Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Revised edition (November 20, 2003)
Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.8 x 9.1 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #173,604 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #65 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Beverages & Wine > Coffee & Tea #371 in Books > Science & Math > Astronomy & Space Science > Astronomy
Update: March 1, 2006In June, 2001, I wrote about "Home Coffee Roasting":"This book is worth several times its purchase price for the two-page roasting chart alone. As a technically-oriented (read: geek) amateur roaster with three (3) roasters (a Hearthware Precision, an Alpenrost, and the fabulous Sonofresco fluid bed) I am constantly referring to this book to improve my art and understanding.But, amazingly, the book -- only a few years in print -- is now dated, because the equipment options for the home coffee roaster have increased so much. My three roasters (or the types they represent) are not covered. That's the only reason that I gave this 4 stars instead of 5. But if you roast coffee at home -- regardless of your equipment -- you need this book.What else is missing? I'd love to see a table in the appendix covering the top 50 (or so) growing regions and rating the AVERAGE bean on acidity, sweetness, body, finish, etc, so that one has a clue where to begin when making a blend. The professional coffee roaster is cupping samples all day long, and quickly learns the characteristics of the world's coffees. But we amateurs, buying 1, 2, or 5 lbs at a time could use a secret decoder ring that would tell us in advance what variety we should order that has a good chance of rounding out that blend that is "not quite there yet." Short of that, David's excellent narrative coverage in the book of different coffee characteristics will have to do."With the release of the "Revised, Updated Edition", the book no longer merits the caveats I described.
Let me start off by saying that I do not like to read at all. I rarely start books and even more rarely finish them. With this book however I read it from cover to cover in three days! A very fun book for the coffee hobbyist or anyone who would like to learn more about coffee and home coffee roasting. Not only is this book packed with history (in a fun way) it is also a wealth of reference information regarding home roasting and the overall coffee process, from plant to cup!This book is laid out in a very easy to read format. The chapters can be long but everything is broken down into small 1-4 page sections. Kenneth Davids has a real grasp on the fundamentals of coffee production and lays out a lot of information in an easy to follow entertaining way. The book reads very well from cover to cover.The content is not too scientific and also not too general. Whether you have no idea about anything coffee or you are a coffee hobbyist (like me) you will learn a lot and come to appreciate all that goes into a truly good cup of coffee. Davids also includes a lot of reference information laid out in a fashion that is easy to search and locate specific information such as coffee origin notes, roasting and flavor terms, roasting equipment and methods to name a few. Davids does review and discuss many of todays home roasting equipment quite well however this information is already dated. Not to worry though the total of this information represents a small portion of the total book.Included are also a lot of drawings and diagrams. This book really captures the romance of coffee and coffee roasting and delivers it in a wonderful easy to read and use fashion. I cannot put this book down and have read and reread many parts of it.
Great book very interesting history of coffee origins and roasting techniques equipment, Good explanations of discribing roast profiles: Great discriptions of coffee flavor, taste, and aromas. Excellent presenation on coffee growing regions around the world and what coffees come from where. Good info on how coffee is grown & the various processes used to prepare green coffee beans for roasting. Good info on roast levels what look for listen to and smell to know where you are in the roasting process. Information on how different beans present different flavors. Talks about how stopping the roast at various light to dark roast profiles can changes things like coffee acidity, body, fruitiness, etc and can make the same coffee beans taste totally different it's just a matter of where you stop the roast.Overall I thought the book was a good read for coffee geeks, and coffee snobs. That's how my wife has taken to discribing me to ours friends since started my home roasting/brewing hobby about two years ago. I love home roasting and brewing it Provides me with a lot of satisfaction and enjoyment all during the day while drain my thermos & & keep my coffee cup full @ work. Once you get past the initial equipment investment you really can save some money home rosting & brewing over buying premium coffee from your local roaster or your favorite coffe shop. However, it does take time & dedicaton each week to roast our own. Also there is a slight learning curve to overcome so it may not be for everyone. Surf the web there is tons of info about home roasting coffee so you can see if it is really something you want to get into.
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