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10-19-2012, 03:28 PM #71
I just bought a nice grinder and a Boudom , and just buy whole beans from a guy that supplies some high end establishments . The beans always taste different sometimes good sometimes not so much but its fun trying the different ones !
10-19-2012, 03:35 PM #72
10-19-2012, 03:36 PM #73
10-19-2012, 11:51 PM #74
10-19-2012, 11:55 PM #75
Here's the issue: you absolutely must buy an espresso grinder, and this is important enough to require the best grinder you can afford. It's more important than the machine. So, short version: entry level espresso setup is $500 or so. If you are still interested I will post some options s when I'm off my cell.
10-20-2012, 04:53 PM #76
I'll go ahead and post entry level options for espresso. Like I said, the grinder is paramount. Espresso is coffee brewed at high pressure, and the coffee provides the resistance against the water. If the grind isn't fine enough, or uneven, there won't be enough pressure, or the coffee will extract unevenly, or over extract (making it sour or bitter). The more expensive the grinder, the more even the grind, the better the espresso. I can't overstate the importance of the grinder enough.
So...the very best option for a beginner setup is the Baratza Preciso, both because it has the ability to adjust precisely, and because Baratza is a phenomenal company to deal with, should you need service. Absolutely outstanding. It's also compact, comparatively, and looks pretty sweet on the counter.
Amazon.com: Baratza Virtuoso Preciso Coffee Grinder: Kitchen & Dining
Here's a review:
CoffeeGeek - Baratza Virtuoso Preciso
Another option is the newly redesigned Cunill Tranquilo. One bonus to this is that it has an eDoser: push a button, and it grinds and deposits directly into the portafilter, like a $1000 Mazzer.
Cunill Tranquilo Classic Grinder (Doser or Doserless)
If you have the budget, there are far more expensive grinders. Mazzers are the gold standard, and built like tanks, lasting a lifetime. The grind may be better, but not a deal breaker, compared to the Preciso/Cunill; build quality is the main think you're buying.
Mazzer Mini Electronic Type B Coffee Grinder - Mazzer Coffee and Espresso Grinders from Whole Latte Love
Now, machines: in my vast range of experience (I'm not kidding here, I've owned far too many machines starting from a $50 Krups, and working up), the best beginner option is a cheap Gaggia, and between a $200 Gaggia, and a $1200 HX machine, there are no options worth considering. Gaggia is Italian, and makes good machines that are easy to learn on. Other options in that range are less forgiving, more expensive, and don't provide better results in the cup. The Rancilio Silvia is a very common recommendation for beginners, and again, I can't stress enough how strongly I'd recommend AGAINST that machine. Having owned one for 4 years, I speak from experience. Silvia is the most inconsistent, frustrating machine ever, and she's $700. Avoid. So, Gaggia:
Gaggia Espresso Pure Espresso Machine from Whole Latte Love
BTW, the Gaggias all have the same internals, from the $200 unit to the $400+ units. The difference is the stainless exterior, and possibly a 3 way solenoid valve. I wouldn't spend the extra cash.
Now, if you can drop $1200, you can buy an HX machine (heat exchanger), which allows you to steam and brew simultaneously, and provides very noticeable improvements in the cup. I own an Astra Pro, and this is the machine I recommend. You'll have to spend $500-1000 more to beat its performance, and build quality is unmatched. There are only 2-3 HX machines at around the $1200 price point, and none compare to the Astra, it's simply built better, with a bigger boiler, better metals, better pipe fittings, better wiring, better pressurestat, etc. If you are interested in one, I can refer you to Astra for a good deal.
Hope that helps. If you need more info, let me know.
10-20-2012, 05:08 PM #77
Anyone here use French press?Donkey ( daily driver)
10-20-2012, 06:21 PM #78
10-21-2012, 02:39 PM #79
10-21-2012, 02:49 PM #80
1) What coffee are you using?
2) When was it roasted?
3) How fine are you grinding? Pics?
4) Did you grind before brewing?
5) How hot is your water?
6) How long are you letting it sit?