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Coffee Connoisseurs

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Zimmerman
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Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Zimmerman » 06 Aug 2011, 14:22

Right…. any of you good folk like your coffee?

More to the point - have a machine for making it at home.
I dont drink coffee. Cant stand the stuff (shame, because I really love the smell of it (freshly ground stuff) - and the fact there are loads of options for coffee all over the place nowadays).

Anyway, Mrs Zim likes her coffee and in recent times has become a coffee snob.


Can anyone recommend a good machine for making your own (so something that you can make espresso and cappuccino's with)? What else is there? Latte's? Isnt that just mainly milk?

Anyway, I am not after one of these machines that you bung the capsules in (we've got a Nescafe Krupps(?) one which she has outgrown).

So now want a real mccoy grown up full blown jobbie.

Needs to be good, reliable, easy to use - and to satisfy Mrs Zim - look the part too (retro Italian styleee).

Willing to pay £200-£250 (obviously less if its possible).

Cheers

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Richt » 06 Aug 2011, 14:45

I can't recommend a coffee maker per se as I standard coffee maker, which just does filter coffee.

Russell Hobbs Caffe Torino.

The coffee I would recommend has to be Tesco's finest Java Sumatra. Obviously coffee is a personal taste thing, but thats the nicest I have found. (You didn't ask that question though did you) :lol:

edit to add.... there is nothing better than the aroma that comes from a freshly opened bag of coffee

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Richt » 06 Aug 2011, 15:15

http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?q=russel ... x=98&ty=59" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by bloggie » 06 Aug 2011, 15:32

Like the taste except the coffee chocolates of course but the caffeine goes straight to my bloodstream.The Gadget Show did a test.
http://fwd.channel5.com/gadget-show/vid ... e-machines" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by stuboy » 11 Aug 2011, 13:54

I have a nespresso machine. Highly recommend but make sure it has a milk filter if you want to make fancy coffees like Latte and Cappuccinos. I only have the espresso/coffee one - no milk filter - but they are great and coffee very tasty too.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by X-Man » 11 Aug 2011, 14:14

Over your budget but the best consumer coffee machine as voted for by Coffee Geek is

http://coffeegeek.com/reviews/consumer/rancilio_silvia" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I have one and it is beautifully made - engineered to perfection. Built like a tank and has been used regularly for 6 years without any problems.

Bear in mind that however good a machine you get, it is actually the freshness of the beans and the quality of the grind which is the greatest influence over the crema (which is the browny-reddish cream on top of properly brewed espresso and contains all the oils and flavour).

I have my own roaster (about £200) and grinder (about £200) and I have to say that fresh roasted beans are the key to the best coffee.

Read more advice here:

http://coffeegeek.com/guides/howtobuyanespressomachine" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


I know it sounds expensive but if you are trading up it's a false economy to go for mid-range.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Zimmerman » 15 Aug 2011, 13:54

Weirdly I was thinking about you over the weekend (and how you no longer post) :(


So does that machine make the cappucino types etc.

http://www.hasbean.co.uk/products/Ranci ... o-Machine-(New-Model" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;).html

This site refers to it as an espresso machine (but there looks to be a pipe on the right)?

£435.... is that about right? Seems very few UK stockists are available.

The link you sent is in dollars (and converts at about £350). Where did you buy yours from? Was it from that site?

PS - I know my crema's even though I dont drink the stuff :)

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Knulpuk » 15 Aug 2011, 14:08

I am purely an expresso man and use the Gaggia Classic. £270 though I bought direct from italy for about 250 eur.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0000C72XS/r ... B0000C72XS" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;.

Does the job nicely. Grind own beans but do not roast at home.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Hogmeister » 15 Aug 2011, 14:14

stuboy wrote:I have a nespresso machine. Highly recommend but make sure it has a milk filter if you want to make fancy coffees like Latte and Cappuccinos. I only have the espresso/coffee one - no milk filter - but they are great and coffee very tasty too.
Me too, have had one for years and love the quality and the convenience - faster than making instant coffee. For Latte's etc I have a separate nespresso milk frother thing ("aeroccino") which works very well too.

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Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by SamD » 15 Aug 2011, 16:42

Earlier thread for digestion:

coffee-maker-t36721.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by unc.si. » 14 Nov 2011, 16:41

Are DeLonghi bean to cup machines any good?

seems the perfect compromise between taste and convenience, without being tied to pods??

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by ArmChairPundit » 18 Dec 2011, 16:00

Unfortunately pukka coffee comes at a price, I own this

Image

and is very, very good
don't expect much change from 800 squid, [lucky for me i work for Siemens]

Remember your coffee is only as good as your bean, find your local suppler.

however some of my best coffee have been using nothing more then this... it doesn't need to be expensive.


Image
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Martin-Wahl-Gri ... 722&sr=8-2" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

And

Image
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Bialetti-Moka-E ... 646&sr=8-1" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


you wont go in a Italians home and find a auto coffee machine just that pot above on the stove.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by unc.si. » 21 Sep 2013, 12:42

I've got a Bialetti, but have now got an induction hob, so the SS Bialetti doesn't work (can probably get something to make it work I guess, like a steel disc that goes underneath the pot?).

Anyway, I've now also got a Gaggia Classic set up in the Garage (got it for free when a mate was 'upgrading' to a nespresso).

Have managed (after a few failures) to get some coffee out of it with a decent (ish) crema, although surprised at how hard the coffee has to be tamped down to get the crema.

I've also got a burr grinder, so maybe need to grind it a bit finer.

Any coffee maker owner experts have any useful tips as to getting a good crema? This is my latest effort.
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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by murf » 21 Sep 2013, 13:22

Don't suppoed you would be impressed by the Dolce Gusto Capuccino I am currently drinking :lol: (but it is nice)

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by X-Man » 21 Sep 2013, 15:45

unc.si. wrote:
Any coffee maker owner experts have any useful tips as to getting a good crema? This is my latest effort.
As the espresso maker's Bible 'Espresso Coffee: Professional Techniques' by David C. Schomer makes it clear - there are certain variables when you make coffee:

1. The freshness of the bean
2. The grind
3. The amount of coffee
4. The temperature of the brew
5. The tamping pressure.

The key to the best coffee is to get 3, 4 and 5 100% consistent and then tailor 2. to the conditions and the freshness of the bean. Outside temperature, and humidity can make a difference to the grind but the most important factor is really the freshness of the beans.

You get beans that have been roasted within the last 48 hours you'll find that the crema is easy to produce. Having said that your existing effort isn't bad - just that you could double that easily with fresh beans. It's all about the oils in the bean. The older the bean the less oils it has as it dries out over time.

The best coffee machines are the ones that maintain the most consistent temperature. But that's why you'll see coffee snobs saying that in order of importance it's:

(a) Beans
(b) Grinder
(c) Machine

Ignore them to a certain extent but I can vouch that if you roast your own beans properly you will see crema like you've never seen it before!

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by unc.si. » 21 Sep 2013, 17:53

Thanks X-Man.

Don't think I'll be roasting my own beans any time soon but I will try and find somewhere that I can buy freshly roasted beans from.

So am I right in saying that the older the beans, the finer the grind needs to be?

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by X-Man » 21 Sep 2013, 19:24

unc.si. wrote:Thanks X-Man.

Don't think I'll be roasting my own beans any time soon but I will try and find somewhere that I can buy freshly roasted beans from.

So am I right in saying that the older the beans, the finer the grind needs to be?
As a very general rule that's true - but all bets are off when your bean is over three weeks old (some people say two but I haven't noticed a real difference).

Now bear in mind that this is only true if you keep the weight of ground coffee and tamp pressure consistent. In other words you can get a similar effect to reducing your grind by adding more coffee or increasing the pressure of your tamp (at the same time as keeping the other things consistent). The reason for changing the grind is that this is a much more measurable way of altering the brew. It's harder to do this consistently or measurably using amount of coffee or pressure of tamp.

Part of the joy of making espresso is that it's as much of a science as an art - it needs a little experimentation to get it right but over time you get a sense of what you when you need to reduce the grind.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by X-Man » 21 Sep 2013, 19:36

Search for local roasters and you'll find someone - Bristol, Nottingham, Manchester, Derby, Sheffield all had at least one and that was just a quick google. Typically they are all micro-artisan and are worth supporting.

Failing that (for example Leeds doesn't have one) you can buy online - http://www.hasbean.co.uk" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; supplies me with green beans but they do lots of fresh roasts because they supply a lot of small coffee shops. Once you've got used to using freshly roasted beans (they may take a little experimentation at first) you'll understand why it makes such a difference.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Groomyd » 21 Sep 2013, 20:18

I use hasbean and use an Italian/Spanish stove top jobby

I am more than happy

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by thebillfella » 21 Sep 2013, 20:43

I do like my coffee and I think X-man's recommedations are great if money and time are no object.

For anyone who just ones something quick but authentic before you rush out in a morning I have to say that I am really impressed with the Nespresso Club. I have a De'Longhi Lattissima+ which can do Expressos, Lungos, Cappucinos and Latte Macchiatos with no effort whatsoever and I can't fault it.

The Club has a huge selection of Pure Origin and Blended Expresso Grand Crus so there is something for everyone, and it saves me a fortune compared to going to Costa or Nero every day.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by unc.si. » 21 Sep 2013, 22:15

X-Man wrote:Search for local roasters and you'll find someone - Bristol, Nottingham, Manchester, Derby, Sheffield all had at least one and that was just a quick google. Typically they are all micro-artisan and are worth supporting.

Failing that (for example Leeds doesn't have one) you can buy online - http://www.hasbean.co.uk" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; supplies me with green beans but they do lots of fresh roasts because they supply a lot of small coffee shops. Once you've got used to using freshly roasted beans (they may take a little experimentation at first) you'll understand why it makes such a difference.
Think I might need to be a bit careful googling 'local roasters', but I'll give it a go. Cheers. If I can't find a local supplier I'll try hasbean.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Clibing » 13 Aug 2016, 11:15

stuboy wrote:I have a nespresso machine. Highly recommend but make sure it has a milk filter if you want to make fancy coffees like Latte and Cappuccinos. I only have the espresso/coffee one - no milk filter - but they are great and coffee very tasty too.


Which espresso machine you would like to have? I need one for my home but still looknig for some perfect reviews.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by blahblah » 07 Nov 2016, 22:20

My turn :lol: :oops:

I have a fave bean (Peruvian, as it doesn;t have that dirty after taste, I have cigs for that, but a chocolate\nutty after taste), but more than open to local roasters, with Unc's rider :?

Without getting all European about this (and we did vote Brexit in our infinite wisdom) I want milky coffee ie ye olde instant stuff in cup with some sugar and boiling milk poured into it - a few whizzes round with a teaspoon and "young" blah was a happy blah :)

I want that with my yummy Peruvian beans - well it is winter.....

Anyone know of any sensibly priced machine? As above ground beans not dodgy capsules etc

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by unc.si. » 07 Nov 2016, 22:46

I ended up getting rid of the Gaggia and getting a Panasonic bean to cup job in the New Year sales a couple of years ago. About £350 I think, reduced from about £600. We've got DeLonghi Magnifica's in each of the UK offices at work but I prefer the Panasonic, despite not really being a known 'name' for coffee machines (De Longhi's were only about £200 each though I think). Never use the milk frother - too much faff cleaning, but if I just use it for espresso the cleaning is really easy. It's a lot less mess than the Gaggia was.

Picked up some organic coffee beans from Colombia a few weeks back which were very nice, but even the bog standard Juan Valdez packs are better than the supermarket stuff. Have got some nice beans from El Salvador and Oaxaca as well - all very different but all good. Not gone as far as X-Man's home roasting though. Would love to have the time to do that - something to look forward to in retirement :D

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by blahblah » 08 Nov 2016, 09:31

unc.si. wrote:in the New Year sales a couple of years ago. About £350 I think,
I read that as New York :? :oops: :lol:

Good point re waiting a few months, but it really for the milky versions.....

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Zimmerman » 08 Nov 2016, 11:40

another option is to buy ready ground beans and to do them in a filter cup (think its called a drip cone)?



This dude is a bit extreme /perfectionist - but shared the link purely for you to see the method.

Monmouth in London do a coffee that is ground and can be made in this manner - they make their coffee in the Borough Market shop using this method.

I don't drink coffee but my mate loved this method and used to by his coffee from Monmouth.
My mrs used to love their coffee beans too (she's since moved on to another supplier).
Monmouth also sell the drip cones and papers to go inside.

Im not sure if any/all coffee that has been ground for filter can be made in this way?
If it can, i'll get the name of my mrs' chosen supplier.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by murf » 08 Nov 2016, 12:44

I used to use drip cones, picked up the idea when touring France. A way to make a half decent cup while moving round in hotel rooms etc.

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Re: Coffee Connoisseurs

Post by Beerfuelledman » 27 Dec 2016, 12:30

Hi folks, I got a VonShef bean to cup coffee maker for Christmas :D
It comes with its own grinder to grind the beans into grounds.
What I need to know is how to dispose of the grounds.
I intend to put them in the bin, but I need an optimised method of getting them from the i nternal metal filter into the bin. If I run the metal filter under the tap - great the filter is cleam but the grounds go down the sink :?
Anyone devised a good method lol?

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