Hello r/coffee! I have a quick question about flavored coffee beans and grinders. I did a search here, but I wanted to see if there was any additional or new info.
Tl;dr: Used Bones flavored coffee beans in my my grinder. Will my grinder ever be the same, or should I buy a new grinder for non-flavored beans only, and keep this old one for any flavored beans in the future? My current grinder is an inexpensive, entry-level Hario metal-and-wood grinder (this one: https://www.hario-usa.com/collections/grinders/products/small-ceramic-coffee-mill ). I read on here that grinding bread through the grinder will help remove the flavored tastes in the burr – does anyone know how effective this method is?
I’ve recently become quite enamored with coffee making since the holidays/new year – I’ve used an Aeropress for years, but after discovering James Hoffman’s videos (thank you YouTube algorithm), my curiosity was piqued. I eventually ended up trying out brewing with a Hario ceramic V60 about a month ago, and wow! I love it so much more than my Aeropress! I never knew I could make coffee that tasted this delicious at home (I’m sure my technique is far from perfect, but to my inexperienced palette, even a mediocre V60 brew tastes heavenly compared to my Aeropress brews).
I’ve been very happy with the coffee we’ve made over the past month with it (so much so that the Aeropress is now in storage). I have never been able to enjoy black coffee before brewing with a V60 – it’s been wonderful to experience! It feels like I finally understand what it is about coffee that inspires so much passion.
We were running out of beans a week or two ago, and in looking at new places to restock, my partner suggested a sampler of Bones flavored coffee. We received a sample pack of their single-origin (non-flavored) coffee as a gift over Christmas, and we loved these brews!
When he showed me the new sampler he was interested in, I noticed they were flavored coffee beans, instead of the non-flavored beans we’ve exclusively brewed with (not out of any real reason – mainly out of ignorance, because I didn’t even know grinding flavored coffee beans was a thing). I’m very new to coffee brewing, as you can tell!
Anyway, I was concerned about the flavored coffee beans potentially affecting the grinder we use – I’ve been delighted by the subtle flavors in the non-flavored coffee beans we’ve brewed. It’s been very rewarding to taste the differences between my pourover technique and different beans. Because of this, I was concerned about lingering tastes from flavored beans in our grinder affecting brews with non-flavored beans.
My partner enjoys coffee, but he isn’t as interested in the brewing process as I am. I love brewing coffee for both of us, since it’s fun for me, and he drinks more coffee than I do (which means I can brew much more often than if I was only brewing for myself). He was very excited to try these flavored coffee beans, and I was happy to try them given how much fun he finds them! We ordered, and tried them last night and this morning.
But r/coffee, I have to admit, I felt like I was committing sacrilege. The blissful scent of a freshly opened coffee bag I have come to adore – by comparison, these flavored coffees, the aroma is like offensive Halloween candy! The scent is overwhelming artificial! I felt like my olfactory glands were being assaulted with every whiff. I went in open-minded – I truly did! – but r/coffee, I can’t express to you how disappointing my first brew with flavored coffee tasted.
Where I have become used to the smooth, subtly sweet, deliciously fruity notes of my pourovers, the first sip of “French Vanilla” coffee beans was like my tongue being bludgeoned by the most bitter hammer imaginable. It was safe to say the worst cup I’ve ever brewed in my life!
However, reddit, trying these “fun” flavors make my partner happy, and I’m happy to brew them if they make him happy! I want to keep the option open to brew more of these in the future (though I will likely end up brewing a second, non-flavored brew for myself, haha), but after discovering how incredibly overpowering the flavors seem, I have serious doubts the grinder I used them in will ever be fully cleared from the flavoring. I think I have already decided that I will buy a second inexpensive Hario grinder, but I was curious about anyone else’s experiences here with regard to flavored coffee and coffee grinders.
Do you use two grinders? Were you able to clean yours? If you did, what method worked for you? Does grinding bread through a grinder work? (I saw this suggested in one of the searches I did in this subreddit.) Or did you end up replacing it? I’d love to know your experiences or thoughts!
Thank you to anyone with suggestions, advice, or who read this unintentional novel!