Brew Notes

  • Beans: “Angel Albino Corzo-Chiapa” medium roast (Mexico)
  • 20g coffee / 250g water (1:12.5)
  • JX: 2 rotations less 6 clicks (18 on the grind chart / 54 total clicks)
  • Water at 95°C
  • Recipe: A Better 1 Cup V60 Technique (see below)
  1. 0:00: Pour 66g of water to bloom
  2. 0:10 – 0:15: Gently Swirl
  3. 0:45 – 1:00: Pour up to 100g total (40% total weight)
  4. 1:10 – 1:20: Pour up to 150g total (60% total weight)
  5. 1:30 – 1:40: Pour up to 200g total (80% total weight)
  6. 1:50 – 2:00: Pour up to 250g total (100% total weight)
  7. 2:00 – 2:05: Gently swirl
  8. Drawdown should finish around 3:00

This is the same V60 recipe I’ve been using for light roast, with 20g coffee (vs 15), proportionally more initial bloom water, and slightly lower water temperature. I wanted to try brewing a stronger pourover cup, and it appears I have succeeded. This tasted well-extracted and very rich. I’m going to try my next cup at 1:14 (18g coffee / 60g initial pour) and see how that turns out. Over the past 3 days, I’ve now brewed 2 different AeroPress recipes and 1 pourover cup with these beans, all at roughly the same ratio. Both of the AeroPress cups tasted weak, but the pourover was strong. The pourover method is obviously doing a better job of extracting the beans, which makes me wonder what I could be doing differently with the AeroPress. It’s pretty clear that just upping the ratio is not the answer. I suspect that I need to be grinding the beans a lot finer, and/or increasing the steep time. But, if I get consistently good results with pourover, I’m inclined to stick with that for the time being.

Brew #2

Round 2 with the same beans as yesterday:

  • Beans: “Angel Albino Corzo-Chiapa” medium roast (Mexico)
  • Grind: Medium-coarse – 2.5 turns on the JX minus (25 on the grind chart, or 75 total clicks)
  • 90°C water
  • 16 grams coffee / 180 grams water (1:11.25)
  • One new paper filter (pre-moistened)
  • Recipe: 13g that makes you happy (inverted: add 40g water, stir 5x, top up to 180g at 0:30, stir 10x, flip at 1:30 and press very slowly, finishing at 2:30)

This turned out similarly to yesterday’s cup. The flavor was fine, and while it was a tiny bit stronger (in line with the slight difference in ratios) and overall a pleasant cup, it was still a little bit weaker tasting than I would prefer. So, not much difference between the two recipes, at least when it comes to the finished product. I feel like I’m going to end up at 1:10 again, which tasted really good with a dark roast, but seems kind of like overkill. Based on an interesting Reddit thread I found, I think as an experiment, I’m going to try the following, not necessarily in this order, and see what I end up with:

  • One of these two AeroPress recipes at 1:12 to 1:15, with a very fine grind
  • Pourover using 20 grams of coffee with 250 grams of water and a similar grind to my previous pourover cups

If neither of these do the job for me, then I’ll break down and try 1:10.

Brew and Run

Got a bunch of medium roast coffee beans to use up before I resupply. Here was this morning’s attempt:

  • Beans: “Angel Albino Corzo-Chiapa” medium roast (Mexico)
  • Grind: Fine – 1.5 turns on the JX minus 6 clicks (13 on the grind chart, or 39 total clicks)
  • 95°C water
  • 16-17 grams coffee / 200 grams water (around 1:12)
  • One new paper filter (dry)
  • James Hoffmann’s Ultimate Aeropress Recipe (20 second pour, 2 minute steep, swirl, wait 30 seconds, press 30 seconds)

This is essentially the same thing I brewed about six weeks ago, with slightly hotter water and a little bit more coffee. The result was similar to last time: just fine flavor-wise, but lacking in body. I guess I could try grinding even finer, or I could try my go-to inverted recipe again, although that attempt also yielded a thin-bodied cup. Maybe I’d get better results with pourover or French press. I’ll figure it out one way or another.

I left the house at 7:10 this morning and ran a little over 7.5 miles. It was not a bad run on yet another damp, overcast, humid morning. Similar to yesterday’s bike commute, I wanted to get a sense for how the bell schedules for all of the local schools will affect my route. Verdict: unless I wait until after 9:15, I’m going to be dodging kids in one place or another. 7:10 worked out OK, but there may be another window between 8:00 and 8:20ish that may work out. I may try leaving around then on Thursday.

Threading the Needle

It’s the first day of school in Howard and Baltimore Counties. The past couple of years, I have telecommuted on the first day of school, but I decided to ride to work today to get an early start on fine-tuning my routine for the school year. There are certain times when it’s bad to leave the house due to school traffic, and certain routes that need to be avoided as well. My route passes through several school zones, so I have to take several bell schedules into account, and different schools affect me in the afternoon than in the morning. This year will require some adjustments to my routine, as HoCo has tweaked the start and end times for most of their schools, and also expanded the walk zones near where I live. This morning, I rolled out at 7:20, and it worked well. I think any later than 7:20-7:25 will cause issues with car and foot traffic heading to the nearby middle school. That should clear out by 7:45 to 7:50, but last year, when I left that late, I ran into issues with school traffic in Baltimore County. So, I think 7:10 to 7:20 might be the sweet spot this year.

I killed the last of my light roast coffee beans this morning. Next, I’ll work on using up my remaining half-pound bags I bought in Delaware, which are both medium roast. One bag is sourced from southern Mexico, and the other a is blend from Guatemala and Colombia. The light roast I just used up was from the same roaster and also from Guatemala and Colombia, so I suspect it might be the same blend of beans, just roasted differently. It is labeled a “cold brew blend”, and I’ll try it that way, but I suspect it’ll make good hot coffee as well. Since both bags are medium roasts from the same general region of the world, I’m hoping I can find a single recipe that works well for both, whether it’s pourover, AeroPress, or French press.

Ride Notes

I took advantage of the nice Sunday morning weather and got out for a roughly 35-mile bike ride. I found 6 geocaches along the way, which is the most I’ve found in a single outing this month. After last Sunday’s ride into Baltimore, I decided to head back to the familiar territory of Columbia, riding out towards the downtown area first, and then back across US 29 through Kings Contrivance and Huntington. I then crossed US 1 and headed home through Jessup and Hanover. This is a pretty good single-speed route. Columbia is generally pretty flat east of US 29, and the few steep hills are relatively short. Things don’t really start to get hilly until you get farther out west towards River Hill and Clarksville, or north into the Patapsco River Valley towards Ellicott City. Next weekend, I’m thinking about riding out to West Friendship, and I’ll definitely want a geared bike for that.

This and that

My dream of running 10+ miles on Saturday mornings is going to have to wait at least another week, as it’s still oppressively humid out there. Today, I settled for 10K, and probably sweated out about 30% of my body weight. If I’m able to consistently run longer distances through fall, winter, and next spring, then I’ll figure out what I need to do to keep it up this time of year. At a minimum, I’ll need a way to carry 1.5 to 2 liters of water, as well as a strategy to replenish electrolytes lost through sweating.

On the pool front, after malfunctioning twice so far this season, my SWG temperature sensor has been working correctly for the past several days, but I now have a tri-sensor simulator that I can use to troubleshoot it the next time it acts up. For now, though, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. I just ordered a new Skimlite R16C leaf rake to replace my old one that I bought in 2007. That’s right — the old one lasted 16 years as my only leaf net. It had a few holes in the mesh, but was still usable. Recently, though, the frame has started flopping back and forth, which is inconvenient enough that I finally took the plunge and ordered a new one. They are not cheap ($70 in 2007; $100 in 2023) but they are made to last, and when you consider that the cheaper nets only last a season or two, the Skimlite basically pays for itself over time. I expect that this will be the last one I ever need to buy.

More Pourover Notes

My AeroPress has been a little bit neglected lately, as I’ve been really enjoying the pourover cups I’ve been brewing with my bag of light roast beans. Both the pourover and AeroPress methods take about 5 minutes (start to finish) to brew a single cup, so going forward, I’ll probably be using both, depending on the beans and (to an extent) my mood. Two things I’ve learned over the past week:

  • With pourover, small adjustments to the grind size seem to have a larger effect on the finished cup than with the AeroPress. The first few pourover cups I brewed tasted a little bit sour and under-extracted, but at just a slightly finer grind (6 clicks on my JX), I’ve been getting fantastic cups.
  • When brewing single cups with boiling water, the coffee will cool to a drinkable temperature faster if I use a room temperature ceramic mug instead of an insulated Hydro Flask mug, so I can enjoy it sooner and without burning my tongue. 😀

Cold Brew Redux

I made some cold brew at dinnertime today, with the same recipe I’ve been using for most of the summer, and decided to measure the quantity of water used so that I can double the recipe more easily and accurately. Here’s the latest recipe. Note that a “scoop” refers to the scoop that comes with the AeroPress.

  1. Set AeroPress up in inverted orientation and add 1 heaping scoop of drip-grind coffee
  2. Add 200 to 220 grams room-temperature water (enough to fill AeroPress to about 1cm of the top)
  3. Stir vigorously for 1 minute
  4. Flip and press into a glass tumbler (30 seconds)
  5. Add 2-3 ice cubes and a few drops of stevia to taste
  6. Stir and serve

Doubled recipe:

  1. Set AeroPress up in inverted orientation and add 2 heaping scoops of drip-grind coffee
  2. Fill AeroPress with room-temperature water to 1cm from top and note how much was added by weight
  3. Stir vigorously for 1 minute
  4. Flip and press into a tall glass, small pitcher, or carafe
  5. Top up to a total of 400-440 grams of water
  6. Add several drops of stevia to taste
  7. Stir, pour into tumblers, add ice, and serve

I’m still using Wellsley Farms Breakfast Blend pre-ground coffee to make this, but I’m almost out of it. Once it’s gone, I’ll try it with some Maxwell House Original Roast that we have in the cabinet.

Morning Notes

After alluding to it yesterday, I brewed a cup of pourover coffee this morning using this recipe, with the same beans and a slightly finer grind. I went back and forth over whether to try it coarser or finer, eventually settling on finer just because of how my earlier pourover cups have tasted. I used a setting of 18 on the JX grind chart, which is two rotations minus 6 clicks (54 total clicks). I think this was the right call. The cup had a little bit more fruitiness than the cup I brewed with the AeroPress, with more body to balance out the fruity acidity than my previous pourover cups. Now I’m wondering how fine I can go before it starts to taste bitter.

The weather was quite pleasant this morning, and the past several days have been dry, so I hit the trails and commuted to work through PVSP on my mountain bike. It was my third bike ride in 4 days. On the HoCo side of the river, I rode Belmont Trail to Morning Choice to Lewis and Clark to Garrett’s Pass, which is a route I take frequently. It was a great ride, except something stung me on my arm at one point. I am wondering if maybe I ran over an underground hornet’s nest, and one of them got me. If that’s the case, I’m glad I was moving fast (and I’m not allergic)!! We’re still in heavy summer growth season, but with a few exceptions, the trails I rode were not overgrown. Upper Soapstone Trail, which is on my route home, may be another story, so I’ll see how that is doing later this afternoon.


After a hot and humid day yesterday, this morning saw a cold front sweep through and take a lot of the humidity with it. I got out for my run at about 8:30, which is later than I typically like in August, but it worked out in my favor today, as the dewpoint had dropped considerably by then. I ran a very typical weekday distance of 7 miles at a very typical pace of 10:30.

Last week’s tweaked foot nerve seems to have mostly resolved. I had no issues climbing last night. I climbed somewhere around 6-7 routes, about half on lead and half on top rope. Instead of my usual Scarpa Force V shoes, I wore my La Sportiva Solutions for all of my climbs. Although they are less comfortable than the Scarpas overall, they put less weight on the balls of my feet (because the soles have a downturned shape), which seems to help with nerve issues. Running did not aggravate the nerve at all last week, but I did feel it after 45 minutes or so on my treadmill desk.