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    Caffe cream coffee and it was the crema that made spring lever machines successful A spring lever group is basically a cylinder with a rod spring and piston inside Pulling the lever down raises the piston compresses the spring and allows water direct from the boiler to be drawn into the space under the piston The barista then releases the lever and the spring forces the piston down pushing the water through the coffee at a pressure of 8 9 bar Presto espresso with crema The other major benefit of lever brewing is that the water cools down as it expands into the cylinder so suddenly a brew temp of 92C or thereabouts is feasible Presto no more burnt coffee Levers have a number of limitations including a tendency to overheat in constant use and the barista developing one arm s muscles out of proportion but in capable hands they still produce an unmatched shot Lever machines didn t have pumps simply relying on town water pressure and a sight gauge for boiler refill Heating was controlled by big mercury switch pressurestats and could be electric or gas It took 13 years of development for the next big advance in espresso machines to be revealed and it was a doozy In 1961 Faema introduced the E 61 model espresso machine It had a number of industry changing innovations starting with an electrically driven pump delivering 9 bar pressure to the group Instead of drawing hot water directly from the boiler cold water was pumped through a heat exchanger inside the boiler and then to the group The group and heat exchanger formed a thermosyphon loop which kept the group heated but below boiling point The group itself was a marvel of engineering cams rods washers and springs which allowed pre

    Original URL path: http://www.coffeeco.com.au/newsletter/july2013.html (2015-11-27)
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    which automatically dispenses the required amount of water for each shot usually controlled from a keypad boiler level control pressurestat and electric pump As each increment of automation was made the electronic controls got more complex with the programmable dose controllers which appeared in the 1970 s requiring early computer circuits These developed into the modern day computerised touchpads and brain boxes However the point of all these improvements wasn t better espresso it was to make things easier for the café owner and the barista to make more drinks in less time with fewer people Shot quality was a secondary consideration Despite the advent of small cheap computer chips things stayed that way until the late 1990 s The sad fact was that most of the world s espresso machine companies were Italian most still are and their ideas of innovation were concentrated on looks and ergonomics not the taste of the espresso Then came the internet and everything changed A group of enthusiastic amateurs started discussing all things coffee using the internet social media of the day newsgroups Some of the people involved actually were rocket scientists and when the conversation got around to espresso machines and the various factors involved in producing quality espresso ideas started to emerge These ideas have led directly to the current state of the art machines with individually PID temperature controlled groups variable pressure brewing etc Machines like the Synesso or Slayer are really directly descended from the ideas and experiments of these internet era espresso pioneers Of course the machine manufacturers didn t initially want to do this it was customer demand fuelled by internet acquired knowledge that drove them to it Now there are a bunch of amateurs thinking about grinders but again there hasn t been a lot of

    Original URL path: http://www.coffeeco.com.au/newsletter/august2013.html (2015-11-27)
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    was demonstrated was that the general levels of Singaporean barista skills have risen dramatically in the last few years So armed with the knowledge that any shop I visited should have at least this level of competence I set out to taste test espresso in Singapore One thing I found out fairly quickly was that any of the chains and there s one called Coffee Connoisseurs I should sue went for the extreme dark roast Fortunately the specialty shops I checked out were all medium roasts much more in line with my palate My rankings are purely arbitrary based only on my tastebuds because all the shots I tasted were expertly produced In fourth place NYLON COFFEE ROASTERS Everton Park Estate 01 40 enter off Cantonment Rd Miniscule shop no food offering espresso and pourover coffees I found the espresso too acid a blend of Central American coffees Nicaraguan and El Salvador The owners have travelled to the coffee farms they buy from cup regularly and the coffees suit their personal tastes but they still have a lot to learn about roasting and blending for espresso Machine was La Marzocco Mazzer grinders Third place was JIMMY MONKEY 9 One north Gateway Singapore 139643 Student focused cafe with industrial ambience Slayer espresso machine Mazzer grinders Shot was superbly pulled but the flavour was generic central south American blend no standout notes of sweetness fruit or chocolate Service was fairly sloppy several menu selections unavailable at 2 p m Food prices are relatively high for Singapore Second place was CHYE SENG HUAT HARDWARE 150 Tyrwhitt Road Singapore 207563 Nicely furnished cafe inside an old hardware store Synesso machine Mazzer grinders Good service correctly pulled shot 4 00 slightly acidic blend that probably works well with milk Again somewhat generic central south American

    Original URL path: http://www.coffeeco.com.au/newsletter/september2013.html (2015-11-27)
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    tasted half a dozen Gesha coffees to date from Panama Colombia and Guatemala They all have similar characteristics 1 high acidity 2 intense floral aroma 3 mild chocolate finish 4 very light body The roast level is also quite light by most standards about the same as our Café de Cuba roast These are not coffees that can retain their varietal character as dark roasts If fact one of the most common comparisons I hear from other coffee professionals tasting Geshas is not to other coffees but to high end teas The Gesha varietal certainly makes exceptional coffee in the sense that it stands out from other coffees in terms of both aroma and flavour The question of value is entirely up to the tastebuds of the buyer Personally I m not that fond of the straight Gesha coffees but that s because I m biased towards big rich full bodied coffees My taste in wine tends the same way I prefer a monster shiraz to a flinty semillion although I can appreciate and critique both This month s special needs no introduction because it certainly sits on the monster shiraz side of the equation It s the new crop Costa Rica Tarrazu Miel 45 00 kg Rich coffee aroma with sweet acid smooth fruity mid palate and creamy body the coffee est coffee you ll ever taste Speaking of Café de Cuba one of my customers wondered why I hadn t run out after warning that last year s crop had suffered hurricane damage in the February 2013 newsletter It turns out that my newsletters are more widely read than I d imagined I was contacted by several roasters who just happened to have a bit of green Cuba laying about It s a difficult coffee to roast well

    Original URL path: http://www.coffeeco.com.au/newsletter/october2013.html (2015-11-27)
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    packaging does help to preserve them Third most common Is my pump going bad I don t seem to get the same pressure as a year ago True sometimes vibration pumps do wear out but by far the most common cause of this problem is lack of cleaning I try to gently guide the questioners through the steps involved while thinking If you actually cleaned the thing once every 5 years you wouldn t have any problems Fourth is probably Which machine do you recommend for an office These days much to my own detriment I would have to say Nespresso Commercial Expensive yes but clean and low maintenance vs superauto machines A proper espresso machine and grinder setup also needs a decent office barista and few workers do well in the dual role Fifth place goes to What s the best way to keep coffee fresh and here my answer has always been the same Freeze it Preferably in the sealed bag it arrives in if not in an airtight container glass is better than plastic The lower the freezer temp the better chest freezers are best After that don t keep it too long anything more than 3 months is too much And finally sixth is Can I drop in to your shop and buy spares coffee machines or pick up stuff This is by far the hardest one to deal with I m a retailer and I hate to tell my customers No but sometimes it has to be done It s a bit like asking Amazon if you can drop in and pick up a book Most of the time the only person actually present in the office is my coffee packer I m usually out and about travelling between coffee roasters and green coffee suppliers

    Original URL path: http://www.coffeeco.com.au/newsletter/november2013.html (2015-11-27)
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    a couple of mutant strains had become the most common cultivars One of those mutant strains was introduced to Brazil in the early 1800s and Brazil Bourbon coffee became the most successful coffee varietal ever Funnily enough the other mutant variety didn t do as well It thrived on the little island but gradually became much rarer as overall coffee cultivation on Reunion declined to the point where it was more or less forgotten Fast forward 200 years or so and a whole lot of little things start to come together to form something much bigger The first was the invention of the Polymerase Chain Reaction in 1983 by a young biochemist Kary Mullis while he was on a long drive with his girlfriend towards a weekend away Probably the most productive dirty weekend in history because it led directly to the DNA mapping world we now live in As Kary has since quipped before PCA being a genetic engineer meant that your grandfather your dad and you all drove trains After the PCA invention Monsanto and other huge agricultural would be monopolists started tinkering with genetically modifying common foods Fortunately coffee farmers have been breeding coffee plants for higher yields and disease resistance for decades so there was no Big Ag interest except in trying to create a genetically modified decaff coffee bean that still tasted like coffee To date that effort has been a dismal failure The rediscovery of stunning heirloom varietals in the early 2000 s in particular Panama Gesha prodded the specialty coffee world into investigating what else was out there After all Gesha had always been there in Ethiopia it just hadn t been singled out and intensively researched to find the best combination of terroir and climate for US 100 per pound results Some

    Original URL path: http://www.coffeeco.com.au/newsletter/december2013.html (2015-11-27)
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    made machines and capsule machines has increased and consumer spending on gadgets has dropped significantly since the GFC As long as we could cover our costs we ve never been concerned but in January Lelit dropped a couple of bombs on us First was a pretty decent price increase and then the news that Jetblack Espresso in Sydney are about to be appointed Lelit s exclusive distributor And yes we were the original Lelit importers and established their brand in the Aussie market Italian manufacturers are very pragmatic Following this we ve taken a hard look at our whole equipment business with some startling conclusions The equipment side of our business easily takes up more than half of our time and resources but generates only a few percent of our income Adjusted for inflation we d probably be better off putting the same investment into term deposits or blue chip stocks Which is what we ve decided to do We ll be getting out of the equipment business altogether with a couple of exceptions We will still provide warranty services general repairs and spare parts for all the machines we ve sold over the years although we expect the cost of the parts to rise significantly Our existing stocks of machines are all marked down 20 from the current prices no exceptions We will not be re stocking the PL Plus machines so our apologies to all those who have enquired Right now our number one priority is getting a large spare part shipment organized to ensure that our service capabilities remain unchanged I ll repeat we WILL be honouring all our warranty and service obligations for the foreseeable future just like we do with Rancilio products From my personal viewpoint I will now have more time to devote to

    Original URL path: http://www.coffeeco.com.au/newsletter/february2014.html (2015-11-27)
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    is ALWAYS to open their own place How would you feel if Jamie Oliver had been an apprentice in your kitchen All you can do is to train your staff to do as well as possible and recognize that ultimately the really top ones will either move on or buy you out On blaming the 2000 machine for poor espresso Sometimes you ve just got to laugh We don t have a grinder is 100 of your problem On blaming wholesale roasters for stale coffee in large stores I suspect a commercial reality check is in order If a large department store chain rocks up to a relatively small specialty roaster and says we d like 10 tonnes of your coffee in 200g bags for our winter rollout and 2 tonnes a month thereafter do you think the roaster is going to knock them back Most likely they ll ring their spouse and say Honey contact the bank and tell them if they can hold off on foreclosing until next month we ll pay out the mortgage in full Oh and the kids can get new shoes They might worry about in store freshness after they ve cleared their debts but since they have absolutely no control over it they ll worry more about losing the contract if they make an issue of it The only practical way to ensure you re getting fresh beans is to buy direct from the roaster or roast them yourself On pumps The Italian manufacturers I ve talked to use vibe pumps for tank machines rotary pumps for plumb ins Simple as that All of them recommend that rotary pump machines should only be used when attached to a permanent water supply There are some parts used in espresso machines where releasing your inner

    Original URL path: http://www.coffeeco.com.au/newsletter/march2014.html (2015-11-27)
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