Author Topic: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffee pod machines?  (Read 3468 times)

Valiant

  • aka Sam
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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #25 on: October 06, 2020, 05:34:54 pm »
I make mine like this but use the mesh filters for all that extra oily richness https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVcgSBJFhgM
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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #26 on: October 10, 2020, 04:59:03 pm »
I make mine like this but use the mesh filters for all that extra oily richness https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVcgSBJFhgM
looks weaker than a nuns piss

Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #27 on: October 10, 2020, 06:06:06 pm »
35g coffee to 310-350ml water? That's not going to be weak coffee; as a specialty/hipster brew it's more likely just a light roast.

Porkins

  • Formerly Nick H. And a long time ago etc, Eurostar
Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #28 on: November 17, 2020, 09:09:29 pm »
Thanks to this thread I've got my Gaggia Classic out of mothballs.



I got it 5 years ago but I just couldn't get the hang of making a decent cup. This year I've been trying lots of different beans in various moka pots, grinding them with my Iberital MC2. And lo and behold, I seem to have learnt something about grinds and extracting. I now make delicious coffee, without any of the measuring and weighing and timing that I used to wrestle with. I can even make black coffee with a sweet crema. I've cracked it!

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #29 on: November 17, 2020, 09:31:58 pm »
Its all down to temperature stability (or lack of it) with these thermostat machines. The temperature overshoots as the element switches off, drops, then carries on dropping for a bit after the element switches on again. I think it can be up to about 10⁰, which has a huge impact on flavour. Solution is to fit a PID. You can get kits just for the Classic.

Porkins

  • Formerly Nick H. And a long time ago etc, Eurostar
Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #30 on: November 17, 2020, 09:44:57 pm »
I'm delighted with the flavour. Not interested in changing anything.

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #31 on: November 18, 2020, 06:52:45 am »
Great. That saves £100 and a few hours of swearing and frustration with a soldering iron then  :thumbsup:

Porkins

  • Formerly Nick H. And a long time ago etc, Eurostar
Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #32 on: April 10, 2021, 04:33:14 pm »
I've succumbed to Nespresso mania. Not a morning person. Couldn't stand the faff and mess of a real espresso machine and grinder, or a moka pot. So I got myself a used Sage Creatista Plus for half the new price. My God, it's so easy. Have bought the full range of Illy capsules, hoping to get a result which isn't too much of a compromise.  Unfortunately the taste is murdered somewhat by having to use oat milk, for health reasons. (Ok, I could use almond or cashew, but they're gross.) BUT... I've just made something extremely good...three Illy Forte Extra Bold capsules plus some oat milk in a mug. Very happy. I shall survive.

The waste is appalling. I think I might recycle the capsules by cutting them open to get the coffee out. Wouldn't take long to recover enough aluminium to build an airliner.   

ravenbait

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #33 on: April 12, 2021, 05:16:53 pm »
Jumping in here, if you were looking to add a manual espresso machine to your recently-acquired Rancilio Rocky (and I am not enough of a perfectionist to listen to anyone telling me I should have got a Eureka Mignon, before anyone ventures down that road), what would be the recommendation of the forum for under £1000 (preferably significantly under)?

Sam
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"Created something? Hah! But that would be irresponsible! And unethical! I would never, ever make... more than one."

Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #34 on: April 12, 2021, 05:36:16 pm »
I'm confused - The Rancilio Rocky is a grinder, as is the Mignon? As an espresso machine, I'm very happy with my Rancillio Silvia, which is only £400-ish, which with the addition of a PID is fantastically consistent

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #35 on: April 12, 2021, 05:42:14 pm »
£1000 will get you a single boiler E61 HX machine. If you go up £200 you are into dual boiler PID territory, either Sage Dual (which works very well, but may not be robust or serviceable) or one of the E61 machines that are built like tanks.

£500 will get you a Rancilio Silvia. Factor in £80 or so for a PID and it'll produce shots as good as the £1000 jobs, but the steaming is a ballache.

Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #36 on: April 12, 2021, 06:05:02 pm »
What is this "steaming" of which you speak? I think my machine has the capability to do something with a magic wand, but I've not tried it ever.*

You may find it interesting to look at James Hoffman's review of low end machines, the Gaggia and Rancilio are both in there https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HIGdYy5of4

ETA things I've added to mine:
- a PID - the mecoffee PID https://mecoffee.nl/ - may not be the best choice if you need support, but works fine for me so far, planned from the off
- a funnel for the portafilter, to reduce mess and add ease of use (I have a manual Mignon grinder). Best Chinesium off ebay (actually a nice bit of CNC kit)
- a motta tamper
- a bottomless portafilter, keeps coffee hotter and is easier to tamp flat

*EATA: Lie. I tried it once. Distinct dimunition of visitors has meant that is the sum total of my frothy milk escapades.

ravenbait

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #37 on: April 12, 2021, 08:55:19 pm »
I'm confused - The Rancilio Rocky is a grinder, as is the Mignon? As an espresso machine, I'm very happy with my Rancillio Silvia, which is only £400-ish, which with the addition of a PID is fantastically consistent
Yes. As in, my Wilfa Svart blew its motor, I replaced it with a Rocky because it can handle filter grind and has easily replaceable bits (also Charlotte recommended it), and am now contemplating an espresso machine to replace the Nespresso (which I was always in two minds about).

Neither of us takes milk in coffee (I have a dairy intolerance), the dog doesn't drink coffee, and so performance with a magic wand is superfluous. Thank you for the recommendations. No idea what a PID is, but that's what google is for.

Sam
https://ravenbait.com
"Created something? Hah! But that would be irresponsible! And unethical! I would never, ever make... more than one."

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #38 on: April 12, 2021, 09:06:33 pm »
Rancilio Silvia then  :thumbsup:

PID pulses power in continuously to boiler which helps keep brew temp stable. Without it you get a huge temperature rise and drop leading to massive inconsistency in shots. (because temperature is pretty crucial.

The beauty of the Silvia is that it shares the important bits (the group head) with the top range pro equipment, and it's all about heat retention (but see comments about PF)

WRT to Ham's comment on portafilter, the stock one is shite. You can swap it out for a professional cafe one which weighs about 10x more but retains heat beautifully. Well worth the cash. The truth is a decent 2 spout PF will keep your shot hotter than a naked PF. Naked PF is for diagnosing issues with your grind and tamp (which cease to be an issue if you have a decent grinder...Rockys are OK but are known to be clumpy...which results in water passing through unevenly and what is called channelling...you get one side of filter producing lush brown blobs and the other side a stream of acrid yellow piss)

Ultimately the better your equipment the fewer faults you have to mitigate. It really isn't about being anal...its about repeatability and not having to mess around. This is why cafes use decent kit. They set the grind, the dose, the amount of water, and the temp. And that is it. You get those right with good kit and don't need to fuck around.

There is a learning curve that everyone goes through, and the first part is usually discovering the hard way that the people you thought were coffee obsessives were right. The first part of this is learning that your grinder is as important if not more than your machine.

Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #39 on: April 12, 2021, 09:48:38 pm »

There is a learning curve that everyone goes through, and the first part is usually discovering the hard way that the people you thought were coffee obsessives were right.

That's true, but there's a but.

That is, (at least in my case) you realise that stuff does make a difference, and that a small amount of effort at establishing consistency has a pretty good repayment. What it is, you start off making coffee, and it's good. Only sometimes it's better than others, so you try to find out how to make it so it is consistently enjoyable. The PID that keeps the water temperature constant at the start made the single biggest improvement. While I can see that there is reason for greater obsessiveness, I've reached the point of diminishing returns so I don't see myself ever weighing each shot, or worrying about a dosing grinder, or even buying a better grinder until this one packs up. I judge the coffee I put in by eye and the same with the water, it is really good enough for me. Full confession: I have bought a crack dealer's weight scale for a fiver off eBay, which I used to establish visual representation of volumes, I don't use it on a regular basis.

As far as the portafilter is concerned, I'm not entirely convinced that a bigger holder would retain as much or more heat than the stock one fully up to temperature, but it isn't impossible. People appear to get more aerated over the portafilter basket than the holder, I might well change that if I can find the right size. But the absolute reason I got the bottomless one was that with a 2 spout and the cups I have the bastard machine drinks the coffee as well, if I'm not careful. I thought of a 1 spout but decided it would make tamping too difficult, can't see any drawback with the bottomless one. Another confession, I wipe the seal clean pretty much every shot (or, every other one) to make sure the pressure seal is good and consistent.

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #40 on: April 12, 2021, 10:01:15 pm »

There is a learning curve that everyone goes through, and the first part is usually discovering the hard way that the people you thought were coffee obsessives were right.

That's true, but there's a but.

That is, (at least in my case) you realise that stuff does make a difference, and that a small amount of effort at establishing consistency has a pretty good repayment. What it is, you start off making coffee, and it's good. Only sometimes it's better than others, so you try to find out how to make it so it is consistently enjoyable. The PID that keeps the water temperature constant at the start made the single biggest improvement. While I can see that there is reason for greater obsessiveness, I've reached the point of diminishing returns so I don't see myself ever weighing each shot, or worrying about a dosing grinder, or even buying a better grinder until this one packs up. I judge the coffee I put in by eye and the same with the water, it is really good enough for me. Full confession: I have bought a crack dealer's weight scale for a fiver off eBay, which I used to establish visual representation of volumes, I don't use it on a regular basis.

You are at the point where mitigating the shortcomings of your equipment means a load of faff...like weighing your beans, weighing your shots etc etc etc etc
I don't need to do any of that shit because I have a dosing grinder(I modded it with a timer so I can set the dose easily) and the grind quality is awesome, and I have a volumetric machine.

Here is my process: press grind button. Dump coffee into PF. Tamp briefly (I don't need to fuck about) Put PF into group. Press one button once.Coffee arrives, pump stops.

And that is it.That is all I do.

Quote
. People appear to get more aerated over the portafilter basket than the holder, I might well change that if I can find the right size. But the absolute reason I got the bottomless one was that with a 2 spout and the cups I have the bastard machine drinks the coffee as well, if I'm not careful. I thought of a 1 spout but decided it would make tamping too difficult, can't see any drawback with the bottomless one. Another confession, I wipe the seal clean pretty much every shot (or, every other one) to make sure the pressure seal is good and consistent.

Yes, some peoplehave VST baskets and rave about them. I tried one and noticed no difference.

At this point I have to say that the coffee you use alsopresents different challenges. I like medium dark trad espresso, but if I liked lighter roasted acid coffees as espresso I would be being very anal because they need a lot more care to get a balanced shot. I would be following a recipe for that to get the right brew ratio of solids to water.

Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #41 on: April 12, 2021, 10:14:39 pm »

You are at the point where mitigating the shortcomings of your equipment means a load of faff

True, with that small change, but then that is reflected in the original purchase cost - and possibly size - of your kit, your may be plumbed in, too. Ultimately, you have better kit and it likely pays off in convenience and consistency. As it happens, the MeCoffee PID will allow me to set a shot timer, but up to now I'm happy with using the switch (I do have it set to do prewetting though, which seems to help)


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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #42 on: April 12, 2021, 10:29:44 pm »
Yes, it's plumbed in, and I wouldn't go back to a tanked machine.

The funny thing is that all the geeks are moving into pressure profile machines like the Vesuvius or the Decent. Or they are going lever because they think lever gives a special flavour (it might, it is essentially pressure profiling)

Me? I can't be arsed. I want repeatability and ease. I don't want to go off on some wanky coffee adventure every time I make a cup. Also my wife can easily use this machine because its all set up.

T42

  • *** fool in a hurry
Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #43 on: April 13, 2021, 02:14:22 pm »
There is a learning curve that everyone goes through, and the first part is usually discovering the hard way that the people you thought were coffee obsessives were right. The first part of this is learning that your grinder is as important if not more than your machine.

The second part is convincing your significant other that yes you do need to spend all that money on "just" a grinder.
I've dusted all those old bottles and set them up straight.

Porkins

  • Formerly Nick H. And a long time ago etc, Eurostar
Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #44 on: April 13, 2021, 10:54:23 pm »
Its all down to temperature stability (or lack of it) with these thermostat machines. The temperature overshoots as the element switches off, drops, then carries on dropping for a bit after the element switches on again. I think it can be up to about 10⁰, which has a huge impact on flavour. Solution is to fit a PID. You can get kits just for the Classic.

I've given this more thought because the good cups from my Gaggia were rare aberrations. And I found a cheap-but-highly-rated PID kit which doesn't require soldering, which I am very crap at. https://www.shadesofcoffee.co.uk/pre-2018---original-gaggia-classic-espresso-machines/gaggia-classic-pid-kit---132din-single-display So do I persist with the Gaggia? I'm looking for black coffee of rocket fuel strength and lots of crema with some sugar-free sweetness. It's what I think a proper, traditional Italian espresso ought to be. I have a feeling I wouldn't get it even if I fitted the PID. There'd be more mods needed, more faffing and probably a very, very expensive grinder upgrade. (I have an Iberital MC2).

The alternative is to try all the coffees available in Nespresso pods and find my favourite. Or concede that I'd prefer Illy to anything I haven't tried, and maybe consider sticking it in a reusable pod.

A huge factor is that by this time next year I want to be away with my campervan most of the time. Taking my Nespresso machine with me would be easy. A real espresso machine + grinder would be harder, especially if I'm to avoid making horrible messes in the vehicle. I'd probably have to put the machinery on a shelf/table outside the vehicle and only make coffee in the open air. 

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #45 on: April 13, 2021, 11:02:19 pm »
If you can find a Nespresso you are happy with then go with that would be my approach given what you have said.  The unfortunate truth is that whatever you do to your Gaggia you will still have the MC2 as a limiting factor (I speak from experience of the old MC2)

Porkins

  • Formerly Nick H. And a long time ago etc, Eurostar
Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #46 on: April 13, 2021, 11:08:41 pm »
If I had the money I'd have five grand's worth of gear in my campervan, set up to give the same perfect cup every time with the press of one button.

Porkins

  • Formerly Nick H. And a long time ago etc, Eurostar
Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #47 on: April 13, 2021, 11:12:54 pm »
Five grand is excessive - there are used Super Jollys going for £250 on ebay.

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Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #48 on: April 14, 2021, 08:07:06 am »
Yes, and they are good grinders. The only issue is working out if the ebay grinder is an enthusiast's machine that has been used 4 times a day for 10 years, or an ex-cafe machine that is tired.
It is possible to hunt around for a bargain. I got a newMazzer Major £700 grinder for £350. It had a slight dent in the doser and I cracked doser screen. The screen cost £12, the dent didn't matter. I'll never ever change that grinder because it will outlast me, and it produces a great grind.

For a van though, personally I'd go Nespresso. You've an issue with space, and also potentially power. The Nespresso heats up quickly so there won't be a prolonged power draw, and they have a small footprint. Plus they don't make any mess at all.

T42

  • *** fool in a hurry
Re: Bean to coffee coffee makers? Coffe pod machines?
« Reply #49 on: April 14, 2021, 08:58:05 am »
I'm just imagining a Super Jolly in a camper van...
I've dusted all those old bottles and set them up straight.