Wow - $2000 for a tamper, but I get a free machine! Gotta get me one of those. Great article, Mark. Weighed the pros and cons of each tamper well, and gave justified conclusions. Fabulous photos, too! Nice work.
Posted Fri Mar 28, 2003, 7:43am Subject: My decision is made...
I'm one of many who's been fence-sittig on tamper choice for awhile but the wait is over - I'll order a Reg Barber today. Might have to get others in the future but it's a good place to start. BY the way - my free plastic tamper was only $1,080 including the free machine - a great deal!
Surprisingly enough, the Pimp Tamper (my new moniker for the cudic zirconia sportin' model) was on the shelf in abundance at a local high end kitchen supply chain I visited the other day. Chewf central has very nice stores if you're into cooking and a better than average coffee/espresso supply section. I was stunned to see the Pimp Tamper but when you're living in Sopranos country as I am, anything can happen. Bada bing!
jroche Senior Member Joined: 19 Dec 2001 Posts: 24 Location: Piermont, New York Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Silvia, Solis SL90 Grinder: Rocky, Solis 166 Drip: Cone, press pot Roaster: dead dead dead
Posted Fri Mar 28, 2003, 10:38am Subject: Knock off
I find it odd you would be even the least bit hesitant to say the Rosewood is a knock off of the Reg Barber. It clearly is an attempt to cash in on one of the most respected and popular tampers to date. Just the fact that its "Rosewood" and not some other wood for petes sake. I have a great deal of respect for 1st line (I got my Rocky from them...), but this one got under my skin. Not all my purchase decisions are based solely on cost. I'm all for innovation, but knocking off someone else's work does not win you points in my book, especially on such an affordable item like a tamper. Kudos to Presso for thinking on their own and delivering a product worthy of our consideration.
espresso_jim Senior Member Joined: 13 Jun 2002 Posts: 325 Location: Austin, TX Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Mini Vivaldi II Grinder: Mazzer Mini E Drip: Technivorm Moccamaster... Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Fri Mar 28, 2003, 1:30pm Subject: Solid Article
Great article, Mark. I have the aluminum version of the espresso parts pro tamper (convex) and like it. Chris Nachtrieb threw it in when I got my Tea (never even tried the plastic one). I had a chance to use a Reg Barber a friend brought over and ordered one that night. I absolutely love this tamper. IT just feels right and I get great shots using it, slightly better than the aluinum tamper.
Reading in between the lines, I am seeing that some of what folks think about the tampers is the fit and feel. Smaller handed people like a different tamper than big handed people. However, I think this only goes so far. My hands are fairly average and the Reg Barber just flowed into them. It was like an extension of my hand. I would like to be able to try others without having to buy them. The best I can do is read your fine article.
MarkPrince Moderator Joined: 19 Dec 2001 Posts: 5,656 Location: Vancouver, BC Expertise: Professional
Espresso: KvdW Speedster Grinder: Versalab M3 Grinder Vac Pot: A bit too many Drip: Bonavita Roaster: Hario Glass Retro Roaster
Posted Fri Mar 28, 2003, 9:00pm Subject: Knockoff Redux
In retrospect, I was probably a bit too soft on the 'knockoff" aspect of the Rosewood tampers (which btw, aren't just Jim's product - several other vendors sell them, and one parts company is the major importer). But at the time of this review there was sufficient differences between the two (namely a gloss finish and the chromed base) that I minimized some of the commentary I made.
Reg is now applying a gloss finish to the handles of his tampers, so they are closer, but one question out of that: who did the gloss coat first?
In the end, yes, it's a knock off, and the Taiwanese company that makes these should have gone for a more unique design, I agree.
Posted Fri Mar 28, 2003, 11:05pm Subject: Gourmet Espresso Tamper
If you read the material on their web site, you see that the intended use is for a five-pound tamp in a moka pot. Who knows how it works in that environment? It seems almost unfair to attempt to use it for real espresso.
Posted Fri Mar 28, 2003, 11:18pm Subject: Presso tamper
I don't doubt for a moment what CoffeeKid has written that the Presso tamper creator(s) didn't even bother to look at other tampers and simply relied upon the comments of baristas to develop its tamper. Given that there aren't exactly an infinite number of tampers to be considered and studied that point of view seems to have been quite naive. Sufficient heft is a necessity for a tamper and I would think that no aluminum version is going to be better than the same version in stainless steel with the same external dimensions.
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