Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I'm about 6 months to a year behind the rest of the coffee world

So yesterday i posted about Tim Wendelboe's deliciously awesome French Press technique that i saw on CoffeeGeek. Still excited about my "new" discovery today, i was talking online to Chris Owens and he informed me or, should i say "busted my balls", by telling me James Hoffmann had done a video tutorial a while ago too, and Coffee Collective before that! So needless to say, i had to go back and watch James's tutorial as well, just to see what i had missed. I guess i have some more playing around to do...

My fatal flaw is that in an effort to better my coffee knowledge i subscribe to an obscene amount of RSS feeds, but because for many months i had literally over 1000 unread posts in my reader, i missed a lot of good stuff. (On a side note, i've switched from Bloglines to Google Reader (with Helvetireader) and am now completely caught up!) My days of being 6 months behind are (hopefully) over!

The moral of the story is have a good RSS reader. It helps your coffee skills and keeps you super informed.


James Hoffmann said...

That Owens character, such a ball buster....

I take no credit for originality, only being the one boring enough to film it and upload it!

I am testing out Google Reader (with Helvetireader after your excited postings), though not sure if I am ready to switch from NetNewsWire which is very awesome.

CoffeeGeek Bloggin' said...

LOL - Chris Owens. I'd kick his butt, but his s/o would probably destroy me! (I kid, I kid, I love them both!)

Here's the real backstory on this whole press pot thingie.

About a year ago, I was talking to several people at an SCAA event (I think it was the WCB machine certification test) about wanting to pursue a "press pot standard" for the SCAA, much like how they currently have a drip brew standard. At that event, someone mentioned to me a technique that Tim Wendelboe was experimenting with. AFAIK, at that time there was no video or open internets discussion of the technique.

I also interpreted the technique wrong - I heard "cupping, like a cupping" so much, I assumed that Tim was scooping the grinds off the top of the press.

I started fooling around with it. In the meantime, Vince Piccolo (of Artigiano) was spreading some discussion he'd picked up from another coffee guru (I want to say it's Tim Castle) that you should NEVER stir a press - even at the beginning.

I ended up doing two techniques - a stir, steep, and scoop all the grinds method, and the no-stir, use 20% extra coffee, and scoop all the grinds method. All the time giving credit to Tim Wendelboe to anyone who would hear my words on the subject.

It wasn't until I saw Jim's video that I thought to myself - uh oh, I think I've been doing Tim's method wrong all this time! So I contacted Tim, got step by steps from him and indeed, we came up with two different approaches (but both based on Tim's method - I just heard wrong).

I've tried both methods extensively now, blind (others do it, I taste) and while both have their merits, I gotta say, I'm liking the scoop method more than the skim method.

I did interview Tim, and have been trying to put together an article on it all.

Ben said...

Man, that would make a great article. Thanks for the backstory! I love staying informed.