bitterness so that you can become "acclimated" to the flavors of coffee.  When I decided that I didn't want the extra fat and sugar, plus I learned that there were so many amazing flavors I was undermining by adding anything to coffee, I first cut out sugar and only added cream, and then over time I cut out the cream and am happier for it.

I only drink my coffee black.  Doesn't matter if it is a filthy diner in the middle of South Carolina, Waffle House before a pool tournament (Waffle House has fantastic coffee BTW), or in my very own kitchen in Arizona.  It is easier because I don't have to work through a chemistry experiment to get the proper mixture, I get to savor the various flavor nuances every different type of coffee offers, whether it be where the beans are grown, the roasting process, etc, there is so much more to coffee than ruining it with cream and sugar.

I'd advise against dark roasts until you develop a better palette since darker roasts can seem overly bitter and have much more bite than novices can appreciate, but over time I started to develop a taste for richer, darker, fuller coffees.  Right now I am enjoying a cup of San Francisco Bay "Fogchaser" coffee I found at Fresh-N-Easy.  Rich, full, a hint of bitterness, citrus notes, just a nice flavor profile for early-mornings when you're not quite ready for heartier blends but when breakfast blends just won't cut it.

But remember, you don't necessarily "need" caffeine.  The key is self discipline.  If you can simply decide that you don't need caffeine, you won't.  But if you're going to drink coffee, I recommend drinking it because you like it, not because you feel you need it.  Try starting out with cream and sugar, but I much prefer black coffee because I have been amazed at the flavors I was completely missing when I used to dilute my coffee with cream and sugar.  Slowly cut back on the amount of cream and sugar you add over time, and soon you may be appreciating black coffee as well.  Now I can't drink it any other way. 

And it makes refills at restaurants so much easier because they never eff up your cream/sugar ratios. 
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #5 on: October 20, 2009, 03:23:29 PM »

Try the Kopi Luak or Civet coffee...  icon_wink
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Chaz
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« Reply #6 on: October 20, 2009, 03:31:48 PM »

I learned to drink coffee the hard way: Maxwell House instant (ie: stir a scoop directly into water).  Did it during high school when I was averaging 4 hours of sleep per night.  After a while of doing this, I one day had Dunkin Donuts coffee, and discovered that coffee tasted good when prepared with their patented "way too much milk and sugar" formula.  Eventually I weaned myself off milk and tons of sugar, and now I take it mostly black.

So you can do it my way, or the easy way of just drinking flavored stuff with milk and sugar to combat the bitterness.  Much like learning to drink beer, eventually you come to like the bitter flavor, but it's an acquired taste.
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cheeba
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« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2009, 03:33:53 PM »

I also broke the caffeine addiction and highly recommend it. Personally I just don't like being a slave to a drug - I hate the feeling that I *have* to have something just to get by. But then I'm in a position where I can get enough sleep at night. Last month when I was on the project from hell and working 70-90 hour weeks I was definitely back on the caffeine, so I certainly understand if you're not in a position where you are able to get enough sleep.

But I'd still recommend just going without caffeine if you can. It's always fun when you're not addicted to caffeine and you do drink a pop or a cup of coffee and feel the effects like 10x more than you normally would slywink.

And personally, I hate "acquired" tastes. To me, forcing myself to eat/drink something until I like it is more along the lines of torture than "bettering" my palette.
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kratz
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« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2009, 03:40:56 PM »

I cut out the caffeine too (mostly), and I feel better for having done it.

If you are overdoing it with your 5 hour energy, replacing it with coffee isn't going to magically fix the problem... you can drink too much caffeine in whatever way you decide to deliver it to your body.
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Scuzz
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« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2009, 03:45:26 PM »

I learned to drink coffee when I first started playing golf very early in the morning, crack of dawn type stuff. I would have coffee with a shot of Bailey's Irish Cream in it. Great stuff.

From there I am now drinking coffee straight every day. I like to grind my own but I don't have a fancy coffee brewer or any other fancy equipment.

I like Kona.
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Einsteinium
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« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2009, 04:19:33 PM »

For a beginner, Get a regular $20 coffee pot. Clean it maybe once a month by running through a vinegar/water 50/50 mix.

Coffees:

It depends on whether you like dark, earthy coffees or something lighter. My recommendation:

Peet's Coffee - Major Dickason's Blend - Very smooth and tasty, not too overpowering.
Starbucks - Columbia is light and flavorful, Italian Roast is one of my favorites. Verona is very good all around too.

Stay away from the "flavored" coffees at first. They will pollute your opinion of coffee. Adding syrups/other flavorings are really easy after the fact.

Making the coffee:

2 Tbsp (one Coffee Scoop) per 6 oz (which is the metric for 1 cup) of coffee. Don't play with this at first.
You'll like playing with the strength of coffee once you can master a good basic cup.

Hope this helps.
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kratz
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« Reply #11 on: October 20, 2009, 04:37:04 PM »

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:19:33 PM

... 6 oz (which is the metric for 1 cup) ...

LOL!
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Einsteinium
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« Reply #12 on: October 20, 2009, 04:46:31 PM »

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 04:37:04 PM

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:19:33 PM

... 6 oz (which is the metric for 1 cup) ...

LOL!

It's retarded, I know.  But this supposedly allows room for cream and sugar in a traditional 8 oz coffee cup. Which no one in their right mind ever uses, unless they have a traditional serving set with a tea cart. But being Americans, we use the large 18 oz mugs that hold 2-3 cups out of our absurdly marked coffee makers.
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« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2009, 04:48:52 PM »

Don't go fancy yet, just get a thing of foldgers coffee and an auto-drip coffee maker. The water to coffee ratio is 1 heaping tablespoon for every 2 cups water. Use the numbers on the coffee pot or the water reservoir on the machine to measure your water, and then add the grounds. I've found that 2 cups water makes about 1 mug of coffee.

If you don't like the taste, add cream and sugar until it's something you like. I would stay away from flavored coffee. It's really hard to find a good flavored coffee. If regular coffee doesn't taste good, try flavored creamer. I really like some of the coffee mate creamers, although I usually just get the regular creamer.

Once you decide that you like coffee, then you move to a french press.
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kratz
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« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2009, 05:48:35 PM »

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:46:31 PM

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 04:37:04 PM

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:19:33 PM

... 6 oz (which is the metric for 1 cup) ...

LOL!

It's retarded, I know.  But this supposedly allows room for cream and sugar in a traditional 8 oz coffee cup. Which no one in their right mind ever uses, unless they have a traditional serving set with a tea cart. But being Americans, we use the large 18 oz mugs that hold 2-3 cups out of our absurdly marked coffee makers.

Heh, I don't think you are catching the source of my amusement.
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« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2009, 06:21:01 PM »

One day I should figure out how much the Black Mesa/Aperture science mugs I use at work hold.  They're fairly big.
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Alefroth
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« Reply #16 on: October 20, 2009, 06:24:14 PM »

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 05:48:35 PM

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:46:31 PM

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 04:37:04 PM

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:19:33 PM

... 6 oz (which is the metric for 1 cup) ...

LOL!

It's retarded, I know.  But this supposedly allows room for cream and sugar in a traditional 8 oz coffee cup. Which no one in their right mind ever uses, unless they have a traditional serving set with a tea cart. But being Americans, we use the large 18 oz mugs that hold 2-3 cups out of our absurdly marked coffee makers.

Heh, I don't think you are catching the source of my amusement.

I think he's using the term metric as in standard, not the actual base 10 system.

Ale
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« Reply #17 on: October 20, 2009, 06:39:55 PM »

Quote from: msteelers on October 20, 2009, 04:48:52 PM

Once you decide that you like coffee, then you move to a french press.

This.

Grinding the beans yourself and using a French Press is the best way to enjoy coffee. If you also use pure bottled water the only thing you taste is the coffee bean. 

When I'm not at home I go with the basic Dunkin Donuts extra large with cream.
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kratz
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« Reply #18 on: October 20, 2009, 07:04:00 PM »

Quote from: Alefroth on October 20, 2009, 06:24:14 PM

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 05:48:35 PM

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:46:31 PM

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 04:37:04 PM

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:19:33 PM

... 6 oz (which is the metric for 1 cup) ...

LOL!

It's retarded, I know.  But this supposedly allows room for cream and sugar in a traditional 8 oz coffee cup. Which no one in their right mind ever uses, unless they have a traditional serving set with a tea cart. But being Americans, we use the large 18 oz mugs that hold 2-3 cups out of our absurdly marked coffee makers.

Heh, I don't think you are catching the source of my amusement.

I think he's using the term metric as in standard, not the actual base 10 system.

Ale

Okay... it did read funny though.
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Alefroth
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« Reply #19 on: October 21, 2009, 12:20:52 AM »

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 07:04:00 PM

Quote from: Alefroth on October 20, 2009, 06:24:14 PM

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 05:48:35 PM

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:46:31 PM

Quote from: kratz on October 20, 2009, 04:37:04 PM

Quote from: Einsteinium on October 20, 2009, 04:19:33 PM

... 6 oz (which is the metric for 1 cup) ...

LOL!

It's retarded, I know.  But this supposedly allows room for cream and sugar in a traditional 8 oz coffee cup. Which no one in their right mind ever uses, unless they have a traditional serving set with a tea cart. But being Americans, we use the large 18 oz mugs that hold 2-3 cups out of our absurdly marked coffee makers.

Heh, I don't think you are catching the source of my amusement.

I think he's using the term metric as in standard, not the actual base 10 system.

Ale

Okay... it did read funny though.

I feel bad now for killing your amusement =)

Ale
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Alefroth
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« Reply #20 on: October 21, 2009, 12:25:12 AM »

Quote from: denoginizer on October 20, 2009, 06:39:55 PM

Quote from: msteelers on October 20, 2009, 04:48:52 PM

Once you decide that you like coffee, then you move to a french press.

This.

Grinding the beans yourself and using a French Press is the best way to enjoy coffee. If you also use pure bottled water the only thing you taste is the coffee bean.  

When I'm not at home I go with the basic Dunkin Donuts extra large with cream.

I like the French press a lot, but I can't get a filter fine enough, or my grind coarse enough to not have some sludge. I prefer the pourover method with a re-usable cloth filter. Hope to get one of those gold metal filters soon. That, I think will be the best possible, short of americanos.

This would be nice, also-
Clever Coffee Dripper


Ale
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wonderpug
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« Reply #21 on: October 21, 2009, 01:35:43 AM »

Didn't like coffee for the longest time, but gave iced coffee a try and liked it pretty good.  Got in a semi-habit of drinking iced coffee, and now I like it hot or cold (but prefer cold).
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« Reply #22 on: October 21, 2009, 01:34:55 PM »

Quote from: wonderpug on October 21, 2009, 01:35:43 AM

Didn't like coffee for the longest time, but gave iced coffee a try and liked it pretty good.  Got in a semi-habit of drinking iced coffee, and now I like it hot or cold (but prefer cold).

I've been drinking coffee since I was in middle school, but I always hated iced coffee. Something happened about a year ago though, and now if it's hot outside I default to iced coffee. I find it more refreshing than any soft drink or iced tea.
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« Reply #23 on: October 21, 2009, 04:04:31 PM »

Unless you are using the IMPRESSA S9 One Touch, you are just wasting your life drinking inferior coffee.
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« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2009, 05:22:15 PM »

Speaking of coffee does anyone have an opinion on Rembrandt's Coffee House? Theres one in Memorial Hospital in Chattanooga. It smelled wonderful and though I dont care for coffee they have a large selection of teas including earl Grey. But they seem kinda pricey. Would hate to waste any money. They have some really cool thermos mugs for $13 too.

Local reviews seem ok

I ask because Ill be back down there today. Cousin had heart bypass surgery.

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« Reply #25 on: October 21, 2009, 06:02:30 PM »

I own 2 french presses and a Starbucks Barista Espresso Machine, Circa 2002. I have a $20 Black and Decker burr grinder that does 3 settings: Fine (Espresso), Medium (Drip), and Coarse (French Press). It works out really well.

The only actual coffee maker I've ever owned was Starbucks' Short-lived Utopia, which was a reverse osmosis filtering system. The coffee and water would mix with explosive and entertaining results, kinda like a transparent percolator.

I've also used my French Press to make Iced Coffee, or Frappuccino mix. Both taste better than the usual stuff you can get.
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JuniorDan
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« Reply #26 on: October 21, 2009, 11:39:12 PM »

Thanks for all the info guys I got a Signature Gourmet drip coffee maker, powder creamer hazel nut and a vanilla, and a bag of eight o'clock 100% Colombian I think its medium roast. I do plan on trying other brand and as some suggested staying away from the flavored beans. I have a French vanilla Liquid Creamer at work which I admit tast much better that the powder stuff which still is not bad.
I am just confused by the fact that the suggested goal from you guys was to get to the regular no sugar or creamer taste of the coffee...WHY? its horrible.. Thank god for creamers and lots of sugar.
I guess time will tell though.

Thanks again my coffee is now bearable, I dont know what I was doing wrong. I will continue experimenting with brands and flavor creamers to fine the one I like most. May actually go to a Starbucks now see what the hype is about.     
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« Reply #27 on: October 22, 2009, 01:16:28 AM »

They've introduced some new coffees since I've worked there, but here's a brief description of some of the Starbucks blends:

The good:

Espresso Roast: What they use in the bar, but it's not a bad coffee. Medium acid, light earthy taste. Lighter than Italian Roast
Italian Roast: Darker, sweet earthy aftertaste.
House Blend: A good starter coffee, you don't have to worry about it being too strong in any flavor direction.
Verona: 80% House Blend, 20% Italian Roast. Possibly their best blend.
Sumatra: Dark, earthy, it tastes like what you'd picture "cowboy coffee" tasting like. One of my absolute favorites.

Not so good:

Breakfast Blend: Very light, mild citrus aftertaste. Not one of my favorites.
Ethiopian Sidamo: Very dark coffee that tastes like someone mixed a dandelion in it. Ugh.
Kenyan/African Blend: Not as dark as Ethiopian, still very floral. Kinda gross.
French Roast: Starbucks tends to burn this one too often, I'd steer clear of it.


Generally, African/Latin American Coffees are very fragrant, floral coffees. Some people love them, some hate them.
The Indonesian coffees have a more earthy, full bodied flavor. They tend to be darker roasts, but that's more a roaster's preference than anything else.

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« Reply #28 on: October 22, 2009, 03:37:19 AM »

My formula is simple - whole beans ground fresh as you need them. It doesn't matter if it's drip, press or expresso for me -I have all 3 prep types- but that the coffee is freshly ground. Of course the quality of the coffee is every bit as important. If I want a coffee that will work for any of the 3 prep types, I usually go with Italian or French roast.
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« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2009, 05:54:20 AM »

I've heard the best coffee comes from Hawaii .
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« Reply #30 on: October 22, 2009, 04:50:29 PM »

Quote from: JuniorDan on October 21, 2009, 11:39:12 PM

...powder creamer hazel nut and a vanilla...

 ban

I suggest throwing out the powder immediately and getting the real stuff.
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« Reply #31 on: October 22, 2009, 07:07:11 PM »

Saw this and immediately thought of this thread.  icon_wink

http://www.boingboing.net/2009/10/20/spurning-the-false-g.html
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Alefroth
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« Reply #32 on: October 22, 2009, 09:28:40 PM »

Quote from: Daehawk on October 22, 2009, 05:54:20 AM

I've heard the best coffee comes from Hawaii .

There's little truth to that.

Ale
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« Reply #33 on: October 22, 2009, 09:31:18 PM »

Quote from: JuniorDan on October 21, 2009, 11:39:12 PM

Thanks for all the info guys I got a Signature Gourmet drip coffee maker, powder creamer hazel nut and a vanilla, and a bag of eight o'clock 100% Colombian I think its medium roast. I do plan on trying other brand and as some suggested staying away from the flavored beans. I have a French vanilla Liquid Creamer at work which I admit tast much better that the powder stuff which still is not bad.
I am just confused by the fact that the suggested goal from you guys was to get to the regular no sugar or creamer taste of the coffee...WHY? its horrible.. Thank god for creamers and lots of sugar.
I guess time will tell though.

Thanks again my coffee is now bearable, I dont know what I was doing wrong. I will continue experimenting with brands and flavor creamers to fine the one I like most. May actually go to a Starbucks now see what the hype is about.     

If you're just using coffee as a caffeine delivery system, stick with medium or go even lighter if you want. The darker the roast, the more caffeine is destroyed.

Ale
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« Reply #34 on: October 22, 2009, 09:35:35 PM »

Quote from: Alefroth on October 22, 2009, 09:31:18 PM

If you're just using coffee as a caffeine delivery system, stick with medium or go even lighter if you want. The darker the roast, the more caffeine is destroyed.

Not exactly.....

"Assuming all other variables are the same, if you measure by weight you actually have more caffeine in dark roast because the water loss is faster than the minimal caffeine loss during roasting. If you measure by volume you have less caffeine because the beans expand as they roast. This seems to confuse some people so let me restate the above. If you measure your coffee using a scoop you will have less caffeine per cup using dark roast coffee. If you measure your coffee by weight you will have more caffeine per cup using a dark roast."
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Tebunker
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« Reply #35 on: October 22, 2009, 11:58:01 PM »

If you can afford it, a Jamaican Blue roast is very good. Fresh Market has one that they just call Jamaican Blue Mountain, it is fantastic. It's great black or with a little half/half or cream.

I also would recommend never getting non-dairy creamers, talk about destroying your digestive system, blech.

When people talk about being addicted to anything I can never empathize, I don't have an addictive personality, and I never feel like I just have to have something, whether chemical or otherwise.

I enjoy my coffee, usually with 1/4 to 1/2 packet of Sugar in the Raw and about 1 1/2 tablespoons of half and half, try to be too light though.
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« Reply #36 on: October 23, 2009, 12:38:38 AM »

If you can find it in Safeway, Torrefazione is one of the best coffees I've ever had. Their Venetian and Palermo blends taste amazing.
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« Reply #37 on: October 23, 2009, 03:02:42 PM »

Use skim milk instead of cream to avoid unnecessary fat, unless you desperately need to cover up the taste of bad coffee with fatty fatty cream. 
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« Reply #38 on: August 16, 2011, 01:19:39 PM »

I just had some coffee that reminded me of this topic. Wow its been almost 2 years now since my first cup of brew. I remembered when it was all about the flavor coffee for me, I could not understand why people did not like flavor coffee.
Well I am not sure when or even how I stopped drinking flavored coffee, but one thing is for sure now that shit is nasty.. I just had me a cup and was like this shit must be spoiled. I tried a fresh new package and flavor and the same nasty after taste.
It got me thinking of this post and how people said I would grow out of the flavored coffee phase. I am not sure how, but it did happen.
My brew of choice now, is Eight O'Clock 100% Columbian, Starbucks morning Joe, and the very hated MaxuelHouse (Work). with French Vanilla or Hazelnut Creamers. Although I do like to try different creamers from time to time.
I am not big on black yet but can handle it with 4-6 sugars. Just a week ago I was introduced to espresso, wooooh.
Just taught I share that with you all.
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« Reply #39 on: August 16, 2011, 02:03:59 PM »

Quote from: JuniorDan on August 16, 2011, 01:19:39 PM

Just a week ago I was introduced to espresso, wooooh.

icon_lol
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