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Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
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JoelCigan
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 30
Location: Fresno, CA
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 12:15pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

5lbs of espresso beans seems to be the most I would buy at any given time.  I would probably store them in an airscape container that they sell at Seattle Coffee Gear and put them in a cool, dark place only using the beans that I'm going to grind for usage at any given time.  I doubt I would keep any beans in the hopper unless I was going to grind them on any given day.  Coffee really does grow stale quickly and that is the downfall of this process and one of the things that is holding me back from purchasing a machine and grinder.

You say the grinder is the most important component for the sport of pulling shots?  How then can you justify spending $549.00 on the Vario-W when it is in fact a stepped grinder?  What I'm saying is that it isn't to be used solely for espresso.  Does it have enough micro adjustments at it's "fine" setting to be a dedicated espresso grinder?  How many members on here have a Vario-W and say a Mazzer Mini-Electronic Type A or B for use solely when making espresso?  Is the Vario-W sufficient for use solely for when you pull shots?

Apparently, someone has a YouTube video up of an unboxing of the Izzo Alex Duetto II and it doesn't look like it comes assembled.  I'm not a mechanic, but a pharmacist and this sort of deterred me from purichase.  Has anyone ordered one from Chris' Coffee Services?  What was their experience?

I read that document on HX temperature stability as it relates to the "cooling flush."  In many ways, I still don't understand when to perform a "cooling flush."  I'm not a physics major either so I didn't really assimilate anything from the graphs.  Did someone write a document in layman's terms?  Seems like a double boiler machine might be better all around.

I've never heard of tamping with 5-10 psi... seems like it would way underextract and flow too fast!  I've heard that 30 psi is the gold standard to prevent a "sink shot."  That's probably what I'll stick to especially if I purchase an Espro tamper.  It would be awesome if I can reproduce the espresso drinks that I was getting while in Rome, Italy back in 1999.  They were the best I've had in my life but of course they were probably using beans that you can't get in the states.  Don't know, though.

The Rocket Giotto Premium Plus is just as good as the Evoluzione?  One can be plumbed and the other cannot and that is the only difference, correct?  I have a 20amp plug on my countertop where I was going to place my machine without a cabinet hindering a height requirement.  It was my understanding after my electrician tested the plug, that all plugs in a kitchen have to be 20amps for use of appliances.  I've never heard of a 15amp plug in a kitchen area.  This was when I was researching the Izzo Alex Duetto II....  I won't be plumbing my machine anytime soon because someone would have to come out and drill through the granite...

Do you live in the bay area, Jason?  I notice your salutation is "cheers" and that seems to be bay area speak.  Lol.  You probably have a lot more coffee shops over there that make a quality shot.  I don't have any in my area.  It's really too bad because I was thinking about getting a part-time job in a legitimate coffee shop with good commercial equipment in order to fine tune my skills.  I have a lot of downtime from work as a pharmacist right now due to the poor economy.

The new Elektra machine being sold from 1st-Line equipment specifically states that it includes a basket for pods.  While I probably won't be using pods when my machine finally is ordered, it still would be nice to be able to use pods in the future.  Someone was trying to tell me that it ruins the machine.  This seems hard to believe because there is a specific basket to be used with a 58mm portafilter.  Why then would this ruin a machine?

If I find someone to give me a sweet package deal, I might just go with the Rocket Giotto Premium Plus.  I've been hearing though that this would be the year that they would release a newer model and I don't want to catch "upgradeitis" especially when spending over $1,000.00 on the machine alone.  All machines have pluses and minuses and this is what gets me.  For example, the Rockets are said to have small drip trays.  Since Zi'm not plumbing mine, this may be a factor that deters me from making a decision and puts me back at thinking about a Breville.  Lol, seriously.
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JoelCigan
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 30
Location: Fresno, CA
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 12:24pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

JtothaR Said:

Based on these questions, there are alot of the basics that you still need to understand. That's fine we were all there at one point.

You should read this guide completely and then give us any further questions you have after. I know it's a lot of info.

http://www.home-barista.com/espresso-guide.html

Good Luck,
-James

Posted November 20, 2011 link

I've already read a book on espresso but thanks for the info!

Joel
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JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,378
Location: Berkeley, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Elektra T1 - La Valentina -...
Grinder: Mahlkönig K30 Vario -...
Vac Pot: Yama 5-cup
Drip: CCD, Chemex
Roaster: No, no, not another...
Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 1:10pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

JoelCigan Said:

I've already read a book on espresso but thanks for the info!

Posted November 21, 2011 link

Sure, who needs more information when you've read a book!

JoelCigan Said:

5lbs of espresso beans seems to be the most I would buy at any given time.  I would probably store them in an airscape container that they sell at Seattle Coffee Gear and put them in a cool, dark place only using the beans that I'm going to grind for usage at any given time.  I doubt I would keep any beans in the hopper unless I was going to grind them on any given day.  Coffee really does grow stale quickly and that is the downfall of this process and one of the things that is holding me back from purchasing a machine and grinder.

Posted November 21, 2011 link

Buy pods, and you won't have to worry . . . after all, no one else -- and certainly not the thousands of registered users on this site -- have ever thought of how to buy coffee and store it at home to preserve the freshness of the beans . . .

Joel, are you bothering to read anything that people have written here?  (Example:  you just asked where I lived, when just a few posts ago, I showed you that if you looked to the left, you can find out all sorts of information, including where I live and what equipment I have.)  I honestly mean no offense, but you seem to have already decided on what to do and (I guess) you believe what someone wrote in a book, rather than the collective REAL WORLD experience of the people here who are trying to help you!

You know, maybe you should just get the Breville and use pods . . .


(NOTE: edited to correct typo.)

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
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JoelCigan
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 30
Location: Fresno, CA
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 1:57pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

This might be a site for SNOBS!!  I welcome new information wholeheartedly, don't get me wrong.  Coffee isn't my life and maybe that's what sets me apart from other senior members here.  To each his own.  I've just been looking for a machine for my needs.  I don't plan on drinking coffee all day long and I don't forsee me using the machine as a workhorse for dinner parties that I have only occasionally.

POD seems to be a bad word on this site and I can understand why.  Please don't chastize me for it.  I was only asking the question on what machine can adapt itself for pod use.  From the answers I've gotten, it doesn't seem like any are capable of working with E.S.E. pods.  I find this hard to believe.  Do you go to restaurants and send the drip coffee that you've ordered back because it didn't agree with your pallate?
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JtothaR
Senior Member
JtothaR
Joined: 20 Dec 2010
Posts: 683
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Faema D92/A1 Smart
Grinder: B VARIO, Krups Conic
Drip: Manual Pour-Over, Bodum...
Roaster: Redbird, Metropolis
Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 2:14pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

JoelCigan Said:

This might be a site for SNOBS!!  I welcome new information wholeheartedly, don't get me wrong.  Coffee isn't my life and maybe that's what sets me apart from other senior members here.  To each his own.  I've just been looking for a machine for my needs.  I don't plan on drinking coffee all day long and I don't forsee me using the machine as a workhorse for dinner parties that I have only occasionally.

Posted November 21, 2011 link

Forum etiquette dictates that posting "informed" questions is expected. (in every forum I've ever been on)
If snobs are folks who read guides and search for answers before asking questions then I am -guilty as charged-.

JoelCigan Said:

Do you go to restaurants and send the drip coffee that you've ordered back because it didn't agree with your pallate?

Posted November 21, 2011 link

No, because i didn't order it to begin with.

-James

 
Load and Lock.
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jkoll42
Senior Member


Joined: 2 Jan 2010
Posts: 465
Location: Pennsylvania
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: VBM DD V3, Gaggia Baby Class
Grinder: Cimbali Max Hybrid, Bunn...
Drip: Technivorm, Chemex
Roaster: Honey Badger 1K, HG/BM
Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 2:32pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

JoelCigan Said:

This might be a site for SNOBS!!  I welcome new information wholeheartedly, don't get me wrong.  Coffee isn't my life and maybe that's what sets me apart from other senior members here.  To each his own.  I've just been looking for a machine for my needs.  I don't plan on drinking coffee all day long and I don't forsee me using the machine as a workhorse for dinner parties that I have only occasionally.

POD seems to be a bad word on this site and I can understand why.  Please don't chastize me for it.  I was only asking the question on what machine can adapt itself for pod use.  From the answers I've gotten, it doesn't seem like any are capable of working with E.S.E. pods.  I find this hard to believe.  Do you go to restaurants and send the drip coffee that you've ordered back because it didn't agree with your pallate?

Posted November 21, 2011 link

You came to a site full of people who are passionate about coffee and asked for advice.  You were given advice and have pushed back against it the entire time.  This has to be one of the most informative and annoying threads I have read in some time.

Here is my advice:  Go into Williams Sonoma, Sur la table, BB&B, Macys..... where ever.....  ask a sales person what to buy and buy whatever they say.  Get some pods and call it a day.  It will produce a black liquid and you and everyone else here can go back to their lives.

Sorry to sound like a jerk, but asking extermely knowledgable people for advice and not taking it is annoying.
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JoelCigan
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 30
Location: Fresno, CA
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 2:43pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

My questions were directed to Jason Brandt Lewis.  My apologies if this thread is annoying to you.  Again, POD seems to be a bad word in these forums and I've gotten flack for using it.  Can you fault me for sometimes wanting convenience when brewing espresso?  You can bypass the grinder alltogether and avoid the mess.  Sometimes convenience wins over perhaps a better tasting cappucino or latte...
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IMAWriter
Senior Member
IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,864
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, OE Pharos,...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 2:55pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

Joel...
Jason and many others have taken a WHOLE lot of time attempting to educate you about the numerous choices you have.
Also pointing out that 10HX machines, no matter the styling will most probably deliver equally good...or bad shots, depending on the user's willingness to be patient, practice and ask questions ONE AT A TIME.

Believe me, you are ALL OVER THE PLACE. We're honestly trying to help, but calling "senior members" SNOBS is not exactly a way to endear yourself with us. Nor to the Junior members who have contributed here and will continue to do so. I was a Jr, like everyone else.

Your comment regarding the Vario-W being worth it's price (due to it being "stepped"is typical of inexperience. BTW, the regular Vario is $100 less, and grinds equally well, but is a time based grinder, not weight based.

If you had researched freezing fresh roasted coffee, you would have seen many of us who order 10-15 lbs at once to save shipping costs. We freeze all but a lb in Mason jars and such.
As was said, somehow you are just full of mis-information, or preconceived notions.

Get a proper espresso grinder. FIRST.
Earlier I mentioned 2 in the $400-$550 range. You can pay LOTS more, and a little less and be happy.
Get the machine of your choice, and supplies. If the Breville appeals to you, get it. If you don't like it after 6 months, sell it, take a bit of loss.
I can assure you if you purchase a more established machine like ALL the machines you've mentioned, they will hold their value better, as they are ALL home serviceable. This is no knock on the Breville, which certainly has more "automatic' features.
Most here just PREFER to be more involved in the process. That's why I currently own a manual lever machine. DON'T ASK!!!

Find a supplier for your roasted coffee. try several blends or Single origins. Experimentation is part of the enjoyment.

But for the love of God, please open your mind and LISTEN to what folks are telling you here.
We mean you no harm. We are only trying to help.
LET US.



Edited for commentary

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
www.robertjason.com
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frcn
Senior Member
frcn
Joined: 23 Dec 2001
Posts: 3,394
Location: Northern California
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Vibiemme Domobar Double
Grinder: Mazzer Kony, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Hario, 2 Cory pots, 1 Cory...
Drip: Behmor Brazen, Bunn A10 mod...
Roaster: computer controlled Hottop,...
Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 3:25pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

JoelCigan Said:

My questions were directed to Jason Brandt Lewis.  My apologies if this thread is annoying to you.  Again, POD seems to be a bad word in these forums and I've gotten flack for using it.  Can you fault me for sometimes wanting convenience when brewing espresso?  You can bypass the grinder alltogether and avoid the mess.  Sometimes convenience wins over perhaps a better tasting cappucino or latte...

Posted November 21, 2011 link

Try Googling "Instant coffee." Your grail awaits.

Espresso is not about fast, easy, no assembly required, brain-dead push-button convenience. If it were that easy Starbucks could do it. I have been making espresso at home for over eleven years and that includes roasting my own all that time, and I am still learning, improving, and adjusting variables to get the very most from those precious beans into my cup. Each of those beans is picked individually, by hand, and the least I can do is honor the effort that went into growing and processing them.

I've already read a book on espresso but thanks for the info!

In essence, I wrote one (see URL in sig below).

I once saw a cow but that doesn't mean I can cook an excellent steak.

If all you want is to make a good cup of coffee, save the time, effort, and expense and buy a Baratza Virtuoso grinder and get an Espro press. Doesn't even involve reading a second book!

 
Visit My Website
www.EspressoMyEspresso.com
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nixter
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Jan 2008
Posts: 162
Location: Vancouver
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Giotto Evoluzione, Oscar Pro
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Mon Nov 21, 2011, 3:39pm
Subject: Re: Breville BES900XL Best For Pricepoint
 

JoelCigan Said:

5lbs of espresso beans seems to be the most I would buy at any given time.  I would probably store them in an airscape container that they sell at Seattle Coffee Gear and put them in a cool, dark place only using the beans that I'm going to grind for usage at any given time.  I doubt I would keep any beans in the hopper unless I was going to grind them on any given day.  Coffee really does grow stale quickly and that is the downfall of this process and one of the things that is holding me back from purchasing a machine and grinder.

Posted November 21, 2011 link

That amount is fine to purchase but simply storing them in an air tight container in a cool dark place will not do. Beans will continue to degas regardless unless they are frozen. I separate my beans in 3 day portions and freeze them in turperware. I fill each container full so there is minimal air. However I still only buy 1lb at a time as regular freezers will not stop the aging process completely. You need a proper deep freezer for that. There's some good info on freezing over at HB. The testers were not able to detect a meaningful difference in beans that were frozen for months. (But again, this was done using a deep freezer).

JoelCigan Said:

You say the grinder is the most important component for the sport of pulling shots?  How then can you justify spending $549.00 on the Vario-W when it is in fact a stepped grinder?  What I'm saying is that it isn't to be used solely for espresso.  Does it have enough micro adjustments at it's "fine" setting to be a dedicated espresso grinder?  How many members on here have a Vario-W and say a Mazzer Mini-Electronic Type A or B for use solely when making espresso?  Is the Vario-W sufficient for use solely for when you pull shots?

Posted November 21, 2011 link

Over at HB there was a double blind taste test done pitting some of the smaller grinders against the titan commercial grinders. In terms of taste in the cup the vario beat the mini every time. It is an excellent grinder and Baratza's customer service is second to none. I've had the regular vario for 1.5 yrs and I just upgraded to the Vario W.

JoelCigan Said:

I've never heard of tamping with 5-10 psi... seems like it would way underextract and flow too fast!  I've heard that 30 psi is the gold standard to prevent a "sink shot."  That's probably what I'll stick to especially if I purchase an Espro tamper.  It would be awesome if I can reproduce the espresso drinks that I was getting while in Rome, Italy back in 1999.  They were the best I've had in my life but of course they were probably using beans that you can't get in the states.  Don't know, though.

Posted November 21, 2011 link

Tamp pressure is over rated. anywhere between 5-30 lbs will do just fine. Level grounds distribution is far more important. The wetting of the puck will expand it and then the full pressure of the pump will render your variation in tamp pressure meaningless.

JoelCigan Said:

If I find someone to give me a sweet package deal, I might just go with the Rocket Giotto Premium Plus.  I've been hearing though that this would be the year that they would release a newer model and I don't want to catch "upgradeitis" especially when spending over $1,000.00 on the machine alone.  All machines have pluses and minuses and this is what gets me.  For example, the Rockets are said to have small drip trays.  Since Zi'm not plumbing mine, this may be a factor that deters me from making a decision and puts me back at thinking about a Breville.  Lol, seriously.

Posted November 21, 2011 link

I played around with a friend's brand new BDB this weekend for a few hours. It's a very capable and simple to operate machine. Remove the silly plastic disk in the portafilter and put away the pressurized baskets and you're good to go.

If you favor the Macdonald's convenience route then by all means go with pods. However if you strive for good tasting espresso then steer clear of pods completely. I have nothing against pods at all. I recommended my mother to buy a Nespresso for reasons of convenience as I knew she did not have the time or patience to make good espresso. Now I do have a problem with comparing pods to real espresso because there simply is no comparison.
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