Saturday, October 15, 2005

More Coffeeblogging
There was an aspect of the Cook's Illustrated article on "coffeehouse coffee" which I neglected in my earlier post. It's what we in the BlogDog family took to calling "Spanish Coffee" or "Cafe Ole!" What is the effect of milk on the bean bevy? The article author had been drinking Starbucks which, in the tasting, was criticized as tasting burnt. Which is my salient complaint about the Beast That Came From Seattle. The author found it hard to accept that assessment.
The initial testing was done on black cofee so a round of tasting coffee with milk was done. And the results were quite different. The darker roasted coffees won the round of "au lait" sippage. Here's a snip that gives some good old CI kitchen science:
"...the plain coffee champs, ended up in the lower ranks - bland and insipid, according to the tasters. In contrast, Starbucks landed near the top, along with ... two other fairly assertive coffees. The bitter, burnt notes that had menaced tasters in the first round were suddenly 'robust' and 'complex' when tempered by the milk. ... Additional research revealed that the proteins in milk (and cream) bind some of the bitter-tasting phenolic compounds, reducing the bitterness and intensity of the coffee flavor."

Good to know. I'll give Millstone Columbian Supremo (which Millstone considers a medium roast) a try. And, being a good blogger, I'll let you know the results.

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