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hejduk

Coffee! How do you get your buzz?

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How do you avoid the $5 hassle of getting your buzz on at Starbucks. Do you home brew? If so, list your equipment/setup and the costs associated.

Personally, I have a Tassimo brewing system. Registered for it when I got married (only thing I got! wife got everything else!). Retail cost is typically ~$150 or below. Only pod system (think Keurig, et) that allows you to do steamed/heated milk for cappuccinos and lattes. Great selection of pods, and you can signup at tassimo's website for monthly delivery options.

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HA! I am in LOVE with this post! I was thinking of making a coffee/tea post for some time now but this is excellent. I am a genuine coffee lover :)

I'm starting my program in the fall, but I totally agree with you; I don't ever go to Starbucks/Caribou/Gloria Jean/s/Dunkin' Donuts/everywhere else because I can't afford that extra 5 bucks. It really adds up. For all the years I have been a student I used a Cuisinart Grind and Brew to make whole pots, which is very nice because it grinds the beans for you just before it makes the coffee in the same contraption. It's a pain to clean, though.

I also use my French Press if I want to make just one or two mugs full. I love it! Makes me feel very chic and cosmopolitan :P

I love the Tassimo idea, though, I have been wondering if I should get one of those! I rarely have cappuccinos, they'd be nice to have when I'm up long hours. How much are the pods? $150 for the whole machine isn't bad, I was thinking they'd be at least $300. Someday I will have a fancy espresso machine. B)

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At the office we have a fancy nespresso machine and the pods are much less expensive than going to Starbucks/others, so I do that. At home I brew my coffee on the stove, the old fashioned way. I guess I still can't get used to American coffee, so most places aren't even an option for me anyway. It's only very specific places that make (what I consider to be) good coffee, but they're too expensive and out of the way to go to on a regular basis. Yeah, one day I hope to own a fancy espresso machine of my own :)

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I buy most of my equipment used (coffeegeek.com, craigslist, eBay, etc.), so I usually pay a lot less than MSRP and I also usually get most of my money back when I sell them--that's why the steep prices aren't too bad considering the used market makes the investments fairly liquid as long as they're in good working condition. Also, with proper equipment and knowledge of how to pull shots correctly (along with steaming milk), the drinks you make yourself at home will be of much higher quality than many commercial cafés (of course there are some baristas and many notable smaller coffee shops offering great coffee). Also, with a home setup, you can begin to taste and choose your favorite coffees and coffee blends and experiment; sweetmarias.com is a great site (with helpful descriptions) to buy green coffee from.

Current:

Espresso Machine: Nuova Simonella Appia 5.3qt (downgrading to smaller capacity) - ~$4,000

Press Coffee: Aerobie AeroPress (for the office/lab) - ~$25

Burr Grinder: Capresso Infinity (don't really recommend this; not enough clicks) - ~$90

Roaster: Behmor 1600 (too big; downgrading to smaller capacity) - ~$300

Coffee: Many, but favorite is Sweet Maria's Liquid Amber (really subtle, but complex flavors; amazing crema) - ~$6/lb (green bean, meaning you need to roast this yourself)

This fall:

Espresso Machine: Rancilio Silvia (had an older one that held me over for a year; great machine) - $650

Press Coffee: Aerobie AeroPress (for the office/lab) - ~$25

Burr Grinder: Capresso Infinity (don't really recommend this; not enough clicks) - ~$90

Roaster: Fresh Roast SR500 (fairly positive reviews on coffeegeek.com) - ~$150

Coffee: Many, but favorite is Sweet Maria's Liquid Amber (really subtle, but complex flavors; amazing crema) - ~$6/lb (green bean, meaning you need to roast this yourself)

Edited by Behavioral

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HA! I am in LOVE with this post! I was thinking of making a coffee/tea post for some time now but this is excellent. I am a genuine coffee lover :)

How can you be a student and not be a coffee lover?!? My lil' brother is 22 and still doesn't drink coffee, but I have bet him that as soon as he starts his MA, he'll definitely come to the dark side.

I'm starting my program in the fall, but I totally agree with you; I don't ever go to Starbucks/Caribou/Gloria Jean/s/Dunkin' Donuts/everywhere else because I can't afford that extra 5 bucks. It really adds up.

I use to have a rough budget that would allow me to have Starbucks every so often, but now it's just too damn expensive and not worth it. I'll have a "beer budget" this fall, as I'll be starting a PhD, and the city has multiple breweries.

For all the years I have been a student I used a Cuisinart Grind and Brew to make whole pots, which is very nice because it grinds the beans for you just before it makes the coffee in the same contraption. It's a pain to clean, though.I also use my French Press if I want to make just one or two mugs full. I love it! Makes me feel very chic and cosmopolitan :P

I love the idea of making my own coffee, and am looking for suggestions is this tread on espresso machines. Lot of effort, but much more affordable, and hey, who doesn't like the student who has an espresso machine? Easy way to make friends!

I love the Tassimo idea, though, I have been wondering if I should get one of those! I rarely have cappuccinos, they'd be nice to have when I'm up long hours. How much are the pods? $150 for the whole machine isn't bad, I was thinking they'd be at least $300. Someday I will have a fancy espresso machine. B)

On prices, Tassimo sells Gevalia Cappuccino for 9.99, and is enough to make 8 servings. Apparently they just lost their contract with Starbucks.. Arg! They do still sell Jacobs, Suchard, Tazo, etc. Their website is http://www.tassimodirect.com/beverages-t-discs/t-disc-brands.

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I guess I still can't get used to American coffee, so most places aren't even an option for me anyway. It's only very specific places that make (what I consider to be) good coffee, but they're too expensive and out of the way to go to on a regular basis.

I'm in the US (I guess I assume most posters here are US or Canada?), and my wife brought some Turkish coffee back from a trip recently... Love at first sip! Have a place locally that makes Turkish coffee, and while harsh/bitter, it's just how i love my coffee!

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I'm in the US (I guess I assume most posters here are US or Canada?), and my wife brought some Turkish coffee back from a trip recently... Love at first sip! Have a place locally that makes Turkish coffee, and while harsh/bitter, it's just how i love my coffee!

Yep, that's actually what I drink now too, and I love it.

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You two nuts would love Ethiopian coffee, then; it's perhaps the most acidic/bitter and harshest coffees I've had to date.

When I first started drinking coffee, I thought it was supposed to taste that way--then I discovered a quality coffee shop who knew how to roast their beans correctly.

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I alternate between buying a cup at our local coffee shop (we have one on the first floor of the building my office is in) and making it at home. I drink almost entirely cold-drip iced coffee- and it's only $2 for me to fill up my 20 oz coffee mug at the coffee shop. Since cold drip is a kinda painful 12 hour process that uses a full pound of grounds for ~1 L of coffee, I end up buying it more often than I make it.

It's also a nice break from work- go get a cup of coffee, chat with a few people, see the outside world, etc.

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I drank instant coffee for a long time, so I'm probably not qualified to post here. But anyways, I switched to actual coffee somewhat recently, mostly just out of shame. I use a stovetop percolator because the store I went to had no french presses and I didn't want to spend lots of money on something fancy I'd never use. The percolator's a bit funky and of course the coffee comes out a bit strong, but I drink it with a little milk to it's not really an issue for me. And I like it because it's pretty simple to clean, doesn't take up space on my counter, and doesn't require filters. And I feel like I'm camping every day.

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I buy most of my equipment used (coffeegeek.com, craigslist, eBay, etc.), so I usually pay a lot less than MSRP and I also usually get most of my money back when I sell them--that's why the steep prices aren't too bad considering the used market makes the investments fairly liquid as long as they're in good working condition. Also, with proper equipment and knowledge of how to pull shots correctly (along with steaming milk), the drinks you make yourself at home will be of much higher quality than many commercial cafés (of course there are some baristas and many notable smaller coffee shops offering great coffee). Also, with a home setup, you can begin to taste and choose your favorite coffees and coffee blends and experiment; sweetmarias.com is a great site (with helpful descriptions) to buy green coffee from.

My name is envy after seeing your list of hardware. That is truly a java paradise as far as I'm concerned. How did you come to the final conclusion on your espresso machine? Did you teach yourself the art of perfecting/making it, or did you read-up on it? Does one need all the equipment listed to make a good cup?

Yep, that's actually what I drink now too, and I love it.

Do you make your own? Specific brand you like?

You two nuts would love Ethiopian coffee, then; it's perhaps the most acidic/bitter and harshest coffees I've had to date. When I first started drinking coffee, I thought it was supposed to taste that way--then I discovered a quality coffee shop who knew how to roast their beans correctly.

Ha! I've had the same experience, so I know where you're coming from. Course, I am tainted by enjoying the harsher roasts.

It's also a nice break from work- go get a cup of coffee, chat with a few people, see the outside world, etc.

Pretty amazing to think how something as simple as coffee can really set the mood for conversation. Agree that nothing can beat just taking a break and enjoying some conversation over a cup.

Edited by hejduk

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My name is envy after seeing your list of hardware. That is truly a java paradise as far as I'm concerned. How did you come to the final conclusion on your espresso machine? Did you teach yourself the art of perfecting/making it' date= or did you read-up on it? Does one need all the equipment listed to make a good cup?

I had a few friends who were baristas at local coffee shops who showed me the basics (i.e., setting up the grind, tamping, extraction, etc.). From there, I just read the forums on coffeegeek.com and learned about the art and science of espresso haha

And I picked up the Appia on a whim since I saw it on craigslist being sold by a guy who just declared his coffee shop bankrupt. I knew Nuova was a great brand, so I did little research and just bought it.

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I just use a regular Mr. Coffee and some Folgers or Maxwell - whichever is cheaper. BUT, the secret to an amazing cup of coffee is putting chocolate mint in it. It is an herb that I grow in my garden. All you do is take about 5 leaves for 2-3 cups, stick it in the bottom of the filter, throw the coffee on top, and make it like usual. It is so delicious! Chocolate mint can be found pretty much anywhere, and is easy to grow. It is really aromatic too, so the smell alone helps to wake you up :)

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I use the french press most days. I grind beans fresh most of the time, except lately I have been buying pre-ground espresso roast.

I also have something similar to this: https://shop.melitta.com/itemdy00.asp?T1=64+010&Cat= which is quite handy and makes a very good tasting single cup.

The secret to both, I learned from a coffee buyer and roaster, is heating the water to 200 degrees Farenheit, not boiling. I think I will invest in one of those electric kettles soon.

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I'm in the US (I guess I assume most posters here are US or Canada?), and my wife brought some Turkish coffee back from a trip recently... Love at first sip! Have a place locally that makes Turkish coffee, and while harsh/bitter, it's just how i love my coffee!

Yep, that's actually what I drink now too, and I love it.

You two nuts would love Ethiopian coffee, then; it's perhaps the most acidic/bitter and harshest coffees I've had to date.

When I first started drinking coffee, I thought it was supposed to taste that way--then I discovered a quality coffee shop who knew how to roast their beans correctly.

...you guys. I. love. Turkish. coffee. How did I not mention it? I don't have my own ibrik yet but whenever I can find it, you can bet I will be on it like a moth to a flame. My sister brought some back for me from Turkey and I thought I died.

But it sounds like I gotta find me some Ethiopian brew! That sounds sinful!

@hejduk -- could you be in St. Louis or Milwaukee? Just a guess :)

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Mr Coffee and Folgers! That's what I did for years. I went through too many coffee makers though. One day I had hand poured coffee, I bought a press and won't go back! Than another time I opened a bag of decent coffee and smelled it. Then I smelled the Folgers... I won't go back to Folgers til I am almost out of money haha.

Oh and what do you mean "found pretty much anywhere"? Like a grocery store?

Sorry - I should have been more specific. If you are looking to buy the plant to grow, it is found almost anywhere that has a decent garden section. Even Wal-Mart and Lowes where I live carries it, and any garden center will have it. It is way cheaper and worth it just to buy the plant and harvest leaves every morning. It is hardy and will grow like a weed. I'm not really sure as far as trying to buy it at the store. The Giant Eagle where I live has a good selection of herbs - I know I've seen mint there, but not sure about the choco variety. It is so worth it. It makes that Folgers that I drink every morning bearable! haha. Maybe once I'm out of school and making some $$$ I will step up my game ;)

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Mint is so easy to grow too- it will take over whatever yard space you have! We have several areas that we've given over to various mints as groundcover, and it makes it really easy to get fresh mint for recipes as well.

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I am a Keurig girl. I got one for Christmas this past year, and I haven't gone back since. It is super helpful because I don't drink a lot of coffee (though I'm sure that will be changing soon) and they have some awesome flavors!

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Been trying cold drip brewing recently. Much much smoother, less bitter, and less acidic. You can definitely tell a major difference. Some people won't like a cold brew while others may vastly prefer it.

Edited by fibonacci

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Yuban coffee (ground) from the supermarket. I make it in my coffee percolator at home with filtered water. When it's done, I add Bailey's creamer in french vanilla flavor. Not comparable to Starbucks, but it sure beats the price and does the job.

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Been trying cold drip brewing recently. Much much smoother, less bitter, and less acidic. You can definitely tell a major difference. Some people won't like a cold brew while others may vastly prefer it.

The really nice part about it is that it doesn't take any setup at all- you can do it in a bowl or mason jars.

That, and it keeps well in the refrigerator- most other coffee doesn't keep well at all. But you can make up a liter of cold drip coffee (very concentrated, dilute it down with milk/water) and then take it to a refrigerator at school and always have a supply of coffee with you.

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Basically, you combine coffee with cold water (Room temp) in the ratio of about 1/2 lb of coffee per 5 cups water. Then you let it sit in an aluminum/glass container for about 10-12 hours, filter off the grounds, and enjoy.

That makes a concentrate that you usually need to dilute 1:1 or 1:2 with water/milk, depending on how strong you like your coffee. I usually dilute mine about 2:1 when I finish making it, and then add it about 2:1 with milk when I make a cup in the morning- but then I like my coffee really strong.

You can also buy setups to make it with- they have a container with a filter in the bottom, and a carafe to drain the coffee into, they cost $35 or $40 each, iirc. You can do it fine without them, however.

Cold drip coffee is much less acidic- about 70% less, but the same caffeine. That's because the tannins in coffee won't come out in cold water, just in the hot water you use for other methods. If you prefer your coffee hot, it's easy to heat this after you make a cup of it, and it tastes fine- or you can drink it over ice. It's really nice in the summer, and lasts for about 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator without changing the taste.

You can also use it to make coffee ice cubes! Woohoo!

Edited by Eigen

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I'm not sure- I've always done it that way, but I'm sure you could brew it weaker. I like it pretty strong, so this way works for me. You also need much bigger containers if you want to brew it weaker.

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Okay, I have bookmarked this thread. Along with the "what do you take notes on" thread, I think I'm going to benefit a lot from this!

I came to coffee rather late, and due to my perception that making good coffee requires lots (read: more than I wanted to give) initial investment in time and money, I haven't bothered to learn. Plus, I live with non-coffee drinkers, and they pay for all the food, so I'd feel bad making them buy something they don't like. We drink tea, but it is nice to have a change and go to a decent coffee shop sometimes.

That said, this cold brewing method sounds easy and delicious. Also I eventually want to make my own, extremely strong Vietnamese-style coffee (every cafe in the US adds way too much sweetened condensed milk), for which I have filters. Now is the time to start!

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How do you avoid the $5 hassle of getting your buzz on at Starbucks. Do you home brew? If so, list your equipment/setup and the costs associated.

Personally, I have a Tassimo brewing system. Registered for it when I got married (only thing I got! wife got everything else!). Retail cost is typically ~$150 or below. Only pod system (think Keurig, et) that allows you to do steamed/heated milk for cappuccinos and lattes. Great selection of pods, and you can signup at tassimo's website for monthly delivery options.

I bought a cheap single-mug coffeemaker from Amazon - it's Hamilton Beach, I think it was $32. I get Dunkin Donuts ground coffee but recently I've begun getting Fresh Direct's cheaper fresh ground French vanilla coffee, which is delicious. I have this amazing travel mug that keeps my coffee steamy hot for 3 hours and doesn't spill even if you turn it all the way upside down and shake it. (Seriously, 3 hours - I brew my coffee and fill the mug at around 7:00 and drink it when I get to my internship 2 hours later. It's usually still hot and tasty at 10:00 am.)

When my fiance and I get married I think I might register for one of those pods so I can make cappuccinos and lattes. I can deal with a less expensive one since he doesn't drink coffee.

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