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VST or Strada baskets
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Discussions > Espresso > General > VST or Strada...  
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gbastiani1952
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gbastiani1952
Joined: 18 Dec 2008
Posts: 277
Location: North Carolina
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: QM Andreja Premium
Grinder: Cimbali Junior
Drip: Crusinart
Posted Tue Jul 3, 2012, 7:07pm
Subject: VST or Strada baskets
 

Has anyone any experience with either the Strada or VST baskets and have you noticed any difference in the cup compared to the stock basket that came with your machine. I've got a Andreja Premium from what I seen is the Strada comes in either a 17g or 21g, the VST has 15g, 18g, 20g and 22g with either ridge or ridgeless

 
Gery Bastiani
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TonyVan
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Joined: 24 May 2010
Posts: 276
Location: Pacific Northwest
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: GS/3, La Pavoni
Grinder: Macap M7K, Rocky
Drip: Kone
Posted Tue Jul 3, 2012, 9:06pm
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

My preference for the VST baskets is great enough that I have abandoned the original equipment baskets entirely and have no intention of going back - the espresso tastes that much better to me.  I occasionally use the 7g and 22g, but use the three middle sizes (15g, 18g and 20g) constantly.  Regarding the choice of ridge designs, the ridgeless works especially nicely when used with a 58.4mm tamper since the piston fit leaves little or no excess loose grounds on the basket sides. The overall body of opinion on this and other sites over the past year is that the VST-manufactured baskets are superior to the "Strada" baskets coming from LM.  

All this is IMO, although it's pretty clear that Mark Prince's original article has proved itself true and VST's design has been widely validated by across much of the espresso world.  Others disagree or prefer alternatives, especially for use in specific niche requirements. But this topic always seems to become hotly debated, and posts such as yours have too often had the unintended effect of tossing a grenade into the room. So please excuse me while I run for my life before it goes off, warnings are issued, posters get strikes, threads are locked ...
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gbastiani1952
Senior Member
gbastiani1952
Joined: 18 Dec 2008
Posts: 277
Location: North Carolina
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: QM Andreja Premium
Grinder: Cimbali Junior
Drip: Crusinart
Posted Wed Jul 4, 2012, 12:10pm
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

Thanks Tony for your info, will try the VST 18g. Since I don't have a bottomless PF and from what I've read on Chris's website that anything over 18g basket I need the bottomless PF for my QM Andreja.

 
Gery Bastiani
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adan0327
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adan0327
Joined: 6 Sep 2011
Posts: 45
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: la cimbali m32 dosatron 3...
Grinder: Astoria Super Jolly
Vac Pot: hario tc2
Drip: chemex, v60,kalitta...
Roaster: Lol.... Pan :D
Posted Wed Jul 4, 2012, 10:31pm
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

Love my vst 18g. It definitely makes shots much sweeter in my opinion. Ive compared my stock basket and VST basket with calibrations to achieve 26g in 26 s on both baskets. VST was definitely sweeter. To me this proves that uniform hole sizes do make a difference in shot quality. The VST is designed to be uniform to achieve a better overall even extraction.
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TonyVan
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Joined: 24 May 2010
Posts: 276
Location: Pacific Northwest
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: GS/3, La Pavoni
Grinder: Macap M7K, Rocky
Drip: Kone
Posted Thu Jul 5, 2012, 7:23pm
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

gbastiani1952 Said:

Thanks Tony for your info, will try the VST 18g. Since I don't have a bottomless PF and from what I've read on Chris's website that anything over 18g basket I need the bottomless PF for my QM Andreja.

Posted July 4, 2012 link

Chris' comments had to do with the basket fitting inside the PF, but I'd also recommend the bottomless PF with the VST for learning reasons too.  My experience is that the VSTs reward good technique when it comes to basket preparation, especially consistent distribution.  While taste always has the final say, getting immediate visual feedback on any flaws in your preparation pays extra dividends and will get you down the learning curve faster with these baskets.
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andys
Senior Member
andys
Joined: 10 May 2003
Posts: 857
Location: NY
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Speedster, Londinium 1
Grinder: EK-43,Robur, HG One, M3
Vac Pot: Yama
Drip: various
Roaster: PIDed Popper
Posted Thu Jul 5, 2012, 9:17pm
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

gbastiani1952 Said:

Has anyone any experience with either the Strada or VST baskets and have you noticed any difference in the cup compared to the stock basket that came with your machine.

Posted July 3, 2012 link

I believe the difference you will see or not see in the cup between the VST baskets and your stock baskets depends entirely on your individual stock baskets. There is so much variation in conventional basket performance, due to both design and quality control issues, that it is hard to know what you will observe.

Especially with lighter roasted coffees, however, (which are difficult to extract properly), many people readily notice a significant improvement. That's because the VST filters are designed to get you espresso in an 18%-20% range of extraction yield even with these light coffees. In my experience, this usually gives you sweeter and more fully developed flavors than you would get with baskets that yield only 16%-17%.

Also, the VST baskets have a quality control procedure better than anyone else in the industry. So you know when you buy one it'll perform as designed. Sadly, this is not the case with other baskets -- it is well known among pro baristas that supposedly identical conventional baskets all pull a little differently.

Sorry for sounding like a VST advertisement. I know, I do! :-)   But I beta tested them a lot and I believe in them.

 
-AndyS
picture page:  http://flickr.com/photos/andy_s/sets/
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gbastiani1952
Senior Member
gbastiani1952
Joined: 18 Dec 2008
Posts: 277
Location: North Carolina
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: QM Andreja Premium
Grinder: Cimbali Junior
Drip: Crusinart
Posted Mon Jul 16, 2012, 7:53pm
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

Just got my VST 18g ridgeless basket and right off you can see that it has more holes and spaced out better. I tried it out with some Dolce Tazza from CC and it does have a different taste then with the stock basket. Will see how it go's when I get my next order of Red Bird and I may try some Dancing Goat from B & B

 
Gery Bastiani
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CMIN
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Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,362
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Mon Jul 16, 2012, 10:17pm
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

How do the HQ baskets from Espressoparts compare to Strada or VST? Read a few things where some said VST still had the edge, and others said they couldn't taste a difference.
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Coffeenoobie
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Coffeenoobie
Joined: 11 Dec 2011
Posts: 3,023
Location: PNW
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: N S Oscar
Grinder: K30 & Vario W
Posted Tue Jul 17, 2012, 9:13am
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

I think you should get the HQ and test it.  They are pretty reasonably priced.  My VST blows the pants off the stock baskets that came with my Oscar.

 
Coffeenoobie

Buying advice: GRINDER GRINDER GRINDER. Don't cheap out on the grinder.

My coffee treasure map...
Click Here (maps.google.com)

Oscar trick out: http://s156.photobucket.com/user/GandBteam/story/14231
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JonathanStarr
Senior Member
JonathanStarr
Joined: 6 Nov 2007
Posts: 85
Location: Columbus, OH
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: LaMarzocco Strada MP 2 group
Grinder: Mazzer Major Elec.
Vac Pot: Yama StoveTop & Tabletop...
Drip: V60, Woodneck, Melitta,...
Roaster: Multiple Behmor roasters,...
Posted Tue Jul 17, 2012, 11:58am
Subject: Re: VST or Strada baskets
 

The VST baskets indeed are far superior than most stock baskets. However, I will say I've noticed a slightly brighter cup with my Strada baskets vs my VST baskets in my Strada. I have no idea why this would be. But so far i've tested it with 17g, 18g, & 21g ridged and ridge less.

Again, that's just been my experience i'm sure that might vary from machine to machine etc.

 
~Cheers
Jonathan
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