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FP88: The Double Shot Coffee Company

25 Jan 2010, Posted by Jennifer Iannolo in beverages, podcast

DoubleShotIf you have any preconceived notions about coffee, this is a good time to cast them aside. After talking with Brian Franklin, I certainly have. Brian is the owner of The Double Shot Coffee Company in Tulsa, OK, and he is roasting the best coffee that has ever touched my lips, bar none. He has changed my whole world.

In our chat we discuss everything from picking, roasting, grinding and brewing to why most of the commercial coffee you buy (including from that big chain) is burnt, and why those enticing-looking, oily beans are bad. Step into Brian’s world with me.

www.doubleshotcoffee.com

Here’s the Cook’s Illustrated coffee machine test to which we referred:
http://www.cooksillustrated.com/video/default.asp?docid=17108&newVideo=y

I’ve also got a very important announcement about Sex on a Plate in case you haven’t heard the news!

sexonaplate.eventbrite.com

Music: Beau Hall (www.beaurocks.com)

Food Philosophy is a production of the Culinary Media Network (www.culinarymedianetwork.com)

  • Jason

    Other useful resources:
    – Kenneth Davids’s books
    – Sweet Maria’s coffee library: http://www.sweetmarias.com/articles.php along with their coffee tasting notes, email list (general coffee roasting discussion) and Farm’s Gate program: http://www.sweetmarias.com/farmgatecoffee.php
    http://coffeegeek.com/

    Enjoy your explorations in coffee! I highly recommend roasting your own at some point just to experience that process. You don’t need expensive equipment to roast for yourself, either. And I’m glad to hear from other roasters who take the entire chain seriously. Fantastic!

  • Jason

    Oh, and on “de-gassing”… It depends on the bean. Some beans taste better a few days after the roast. The Ethiopian coffees develop their fruity flavors after some of the first, volatile flavors fade.

  • She’s baaaack!
    ;-)
    Nice, playful episode.
    Really glad you’re exploring coffee in a new way. There’s a whole world, out there. Sure, during the initial steps into this world, it can feel awkward. Like Alice’s fall in the rabbit hole. But, once you start exploring, it becomes more like Dorothy in vivid colours.

    My personal advice, as someone who primarily drinks coffee at home.
    Do get a decent grinder. Doesn’t even need to be 100$. I’m using this Hario Skerton and it’s producing a superior grind to the Bodum Antigua I was using before.
    Experiment with a few brewing methods. French Press is nice to get good body, which seems to be a huge thing for a lot of people. But there are many brewing methods, out there, and they really help in coffee explorations. My favourites: stove-top moka pots (used properly) along with Bialetti Brikka, and AeroPress. I also do Turkish-style cezve/ibrik, on occasion, and the Skerton works well for this. Especially with with insanely fresh beans. Same with the AeroPress, actually.
    And speaking of insanely-fresh beans….. Homeroasting is an ideal way to get really rich coffee experiences. On his own podcast, Brian tends to dismiss it, especially when it comes to hot air popcorn poppers. But I used exactly that for seven years and it radically enhanced my coffee pleasures. Some of my homeroasted blends were truly fantastic. And there’s something to be said about connecting so directly with individual coffee beans. I wish I could grow coffee myself (not feasible in Quebec’s weather) or at least get beans directly from farmers with whom I establish rapport. But homeroasting is the next most conscience-striking thing to do, in my humble opinion.

    Have fun! I know you will.

  • Richard

    It was difficult for me to get through this podcast. I kept listening because I enjoy coffee and wanted to learn from Mr. Franklin who is clearly knowledgeable, but his personality and attitude rubs me the wrong way. Maybe it’s the long term effects of too much caffeine.

  • A few opinions on the above comments.
    Jason – I agree, Ken Davids’ book Home Coffee Roasting is a good introduction. It was the first book I bought about roasting coffee. And Sweet Maria’s is still a valuable resource for me when exploring different coffees. Tom is a great cupper and an encyclopedia of information.
    My opinion about de-gassing is that it equals staling. I love fresh coffee. I dislike coffee that has de-gassed.
    Alexandre – I do use a hand grinder (JavaGrind from GSI) when I need to (camping, power outage, traveling, etc) but seriously, Jennifer Iannolo is NOT going to hand grind her coffee. She might have some cute, young, lusty boy grind her coffee by hand, but I have a hard time imagining her doing it herself. I don’t think $100 is a big investment for an appliance that should last a long time and do a good job making something you drink every day. It would be used more than your favorite frying pan. Why not put 100 bucks into it? You should buy one locally, so if you have any problems, they can fix it for you.
    Brewing methods. I don’t like the moka pot because the water must be boiling in order to create the pressure needed to push through the puck of coffee. Boiling water and coffee don’t mix very well. Plus, putting your ground coffee over a heat source isn’t a good idea. The Aeropress is ingenious. I initially bought one to make fun of on my podcast. But it worked, so I started selling them in my store. It doesn’t make espresso, but the concept is VERY similar (but better, in my opinion) to the $11,000 Clover brewer. You can make good coffee with the Aeropress, but it’s not for everyone. (Check this out: http://www.doubleshotcoffee.com/blog/2009/12/coffee-brewing-funtimes.html)
    I currently love the Chemex pourover. And I’ll always love the presspot.
    As for “insanely fresh” coffee… I think it’s insane to drink coffee that’s not fresh. Certainly nothing insane about fresh coffee; that’s the way the gods wanted it to be. Home roasting is interesting. Of course, that’s the way I got started. But I did it because there were no good roasters here and I quickly found out I’d never had coffee that wasn’t stale. Knowing what I know now about roasting, I have a hard time believing home roasting can reliably produce a great cup. Much like home beer brewing, I know that people who roast (and brew) their own think it tastes great because they did it. Objectively though, it’s very difficult to roast coffee good with a home roaster. Not discouraging it, but if you have a good local roaster that will sell you fresh, delicious coffees, why fight it?
    Buying coffee directly from farmers is an extremely complex and uncertain venture. If you decide to, start in Kona.
    Glad y’all liked the podcast! :)

  • Brian, thanks for posting your feedback. I am happy to find a lusty boy to grind my coffee, and will get to work on that promptly.

    Richard, I find his personality and attitude delightful. It’s not for everyone (nor is mine), but that’s what makes the world an interesting place. :) And as your comment seems to project the same tone you derided, where is the issue?

  • Ha! I missed Richard’s comment. My personality and attitude rub a lot of people the wrong way I guess. I also pet cats backward just to piss them off. But they seem to love me anyway. True I am an ornery bastard, but I really just love coffee, like curious people, and enjoy laughing a lot. Lighten up, Richard.

  • Play nice! Let’s get back to the coffee, shall we?

  • Richard

    The last sentence in my comment was an attempt at humor and it came out sounding more abrasive than I intended.

    I have no disagreement with what Brian said. I’ll just say that there’s a fine line between correcting people for something they might not know, vs scolding them about it.

  • Got it. Thanks for that, Richard. :)

  • Brian, take a good Ethiopian Harrar (which may need to wait until next season, or longer, but I remain hopeful). Taste it at 6, 12, 24, … 48 hour intervals (and both hot and cool). The flavor changes substantially. I like the fruit that bursts into the 36-48 hour interval. Earlier than 24 hours tastes rough to me.

    Other coffees (e.g. typical Peruvian, Kenyan beans) do seem simply to turn stale. The difference between season and even minor geography is fascinating. History for a given farm provides only a rough guide. I wish more of the farms tasted their higher-end coffee. They live through the year’s changes and might gain a better feel for what influences the flavor. Then they could teach the rest of us.

    If anything, home roasters have an extreme advantage with the interesting origins. We don’t need to worry about consistency and quality of large batches. If one small batch is mediocre, we simply try something different for the next small batch. There’s no serious loss unless you bake your beans; even poor home-roasted coffee is better than typical grocery store coffee. We can play with *every* batch. This doesn’t discount the commercial roasters’ skill. I never could maintain consistency across those sizes or manage customer feedback. It’s a different sphere. We share ingredients and notes, but little else. So I suck up all commercial roaster information I can. It’s so different that there’s always something to learn.

  • Hey Jason. It’s true, good Ethiopian coffees have been hard to come by this year. Shame. I do agree with you that coffees change over the first couple days. And it does seem for some reason that the more sweet, fruity notes start emerging to the forefront after a day or so. Though I am drinking a natural Yirg right now that I roasted last night and it is damned delicious. I wouldn’t say fresh coffees like that are rough at all. They just brew a little different and taste a little different. But addictively different.
    My roaster is small- only a 15 kilo. I don’t claim to be perfectly consistent. I’m sure a HIGHLY trained cupper could determine differences week to week in some of my coffees. I also play with roasts. I change profiles based on what I tasted last time. I keep tweaking the roast profile and finish temp until I REALLY feel the coffee is outstanding and is exhibiting all the characteristics it has to share with us. I feel like it’s an experience. And as I learn about each coffee through roasting and tasting, I feel like my customers follow me on that journey, whether they know it or not.
    I absolutely agree that (unless you’re an idiot) home roasted coffee is better than grocery store coffee. No doubt. And if you’re an experimenter like I am, you must find a way to roast coffee and learn. But I wonder what would’ve come of me if there would’ve already been a place just like the DoubleShot here when I was initially learning about coffee. Would I still have felt the need to roast at home when I could go and experience so much at the local roastery?
    Without a quality local roastery you have no choice. Home roasting it is.
    Did I mention I love coffee?
    Just wait til you taste the Natural Yirg we just got in. Oh lord.

  • Adam

    Hey guys, any thoughts on the pour over methods like the Clever Coffee Dripper?

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