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Cross-Posted From Funranium Labs

A while back, one Mr. Kristobek presented me with the simple challenge to see how Death Wish Coffee worked out as BBotE, on the principle that one ridiculous thing taken to the power of extreme must, by definition, be More Awesome. I can't fault this logic and it is the principle to which Funranium Labs is dedicated.

More to the point the folks at Death Wish have pursued a line of questioning that has been nagging at me since the dawn of BBotE: why don't we have tastier robusta coffees? We know that the robusta beans can be 2 to 5 times the caffeine content of their arabica cousins and that they will happily grow in climates that arabica would never sprout. If the childhood memory of Li'l Herr Direktor Funranium serves, we actually had some robusta growing in the wild hammock of the Erna Nixon Park in Melbourne, FL. One of the wonderful things about robusta coffee plants is that they are rather friendly, cultivation-wise, as they're low impact farming. They're practically weeds they're so hardy.The problem is that robusta beans are regarded as tasting almost uniformly awful. Part of the reason that many mass production store bought coffees are cheap (and regarded as crap) is that their arabica beans have been cut with robusta to help bulk out the can. Yes, that sounded like I was discussing selling crack to me too.But I always wondered, there must be some robusta that isn't as awful. There must be something that can be done to breed for improved flavor while preserving the higher caffeine content. This is precisely what the folks at Death Wish did. Where I went searching for a process to improve coffee to make it more drinkable for me, they went searching for the highest possible caffeine levels they could find and then making a delicious coffee from that.Some caveats for my rather biased tasting:
  1. I am fond of light roasts, not dark. Even the choicest picked beans taken to a dark roast loses a great deal of flavor as far as I'm concerned.\

  2. The original reasons I made BBotE in the first place was because of the bitterness of arabica coffees without heavy cream & sugar masking and diabetes had made that impossible for me anymore. Thus, the average robusta is a no go. The hot perc coffee I made with the Death Wish was undrinkable to me, though others were quite fond.
In flavor, both straight and with 1 part straight vodka to 3 part BBotE addition there was an wild green grape metallic-like (go eat one sometime and and see what I mean) & licorice flavor. And then there was a very long, though muted, bitter pinch on the front sides of the tongue. The robusta bad qualities were showing in the long palate, though not cripplingly so.

When diluted with 3:1 with hot water, the grape-metallic flavor and long palate bitterness disappeared, leaving a good strong, dark coffee that finished with long feeling of menthol cool on the tongue. I think it may have made the best pairing with absinthe yet as it pulled a strong root beer flavor.

For all of these tastes, I can most definitely testify that it had more than the normal amount of caffeinated zing. I felt eyelids go a bit wider after a few minutes after my testing sips. ADDENDUM: did not comfortably get to sleep until roughly 2:30am after a half shot. Wow, and this is my caffeine tolerance talking.

Date: 2011-06-19 07:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Dear Herr Doktor Funranium,

I would dearly love to purchtase from you a bottle of Death Wish, however there are 2 things:
1) My dad will be in San Fran for about a week, based out near Google Headquarters for some kind of futurist conference. Is this likely to be somewhere that he could be reached to exchange get the bottle to him? (He'd probably do some legwork for me, but I have no idea of your city's layout)

2): I'm just in the process of getting a credit card, so I can't pay for it right this moment, but I should be able to arrange someone to pay for it within a day if the first issue is sortable.

Thanks for your reply to this missive,
Will Howard,
From the land of kiwi's and attack possums.

Date: 2011-06-20 03:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
For a member of the Forces of KAOS, sure thing. Especially if I've got until Thursday or so.

Easiest thing to do would be to just have him pay me $40 cash. That way you don't have to monkey about with Paypal and such, you just owe your ;).

Further communication to make arrangements should be done through funranium [at] gmail DOT com so I can keep things straight.

Date: 2011-06-20 08:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I think you've got a touch longer than than (I think he doesn't arrive until Thursdayish), but I'm not 100%. Have forwarded things to him.

December 2012

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