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Coffee connoisseurs - what would cause my coffee to suddenly be bland?

Red Squirrel

No Lifer
May 24, 2003
59,365
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126
www.uovalor.com
So for years I was using a basic Proctor Silex coffee machine and it worked fine. I would either use regular grounds like Maxwell House etc, or buy beans and grind them. I've mostly been grinding my own at this point as I find it taste better. Then suddenly, the machine started to act really strange where it would just make lot of noise and hardly any coffee would come out. I descaled it like 20 times and it got better but the coffee just did not taste right anymore. It tasted the same way as hot water from a really old hot water heater smells. Had this weird metallic after taste.

So I got a new machine after giving up trying to get the old machine to produce decent coffee. The coffee was tasting better for maybe the first couple batches, and now it just taste bland. Like if I was just drinking hot water. What would cause this to happen? I'm putting like 2x as much grounds as needed, and still, it's just not extracting the taste or something. I also changed my under sink water filter recently so it's a new one.

Thinking of just getting a french press, but I can't find much info on how you use those, like how do you heat the water at a consistent temperature?
 

lxskllr

No Lifer
Nov 30, 2004
54,494
4,495
126
French press you heat the water just shy of boiling, pour it in the press, then press it after a few minutes. I'm sure there's people that overcomplicate it, but it isn't a complicated process. Dunno about your coffee issues. Never had anything like that. Perhaps the maker isn't heating the water hot enough. Either through bad luck getting a dud, or your water's doing something weird to your machines.
 

Arcadio

Diamond Member
Jun 5, 2007
5,631
19
81
I would suggest getting an AeroPress in addition to a French Press. The AeroPress is very easy to use and is super quick and convenient to clean.
 

snoopy7548

Diamond Member
Jan 1, 2005
6,496
3,351
136
I can't imagine a drip coffee maker with Maxwell House tasting like anything but flavored water.

I agree with lxrllsxslrslr, get a French press, a decent burr grinder, and some good coffee beans and you're good to go. It's a bit more work, but totally worth it.

Here's my routine:
-Heat water to boiling
-Grind beans (I use about four tablespoons for about two cups) on a coarse setting
-Put grounds into French press
-Pour water over grounds
-Let sit for ~3.5 minutes
-Stir it up and put the cover on
-Let sit for another ~3.5 minutes
-Plunge and pour

You can experiment with the amount of beans/water and brewing time.
 

kage69

Lifer
Jul 17, 2003
17,803
8,838
136
Disclaimer: I don't drink that roasted bean juice, but my wife does. As such, I do a lot of coffee machine cleaning, also prized handmade mugs that don't go in the dishwasher. Coffee funk doesn't go away that easily, sometimes not at all depending on the surface being cleaned. Was considering replacing her coffee machine, but first went looking for more info. Had the feeling I wasn't doing something right.

Turns out that feeling was quite correct. As a non drinker, I was completely ignorant of just how resilient coffee oils and residue really are.

Before you do anything, grab yourself some Cafiza and give everything a good soak and cleaning. You will be amazed at how much junk comes off of mugs and machine parts that you already considered clean. Turns out if you want to clean away certain fatty oils, it can only be done with a specific type of acid. Detergents, like the goggles, do nothing.

Seriously, get some, you'll thank me later. Get the powder version. OMRI certified and Made in America too.
 

Red Squirrel

No Lifer
May 24, 2003
59,365
8,456
126
www.uovalor.com
The machine is brand new though, so it seems odd it would already be that dirty. Mugs are rinsed and reused a few times then go in the dishwasher. Could the oils survive the dishwasher? Suppose it might be worth trying it on all my mugs. Just need to find where I can buy it here.

I did end up ordering that french press though. Too bad I went and bought that new fancy machine though, should have just gone with a french press from the start.
 

deadlyapp

Diamond Member
Apr 25, 2004
5,856
337
126
If you're getting weird extraction but are getting correct flow of water, then there's something wrong with the machine, even if it's new.

Try a french press, or even a simple ass pour over (i've switched to pour over for nearly everything) and if even that doesn't work then your taste buds are just broken.
 
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kage69

Lifer
Jul 17, 2003
17,803
8,838
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The machine is brand new though, so it seems odd it would already be that dirty. Mugs are rinsed and reused a few times then go in the dishwasher. Could the oils survive the dishwasher? Suppose it might be worth trying it on all my mugs. Just need to find where I can buy it here.

I did end up ordering that french press though. Too bad I went and bought that new fancy machine though, should have just gone with a french press from the start.

Yes.

Amazon.
 

Red Squirrel

No Lifer
May 24, 2003
59,365
8,456
126
www.uovalor.com
I just went to get Timmy's on my break and that coffee tastes better, so at least I can rule out covid. :p Though even Timmy's feels a bit watered down. Maybe I'm just turning into a coffee snob and need to get the more expensive stuff. :p

I'll have to wait and see once the french press comes in. They did not have any at my local store so had to get from one down south so it will be delivered.
 

herm0016

Diamond Member
Feb 26, 2005
7,594
484
126
get a kettle. who does not own a damn kettle? the cheap Mr. coffee one that you can set the temp works great.

we upgraded to this: (bought used)
 

BoomerD

No Lifer
Feb 26, 2006
56,742
5,110
126
Red Rodent, there's nothing wrong with your coffeemaker. It's you that is getting stale and weak.
 
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Red Squirrel

No Lifer
May 24, 2003
59,365
8,456
126
www.uovalor.com
I have a kettle, but I was thinking there was maybe a better way, since other than sticking a meat thermometer in the spout it's tricky to regulate the temp. I guess once I can hear it bubbling then I know it reached boiling then I can unplug it.
 

MrSquished

Diamond Member
Jan 14, 2013
9,676
5,550
136
I don't have a kettle because I don't live in the year 1341.
It's super convenient to brew tea, for instant oatmeal and if I'm going to make pasta I start some water on the stove and some in the kettle and it just goes faster
 

biostud

Lifer
Feb 27, 2003
15,361
650
126
You can buy an electric kettle with a temperature setting, ours can do 70,80,90,100 C :)
 

deadlyapp

Diamond Member
Apr 25, 2004
5,856
337
126
I have a kettle, but I was thinking there was maybe a better way, since other than sticking a meat thermometer in the spout it's tricky to regulate the temp. I guess once I can hear it bubbling then I know it reached boiling then I can unplug it.
Coffee is not rocket science. Let it boil, let it sit for 1-2 minutes, and then pour. If you're drinking some bullshit maxwell, over or under extraction isn't going to matter because you don't have taste buds anyways.
 

JM Aggie08

Diamond Member
Jan 3, 2006
7,540
252
126
Water mineral content absolutely ha an effect on the flavor of your coffee -- the new filter very well could be removing too much stuffs.
 

Red Squirrel

No Lifer
May 24, 2003
59,365
8,456
126
www.uovalor.com
Water mineral content absolutely ha an effect on the flavor of your coffee -- the new filter very well could be removing too much stuffs.
Hmm interesting, I figured the closer you got to distilled water the better it was? I was actually thinking of trying distilled water just to rule out my water being an issue. The issue has gotten so bad that even maxwell house brewed in the keurig at work is better than what I'm making at home when I use beans lol. That's why I was thinking of just trying maxwell house here again as maybe I got a bad batch of beans or something, but I don't think it's that either, they smell fine... but the final brewed cup just has no taste. I'll wait and see when the french press comes in anyway, if that ends up fixing the problem then I'll just make my coffee that way from now on and maybe sell the machine.
 

biostud

Lifer
Feb 27, 2003
15,361
650
126
I use a French press in the morning, because that is where a good cup of coffee is a necessity, the rest of the day, just give me some brown sludge with caffeine. :p
 

JM Aggie08

Diamond Member
Jan 3, 2006
7,540
252
126
Hmm interesting, I figured the closer you got to distilled water the better it was? I was actually thinking of trying distilled water just to rule out my water being an issue. The issue has gotten so bad that even maxwell house brewed in the keurig at work is better than what I'm making at home when I use beans lol. That's why I was thinking of just trying maxwell house here again as maybe I got a bad batch of beans or something, but I don't think it's that either, they smell fine... but the final brewed cup just has no taste. I'll wait and see when the french press comes in anyway, if that ends up fixing the problem then I'll just make my coffee that way from now on and maybe sell the machine.
Likely more information and data than you'd want on the subject, but this is a good read -> https://www.baristainstitute.com/node/275
 

WelshBloke

Lifer
Jan 12, 2005
27,655
4,693
126
I just went to get Timmy's on my break and that coffee tastes better, so at least I can rule out covid. :p Though even Timmy's feels a bit watered down. Maybe I'm just turning into a coffee snob and need to get the more expensive stuff. :p
Weird question. When you go to coffee chains in NA what kind of coffee do they use?
Like over here all the coffee is made with an espresso base in the big chains. I know you guys prefer big mugs of filter coffee over there so I presume that Starbucks must have loads of filter machines as well as espresso presses for shorts and fancy drinks?
 

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