Philosopher Senior Member Joined: 13 Feb 2007 Posts: 188 Location: Australia Expertise: I like coffee
Espresso: Silvia Grinder: Rocky
Posted Thu Mar 8, 2007, 4:57pm Subject: Re: Crema by James Hoffmann
Sorry, o Philosopher, but thou art full of it (to use a quaint post-philosophical Aussie expression.) You have picked up the superficial factors without understanding the deeper ones. Crema alone is a whole lot more than just CO2 and melanoidin. I would recommend reading the books James mentions in his bibliography as a minimum starting position, followed by the purchase of a decent espresso machine and grinder combination and a LOT of really, really fresh coffee.
This statement is a bit like saying that the mere presence of the sun gives no indication of its importance to the continuity of life on earth. In both cases, you need to contemplate not the presence, but the meaning and effects of the absence. Then, Grasshopper, you can go forth into the wide world, portafilter firmly in your grasp, and start doing something other than thought experiments.
Your logic is askew o' master. Your analogy does not necessarily apply. Is crema actually the source of a good espresso or is it the product of one? You have appreciated the product but have not yet explained the source. In other words, you marvel at the presence of life on earth but you think it solely has to do with the presence or absence of the sun.
To quote James Hoffman:
"Illy’s article is an interesting, and the research they have done is excellent. I do, however, dislike the way that the crema of an espresso is treated in a romantic and mystical way. It is merely a foam of the coffee beneath, caused by bubbles of CO2 being trapped by a compound called a melanoidin that acts as a surfactant. The reason that it fades quickly is down to drainage."
Posted Tue Dec 7, 2010, 11:16am Subject: Re: Crema by James Hoffmann
I found your presentation very interesting. I am a home roaster with a limited bank account. I currently use the iRoast 2 and the Breville Cast 800ESXL with the pressurized basket and a Breville Conical Grinder (grind just short of full Turkish). I have tried several bean varieties and roasts, but cannot seem to get a quantity/quality of crema. I recently roasted up Monsooned Malabar with about 15% Robusta, just as the oils were beginning to show on the beans. I have not particular issues with the taste, except there are varieties I like better than others. Could part of the issue be the roasting profile? Or perhaps it is the combination of roaster and espresso machine.
kajgyr Senior Member Joined: 6 Mar 2014 Posts: 1 Location: Canada Expertise: I love coffee
Posted Thu Mar 6, 2014, 8:58pm Subject: Re: Crema by James Hoffmann
Thanks for the info-packed exegesis on crema. I've been a crema enthusiast for a long time, and when I don't use an Espresso machine, I miss it. I'm an inventor, thus I turned my attentions to the matter and came up with a hand-held gadget which makes crema from any coffee in seconds. It's perfect for those who like the AeroPress or French presses. I'd be glad for any feedback on the concept. A video of the prototype can be found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2m1HAx_pJI0
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