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Craig
04-12-2011, 01:56 PM
This isn't terribly new for me, but here's my coffee gear.

Grinder (Hario ceramic burr grinder):

http://www.greenbeanery.ca/bean/catalog/images/CMHC-4C.jpg

Maker (Bodum vacuum):

http://www.coffee-makers-review.com/image-files/cona3.jpg

Next step is a roaster, I suppose. One of these days.

Jim
04-12-2011, 02:04 PM
I love my Vac pot!
You really must start to roast your own, nothing like it!

Pensacola Tiger
04-12-2011, 02:39 PM
You have a roaster you recommend? I've seen some that aren't practical for me, my counters are just too cluttered as it is.


The Behmor roaster is the size of a large toaster oven, and is the best home roaster available, in my experience.

Craig
04-12-2011, 02:47 PM
The Behmor roaster is the size of a large toaster oven, and is the best home roaster available, in my experience.

Yeah, I want something smaller than that.

Well, I really just want a bigger kitchen with one of those in it. But you know.

Jim
04-12-2011, 02:58 PM
Roasting in a kitchen without a serious range hood can be very smokey

Kyle
04-12-2011, 03:06 PM
We really need a coffee/gear thread. I'm not a huge coffee nerd, but I certainly appreciate a good cup of coffee. I can still stomach some office Folgers, so I'm not quite to snobbery levels yet. Right now I'm just buying bulk coffee and coarse grinding at the store and then brewing in a French press.

I know, I need a grinder but I haven't been ready to plunk down the money. I'll probably go with a manual burr grinder, I don't have the budget for a good automatic. Plus I usually only make coffee on the weekends, so the extra effort doesn't bother me.

I've also been thinking of replacing the French press, it's just a cheapy I bought for $10 at Bed Bath & Beyond. I've heard really good things about the AeroPress but I don't know much else about it. Maybe I'll look into the vacuum pot that Craig posted. Is there anything else I should look into? One of the things that draws me to the AeroPress is I've heard it's good for brewing ahead of time and then serving as iced coffee later, which I do like to drink during the summer, but I don't know much about that.

Pensacola Tiger
04-12-2011, 03:35 PM
Think of the AeroPress as a one-cup French press with a really good filter. No sediment at all.

For iced coffee, I'd look into cold-brewing.

http://www.amazon.com/Toddy-T2N-Cold-Brew-System/dp/B0006H0JVW/ref=lh_ni_t_

WildBoar
04-12-2011, 06:12 PM
eBay is good for finding a smaller commercial-grade burr grinder at a substantial discount from new. Depending on your local, CraigsList can be pretty good as well. Always lots of small shops going out of business or owners retiring.

so_sleepy
04-12-2011, 10:02 PM
The Aeropress makes coffee concentrate, I use it to make iced coffee drinks. I use a Chemex for my drip coffee and prefer the results.

Andrew H
04-12-2011, 10:19 PM
I use a Chemex for my drip coffee and prefer the results.
IMHO chemex is the only way to go for drip. I've never tried roasting my own - mainly because I've been spoiled with intelligentsia coffee. Family friend works there, he gets to travel to all of their farms and "check" on the beans, lucky bastard.

Lars
04-13-2011, 01:36 AM
The Aeropress is very versatile - I just had a very nice cup of light roasted Kieni from Kenya.

Here is the recipe(the Aeropress is used upside down):
17g of coffee ground just a little coarser than a traditional filter brew.
200g of water @ 95 celsius.
30 sec steep time, turn it over and press.
Turned out a very clean, well balanced cup of coffee.

For espresso and milk based drinks I use a Dalla Corte mini and a Ditting KE640 grinder.

rahimlee54
04-13-2011, 07:57 AM
Is there something I can look for at a store that tells me if they brew good coffee. I have never been a fan of coffee as of yet, but I want to give it a good try before I write it off completely. So any suggestions as to what to look for and try would be helpful.

Thanks
Jared

Lars
04-13-2011, 08:26 AM
Is there something I can look for at a store that tells me if they brew good coffee.

Look for a place that serves black coffee brewed to order. No pour over machine allowed..

Good coffee should taste great, with lots of flavours and not be served too hot.

Espresso can be great but is kind of an acquired taste.

Milk based drinks are more like cocktails, they taste great, but you don't taste the coffee so much..

StephanFowler
04-13-2011, 08:49 AM
there's a place local here that only serves french press, you order a coffee and press it yourself at the table.

so_sleepy
04-13-2011, 09:07 AM
Is there something I can look for at a store that tells me if they brew good coffee.

Ask if they roast their own coffee or get it from a local roaster. Coffee is getting past its prime about a week after roasting. If the menu has a selection of single-origin coffees, it is an indication they take it more seriously (or take themselves too seriously).

That said, coffee has a variety of flavors based on origin and the roast. I like coffee a lot, but that doesn't mean i automatically enjoy every product no matter how exotic or expensive.

Craig
04-13-2011, 09:28 AM
there's a place local here that only serves french press, you order a coffee and press it yourself at the table.

I'm not sure I like that setup, though it's obviously better than most places. Do they pour the water for you? If so, do they do it at the table? I would worry that they pour the water then let it sit for an unknown amount of time before it gets to you, so you don't know how long to steep for. For similar reasons, I'm not much of a fan of French Press' in general. I prefer to have my coffee and tea removed from the liquid entirely.


Ask if they roast their own coffee or get it from a local roaster. Coffee is getting past its prime about a week after roasting. If the menu has a selection of single-origin coffees, it is an indication they take it more seriously (or take themselves too seriously).

That said, coffee has a variety of flavors based on origin and the roast. I like coffee a lot, but that doesn't mean i automatically enjoy every product no matter how exotic or expensive.

When people who really don't know coffee ask me that question, I usually just tell them to look for a place with the illy sign in the window and to ask for an Americano instead of just a coffee. The above steps only make sense for people who are already into decent coffee, imo.

l r harner
04-13-2011, 10:09 AM
The Aeropress makes coffee concentrate, I use it to make iced coffee drinks. I use a Chemex for my drip coffee and prefer the results.

funny i thought it jsut made a nice strong cup
i use 2 scoops of grounds fill the press to the top swish the mix let settle out and then press i do top off the cup cause its not all the way full
love the cup of coffee it makes (tho no one lieks to drink coffee like this at the house sept for me )

StephanFowler
04-13-2011, 10:18 AM
I'm not sure I like that setup, though it's obviously better than most places. Do they pour the water for you? If so, do they do it at the table? I would worry that they pour the water then let it sit for an unknown amount of time before it gets to you, so you don't know how long to steep for. For similar reasons, I'm not much of a fan of French Press' in general. I prefer to have my coffee and tea removed from the liquid entirely.




They roast their own beans daily, and they pour each order immediately when you ask for it and your handed your mug and the french press to go to your table..




http://www.drinkcoffeedogood.com/ <--- this place


it's funny because the building their in used to be a luthier's shop that my dad would take his '64 Martin to for tune up work, they had a beautiful assortment of very very nice guitars. I'd been going there since I was a young teenager. so it's a weird memory lane type thing for me to go there.

so_sleepy
04-13-2011, 10:23 AM
funny i thought it jsut made a nice strong cup
i use 2 scoops of grounds fill the press to the top swish the mix let settle out and then press i do top off the cup cause its not all the way full
love the cup of coffee it makes (tho no one lieks to drink coffee like this at the house sept for me )

yep, that is exactly how to do it. two scoops should be right for around 10 ounces of coffee once you top it off. It's just right for a good sized mug of coffee. Sweet Maria's directions are better than the manufacturer:
http://www.sweetmarias.com/aeropress/aeropress_instructions.php

Craig
04-13-2011, 11:29 AM
They roast their own beans daily, and they pour each order immediately when you ask for it and your handed your mug and the french press to go to your table..




http://www.drinkcoffeedogood.com/ <--- this place


it's funny because the building their in used to be a luthier's shop that my dad would take his '64 Martin to for tune up work, they had a beautiful assortment of very very nice guitars. I'd been going there since I was a young teenager. so it's a weird memory lane type thing for me to go there.

Oh, that's fine then. I've been some places where you order from the table and they eventually bring you a press, which annoys me.

obtuse
04-13-2011, 11:33 AM
My favorite brew methods include the Bonmac no.2 single hole dripper, the Hario V60 no.2 dripper and the Aeropress. For the drippers I use a grind between filter and espresso, medium fine. I use about 22-26 grams of coffee per 10oz cup; I like the added strength and body. I use a Hario Bueno kettle and ride the bloom for a 3:30-4:30 minute pour; cooler water temperature is key for this, 190°F to 180°F. I can't stand the taste of astringent or overly bitter coffee. I'm still playing with the Aeropress, but I usually use the inverted method and let it steep for 2-3 minutes—I also can't stand the taste of overdosed, underextracted coffee. I'm getting ride of my Chemex because the Hario V60 has a design I like better. I seldom use a french press, but when I do I use a 6 min steep time and insulate my press. Going to finally order my Behmor today! Cheers

wenus2
04-14-2011, 02:36 PM
I haven't hardly touched my Aeropress since I picked up a Clever Coffee dripper about a year ago. I only use it on the go with a hand grinder or on lazy days where I don't feel up to washing the vac pot, otherwise I use a Yama TCA-5 vacuum brewer about 90% of the time. I don't feel like anything else touches that brewing method for a straight cup, but it can be a PITA some days.

Cold brew is great, whoever said they wanted iced coffee. I love cold brew all summer, it's actually one of the few things I'll splash an inch of milk into. You can brew it up thick like tar :) Ice dripped is also fantastic stuff, a whole different experience in coffee. The equipment is kinda spendy, but if you ever happen in a place that offers it, don't pass it by.

Congrats on the Behmor Obtuse, don't forget to download the "behmorthing." It goes a long way to helping keep track of what/how you are roasting.

SpikeC
04-14-2011, 02:56 PM
I start my day with an americano from my La Pavoni Strativari. I souped up a Kitchenaid Proline grinder with Mazzer Mini burrs, and it does a very nice job of grinding.
When I need to make a pot for some reason I use a Technivorm Mocca Master. It is a very simple machine and does a great job of temperature control of the water.
I get my beans from Stumptown Roasters, they roast the beans a mile from my house and date the bags with the roasting date, so you know how fresh it is and whether you need to let it rest before brewing.

obtuse
04-14-2011, 09:24 PM
One day I want to add a syphon to my brew lineup! wensus2, what do you use for cold brewing? I have not tried a cold brewed coffee. I remember working for a place that sold the Toddy.

Jim
04-14-2011, 11:16 PM
http://badgerandblade.com/gallery/displayimage.php?imageid=5109




Fun with COFFEE
http://badgerandblade.com/vb/images/smilies/yellow_guys/thumbup.gif http://www.badgerandblade.com/gallery/displayimage.php?imageid=5121&original=1 (http://www.badgerandblade.com/gallery/showimage.php?i=5121&c=newimages)


http://badgerandblade.com/gallery/displayimage.php?imageid=18644
http://badgerandblade.com/gallery/displayimage.php?imageid=18643

Rotary
04-15-2011, 10:47 AM
Jim,

Do you like your Technivorm? I've been toying with the idea of getting one for my wife, who's a total coffee nut.

Jim
04-15-2011, 04:13 PM
Jim,

Do you like your Technivorm? I've been toying with the idea of getting one for my wife, who's a total coffee nut.

I never regreted buying it. Works well.

Eamon Burke
04-15-2011, 06:11 PM
I grind my beans with a cheap grinder, and a mortar and pestal before that. I put the ground up beans in a saucepan of 200F water, let it sit, stir it, let it sit, and strain it into a cup.

obtuse
04-15-2011, 06:39 PM
I grind my beans with a cheap grinder, and a mortar and pestal before that. I put the ground up beans in a saucepan of 200F water, let it sit, stir it, let it sit, and strain it into a cup.

I played around with a version of that. Total immersion brewing in a vacuum carafe, for 3-4 minutes, then poured through a chemex filter. I found it takes as much tweaking as any other brew method. I prefer pouring water out of a fancy kettle.

SpikeC
04-15-2011, 07:29 PM
The Appaloosa horse club used to do a version of that on the annual trail ride, butt they put the coffee in a pair of panty hose and the water was 212º!

Eamon Burke
04-16-2011, 05:49 PM
The Appaloosa horse club used to do a version of that on the annual trail ride, butt they put the coffee in a pair of panty hose and the water was 212º!

Funny comparison, this forum keeps making me feel like I am some kind of range-loving cowpoke.

I just don't like specialized equipment! I wouldn't even keep pantyhose around just to filter coffee.

In my experience, there is very little difference between a pot of hot water with powder in it and any other method(aside from espresso, of course!), with the exception of a bit of ground up beans in the bottom of the cup, which I love. I mean, they soak up so much of the bourbon flavor, why not drink them too?:rofl:

SpikeC
04-16-2011, 09:20 PM
I just got back from an introductory coffee roasting class. Brought home a pound of Ethiopian green beans to play with!

obtuse
04-16-2011, 11:04 PM
Ooooh What kind? Where did you take the class?

SpikeC
04-16-2011, 11:11 PM
I think they are peaberry. The class was at a small roaster in NE Portland, AJ Java. She is a big proponent of direct trade coffee, which is what I have been buying of late.

JohnnyChance
04-16-2011, 11:48 PM
I use an electric grinder, Capresso, that has a good range of grind size and conical burrs. Hario Buono kettle and a Chemex. I get my beans from a local place that roasts their own. I use about 28 grams of coffee for 500 grams of water. Weigh the beans, grind, put Chemex on scale, add about 30-40 grams of water to bloom for 45 seconds to a minute. I use Brown Coffee Company's "Island" method for brewing in the Chemex. I use the bleached Chemex filters. Orginally I just used unbleached, but then got a box of the bleached and you really can taste the difference. They have great beans as well if you are into the mail order thing or are local to San Antonio.

http://www.browncoffeeco.com/


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8h-0ewcbHko

obtuse
04-18-2011, 09:32 PM
There's a place here that uses brown coffee. I like their cottonwood espresso.

Tristan
05-08-2011, 11:34 PM
Oh good! A coffee thread! My newfound hobby - which has unfortunately sucked up some money for knives. More marginal utility from $$ in coffee now though.

I do 3 Lattes each morning for the girlfriend, colleague and myself - just to practice latte art.

Using an expobar dual leva E61 machine, and got a baratza vario grinder - quite happy with it for anyone who is thinking of getting a small footprint burr grinter.

Just purchased a gene cafe as well (I saw one a few posts back), and some bags of greens have arrived. More fun for the weekend.

Pictures to follow

Kyle
05-13-2011, 12:27 AM
OK, so it's getting warm and I'm craving a hot cup of coffee less and less and can't afford a knife addiction and a $4/day Starbucks habit either. Last summer I simply brewed hot coffee at night, let it get to room temp and then pour into a caraffe and put it in the fridge overnight and serve iced the next morning. It was OK at best, but I don't know if that's simply an imperfect method or if it can be poorly brewed (I just used an auto drip machine) or crummy beans. I want to be able to make a decent iced coffee.

Right now I think my two options are a cold brew system

http://www.amazon.com/Toddy-T2N-Cold-Brew-System/dp/B0006H0JVW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1305260911&sr=8-1

Or the Aeropress. My understanding is I can make concentrate with the Aeropress and that it refrigerates well. I know I asked a similar question a while ago in this thread, but at the time I was leaning towards something that could do it all. Now I'm looking to get something specifically for making iced coffee. Are either of these two good bets or is there something better I don't know about.

I am planning on buying my own grinder, either a manual grinder or maybe a Capresso Infinity but probably won't pay anymore than what that will cost on a grinder.

swarfrat
05-13-2011, 01:34 AM
http://images.ucomics.com/comics/tas/2011/tas110511.gif

wenus2
05-13-2011, 05:22 AM
The Toddy makes very good iced coffee, better than the aeropress, and the real plus is that with the toddy you only have to make a batch about once a week and that will yield a good volume of coffee, the aeropress is something you would have to make a single serve of everyday/night and chill it. Either way you make it, it should be cut with ~%50 water (to taste).
The advantage to the aeropress is that it will also function to make hot coffe as well, where the Toddy brewer is a specialty device and only serves that one function.

For a grinder I always give two thumbs up to Baratza refurbs, they are one of those products that really are better than new. They go over all of their returned products with a fine tooth comb to be sure they never come back. I've purchased several as gifts and they are all running strong. IMHO the Baratza Maestro Plus blows the Infinity away.
http://www.baratza.com/cgi-bin/commerce.cgi?preadd=action&key=385R

Personall my favorite summer coffee style is prepared ice dripped, but unfortunately the device to brew this unctuous goodness comes at a steep price. One of these days though, one of these days :)

Tristan
05-13-2011, 07:46 AM
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3567/5715841270_4d0c096549_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/53294899@N02/5715841270/)

My Grinder - a malkonig vario. Been extremely happy with it so far. Very tweakable

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2410/5715840478_1e70ccc3a8_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/53294899@N02/5715840478/)

This is what makes me happy most mornings. Expobar dual leva (Expobar brewtus II in the USA). Great consistent performer

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3080/5715840854_3d2e01d73a_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/53294899@N02/5715840854/)

Just arrived... gonna play with it this weekend. A genecafe roaster

Tristan
05-13-2011, 07:57 AM
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3019/5715277417_da386e267c_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/53294899@N02/5715277417/)

All these just arrived too... can't wait to see how it tastes!!

Tristan
05-13-2011, 08:01 AM
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3269/5715824014_3c8bf2a914.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/53294899@N02/5715824014/) The first decent looking rosetta I managed after struggling with the new hobby

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3343/5715824538_347d046eeb.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/53294899@N02/5715824538/) Got another one out the next morning...

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2263/5715825124_e006f464d6.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/53294899@N02/5715825124/) And my favorite one to date. Its been about 6 weeks of pouring 2 cups a day so far...

Lefty
05-13-2011, 09:37 AM
Wow! I thought I was a coffee junkie!
I like you guys more and more every day!!!
For iced coffee, make French press coffee and freeze it in an ice cube tray. Make your preferred coffee, let it cool for about an hour, add coffee cubes, and serve!
It doesn't get watered down this way. It's a little trick I came up with back in University :)

mano
05-13-2011, 09:37 AM
Very nice Tristan!

Lefty
05-13-2011, 09:44 AM
Oh, one more thing.
Heaven will serve french vanilla ice cream with strong, black delta espresso poured over top for dessert ANY time you want it!
It's so simple, but is quite honestly, my favorite dessert!

WildBoar
05-13-2011, 12:30 PM
Nice, Tristan! I can't pour rosettas to save my life; it looks like you are getting close to mastering the art! I really wanted to go with a Brewtus, but instead had to pick one my wife can use with the push of a button. It's pretty versitile though, so I can play w/ boiler temps and run in semi-auto mode. And one day I will restore the trashed La Pavoni lever I picked up 2 years ago, and learn how to survive in full manual mode :rolleyes2:

Please post as you play with the home roasting!

Vertigo
05-13-2011, 12:40 PM
My ex was one hell of a barista, real world class. Used to go to the expos and competitions. Despite all our differences and the other crap that split us up, I sure miss her insisting on making my mochas every morning (and the wacky designs she'd put in the foam).

EdipisReks
05-13-2011, 03:07 PM
i'm perfectly happy with decent beans ground in my cheap bodum grinder and brewed in a french press. i have friends who are nuts about coffee, and roast their own, and have similar neat-o stuff, and i totally get it, but i reserve my heated liquid obsession time and money for green tea.

apicius9
05-13-2011, 03:34 PM
I just had to laugh a few days ago when I read in a book something like 'green tea is really nice if you like grassy-tasting water, and if you add honey, it becomes almost drinkable' :D Love to see the coffee setups. I'm getting really embarrassed about still not having had my machine repaired. This will be one of the summer projects. I have a Quick Mill Anita that doesn't heat up, no repair service out on the island, and I am just not a tech guy... I also tried roasting with a smaller IRoast II before the Anita died. Had mixed success, it definitely has a learning curve. What makes it difficult is that more and more places don't ship green beans to Hawaii - it's illegal to do so in order to protect the Hawaiian growers from imported pests (or better, protect the local growers from losing business...).

Stefan

EdipisReks
05-13-2011, 03:48 PM
like in any other acquired taste something that at first blush should be a negative, the grassy astringency in some of the teas in this case, is what makes it so good. :)

Tristan
05-13-2011, 08:10 PM
Nice, Tristan! I can't pour rosettas to save my life; it looks like you are getting close to mastering the art! I really wanted to go with a Brewtus, but instead had to pick one my wife can use with the push of a button. It's pretty versitile though, so I can play w/ boiler temps and run in semi-auto mode. And one day I will restore the trashed La Pavoni lever I picked up 2 years ago, and learn how to survive in full manual mode :rolleyes2:

Please post as you play with the home roasting!

Thanks to you and Mano for the compliments. Its been rather tough, since i was learning from forums and occasional videos (reminds me of sharpening) and mostly managed to only get what looked like smashed spiders on the crema every morning. The epiphany happened one day. Now just picking up consistency.

Definitely will keep you guys updated as the roasting progresses.

Tristan
05-13-2011, 08:15 PM
:D Love to see the coffee setups. I'm getting really embarrassed about still not having had my machine repaired. This will be one of the summer projects. I have a Quick Mill Anita that doesn't heat up, no repair service out on the island, and I am just not a tech guy... I also tried roasting with a smaller IRoast II before the Anita died. Had mixed success, it definitely has a learning curve. What makes it difficult is that more and more places don't ship green beans to Hawaii - it's illegal to do so in order to protect the Hawaiian growers from imported pests (or better, protect the local growers from losing business...). Stefan

You ought to be embarassed. I shipped my Brewtus over from the UK, because they only sell superautomatic (saeco, krupps) machines and nespresso machines locally, and the one importer of high end espresso machines is charging $1K MORE for the machine than I paid for mine AFTER shipping the 50kg package over. You need to find more motivation Stefan :jumpy:

And you're in the land of the homegrown Kona Coffee... I have to ship my greens in from the US/UK. Seriously, don't make me go over there... :viking:

Lars
05-14-2011, 02:37 AM
I am digging the geeky stuff in this thread.

Here is a - very bad - picture of my setup :thumbsup:

http://i13.photobucket.com/albums/a253/slapback/web_01.jpg

Tristan
05-14-2011, 08:19 AM
Eh?? That looks like your kitchen. But given the ridiculous number of cups and the four frothing pitchers... (and two tampers, because... we each have two hands) it has got to be a place of work right? Either that or you're perpetually buzzy

Jim
05-14-2011, 09:51 AM
Congratulations Tristan!

Lars
05-14-2011, 10:58 AM
it has got to be a place of work right?

It's in my kitchen at home..

wenus2
05-14-2011, 12:27 PM
oohhh, a Dalle Corte, very nice!
I had a coffee counter setup similar to this in my last place, it sure was convenient.
I dont have the space anymore :(
I had to get rid of my Astoria too, a larger place is on the horizon though, and perhaps a GS3 if I'm lucky :)

And yes Tristan, we all need at least 2 tampers !

WildBoar
05-14-2011, 01:54 PM
Hey, isn't one tamper for keeping the beans in the grinder feeder when you don't use the hopper, and the other actually for tamping??? Surely I am not the only one with that system :help4:

Silas
05-15-2011, 10:06 AM
I've found that the one variable on great coffee is the Roaster!

In Baton Rouge, at the foot of Louisiana State University, is a coffee shop called Highland Coffee. They roast their own beans.

Now they are online and an order from them will get me fresh roasted coffee (dated) in 2 days.

The thing I like about them is I like medium roast coffee: Kenya, Sumatra, Costa Rican, Ethiopian....and they do a MEDIUM roast. Not like the local CHARbucks. One CAN over-roast coffee and make it bitter.

No matter how good your coffee making equipment is, a fresher, correctly roasted bean is a mandatory first consideration.

Tristan
05-16-2011, 01:16 AM
I hear you... hence I have my trusty Genecafe roaster ready and waiting for nice green beans. You can't blame charbucks, (although if you've ever had a cup from a place called the coffee bean and tea leaf... THEIR coffee bean is 2 steps down from charcoal) they buy crap coffee to it is better to over roast and let you have a charry cup than to reveal the 'origin' character of the crud they buy in bulk.

I'm very excited about the whole roasting process.

And I'm thrilled the guys here are absolute nutjob foodies as well as knifenuts.

Oh and Jim, if you're looking, thanks for your Spice Rub and BBQ Sauce (aka Goose Juice) recipe. That went over really well with about 30 people (and counting) that I know.

Tristan
05-16-2011, 01:17 AM
I am digging the geeky stuff in this thread.

Here is a - very bad - picture of my setup :thumbsup:

http://i13.photobucket.com/albums/a253/slapback/web_01.jpg

I hate you.

I need a bigger home.

Seriously, when I'm gonna retire, I'm gonna sell everything here and buy myself a well planned huge home at puget sound and get the kitchen of my dreams. Pity I'll have no friends to cook for after moving...

Jim
05-16-2011, 01:20 AM
I hear you... hence I have my trusty Genecafe roaster ready and waiting for nice green beans. You can't blame charbucks, (although if you've ever had a cup from a place called the coffee bean and tea leaf... THEIR coffee bean is 2 steps down from charcoal) they buy crap coffee to it is better to over roast and let you have a charry cup than to reveal the 'origin' character of the crud they buy in bulk.

I'm very excited about the whole roasting process.

And I'm thrilled the guys here are absolute nutjob foodies as well as knifenuts.

Oh and Jim, if you're looking, thanks for your Spice Rub and BBQ Sauce (aka Goose Juice) recipe. That went over really well with about 30 people (and counting) that I know.

You are most welcome!

I am looking forward to your adventures with the Gene' ....Do you know your line voltage at the outlet? The Gene' is pretty fussy with it.

Tristan
05-16-2011, 01:29 AM
I'm in Singapore, and try as I might with the internet, I can't get a steady read on what the current output is supposed to be... I don't have those thingies (you can tell i'm REALLY mechanically/electrically inclined) that measure voltage output so I can't be sure.

From what I know, I should be getting between 230-240v here. So I have the 240V UK model, as opposed to the 230V Europe model, and I think the common literature on the Gene is that it will perform better if the voltage throughput stays consistently high.

Jim
05-16-2011, 01:46 AM
I'm in Singapore, and try as I might with the internet, I can't get a steady read on what the current output is supposed to be... I don't have those thingies (you can tell i'm REALLY mechanically/electrically inclined) that measure voltage output so I can't be sure.

From what I know, I should be getting between 230-240v here. So I have the 240V UK model, as opposed to the 230V Europe model, and I think the common literature on the Gene is that it will perform better if the voltage throughput stays consistently high.

Yep, I have the US model which is woefully fussy with a 120v line. I use a VariAC to boost- With 240v you should have better results.

Tristan
05-16-2011, 06:21 AM
The only issue I have is that in Singapore the ambient temperature is already 30deg celsius - so from the roasting charts I see from people, the time to roast will be reduced as the initial reactions will happen much faster. Hope it settles down ok.

Jim
05-16-2011, 09:44 AM
Its a bit easier to roast when its warm out, just keep good notes on what you do.

apicius9
06-10-2011, 04:50 AM
I feel like such a dunce. My Quickmill Anita has been sitting there for almost 2 years, and I didn't get my act together to have it repaired - that's just something I know nothing about and there doesn't seem to be a repair service on the island. So, last week an old German friend and her husband visited, and he happens to be an electronics engineer. In three minutes he had found the problem, bridged a switch with a fuse and the thing works again. The replacement part costs $10.50 :bashhead: if I think about all the crappy coffee I had in the meantime...

Now it's off to find some good coffee. Ken (are you here, Ken?) has recommended two local sources that sound interesting. Never made espresso from dark roasted peaberries before but he swears by it - and I love to buy local if I can. Of course, Kona or Ka'u coffees for $40 per pound are not my first choice for a cappuchino, but I will see what I find. I will als try to reactivate my IRoast if I find green beans for espresso on a neighbor island. I loved the Vivace dolce that I had flown in from the mainland, but I'll first look for local beans. F anybod happens to know anything in Hawaii....

Stefan

Tristan
06-10-2011, 10:42 PM
If you're happy to roast greens you can get very well graded kona greens for less than half that - around $16/lb. You only need to add hot air and electricity and it'll transform in 15mins to $40/lb product. =D

Kyle
06-14-2011, 02:03 AM
Well, it's not nearly as fancy as the rest of the stuff being discussed in this thread but I bought a Toddy cold brewer today. I had a $10 off coupon for World Market so I snatched one up. I'm just really excited to kick my $5/day summer iced coffee habit! If anyone has any tips or tricks for getting the most of the Toddy I'm all ears!

Kyle
06-14-2011, 12:16 PM
Well, it's not nearly as fancy as the rest of the stuff being discussed in this thread but I bought a Toddy cold brewer today. I had a $10 off coupon for World Market so I snatched one up. I'm just really excited to kick my $5/day summer iced coffee habit! If anyone has any tips or tricks for getting the most of the Toddy I'm all ears!

I asked for tips last night before I even opened the box, but everything was so straight forward and easy. I'm drinking my first cup of iced coffee from it and it's really good. I wish I would have bought this sooner!

Lefty
06-15-2011, 04:54 AM
I can't remember whether or not it was here, but I have mentioned this before...oh well...
Kyle, try freezing an ice cube tray full of strong Toddy coffee and use them in the iced coffee. Mmmm.
I work days and overnights, and one of the only things that makes me feel human during overnights is waking up at 4pm and having a cup of "two and a half tablespoons to about 400 ml of just before boiled water" coffee, on my deck in the sun. I bring my mug and French press out with me and wait for it to "brew" while waking up in the sun.
Man, I hope it's sunny this afternoon! :D

wenus2
06-16-2011, 09:31 AM
but I'll first look for local beans. F anybod happens to know anything in Hawaii....

http://rustyshawaiian.com/
http://www.smithfarms.com/coffee.asp

enjoy :)

geezr
07-10-2011, 04:14 AM
I feel like such a dunce. My Quickmill Anita has been sitting there for almost 2 years, and I didn't get my act together to have it repaired - that's just something I know nothing about and there doesn't seem to be a repair service on the island. So, last week an old German friend and her husband visited, and he happens to be an electronics engineer. In three minutes he had found the problem, bridged a switch with a fuse and the thing works again. The replacement part costs $10.50 :bashhead: if I think about all the crappy coffee I had in the meantime...

Now it's off to find some good coffee. Ken (are you here, Ken?) has recommended two local sources that sound interesting. Never made espresso from dark roasted peaberries before but he swears by it - and I love to buy local if I can. Of course, Kona or Ka'u coffees for $40 per pound are not my first choice for a cappuchino, but I will see what I find. I will als try to reactivate my IRoast if I find green beans for espresso on a neighbor island. I loved the Vivace dolce that I had flown in from the mainland, but I'll first look for local beans. F anybod happens to know anything in Hawaii....Stefan

Stefan - thanks for telling me about this great forum !!!!

Hope Anita is dialed in with temperature, grind, etc. = great espresso :coffeelots:

tychoseven
07-12-2011, 09:22 PM
As a former coffee roaster and full-time coffee snob, I must agree with Craig's choice of brewer. A vacuum pot makes the cleanest cup of brewed coffee I've ever tasted. I used to rock a vintage 1940s Cory vacuum pot; the coffee touched only glass throughout the brewing process. Sadly the Cory took a tumble off the counter and I haven't yet been able to replace it.

If you want to have your tastebuds blown, check out George Howell at http://www.terroircoffee.com George and his roasters are the definition of obssesed, and they get the best Kenyans ever. Seriously, they're that good. I roast my own at home, but when I want a treat I swallow my pride and order a bag or two.

Terger
08-08-2011, 05:24 AM
These are insanely good setups! My friends think I'm a coffee guy just because they see the Keurig on my counter. I'm looking into getting a French Press today...

SpikeC
08-21-2011, 09:47 PM
My friendly neighborhood coffee roaster, Stumptown Coffee Roasters, has a single varietal espresso made with Ethiopian Duromina. It isn't the cheapest espresso beans around, butt boy howdy, what a nice cup it produces!
I ran across a video by the Seattle Coffee folks about lungos. It is using double shot grounds to pull a 4 ounce shot. Some of the machines that they used produced bitter results, but some came out nice, so I tried it with my La Pavoni lever, and it made a really nice cup!
This single bean espresso is very nice!

Kyle
11-18-2011, 03:00 PM
A local shop started carrying Chemex and I wanted to get one but I'm hoping someone can convince me why it's so great. It basically just looks like a jar with a special filter. Maybe I don't know enough about coffee. Is their filter just that good?

And what kind of grind does Chemex require? I haven't had the funds to get a decent grinder yet, so I'm hoping that I can get by with store bought ground beans for the time being until I finally get a good grinder.

cnochef
11-18-2011, 03:06 PM
Very simple: French press and grinder for my dark Ethiopian locally-roasted beans, Bialetti s/s stovetop espresso pot for my weekend Cafe du Monde chicory coffee fix (1/2 coffee and 1/2 steamed milk, of course).

Oh, I almost forgot, I've also got a couple of those units that fit on top of the glass for brewing Vietnamese style coffee. In case you don't know what this is, it's espresso dripped slowly into a glass filled with ice and some condensed milk in the bottom. Greatest cold caffeine beverage ever during the Summer.

Pensacola Tiger
11-18-2011, 03:58 PM
A local shop started carrying Chemex and I wanted to get one but I'm hoping someone can convince me why it's so great. It basically just looks like a jar with a special filter. Maybe I don't know enough about coffee. Is their filter just that good?

And what kind of grind does Chemex require? I haven't had the funds to get a decent grinder yet, so I'm hoping that I can get by with store bought ground beans for the time being until I finally get a good grinder.

I owned a Chemex and found that the filters were ridiculously expensive. The brewed coffee also cooled rapidly in the Chemex brewer. To top it off, it's awkward to clean.

An excellent alternative is a plastic filter cone that uses standard #4 filters, brewing into a standard thermos bottle.

http://www.sweetmarias.com/sweetmarias/coffee-brewers/filtercones/filtercone-6-size-with-thermos-extension.html

Regular drip grind works just fine.

littleroundman
11-18-2011, 10:11 PM
My everyday machine: http://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0011/1932/products/L9998366_medium.jpg?100252

A Ponte Vecchio Lusso

I alternate between having 1 or 2 a day from my https://s3.amazonaws.com/prod.assets.fivesenses.com.au/products/204/small/CleverCoffeeDripper.jpg?1272421545 Clever Coffee Dripper and my http://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0011/1932/products/syphon-sca4_medium.jpg?100252 Bellina syphon

Hattorichop
11-18-2011, 11:42 PM
http://www.coffeeforums.com/

JUST SAYIN...............:wink:

littleroundman
11-19-2011, 12:20 AM
http://www.coffeeforums.com/

JUST SAYIN...............:wink:

Sorry, I'm a newbie here and didn't realize it's not de riguer to have more than one interest.

I could have sworn the thread title was: Thread: Coffee gear and discussion thread :O:O

It won't happen again.

Hattorichop
11-19-2011, 12:51 AM
No biggie, that's what the off topic section is for.

I was just tryin to point out that there is a forum for everything while tryin to be a little funny!

Lars
11-19-2011, 03:04 AM
A local shop started carrying Chemex and I wanted to get one but I'm hoping someone can convince me why it's so great. It basically just looks like a jar with a special filter. Maybe I don't know enough about coffee. Is their filter just that good?

And what kind of grind does Chemex require? I haven't had the funds to get a decent grinder yet, so I'm hoping that I can get by with store bought ground beans for the time being until I finally get a good grinder.

I don't think the Chemex lives up to the hype it got a couple of years ago.
It makes good coffee, but so does french press, Hario cones and the Aeropress cylinder.

My advise would be to get a good grinder first - freshly ground beans and and good quality water are my personal top priority's when brewing coffee..

Lars

obtuse
11-19-2011, 08:46 AM
I gave my chemex away.... I just use a bonmac 1hole #2 filter cone or the hario 02.

SpikeC
11-19-2011, 02:22 PM
My La Pavoni lever does all the coffee work around here unless there is a crowd. Kitchenaid Proline grinder with Mazzer Mini burrs and filtered Bull Run water round out the picture.

Kyle
11-19-2011, 03:20 PM
I don't think the Chemex lives up to the hype it got a couple of years ago.
It makes good coffee, but so does french press, Hario cones and the Aeropress cylinder.

My advise would be to get a good grinder first - freshly ground beans and and good quality water are my personal top priority's when brewing coffee..

Lars

I have a press and I get beans ground for me at a local shop. I don't like the oily/slick mouth feel I get from it, also the grounds at the bottom are pretty gross. Maybe I'm doing something wrong, maybe I'm too used to office brewed drip coffee, I don't know, but it turns me off and makes me not want to use it any more.

Advice?

geezr
11-19-2011, 04:13 PM
Thought about replacing old Sylvia/Rocky combo then recalled a post on the coffee forums about turning-on the steam switch before pulling the shot. Been doing this since earlier this year - get consistent good shots and dry grounds puck. coffee seems better dissolved :coffeelots:
Keeping Sylvia/Rocky :thumbsup:

Hank
11-19-2011, 08:50 PM
I have been drinking snob coffee for the better part of 30 years and roasting my own for 10-12 years.

A couple of thoughts:

Here are some standard limits known as the rule of 15's

Coffee should be roasted within 15 months of leaving the processor in the country of origin.

Coffee should be ground within 15 days of roasting

Coffee should be brewed within 15 minutes of grinding

I have had coffee just about every way imaginable. My preference is a triple or quad shot Americano. with the coffee beans rested 5 days after roasting. With a real barista I will have a macchiato. Generally I don't make these for myself.

If I carry coffee with me when I travel I use an Aeropress and am quite satisfied with the product it produces. (I carry an electric tea kettle and a grinder). I really like the Areopress. It is the coffee maker I suggest as a first purchase for someone wishing to be a coffee snob. Much cleaner than a French Press but with the body provided by the French Press.

Water temps are really important. Brew temps should be between 200-204 degrees. If you make drip coffee run some water through it prior to brewing to bring the coffee maker up to temp.

Water Quality. Coffee is 97% water. The better the water, the better the coffee. When I don't carry coffee on the road, I ALWAYS use bottled water to make the coffee in the room. Not great, but it is drinkable.

Lars
11-20-2011, 02:39 AM
I don't like the oily/slick mouth feel I get from it, also the grounds at the bottom are pretty gross.

Advice?

Well, it seems you are not a fan of the french press, so my advise would be to use something else..
If you are okay with brewing one cup at a time, the Hario could be great for you since you are used to drip coffee.

I still think you need a grinder as well..

Lars

WildBoar
11-20-2011, 12:42 PM
My everyday machine: http://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0011/1932/products/L9998366_medium.jpg?100252

A Ponte Vecchio Lusso

Nice! I really wanted one of these, but bought a semi-auto instead so my wife could use it. And of course she doesn't, because the whole grinding and tamping thing is too complicated :)


My La Pavoni lever does all the coffee work around here unless there is a crowd. I picked up a used one on CL to play with, but have not had the time/ motivation to rebuild it yet since the semi-auto works so well. I really need to get on this project over the winter!

Kyle
11-20-2011, 04:03 PM
Well, it seems you are not a fan of the french press, so my advise would be to use something else..
If you are okay with brewing one cup at a time, the Hario could be great for you since you are used to drip coffee.

I still think you need a grinder as well..

Lars

Well that's good to know. People always told me to try a press, but I've never had coffee from a press that someone else had made. I wasn't sure if this was normal or if I had somehow screwed up a very simple brewing process.

I will definitely look into a new grinder. Thanks so much for the help.

obtuse
11-20-2011, 06:10 PM
I'm roasting some coffee tonight. A pound of Sumatra Onan Ganjang cultivar, for a friend, a half pound of El Salvador La Divina Providencia and maybe another half pound of Costa Rica Cafetalera Herbazu for myself.

EdipisReks
11-20-2011, 06:12 PM
I have a press and I get beans ground for me at a local shop. I don't like the oily/slick mouth feel I get from it, also the grounds at the bottom are pretty gross.

all of that stuff is feature, not bug! hmm, maybe an aeropress? i don't think you really need a new grinder. i've been using the same Bodum blade grinder for years. the secret is that i know that three table spoons of beans, then 15 pulses, plus a shake, then 7-8 more pulses, gets me the perfect grind. i would seriously try to like press coffee, though. you are missing out on a lot of flavor if you exclude much of the oil. i've used a bunch of methods, including Hario drip, and the simple press is still my favorite.

obtuse
11-20-2011, 06:17 PM
all of that stuff is feature, not bug! hmm, maybe an aeropress?

if you only need to brew a cup at a time try a clever coffee dripper. if you have to brew a bunch on the clever you could do a 50% bypass brew or just use It like any other #4 cone. I gave up on the aeropress... not to say that you can't get good results with it, I just suck at it and I always end up with sediment in my cup :(

EdipisReks
11-20-2011, 06:18 PM
as a Frech presser who is also a fan of cowboy coffee, i think a bit of sediment is a good thing. :)

obtuse
11-20-2011, 06:25 PM
as far as sediment goes, you either love it or hate it or kinda tolerate it. I guess I would fall into the tolerate it category because I go enjoy a French press every now and again. I think I'll bust out the bodum tomorrow morning :thumbsup:

EdipisReks
11-20-2011, 06:29 PM
you should!

Eaglewood
11-20-2011, 06:52 PM
Kopi Luwak fresh ground in a French Press maker-- the best!!!!!!

littleroundman
11-20-2011, 11:10 PM
if you only need to brew a cup at a time try a clever coffee dripper. if you have to brew a bunch on the clever you could do a 50% bypass brew or just use It like any other #4 cone. I gave up on the aeropress... not to say that you can't get good results with it, I just suck at it and I always end up with sediment in my cup :(

+1

The Lusso for espressos and a Clever mean I'm in coffee nirvana these days.

ColinCB
11-21-2011, 11:34 AM
I still need to get a burr grinder, but right now I've got my Bodum Bean double-walled french press doing my coffee making. Along with a keurig mini for when I'm too lazy to do do all the work.

Kyle
11-21-2011, 12:20 PM
all of that stuff is feature, not bug! hmm, maybe an aeropress? i don't think you really need a new grinder. i've been using the same Bodum blade grinder for years. the secret is that i know that three table spoons of beans, then 15 pulses, plus a shake, then 7-8 more pulses, gets me the perfect grind. i would seriously try to like press coffee, though. you are missing out on a lot of flavor if you exclude much of the oil. i've used a bunch of methods, including Hario drip, and the simple press is still my favorite.

The flavor is great, it's the feeling in my mouth that kind of bugs me. Maybe I'll bust out the press tonight and give it another shot.

JohnnyChance
11-21-2011, 01:47 PM
The flavor is great, it's the feeling in my mouth that kind of bugs me. Maybe I'll bust out the press tonight and give it another shot.

You can also change your bean/water ratios, or switch up beans (something less oily) and get some different results out of your press.

Kyle
11-21-2011, 02:54 PM
You can also change your bean/water ratios, or switch up beans (something less oily) and get some different results out of your press.

Thanks for the tip, I'm actually getting anxious to start doing more testing with it.

Now I just need to get a grinder. Is there a good grinder to be had for under $100? I always heard good things about the Capresso Infinity but then some coffee snob always chimes in to say that it's a POS and you can't get a good grinder for under $XXX and that's when I end up re-considering the whole thing...

Lars
11-21-2011, 02:59 PM
I wasn't sure if this was normal or if I had somehow screwed up a very simple brewing process.

It's perfectly normal and there is nothing indicating that you screwed anything up.

In fact, I salute you for having an opinion about the coffee you drink - most people are happy as long as it's screaming hot and very bitter :thumbsup:

Lars

Lars
11-21-2011, 03:05 PM
Is there a good grinder to be had for under $100? I always heard good things about the Capresso Infinity but then some coffee snob always chimes in to say that it's a POS and you can't get a good grinder for under $XXX and that's when I end up re-considering the whole thing...

Unless you want to spend the money to get something like a Mahlkoenig Tanzania I think you would be happy with the Infinity - not the most uniform grind you can get, but it beats store-ground beans anytime..

Lars

Johnny.B.Good
11-21-2011, 03:06 PM
I have always enjoyed a strong cup of coffee. I enriched Starbucks for years (and still do on occasion) before breaking myself of the habit and making drip coffee through a simple filter fitted to a plastic cup. My sister gave me an inexpensive ($25) Capresso grinder and Bodum French press for Christmas last year, and I've never looked back. It's one of those things that always seemed like too much trouble until I started doing it. I don't think it takes me any longer to pulse some whole beans and press my coffee in the morning than it did to slowly pour water through a paper filter, and the results are night and day. I don't like tasting grounds in my coffee, but don't find that to be a problem with the press. Maybe I don't know what I'm missing with a more expensive grinder and/or roaster, but the setup I have is cheap and effective.

JohnnyChance
11-21-2011, 03:40 PM
Thanks for the tip, I'm actually getting anxious to start doing more testing with it.

Now I just need to get a grinder. Is there a good grinder to be had for under $100? I always heard good things about the Capresso Infinity but then some coffee snob always chimes in to say that it's a POS and you can't get a good grinder for under $XXX and that's when I end up re-considering the whole thing...

I have the Capresso Infinity. It works fine. Especially if you are using a French Press, Chemex or Pour-over. I don't think you benefit from having a grinder that costs 10 times what your brew setup does. If you were super serious and had some of the crazier brewing methods, then yeah, go big on the grinder.

You could even get a manual hand crank burr grinder if you don't mind putting some muscle into your morning brew.

GlassEye
11-22-2011, 01:05 AM
I just rebuilt the La Pavoni Europic a week or two ago and have been rather satisfied with what I can get from that. My technique is lacking, I think, due to so much time with the machine out of service. And I need to find a decent tamper that isn't stupid expensive.
Press pot is probably still my favorite method, so simple and great.
Grinding with Baratza Virtuoso, has performed nicely so far.
Always fresh, locally roasted beans; origin to suit my mood.

littleroundman
11-22-2011, 02:54 AM
The flavor is great, it's the feeling in my mouth that kind of bugs me. Maybe I'll bust out the press tonight and give it another shot.

Just a sugestion, but if you get the chance to sample a coffee from the recently released press from the Canadian company, Espro, try it.

In their own words:

"The espro™ press helps you make a clean cup, with all of the delicate flavours and aromas that fully express your coffee. You will taste the coffee, and not the grounds. And the cup you drink tomorrow is as good as the cup you drink today.

It is robust enough for home, coffee shop and restaurant use

The espro™ press is a precision coffee brewer. It preserves all of the freshly brewed flavours and aromas by micro-filtering twice with a unique metal filter. This micro-filter keeps grounds out of your cup, and lets the aromatic oils in"

http://www.espro.ca/espro-press/

PhaetonFalling
04-02-2012, 06:02 AM
Just a sugestion, but if you get the chance to sample a coffee from the recently released press from the Canadian company, Espro, try it.

In their own words:

"The espro™ press helps you make a clean cup, with all of the delicate flavours and aromas that fully express your coffee. You will taste the coffee, and not the grounds. And the cup you drink tomorrow is as good as the cup you drink today.

It is robust enough for home, coffee shop and restaurant use

The espro™ press is a precision coffee brewer. It preserves all of the freshly brewed flavours and aromas by micro-filtering twice with a unique metal filter. This micro-filter keeps grounds out of your cup, and lets the aromatic oils in"

http://www.espro.ca/espro-press/



I really like the Espro actuated tamper. I have one and it's pretty nice.



As for the other bit about the mouth feel of a french press.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfN116i4mVg



Lastly,

My coffee set up at home.


http://www.home-barista.com/forums/userpix/2381_IMG_0698_1.jpg

PhaetonFalling
04-03-2012, 06:19 PM
From http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/670-Kitchen-Scores-Post-your-new-gear-here/page16


:coolsign:
checked out Stumptowns site and had no clue what coffee I should order :dontknow: so used their side-bar and reviewed different ways to make coffee.
I will be ordering Ethiopian heirloom single origin espresso roast - thanks Spike - now I have 2 additional sources for coffee :running:
PhaetonFalling and Spike, any other coffees you like from Stumptown?
I brew espresso but also use Aeropress sometimes.

I did the Black cat coffee, forums fave etc. back in the day but have bought local since and it is costly and about time for variety - thanks :thumbsup:


Stumptown changes what's available all the time, but they always have their blends. For their blends, the Holler Mountain Roast was pretty good. I liked the brew at around 200-202.

As a general rule, I buy anything Columbian that they have. The first coffee I had from them was the Columbia Las Vegas (which is no longer around)... just a gorgeous cup when brewed at 197-198.

They had another Columbian that was really good that was good in the 195-196 range and honestly tasted heavily of blackberry jam (scrumptious!)

Their tasting notes are pretty spot on. I tend to like the coffees that are brought out at the lower temps because I feel the cup is more nuanced and subtle. The flavors brought out at the higher temps like dark chocolate tones slap you in the face really hard, but that's just my opinion. Get your grind down, and your tamp down, and then experiment with temps, you'll be amazed at what you taste!

In a way, coffee and kitchen knives are pretty similar. It's all very technical, and you get out what you put in.

PhaetonFalling
04-03-2012, 06:21 PM
My coffee set up at home.


http://www.home-barista.com/forums/userpix/2381_IMG_0698_1.jpg


BTW, can anyone else see the above picture? It shows up on one of my computers, but not on the other one...

the link is below.

http://www.home-barista.com/forums/userpix/2381_IMG_0698_1.jpg

obtuse
04-03-2012, 08:07 PM
Check out counter culture coffee too, 5 dollar flat rate shipping.

Tristan
04-03-2012, 10:01 PM
If anyone finds a great company selling raw beans online, with lots of experience doing bulk shipments overseas, please do give me a shout out. Would be much appreciated.

wenus2
04-03-2012, 10:16 PM
On the topic of Stumptown, I'm currently drinking a Guatemalan bean from their Grand Cru series: Finca El Injerto- El Tanque.

While the price tag is a bit tough to swallow (nearly $40/lb) the coffee sure ain't!


Also, a good source to buy roasted beans is http://www.gocoffeego.com/ they only offer coffee from some of the best roasters in ths biz and they rotate weekly specials for free shipping (or sometimes coffee).

DarrenSwerid
04-03-2012, 11:31 PM
I used to use a low key approach to making my Caramel Macchiato. When I found myself spending WAY too much at Starbucks I picked up these three items and started making my own:

Krups Coffee Grinder (http://www.bedbathandbeyond.ca/product.asp?SKU=100211&)
Bialetti Moka Express (http://www.bedbathandbeyond.ca/product.asp?SKU=113088&)
Aerolatte Stream Free Milk Frother (http://www.bedbathandbeyond.ca/product.asp?SKU=120770&)

I was starting to make a damn good Latte. Then I went on this diet to lose some pounds before I get married in September. The hardest part was the cleanup afterwards. Good thing I got the "missus" the do that part for me! :D

geezr
04-03-2012, 11:45 PM
:thankyou::thanx: and THANK YOU!! All the coffee provider sites are bookmarked :goodpost:
Really good to know there will be variety going forward :coffeelots:
Also appreciate moving my posts to this thread as my 1st post on this forum may have been on this thread :)

AFKitchenknivesguy
04-03-2012, 11:52 PM
Anyone who would like to really get to know about coffee, espresso, and gear, once again go to home-barista.com. It's the kitchenknifeforums of coffee.

Jason

The Edge
04-03-2012, 11:53 PM
I've never been a huge fan of coffee. The only way I've been able to drink most restaurants stuff is to fill it with milk and sugar. That being said, about 6 months ago, I was eating at a restaurant and had a Turkish coffee. Wow!! Never had anything taste so good that was called coffee. Since then, I've bought an Ibrik, and a small can of finely ground Turkish coffee, and now I can't get enough. Maybe I need to just try a good cup of coffee, but this has been my experience so far.

AFKitchenknivesguy
04-04-2012, 12:00 AM
Fresh coffee is different tasting than what you find in a supermarket. Correction, quality fresh coffee. When done right, with an experienced hand, it is like wine in the type of flavors that arise. Flavors such as fruity, chocolate, caramel, tobacco, acidic, balanced, winey, and bitter. I've tasted all these. Some are bold, others taste like tea. Unfortunetely, most people are introducted to stale, bitter coffee so they assume thats what coffee tastes like. That couldn't be further from the truth.

PhaetonFalling
04-04-2012, 03:33 AM
If anyone finds a great company selling raw beans online, with lots of experience doing bulk shipments overseas, please do give me a shout out. Would be much appreciated.

I hear the place to go is http://www.sweetmarias.com/

l r harner
04-04-2012, 08:39 AM
just checked the temp on my water and im lower then i thouhgt guess di ll haveot have a different plan for heating my water for my arropress (yes im a cheap ass but i do at least grind my own beans by hand in a bur grinder

compaddict
04-04-2012, 11:35 AM
Second vote for the Behmor coffee roaster. I have no problem roasting indoors.
Many say that other roasters give more control but the Behmor does roast a full pound of green at a time which is a big plus.

obtuse
04-04-2012, 11:53 AM
I dont like doing a full pound in the behmor because it roasts too slowly. I like to target 9 to 10 minutes otherwise the coffee tastes flat. In order to achieve this on the behmor I roast a quarter pound at a time.

AFKitchenknivesguy
04-04-2012, 02:18 PM
I know it's a no-no by the warranty, but I roast 1/2 lb using the 1 lb buttons. It's true, especially after 50+ roasts, the roasts take too long. It does require cleaning, specifically the fan and heat sensor.

Also, to address a question:
www.sweetmarias.com
www.roastmasters.com
www.coffeeshrub.com (for businesses, owned bye sweetmarias)

can solve your greens issue. There are others, but these are my favs.

geezr
04-04-2012, 03:19 PM
Anyone who would like to really get to know about coffee, espresso, and gear, once again go to home-barista.com. It's the kitchenknifeforums of coffee.

Jason

:plus1:
used to lurk there as well at coffeegeek. so went to HB and found this:
http://www.home-barista.com/reviews/favorite-espresso-blends-2012-t20955.html

UCChemE05
04-04-2012, 05:51 PM
For those who do not roast their own beans, I would highly suggest trying Red Bird Coffee. http://redbirdcoffee.com/

I LOVE the Red Bird espresso. I've tried several different roaster the past couple years but always come back. I order 5 lbs at a time and with free shipping you can't beat the price. As soon as I get the delivery, I seal the excess in pint mason jars and freeze them. Works great through the last jar...

obtuse
04-04-2012, 05:57 PM
We should just start a coffee sub-forum here

PhaetonFalling
04-04-2012, 07:16 PM
We should just start a coffee sub-forum here

+1

geezr
04-17-2012, 04:35 PM
3rd day with Red Bird espresso - I think I got it for - grind, tamp etc. :thumbsup:

UCChemE05
04-17-2012, 06:26 PM
3rd day with Red Bird espresso - I think I got it for - grind, tamp etc. :thumbsup:

So, what do you think? :)

geezr
04-18-2012, 12:36 AM
So, what do you think? :)

Still trying to dial-in taste but OK espresso and Americano :)
Very different from local beans I use at 2x + the cost, these are smaller beans, milder roast and less aroma all around (bag, grind, cup).

SameGuy
04-18-2012, 09:29 AM
For espresso my benchmark is Black Cat. It is also way too expensive -- I live in Canada so I need to bring in an unreasonable quantity to get the cost/ounce down from the exosphere to just the stratosphere... That said, it's damn good espresso. I've had better, but not often. It is consistently good, which is why it is a benchmark for me. Looking around for cheaper alternatives, I have tried Counter Culture Coffee's various espresso blends with some success. Their Rustica and Toscano blends work well with my very humble setup (cheap burr grinder, Rancilio Silvia v.3), and I was able to dial in the grind and tamp quickly. Next I'd like to try either Red Bird or Paradise Roasters, mainly because of the cost -- less than half the price per ounce compared to Black Cat for small quantities. If it is decent enough, I may switch.

Do either Red Bird or Paradise put their roast dates on the packages (as do IC and CCC)?

AFKitchenknivesguy
04-18-2012, 11:05 AM
The problem with current day Black Cat is it is not the chocolate bomb it once was. Additionally, it changes quite often, as coffee's do. I can't quite remember as I am not home and can't check my bag, but I don't think Red Bird puts the roast date on the package; I am not worried, as I know it gets to me within 2 days of ordering. He always roasts right before he ships. Also, I love this as well: http://www.caffefresco.us/offerings/suggested_ambrosiaEspresso.php

Jason

UCChemE05
04-18-2012, 12:40 PM
For espresso my benchmark is Black Cat. It is also way too expensive -- I live in Canada so I need to bring in an unreasonable quantity to get the cost/ounce down from the exosphere to just the stratosphere... That said, it's damn good espresso. I've had better, but not often. It is consistently good, which is why it is a benchmark for me. Looking around for cheaper alternatives, I have tried Counter Culture Coffee's various espresso blends with some success. Their Rustica and Toscano blends work well with my very humble setup (cheap burr grinder, Rancilio Silvia v.3), and I was able to dial in the grind and tamp quickly. Next I'd like to try either Red Bird or Paradise Roasters, mainly because of the cost -- less than half the price per ounce compared to Black Cat for small quantities. If it is decent enough, I may switch.


I thought BC was decent but definately not worth it for me for the price. I used to be more of a "choc bomb" kind of guy but my preferences have evolved to a bit brighter blends (though definately not in-your-face bright).

I can't remember if Jeff puts the date on the bags. (ordering 5# at a time, i don't get them too often :) ) I do know all my past orders have been shipped the same day as roasted. During non-summer months he includes a free small chocolate with each lb. ordered which I think is a nice touch.


Also, I love this as well: http://www.caffefresco.us/offerings/suggested_ambrosiaEspresso.php

Jason

I've heard that Ambrosia is good but haven't tried it yet myself.

geezr
04-18-2012, 03:57 PM
Red Bird bag has hand written date - upper right corner of label.
This am brewed RB espresso beans using Aeropress with metal filter and coarser grind. Good :happymug:
Will do Aeropress again tomorrow, then to espresso machine.

SameGuy
04-21-2012, 02:33 PM
Redirecting from another thread...


The cory is much better made syphon, but they both opperate on the same principles. What is your current yama procedure?


Pretty basic, actually. Though our tap water is perfectly alright, I prefer to use filtered water in all my coffees. For the Yama I just start the flame and bring quart of Brita water to a boil in an electric kettle. I pour a couple of ounces into the Yama for a few seconds to reduce the thermal shock, then fill it up and slide the flame underneath, and insert the coffee chamber. When the upper chamber is full and roiling, I give it a quick stir and time one minute, at which point I remove the flame and watch the magic. Eventually I may get the butane burner and skip the kettle for pre-heating the water. After my cup, I clean the upper chamber, rinse the filter under cold running water while I re-boil the rest of the water in the kettle. I throw the filter in a small marmalade jar, fill it with boiling water and screw on the lid. When it cools and vacuum seals itself, I put it in the fridge until next time. I get about 40 brews before the muslin gets a bit too tattered.

I've been using different single origins from Intelligentsia and Counter Culture, letting them grind for vacuum siphon brewers for me (my little grinder is always full of espresso blend and is too fiddly on a normal day).

foreleft
05-21-2012, 01:07 AM
Nice, a coffee thread! Been roasting my own for about a year now off and on in a Whirley Pop. I mostly use an aeropress, but occasionally a french press if I have company, and I have an inexpensive espresso setup too but the results are mixed with that.

I had to put a plug in for the roaster of my absolute favorite espresso blend ever veltonscoffee.com/ (https://www.veltonscoffee.com/). One guy roasting small batches weekly. The Bonsai blend is an amazing espresso blend and the Twilight blend is good for those who like a bit darker roast for drip/pour over. He's a super nice guy too.

Kyle
05-21-2012, 11:51 AM
So now that I moved to Texas and it's going to start getting very hot, I decided I'm going to make my own cold brew for iced coffee in the morning. I finally picked up a grinder. I decided to cheap out and get a hand crank since I'll be making coffee concentrate and I'll only need to grind maybe once a week, plus I'll most likely be using it in my office and don't want to disturb others.

I bought this grinder

http://www.amazon.com/Hario-Skerton-Hand-Coffee-Grinder/dp/B004QDVNVW/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1337615277&sr=8-4

And I'll brew in this French press

http://www.amazon.com/Bodum-French-Press-Coffeemaker-51-Ounce/dp/B003NG922U/ref=sr_1_2?s=home-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1337615400&sr=1-2

So am I doing OK for an office cold brew setup? What type of beans are good for iced coffee? I'm just not sure where I should even begin.

WildBoar
05-21-2012, 12:23 PM
You gonna drink it straight up, or add sugar and/ or milk?

Chilling the coffee will dull some of the finer flavor nuances, and adding milk (and to a lesser extent sugar) will dull it even more. So while I do not have any specific bean/ roaster recommendations, just keep in mind going for single origins, etc. may not provide much benefit.

I'm not knocking iced coffee though -- I like it every now and then.

wenus2
05-21-2012, 01:16 PM
Kyle if you want iced coffee you will be far better off to brew in a toddy brewer, cold French press isn't that clean and I feel like the end product can often be more bitter than it should be.
Try: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0040ZR0VS/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_sr_1?pf_rd_p=486539851&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-1&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=B0006H0JVW&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=0AJA5W1W20QKMH481733

I have a couple hand grinders myself, nothing at all wrong with using them. Despite also having 2k in electric grinders, I enjoy using mine frequently, especially when doing the more manual process of pour-over.

For beans one needs to realize that in cold brew more of the nutty and earthy tones come forward and that you lose all of the floral and mostly all of the fruitiness. So as David said, your bean choice should reflect this, and lesser coffees will taste better as an iced brew than they would have hot. Personally I still believe in drinking single origin iced coffee though, just don't spend $25/lb on a Guat because it exhibits a beautiful honeysuckle note. I like to look for things with black fruit and chocolate as descriptors, as well as good earthiness. Also, while I don't mind spending $25+/lb on something I will vac-pot, I try to keep an iced candidate around 15-18. Some suggestions for origins would be Brazil, Nicaragua, Papa New Guinea, Bali, Ethiopia.

If you really get into it you can get an ice drip brewer one day, that is actually next on my coffee item list.
It produces an end product that is oddly rich and unctuous, picture a cocktail of Frangelico and Kahlua on ice. I find 4oz to be an ample serving on ice, and it also dilutes well for a daily type drink.

Find it Here: http://www.amazon.com/Cold-Drip-Coffee-Maker-8-Cup/dp/B002RL9DW6

I hope some of this info is useful for you. Happy brewing.

cnochef
05-21-2012, 01:34 PM
Vietnamese iced coffee is deliciously sweet and addictive, not to mention easy!
http://coffeegeek.com/guides/vietnameseiced

SpikeC
05-21-2012, 03:10 PM
A trip to the coffee geek web site might be very helpful to you in this endeavor.

geezr
05-21-2012, 05:45 PM
A trip to the coffee geek web site might be very helpful to you in this endeavor.
:plus1:
went to coffee geek site and may try making iced Vietnamese coffee :biggrin:
usps just delivered Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Adado from Stumptown Coffee Roasters - just in time as the local beans are almost gone.
Was able to dial-in Red Bird for tasty espresso/Americanos - typically about 50% crema. Also 50/50 blend was good with darker roasted local beans.

SpikeC
05-21-2012, 06:41 PM
I'm using Ethiopia Mordecofe single origin espresso roast organic hereloom from Stumptown. Whew!

Kyle
05-21-2012, 06:42 PM
Kyle if you want iced coffee you will be far better off to brew in a toddy brewer, cold French press isn't that clean and I feel like the end product can often be more bitter than it should be.
Try: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0040ZR0VS/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_sr_1?pf_rd_p=486539851&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-1&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=B0006H0JVW&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=0AJA5W1W20QKMH481733

I have a couple hand grinders myself, nothing at all wrong with using them. Despite also having 2k in electric grinders, I enjoy using mine frequently, especially when doing the more manual process of pour-over.

For beans one needs to realize that in cold brew more of the nutty and earthy tones come forward and that you lose all of the floral and mostly all of the fruitiness. So as David said, your bean choice should reflect this, and lesser coffees will taste better as an iced brew than they would have hot. Personally I still believe in drinking single origin iced coffee though, just don't spend $25/lb on a Guat because it exhibits a beautiful honeysuckle note. I like to look for things with black fruit and chocolate as descriptors, as well as good earthiness. Also, while I don't mind spending $25+/lb on something I will vac-pot, I try to keep an iced candidate around 15-18. Some suggestions for origins would be Brazil, Nicaragua, Papa New Guinea, Bali, Ethiopia.

If you really get into it you can get an ice drip brewer one day, that is actually next on my coffee item list.
It produces an end product that is oddly rich and unctuous, picture a cocktail of Frangelico and Kahlua on ice. I find 4oz to be an ample serving on ice, and it also dilutes well for a daily type drink.

Find it Here: http://www.amazon.com/Cold-Drip-Coffee-Maker-8-Cup/dp/B002RL9DW6

I hope some of this info is useful for you. Happy brewing.

I had a Toddy and loved it, but my roommate broke the carafe that came with it and then it got cold again so I stopped cold brewing. When I moved I chucked the remnants of it. I honestly only went with the French press because it's all in a much more elegant package than the Toddy, and since this will be in my office I just figured it would look a little nicer. I'm not questioning you, but if cold brew is simply soaking grinds in water overnight and then filtering out the beans, how does the French press produce a more bitter product? My plan was to press and pour the remaining concentrate in a separate carafe for storage in the fridge. If the Toddy will be better I will return the press. I wanted an Hourglass brewer since that seems like a much more elegant design than the Toddy but I guess it's discontinued now.

I've seen those cold drip coffee makers, but I only drink iced coffee when I need my fix in the summer months and a hot cup of coffee doesn't sound too appealing when it's 100+ outside. Doing cold brew myself is to just save me from spending $4 daily at Starbucks.

Thanks for all the advice!

wenus2
05-21-2012, 07:16 PM
Too bad you tossed the Toddy pieces, you can get a polycarbonate replacement carafe for like $10.
But hey, if you already have the FP then go for it, I thought you were buying a new device.
Like the differences in most brewing methods, assuming all other factors to be equal, the wild card is the means of filtering. The FP doesn't filter off oils, which is its draw for hot coffee because it contains more flavonoids. IMHO I find they become tannic and the cold coffee from the FP doesn't hold as well as from the Toddy over time. Your experience may be different. Also, I haven't tried this particular design of the FP for this, just the standard rig.
Either way you're getting a superior product compared to pouring brewed coffee over ice, so good for you for doing things right.
I do love a good cup of iced coffee in the summer!

obtuse
05-21-2012, 07:28 PM
Just cold brew it in the FP then pour it through a number 4 filter into a carafe. That's what i would do.

foreleft
05-22-2012, 10:36 AM
For cold brew I look for any cheapo dark roast. You lose a lot of the flavors when cold especially with milk & sugar. My usual is something from World Market in the big 2 lb bags. I dump the grounds and water into a big stainless bowl, let it sit for 12-18 hours stirring it once or twice, and then strain through a strainer lined with a flour sack/tea towel.

I threw my Toddy away, too messy for me.

Dieter01
05-22-2012, 04:33 PM
Lots of good information in this thread. Here is me cupping a few batches roasted on the Quest M3. Great, casual way to start a Sunday morning :-)

7376

Dieter01
05-22-2012, 04:35 PM
Double post... Deleted

AFKitchenknivesguy
05-22-2012, 05:41 PM
Dieter...awesome!

obtuse
05-22-2012, 07:11 PM
Sounds like fun :)

JMac
05-23-2012, 12:34 AM
anyone have experience with a Eva solo?

obtuse
05-23-2012, 12:41 AM
It's like a french press without the press. I think it's a little easier to clean.

Duckfat
05-31-2012, 05:18 PM
I just killed my second Brevile smart grinder. Does any one have any experience with Baratza? I'm thinking about ordering a refurb Virtuoso.
Any grinder input or vendor tips greatly appreciated.


Dave

AFKitchenknivesguy
05-31-2012, 05:46 PM
Buy a used Mazzer and call it a day. They are tanks. I have two mini's.

Duckfat
05-31-2012, 06:23 PM
The mazzer might be a bit out of my budget and it probably would have helped if I had said I'm a French Press guy. Hoping to stay under $250.

Dave

GlassEye
05-31-2012, 06:49 PM
I just killed my second Brevile smart grinder. Does any one have any experience with Baratza? I'm thinking about ordering a refurb Virtuoso.
Any grinder input or vendor tips greatly appreciated.


Dave

I have been using a Baratza Virtuoso for a couple of years, been happy with it. I can grind finer than I need for espresso to coarser than press pot needs, button on the front is nice too if you are grinding directly into a portafilter or small press pot. Easier to break down for cleaning than previous grinders I have had.

SpikeC
05-31-2012, 07:30 PM
I have a KA Proline with Mazzer burrs in it. It's my budget hot rod!

apicius9
05-31-2012, 07:36 PM
Rancilio Rocky here. Have the doser-less one, works well enough but is a bit messy.

Stefan

AFKitchenknivesguy
05-31-2012, 09:14 PM
The mazzer might be a bit out of my budget and it probably would have helped if I had said I'm a French Press guy. Hoping to stay under $250.

Dave

If you look on the bay you could get one about there or a little less. You would have to spend $40 on new burrs, likely.

AFKitchenknivesguy
05-31-2012, 09:16 PM
Frankly though, for french press you could have a whirly blade for all it matters. Fresh coffee is more important.

Namaxy
05-31-2012, 10:01 PM
Frankly though, for french press you could have a whirly blade for all it matters. Fresh coffee is more important.

Really?? I'm not a guru, but I've always liked a press. I could never get my family to buy in because of the small amount of sludge/mud in the cup. TBH - I like that aspect - but to them it was a deal killer - they had to have drip. That changed when I got a Virtuoso - I'm not saying there is no mud - but enough less that my old fashioned parents/grandparents will now drink press coffee with me after dinner.

wenus2
05-31-2012, 10:32 PM
For press a good consistant grind is important because (that mud IS annoying, and) the weird flat pieces and the powder from a whirly blade will over extract and make your brew bitter. You needs a decent burr grinder for sure.
My number 1 suggestion: if you are a little crazy and have the space... find a used Bunn or Grindmaster commercial machine, the tall rectangle box ones. Those things do a great job with a super even grind, I've seen em' for 250 on Craigslist and Ebay here and there, just might have to be a bit patient.

Second suggestion: get that refurb Virtuoso, it's a great deal I think. I got a buddy a refurb from them, it came like new and it's been running great for going on 4 years now.
I gave my dad a Maestro from them about 10 years ago, its also still going strong and it was the cheaper one.

Third sugggestion: Throw caution to the wind and spring for a Mahlkonig Guatemala, keet it real, be the envy of all your friends.... and me :)

Duckfat
05-31-2012, 10:52 PM
I could never go back to a whirly blade. That's like turning in my blades for Cutco or going back to a gas grill. :eek2: Funny any one should mention the Bunn. I used to own one. Selling coffee beans was the first business I ever owned but that was many years ago. I wish I would have kept that grinder even though it was a monstrosity.
It did work well.
A Mahlkonig Guatemala would go nicely with a new Speedster or La Pavoni.
Has any one ordered from WholeLotteLove?

Dave


http://www.keesvanderwesten.com/news_new-speedster4.html

Namaxy
05-31-2012, 11:43 PM
Yup.... My Guatemala is coming right after the vintage Berkel.....well and the lottery win of course....:rofl2:

GlassEye
06-01-2012, 12:02 AM
Has any one ordered from WholeLotteLove?

I think I may have once, can't remember too well. I also ordered from Orphan Espresso few months ago, they were great to deal with.

This thread has made me need some coffee, looks like I get to go coffee shopping tomorrow before work.

wenus2
06-01-2012, 05:57 AM
I've ordered from WLL a few times. They used to be about all there was for a web presence, how times have changed. Anyway, they are a long standing and legitimate company, if that's what you were wondering.

AFKitchenknivesguy
06-01-2012, 01:19 PM
For press a good consistant grind is important because (that mud IS annoying, and) the weird flat pieces and the powder from a whirly blade will over extract and make your brew bitter. You needs a decent burr grinder for sure.
My number 1 suggestion: if you are a little crazy and have the space... find a used Bunn or Grindmaster commercial machine, the tall rectangle box ones. Those things do a great job with a super even grind, I've seen em' for 250 on Craigslist and Ebay here and there, just might have to be a bit patient.

Second suggestion: get that refurb Virtuoso, it's a great deal I think. I got a buddy a refurb from them, it came like new and it's been running great for going on 4 years now.
I gave my dad a Maestro from them about 10 years ago, its also still going strong and it was the cheaper one.

Third sugggestion: Throw caution to the wind and spring for a Mahlkonig Guatemala, keet it real, be the envy of all your friends.... and me :)

I respectfully disagree. I have some serious equipment and I can't notice the difference.

Two most important things with french press are freshness of coffee and steeping time, 3-4 mins. Pour it into a thermos and discard grounds.

AFKitchenknivesguy
06-01-2012, 01:26 PM
I probably should mention, I say these things because most people aren't going to flop down $100 on a good grinder, let alone $600+. I try to be realistic and practical. Pretty much grinders under $150 are all POS, unless you can swipe a used good grinder. I use the whirly/FP combo at work, and a mazzer at home. Not much difference, if any at all.

Duckfat
06-01-2012, 02:33 PM
Gosh I don't know Jason. I can tell the difference between a FP with a consistent grind and a FP ground with a whirly blade. Those blade grinders wind up with chunk and dust. That makes a murky cup and you get a lot more silt at the bottom. I agree fresh coffee and brew times are very important and I sure don't want to sound like I don't value the feedback because I do. I think your spot on that most FP drinkers wouldn't spend that Much $$ on a grinder but I'm a pretty eccentric FP drinker. I weigh my grind and water for every pot and use the FP to froth milk.
I'll gladly spend $250 on a good grinder. What really roasts my bean is when I drop $200+ on a unit like the Breville and kill two of them in a year.
I just want something that is consistent and will last. Looks like I missed out on the refurbs so I'm going with a new Baratza virtuoso.
I looked at the mazers and I think if I wanted to my wife would even say go ahead and grab one and a la Pavoni but I'm just not that into espresso. Plus I gotta feed my other hobbies! :)
Thanks guys I really appreciate the help.

Dave

Lars
06-01-2012, 03:00 PM
You can "cheat" a little with the Baratza and shift the ground coffee with a tea strainer to get rid of the fine dust.
I think unless you go for a big shop grinder, a Baratza or similar is a great choise for home use.

Lars

wenus2
06-01-2012, 03:33 PM
What really roasts my bean is when I drop $200+ on a unit like the Breville and kill two of them in a year.

Well take comfort, the reason Baratza has those refurbs all the time is because they stand by their product, and they have notoriously excellent customer service. I've read of many people even getting replacements on units that are out of warranty. So while it's a much better grinder than the Breville to begin with, even if you get a lemon, they will fix it.

Also, if you wanted to save a buck, those refurbs come back in all the time. You might even be able to call them up and have them put you down for the next one.

Anyhow, i hope you enjoy your new grinder. I do love my Vario (no more weighing beans).

AFKitchenknivesguy
06-01-2012, 05:01 PM
I think this abbreviation sums it up, YMMV! :)

Duckfat
06-01-2012, 05:26 PM
I almost tripped the trigger but I'm capitulating now about ordering a Vario and the SS Ditting burrs.

Dave

Duckfat
06-01-2012, 05:26 PM
You can "cheat" a little with the Baratza and shift the ground coffee with a tea strainer to get rid of the fine dust.
I think unless you go for a big shop grinder, a Baratza or similar is a great choise for home use.

Lars

That's actually a very good idea. Thanks for the tip.
Dave

Duckfat
06-03-2012, 04:04 PM
Wound up tripping the trigger on a Baratza Virtuoso preciso. I'd sure like to hear any input you guys that are roasting at home can offer on a roaster. I've been reading as much as I can on the subject but I've zero experience in that department.

Dave

l r harner
06-04-2012, 12:13 AM
so what say you about hand cranked grinders that you can adjust the grind on

AFKitchenknivesguy
06-04-2012, 01:49 AM
Wound up tripping the trigger on a Baratza Virtuoso preciso. I'd sure like to hear any input you guys that are roasting at home can offer on a roaster. I've been reading as much as I can on the subject but I've zero experience in that department.

Dave

Anyone starting out roasting must get a Behmor, it's pretty much the standard. One of these days I am going to secure a used sampler roaster, one of these days...

AFKitchenknivesguy
06-04-2012, 01:55 AM
so what say you about hand cranked grinders that you can adjust the grind on

I have one, nothing wrong with them. I have a Zassenhaus I never use. May I suggest I (if you want the rolls royce of them): http://www.orphanespresso.com/OE-PHAROS-Hand-Coffee-Grinder_p_3977.html

:D

foreleft
06-05-2012, 01:21 AM
Wound up tripping the trigger on a Baratza Virtuoso preciso. I'd sure like to hear any input you guys that are roasting at home can offer on a roaster. I've been reading as much as I can on the subject but I've zero experience in that department.

Dave

If you want to give roasting a try without the $300 investment of a Behmor pick up a whirly pop. At www.sweetmarias.com you can get the whirly pop and 8 lbs of green coffee for about $50. They also have a decent book on home coffee roasting there for $15.

Dieter01
06-24-2012, 02:27 PM
I have one, nothing wrong with them. I have a Zassenhaus I never use. May I suggest I (if you want the rolls royce of them): http://www.orphanespresso.com/OE-PHAROS-Hand-Coffee-Grinder_p_3977.html

:D

I own a few vintage Zassenhaus grinders, the Zassenhaus knee grinder, the OE PFP and the OE Pharos. I have tried quite a few more because I need to have a non-powered version at work. The Pharos is the only one that can remotely compare to the better electric grinders. It does a decent job but don't expect a high-end grinder at a low-end price - there is a sginifican difference between a Pharos and the Mahlkönig Tanzania I use at home.

That said, buying a grinder from Orphan Espresso is probably the best option for a hand grinder at the moment. Some used vintage grinders are quite good also but it is a bit hit-and-miss trying to find a good one.

JanusInTheGarden
08-05-2012, 05:32 PM
Anyone ever rig up a home made cold press coffee system? I've owned a Toddy before and I can never understand how they can sleep at night charging $40 for essentially a plastic tub, a rubber stopper, and a piece of cheap filter.

My initial thoughts are a glass pitcher to go through the process of "brewing" then pass it through my fine mesh sieve? Maybe add cheesecloth to the equation (would that block passage of the oils?)?

Pensacola Tiger
08-05-2012, 05:41 PM
Anyone ever rig up a home made cold press coffee system? I've owned a Toddy before and I can never understand how they can sleep at night charging $40 for essentially a plastic tub, a rubber stopper, and a piece of cheap filter.

My initial thoughts are a glass pitcher to go through the process of "brewing" then pass it through my fine mesh sieve? Maybe add cheesecloth to the equation (would that block passage of the oils?)?

http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/752-Coffee-gear-and-discussion-thread?p=111032&viewfull=1#post111032

JanusInTheGarden
08-05-2012, 05:44 PM
Ah, missed that one. Did a "thread" search on this one and that particular one didn't show up. Appreciate it.

apicius9
08-22-2012, 08:39 PM
I shouldn't even ask, it will only give me evil GAS thoughts :spiteful:, but how are you doing with the Preciso, Dave? I was o.k. with my Rocky, but right now the doserless design annoys me because of the mess I get when I use it, and I also switch more back and forth between espresso, french press and drip coffees than I used to. So, I was wondering how the Preciso holds up. I am also not sure - compared with the Rocky, would it be more of a lateral move or a step up, especially for espresso? CoffeeGeek seemed to be very happy with the Preciso, but there are also a lot of forum posts with issues from what see...

Stefan


Wound up tripping the trigger on a Baratza Virtuoso preciso. I'd sure like to hear any input you guys that are roasting at home can offer on a roaster. I've been reading as much as I can on the subject but I've zero experience in that department.

Dave

Duckfat
08-23-2012, 02:53 PM
I'm really liking the Preciso. Truly one of the best all purpose grinders I've owned. It's quiet, clean and I don't get road gravel on a FP grind. The burrs are very nice and easy to clean. The grind by time Vs grind by weight is a bit different for me but that was easy to get used to. If any one wants to see any detailed pics just ask. As far as Espresso grind I can't imagine this machine not being up to the task but I expect that will vary considerably with your machine. Now I just need to order some Organic Kona....:)

Dave

rahimlee54
09-09-2012, 10:50 PM
Guys a little help here, wife decided she wanted an espresso machine. She was talking about the nespresso but I decided against the pods. So now with no prior knowledge I am going to be buying a machine. I just browsed the thread here and found homebarista so I'll be living there this week.

Onto the question, I guess we will be spending around 1k on a machine plus grinder and I plan on going semi automatic. My friend has a lelit so I naturally started there

This looks like it would be very handy Lelit Combi (PL042EM) (http://www.jetblackespresso.com.au/shop/p/lelit-pl042em/) but other opinions would be great. I wonder if the grinder included is decent quality or would I just be paying extra for it to be in the box, so to speak. Any direction would be great.

Thanks
Jared

UCChemE05
09-09-2012, 11:03 PM
http://www.1st-line.com/machines/home_mod/lelit/index.htm

Unless you need the space, I'd save a coupe bucks and go separates. Plus if one dies, you don't lose both. The PL04 is a pretty well regarded machine but I've never used it. I had the PL53 and liked it but sold it to jump on the Vario band wagon.

SameGuy
09-10-2012, 09:42 AM
I think I've (we've) said it before: it's easy to make great coffee with a so-so espresso machine and a good grinder, but it's hard to make good coffee with a great espresso machine and a so-so grinder. Spend a little extra money on the best grinder that fits your budget and you will get consistent results once you've dialed in all the parameters. Go with a cheap grinder (like I have) and despite your best efforts, great coffee and a good espresso maker, you'll probably only get one good pull out of three.

Start with a great grinder and a sturdy starter espresso maker like the Silvia v.3 or the Le'Lit P041 and you will be making consistently good shots for years before choosing to upgrade the espresso machine. If you really want even more consistency, get the factory-PIDed 041 or add an Auber Instruments PID to a Silvia and you may never choose to upgrade the machine (I've had my "temporary" Silvia for seven years and if I PID it I doubt I'll every upgrade).

chokobo
09-10-2012, 10:18 AM
From what I've heard, the Lelit Combi is a decent choice in that price range but for the same reasons listed by I too would rather separates.

If you can stretch your budget a tad, and possibly wait for the 30% Williams Sonoma sales, you can get the following for around 1k:
- Breville Dual Boiler http://www.williams-sonoma.com/products/breville-dual-boiler-espresso-machine/?pkey=e|breville%2Bdual|1|best|0|1|24||1&cm_src=PRODUCTSEARCH||NoFacet-_-NoFacet-_-NoMerchRules-_-
- Breville Smart Conical Burr Grinder http://www.williams-sonoma.com/products/breville-conical-burr-grinder-bcg800xl/?pkey=e|breville%2Bgrinder|3|best|0|1|24||3&cm_src=PRODUCTSEARCH||NoFacet-_-NoFacet-_-NoMerchRules-_-

Check out the CoffeeGeek first look review (http://coffeegeek.com/proreviews/firstlook/brevilledualboiler/details) and the associated forums for details on the espresso machine, or check out the slightly annoying video review by Seattle Coffee Gear at http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7NIGabvnD2w. Lots of good features for home users, such as built in water filter and very temperature stable. The group temperature is also configurable, which is good if you want to delve into excellent roasts by the speciality coffee joints like Intelligentsia and Stumptown to dial in the precise balance between sourness and bitterness. The only cavaet being that they are relatively new, and don't have established reliability records, but at the price they are a bargain!

Don't forget the importance of the grinder though. I think it's actually more important than the espresso machine itself, but never really gets the recognition it deserves. If you don't mind buying used gear, then look out for a used Mazzer Mini or a Super Jolly. Mazzer's are somewhat the commercial standard and they really are built like tanks. If you don't mind hand grinding then the Orphan Espresso Pharos (with voodoodaddy mods) is excellent or the new HG One, which is about to be released looks absolutely fantastic and user-friendly. We don't have many Vario grinders here in Australia, so haven't had much experience with those, but from most accounts they are probably a good/better option than the Breville Grinder listed above.

And.. for lever lovers, finally a commercial lever which is home use friendly is about to be released - the Londinium I. Lots of info at http://londiniumespresso.com/blogs/londinium-espresso-blog but you might have to read through quite a few blog posts to get to the initial info.

WildBoar
09-10-2012, 12:20 PM
Highly recommend picking up a used Mazzer Super Jolly. If it's one that's seen some use, you can replace the burr. For ~$450-500 you will be set for a very long time with a first-class grinder.

rahimlee54
09-11-2012, 08:23 AM
It is looking like a Vario and Silvano or maybe an anita. I think the vario will fit in a smaller space better for me mostly. Any detractors? I think either machine and that grinder would have me setup until one or both of them die.

chokobo
09-11-2012, 08:42 AM
Silvano has a thermoblock for steam which generally means sub-optimal performance especially for larger milk coffees. Anita is a good choice but I still think you should consider the Breville. Not as shiny as some of the Italian E61's but I don't really think the Italian machines are that well made anyway... If height is an issue with the Super Jolly, you could always get a smaller hopper (the plastic thing on the top which holds the beans). Either way you go, looks like you'll have an awesome set up. It all takes a while to learn and get the hang off, but this is always a handy guide to dialling in your shots - http://www.home-barista.com/tips/espresso-101-how-to-adjust-dose-and-grind-setting-by-taste-t16968.html.

rahimlee54
09-11-2012, 08:59 AM
Ya I was concerned about the milk performance as that is my wife's main use, which is why I considered the Anita. I'll give the breville a look tonight. A reviewer commented on the SJ vs the vario that he only had 3 inches with the short hopper under his cabinets and if it isn't convenient it will see less use and I'd prefer convenience if performance is about equal.

SameGuy
09-11-2012, 09:33 AM
Well, if you're (more than) doubling your budget now, you've opened up a LOT of doors. There are many, many decent machines in the $1500 to $2500 range, but note that at $1500 you are getting close to the point of diminishing returns. You have to honestly ask yourself how many espressos and how many milk drinks you intend to prepare on a daily basis (not just special occasions or when you have guests over). A $2000 machine needs its own type of commitment to master. If you're only making a couple of espressos a day and the occasional cap or latte on weekends, you might do better getting a top-notch grinder and a decent single-boiler machine for now. The beauty of a Rancilio Silvia or the Le'Lit P041 (among a handful of sub-$1000 standouts) is that when you think you are ready to graduate to a Quick Mill or La Spaziale you can sell your "starter" machine for pretty good money -- they are always in high demand if they've been well maintained.

SameGuy
09-11-2012, 09:34 AM
If your wife is "concerned" about milk performance but was considering a Nespresso, and now has you looking at an Anita... ROTFL!

chokobo
09-11-2012, 09:42 AM
Grinders aren't too heavy to shift, they just slide on your bench top? I really can't comment on the Vario, from what I've read it is a good choice, but imo the SJ would still have consistently better performance with less need to potentially groom the puck or worry so much about distribution. I'm not sure how much reviewers actually mention the ease of getting a good shot, they usually assume that one will do everything necessary to fix the deficiencies such as WDT. Fair enough if you go to the trouble of WDT each shot (time consuming) then the Vario may perform just as well, but that's a lifestyle choice you have to make. Unlike the Italian espresso machines, Mazzers are really built like a tank. If anything all you would have to do is replace the burrs, quite cheaply, and chuck a couple of kgs of supermarket beans through the new burrs to run them in and you'll have a great grinder that should last forever.

SameGuy
09-11-2012, 09:49 AM
Absolutely. Let's not forget that most who would submit a review at a coffee equipment vendor's site (or CG or HB) don't mind fiddling for 20 minutes to extract a good shot. I doubt rahimlee's wife wants to spend 20+ minutes every morning to get her Half-Caf-Non-Fat-Low-Foam-Venti. Isn't that what the queue at Coffee Club or Gloria Jean's is for? :)

rahimlee54
09-11-2012, 10:22 AM
Absolutely. Let's not forget that most who would submit a review at a coffee equipment vendor's site (or CG or HB) don't mind fiddling for 20 minutes to extract a good shot. I doubt rahimlee's wife wants to spend 20+ minutes every morning to get her Half-Caf-Non-Fat-Low-Foam-Venti. Isn't that what the queue at Coffee Club or Gloria Jean's is for? :)

Pretty much. She isn't concerned with anything, milk or performance related, she just assigned me research duty. She just wanted the nespresso but I couldn't just leave it alone, I did try though. Would I just be better off getting a machine around the 1k mark and trying it out for a while? I am usually into buying higher up and not worrying about buying again until whatever I have no longer works. I end up spending less money and don't want an upgrade for a long time. In this case since I have no prior experience I can be swayed by more experienced opinions.

Thanks for the hep guys.

Jared

SameGuy
09-11-2012, 10:31 AM
I am the same way. But I'm also a hands-on geek, so I decided to save a bit and get a good, solid machine that is by far the best-selling entry-level home barista unit (the Rancilio Silvia). It's not perfect by any stretch -- the temperature dead band is huge and it vapor locks every initial heating cycle requiring a purge. But for $629 it can make outstanding espresso and surprisingly good milk drinks with some hands-on time. For another $150 you can add a PID kit to get rid of the temperature swings and it is close to perfect. Now to find an easily-installed vacuum breaker to get rid of the vapor locks and it would be the best sub-$1500 machine around.

chokobo
09-11-2012, 10:35 AM
If you have the discretionary, get the best you can get. I find re-sale a hassle and you end up not having to re-learn how to get the best out of your equipment. That being said, demand is there entry level gear so it'll probably be easy to move on when the time comes. Problem with buying something good is there is always an upgrade (more expensive usually) around the corner, regardless of how good a machine you get =)

WildBoar
09-11-2012, 11:56 AM
RE Super Jolly height -- I do not use the hopper. I pour the beans for the shot into the grinder and then cover the hole w/ a tamper -- it fits perfectly. Ideally you would not be leaving beans in the hopper unless you were using them up each day, as they are just getting staler and staler when they are in there.

W/ no hopper, there is no real height issue w/ cabinets.

chokobo
09-11-2012, 12:17 PM
Just a reminder to have good filtration in place for your water. Scale from unsuitable water can lead to very costly repairs or maintenance.

wenus2
09-11-2012, 02:37 PM
RE Super Jolly height -- I do not use the hopper. I pour the beans for the shot into the grinder and then cover the hole w/ a tamper -- it fits perfectly. Ideally you would not be leaving beans in the hopper unless you were using them up each day, as they are just getting staler and staler when they are in there.

This is what I do as well. My 58mm tamper just lives in the throat of the grinder.
I own a Vario also, but I have never tried to use it for espresso. It just makes coffee. But I can quickly and easily adjust the grind between drip in the Technivorm, or siphon brewed coffee in the Yama, or cold brew in the Toddy.

This is well above your stated budget, but....
If I were going to buy an espresso machine it would be a Vibiemme DoubleDomo from Stefano at EspressoCare.com
Given your location on the other coast though, I would suggest the Izzo Alex Duetto II from ChrisCoffee.com

I can't think of any sub $1,000 espresso machine that isn't a glorified toy. You can learn to fool around with one to work ok most of the time, but they don't "just work." I suffered through several different types of machines before finally realizing cheap machines are simply that. I would have saved a lot of time, money, and frustration just ponying up to begin with.

And no, upgraditis doesn't end. I have my eyes on a Speedster.

SameGuy
09-11-2012, 03:20 PM
LOL! Not denying the "they just work" aspect, but even with my crappy grinder I can pull decent doubles with my un-modded Silvia. The mods I indicated above would still keep the price below $1000 and help with the consistency. I still think the grinder would be the biggest factor in any setup. A sub-$1000 machine can make great espresso with a good grinder, while a crappy grinder will hinder the performance of a $2000+ machine. Where a more-expensive machine beats the Silvia and the P041 (among others) is in milk capabilities. A double boiler or heat exchanger machine will run circles around a thermoblock when it comes to steaming milk quickly, effortlessly and repeatedly. Between the $629 Silvia and the next step up is a wide, empty gap that ends around the QM Anita or Andreja Premium at ~$1600.

WildBoar
09-11-2012, 05:27 PM
I will admit to spending way more then I originally intended on our espresso machine because I wanted one I could manually control, yet also wanted semi-auto features so my wife could use it. Temp surfing on a Silvia, etc. was not an option for her. And due to her really liking cappuccinos and lattes a double boiler was important. But in the end, even the semi-auto was too complicated for her (well, really the grinding/ tamping), so I make all the espressos, cappuccinos, etc. :lol2: Three years later, the sting of the machine cost is a distant memory, and I enjoy a nice cappuccino before heading to work each morning. And the machine gets a good workout when we host dinners and parties; the double boiler really helps out when making half a dozen cappuccinos (yes, we do not adhere to the 'no milk after 10:00 am' rule, and neither do our friends!).

UCChemE05
09-11-2012, 05:44 PM
Not as shiny as some of the Italian E61's but I don't really think the Italian machines are that well made anyway...

Based on what? This is completely false. Most high quality espresso machines are still made in Italy with pretty much the rest coming from the US.

apicius9
09-11-2012, 06:04 PM
I have the Anita and I do have somewhat mixed feelings about it. I think I just got frustrated in the beginning and was overwhelmed by learning how to use it - and there is a learning curve. I also made it harder on myself by buying a machine, a mediocre grinder (Rocky) and a small roaster (IRoast II) at the same time. Needing to learn how all three machines worked and how to get them to work together to make a good coffee got frustrating at times. I am just in the process of starting over again and working with the Anita a bit more, hoping I will master it better with more practice. I always envy a friend who gets better and more consistent shots with a Mazzer mini grinder and an unmodded Silvia than I get with my setup. If I had to do it again, I would buy a double boiler machine. Most of the frustration comes with dealing with the heat exchanger and getting the temperatures right (even with a little thermometer in the heat group). And I definitely would also get a better grinder. That's not in the budget right now, so I will have to work with what I have.

That said, I just watched the little video on the Alex duetto II at Chriscoffee.com and this has to be the most beautiful thing I ever saw. Well, at least when it comes to coffee machines. Total overkill for someone who makes maybe 3-4 shots a day, though. Just like owning a $500 kitchen knife is overkill ;)

Stefan

SameGuy
09-11-2012, 06:35 PM
Based on what? This is completely false. Most high quality espresso machines are still made in Italy with pretty much the rest coming from the US.Except for the Brevilles, which come from chokobo's neck of the woods (Australia)! :)

SameGuy
09-11-2012, 06:43 PM
That said, I just watched the little video on the Alex duetto II at Chriscoffee.com and this has to be the most beautiful thing I ever saw. Well, at least when it comes to coffee machines. Total overkill for someone who makes maybe 3-4 shots a day, though. Just like owning a $500 kitchen knife is overkill ;)

StefanAin't that the truth!

chokobo
09-11-2012, 10:42 PM
Based on what? This is completely false. Most high quality espresso machines are still made in Italy with pretty much the rest coming from the US.

Based on my previous experience owning an Alex Duetto II. Pretty much all the Italian machines are made with off the shelf parts made by ageing industry. The QC on the the parts itself is the annoying part. Maybe I got a lemon but it annoyed me so much with rattles, reliability - the pump is vertically on top of the motor (I had a motor failure too) and overshoot on the PID. With conservative settings on the PID, steam recovery was subI'm all up for honouring the history in Italian espresso, but in terms of quality I would think that only La Marzocco or Bosco are really that decent over there. The States on the other hand have some innovative stuff in Synesso and Slayer Espresso.

chokobo
09-11-2012, 10:48 PM
Except for the Brevilles, which come from chokobo's neck of the woods (Australia)! :)

Haha I have no horse in that race. I own a machine from the Netherlands =). But let Mr. CoffeeGeek from Canada tell you the same thing - http://twitter.com/FRSHGRND/status/245401004307251200. In reality, quality and reliability of all machines are unacceptable. Commercial machines fail just as much as domestic ones. It's just that you have a support network of technicians who can service the commercial machines quickly with their slew of generic parts.

geezr
09-11-2012, 11:44 PM
..........That said, I just watched the little video on the Alex duetto II at Chriscoffee.com and this has to be the most beautiful thing I ever saw. Well, at least when it comes to coffee machines. Total overkill for someone who makes maybe 3-4 shots a day, though. Just like owning a $500 kitchen knife is overkill ;) Stefan
:coolsign::coffeelots::coffeelove::yeahthat:
but - footprint too big :(

Carl
09-12-2012, 12:00 AM
Sadly, I just go to Dutch Brothers, but at least I can afford the payments.

AFKitchenknivesguy
09-12-2012, 12:17 AM
Based on my previous experience owning an Alex Duetto II. Pretty much all the Italian machines are made with off the shelf parts made by ageing industry. The QC on the the parts itself is the annoying part. Maybe I got a lemon but it annoyed me so much with rattles, reliability - the pump is vertically on top of the motor (I had a motor failure too) and overshoot on the PID. With conservative settings on the PID, steam recovery was subI'm all up for honouring the history in Italian espresso, but in terms of quality I would think that only La Marzocco or Bosco are really that decent over there. The States on the other hand have some innovative stuff in Synesso and Slayer Espresso.

I have to disagree as well, Italy still is the king of espresso machines. While a few companies are making a dent, it's just that, a dent. My Viebemme Domobar Super is a tank, love the thing. Reality is, pick any major coffee shop and see what is behind the counter, 95% of the time it's an Italian made machine. With that said, I hope more competition from other countries pushes the prices down so I can try a double boiler at a reasonable price.

chokobo
09-12-2012, 12:52 AM
Ok, I think I just expected too much from my Italian machine. All relative, it just didn't meet my expectations.

Actually, if you look at most of the speciality coffee cafes in Melbourne or Sydney, they are mainly using 30% La Marzocco, 50% Synesso (5 Senses do an amazing job of marketing and distribution here) and 20% KvdW and Slayer machines. Rarely do you see another "Italian" machine other than the LaMar in these speciality cafes. Fair enough if you go to your local strip you may see more Wega's, Victoria Arduino's, La San Marco's or San Marino's, but they are more associated with places where coffee isn't the focus and generally serve Italian-style choc bombs with stale grinded coffee from full dosers. Can the other Italian machines make good coffee - absolutely, but the other brands mentioned above in the speciality cafes offer more control and consistency to the barista.

Lars
09-12-2012, 01:36 AM
Ok, I think I just expected too much from my Italian machine.

You are comparing your prosumer Alex to commercial machines like La Marzocco, Synesso and KVDW. Not fair imo.

Lars

apicius9
09-12-2012, 02:38 AM
Aarrgghhh:slaphead::angry1::doublebanghead: I just looked on Craigslist and someone sold 2 Mazzers from closing down a coffee shop 3 days ago. Now, does anybody know what grinder this is?

9860

Stefan

wenus2
09-12-2012, 03:19 AM
Looks like a Rossi RR45, I would generally consider it a good deal at 250.
It is stepped with rather large steps though. Commercial quality, you see a lot of them branded for Astra.

chokobo
09-12-2012, 03:25 AM
You are comparing your prosumer Alex to commercial machines like La Marzocco, Synesso and KVDW. Not fair imo.

Lars

My point was that prosumer Italian machines are not as good as they are hyped are to be or should be for their price point - imo anyway. Either way they will produce good coffee. More so the grinder, beans and most importantly the barista will be the defining factor.

Stefan, I believe that is one of the commonly rebranded Italian grinders, specifically the Rossi RR45 grinder. Rebranded also as the Nuova Simonelli MDX and Eureka MDM. Not sure exactly which model it is, so would be good to check it out in person so that you can check on burr size, but you should be able to source new burrs quite easily.

apicius9
09-12-2012, 03:38 AM
Thanks guys, would that be a step up from my doserless Rancilio Rocky? The seller didn't find any name (but Made in Italy) on it but she also doesn't know anything about it - bought a business that came with it. She says it runs smoothly and the asking price is more than reasonable, so maybe I play around and replace the burrs if necessary. Or would I be better off with the Rocky?

Stefan

chokobo
09-12-2012, 03:46 AM
Should be somewhat Super Jolly quality if 64mm burrs? Apart from it not being stepless, it should still be step up in grind quality from the Rocky.

SameGuy
09-12-2012, 04:17 AM
The machines at all the Virgin Lounges I've visited (Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne) use Rancilios. The original Gregan's on Pitt in Central, Sydney uses (used, when I was there in 2009 and again in 2010) a LM. I tend to see more LMs and Rancilios than any other brand. I have yet to see a Synesso up here.

chokobo
09-12-2012, 04:31 AM
Err I meant speciality 3rd wave cafes. Melbourne - eg. St Ali's, Seven Seeds, Patricia's Coffee Brewers, Clement Coffee, Auction Rooms, Proud Mary, etc. Sydney - Coffee Alchemy, Mecca Espresso, Sample Coffee Bar, Toby's Estate, Reuben Hills, Single Origin Roasters, etc.

wenus2
09-12-2012, 05:21 AM
Thanks guys, would that be a step up from my doserless Rancilio Rocky? The seller didn't find any name (but Made in Italy) on it but she also doesn't know anything about it - bought a business that came with it. She says it runs smoothly and the asking price is more than reasonable, so maybe I play around and replace the burrs if necessary. Or would I be better off with the Rocky?

Stefan

If I were Starting up I might choose the Rossi, but I wouldn't upgrade from the Rocky to get it. The cost/benefit isn't there.
If you upgrade go stepless and keep an eye out for these brands in particular: Mazzer, Macap, Compak.

WildBoar
09-12-2012, 09:05 AM
Stefan, just be patient and keep checking CL (and ebay). SJs come up all the time.

SameGuy
09-12-2012, 06:56 PM
Err I meant speciality 3rd wave cafes. Melbourne - eg. St Ali's, Seven Seeds, Patricia's Coffee Brewers, Clement Coffee, Auction Rooms, Proud Mary, etc. Sydney - Coffee Alchemy, Mecca Espresso, Sample Coffee Bar, Toby's Estate, Reuben Hills, Single Origin Roasters, etc.Hehehe. Thanks for the rounded lists. Last summer (your winter -- it was effing cold!) in Melbourne I managed to get to Patricia and a couple others in and near Little Bourque, Aix in Centre place and a few more. I guess I'm old-fashioned, but one of the best milk drinks I had was (not surprisingly) at Brunetti's in Carlton. Atmosphere may have had a lot to do with my perception, though. LOL

SameGuy
09-12-2012, 06:59 PM
PS: Tiamo 2 was one of the best trattoria meals I've had outside Italy, while T1 next door had a very authentic espresso bar experience.

chokobo
09-13-2012, 02:12 AM
Haha yes winter is too cold here. I suspect you like the traditional Italian espresso then. Coffee is really exciting at the moment as coffee cultivating countries are really improving practises, processing techniques and speciality coffee companies are directly investing in the farms to enable better and more efficient production. What has been found is that other than the nuts, choc bomb, toffee or malt that you normally associate with Italian espresso - which still uses a lot of cheap Robusta beans, rather than Arabica, you can get a lot of different fruit flavours through the different methods of extraction. Melbourne coffee from these speciality cafes are especially geared more towards these fruit flavours which also means lighter roasts. If you're drinking a lot of milk drinks using their espresso blends, this doesn't particularly work all that well for the old-school drinkers as there isn't enough of the choc type flavours to really cut through the milk. All thats left is an eminently balanced milk drink which sometimes doesn't have enough kick. Everyone's palate is different but if you can next time, definitely try all the coffee black.. from the espresso machines either as short blacks or a long black if you really need to. The flavours of some of these beans we're importing now are really fantastic, especially without the milk to kill it all.

Or, ideally, you could try the filter brews from all the places listed above. Filter allows for more delicate flavours as espresso with its 9 bar of water pressure tends to destroy them. You need time to drink them though as you need to let them cool to room temperature to really let the flavours bloom. Proud Mary imports some really special Panama geisha beans which are awesome through filter. Or you can try filter from our very own World Coffee Brewing champion 2012, Matt Perger from St Ali's.

Thanks for the tip. Will try it out next time I'm in Carlton. Try out D.O.C. Pizza there for an authentic Neopolitan style pizza, or Cecconi's and Lupino in the city for pasta/mains.

SameGuy
09-13-2012, 04:23 AM
Next time you're up in Brissie, try Alen's Espresso on George Street near the Roma transit centre. Good espresso.

FWIW, I'm a straight espresso drinker more often than not. I've added your lists to my Dropbox and will check them out next time I swing 'round (early next year I suspect). :)

rahimlee54
09-17-2012, 10:10 PM
Bought a grinder!

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-EvU9IYbJ5gc/UFfTOwa9siI/AAAAAAAABNg/byjIxOozGnY/s801/IMG_20120917_214927.jpg

Lars
09-18-2012, 02:19 AM
Thats a very nice grinder..

Lars

AFKitchenknivesguy
09-21-2012, 09:44 PM
A pourover station a buddy of mine just made for me. I think it's pretty nice...

http://i559.photobucket.com/albums/ss35/jherm77/Cofffee1_zps3d130c95.jpg

http://i559.photobucket.com/albums/ss35/jherm77/Coffee4_zps8328d879.jpg

http://i559.photobucket.com/albums/ss35/jherm77/Coffee3_zpse85d313f.jpg

http://i559.photobucket.com/albums/ss35/jherm77/Coffee2_zps33c769fe.jpg

apicius9
09-21-2012, 11:48 PM
Nice setup, Jason!

O.k. grinders again: What about an Anfim Caimano with commercial use but new burrs? Worth $350 with a cracked hopper and a missing doser lid? Any thoughts?

Stefan

Lars
09-22-2012, 03:57 AM
What about an Anfim Caimano with commercial use but new burrs? Worth $350 with a cracked hopper and a missing doser lid? Any thoughts?

Stefan

Stefan,

I am not a big fan of stepped grinders for espresso, but I like that it runs slower than the Super Jolly that also uses 64mm flat burrs and is in the same price range.

Maybe you could take it for a test drive, to see if it works ok for you..

Lars

Toriss
10-05-2012, 11:01 AM
Well I would like to have similar items for my house because I am looking for huge shopping for my newly built house. I watched some splendid variety there at Hsn using discounts from http://www.ezcouponsearch.com/HSN-Coupons_cm_607.aspx and that worked nicely but I will be looking to see more coupons for my next shopping. If anyone having some opinion about better store with more quality items, then please let me know.

AFKitchenknivesguy
10-05-2012, 10:23 PM
I doubt you are going to get anything of quality on HSN, but I am a buy once, cry once type of guy. Go to home-barista.com if you want to know more about getting a quality set-up for coffee. You don't have to spend a fortune, but if you get into espresso be prepared to spend some coin unless you get deals on craigslist or ebay. Sweetmarias.com is my favorite place to shop for coffee, but there are other good vendors.

rahimlee54
10-06-2012, 10:48 PM
1 week and a quick training session with the guy I bought my setup from and I got a pretty decent cup/shot going here.

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-Tfh3eeLoJ9I/UHDUnwGp2HI/AAAAAAAABew/ch8iu-Ill6o/s1068/IMG_20121006_210108.jpg

I did a little plus sign before I just plopped it on top, I'll have to work on that. Thanks for the input guys.

wenus2
10-07-2012, 02:13 AM
Jason, I'm jealous of your drip station. That's pretty slick lookin, ceramic V60 and all.

SameGuy
10-11-2012, 10:09 AM
Nothing new to add, except that: along with roasting some damn fine espresso and decaf espresso (I ordered 5 lbs. of each again), Jeff at Red Bird is one of the friendliest guys with whom you could ever do business. I have to order by phone because the site isn't set up to accept non-US Paypal payments. Damn fine coffee!

Johnny.B.Good
11-06-2012, 03:01 AM
Anyone else catch the premiere of "Dangerous Grounds" on Travel Channel tonight?

I thought it was pretty interesting and well done. Pretty sure the man knows and loves his coffee!

http://www.travelchannel.com/tv-shows/dangerous-grounds/articles/dangerous-grounds

(I was watching the final episode of "No Reservations," and this came on afterwards.)

joetbn
12-11-2012, 05:00 AM
IMHO the Baratza Virtuoso Preciso is the best grinder for home use at any price. The only thing that more expensive commercial grinders do better is high volume, and they are actually much worse at low volume home use. The preciso leaves only about 0.2 grams of coffee in its chute after grinding, other home grinders, even the more expensive Vario by the same company leave over a gram, and commercial grinders like Mazzer leave up to 7 or 8 grams. That means when you grind for a cup you either have to first grind and throw away a few grams of coffee or have a significant percentage of stale grounds in your brew. It is also extremely versatile, I have never seen another grinder that is exceptional at espresso, and can also do a coarse grind for french press with almost no fines. The vario grinds very well for espresso too, but is no where near as good on the coarse end or even in the middle for drip or pour over. For me, espresso aside, the ultimate home coffee setup is a Preciso and a Hario V60 dripper. People think I'm nuts for telling them to buy a $300 grinder and a $15 coffee maker, but the results are infinitely better than using a $15 grinder and a $300 coffee maker. As far as home roasting goes, it seems like a fascinating and rewarding hobby, but I would rather buy beans from a great local roaster that has spent his whole life perfecting the art of roasting, and travels around the world hand picking beans from individual farmers. I will never be able to produce roasts of that quality at home, not even close. Oh, I do not work for a coffee equipment maker or store, this is all based on personal experience and years of research and tasting.

joetbn
12-11-2012, 05:15 AM
This analogy just came to me, using a blade grinder is the coffee grinding equivalent of using an electric knife sharpener on the back of a can opener. If you aren't willing or able to spend money on a good burr grinder get a Hario Skerton or mini mill hand grinder. Or do a 3mil dice on your beans with a good usuba. :knife:

mano
12-11-2012, 11:46 AM
joetbn, what other burr grinders have you personally compared the Baratza Virtuoso Preciso to? At $700 the Mazzer isn't a consideration for a drip home brew. At around $170 there's the Kitchenaide ProLine and the basic Capresso burr grinders will get a great cup of coffee.

chokobo
12-11-2012, 11:54 AM
Not sure that the Preciso is the best at any price? Lots of others have talked about the advantages of larger conical burrs and commercial grinders - more clarity in flavours, greater forgiveness factor in grind adjustment, fluffier grinds leading to less channelling/distribution issues, slower rpm grinding due to larger motor (the Preciso can heat up the grinds significantly when grinding large filter doses), etc. There are quite a few home-friendly grinders out there which imo are better than the Preciso - Versalab, Malk K30, or even the Elecktra Nino which retains 4 grams but essentially rivals the mighty Mazzer Robur. Hand grinder users should rejoice at the new HG One grinders which are available to pre-order. That being said I'm sure the Preciso is awesome for all the reasons you mentioned above and easily a contender for best home grinder under $1k :biggrin: Haha would love to see a video of someone attempting to brew coffee with the 3mm dice of beans!

WildBoar
12-11-2012, 12:30 PM
It's pretty easy to get trhe grinds out of a Mazzer chute if you don't leave the 'protector' in place. You can use the end of a chopstick, or even a pastry brush. But I actually get most of it out by dropping the tamper in the throat of the hopper opening on top (I do not have the hopper in place). All it take is about a half inch drop. The air pressure pushes out the bulk of the grinds. And that works even with the protector left in place.

There are always Mazzers for sale on eBay, and sometime on Craigslist. You should be able to score a good used one in the $350 range.