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Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
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mickey1
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Joined: 26 May 2013
Posts: 5
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 1:35pm
Subject: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

Hi,

I'm brand new to making my own espresso though I have drunk gallons of cuban coffee (espresso). I live in an area with a lot of Cubans hence a lot of Cuban restaurants. I love the people and I love their coffee too.

I bought a Mr. Coffee ECMP50 not long ago. I load it up with Bustelo and I like what I'm getting out of it so far.

I did some reading on it before I bought it and most people swore by it but the machine got "knocked" by conisseurs because it has a pressurized basket and they say the crema produced by it is not really crema at all, just some foam produced by by forcing the coffee through the basket's single tiny exit pinhole.

So my question is, should I buy the non-pressurized basket made by Krups (model #0907163) that fits this machine?

Will the use of this basket give me a different, hopefully better, taste? I'm satisfied with what a get out of the machine now but if I can get better out of it, I of course want to.

Also, will it produce any crema? The machine is advertised as having a 15lb pump. Whether it is 15lb or not, I don't know.

There is a pretty in-depth review of the machine that I found here. It might help someone answer my question. It is the second review down from the top by Rene LaCroix; ECMP50 - http://coffeegeek.com/reviews/consumer/mrcoffeeespresso

Please don't suggest buying another machine. Now's not the time for that.

Thank you.
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Coffeenoobie
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Coffeenoobie
Joined: 11 Dec 2011
Posts: 3,030
Location: PNW
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: N S Oscar
Grinder: K30 & Vario W
Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 1:40pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

"Please read before you post New Machine buying question."

Have a look at this and answer the questions so we have more info to go on.  It is my understanding that cuban coffee is boiled and strained through a fish net looking thing with fine weave cotton in it.   At any rate I am not sure I would call it espresso.

Click Here (www.cubanfoodmarket.com)

The fact that you don't list a grinder makes me think you need to wait on the depressurized basket.

 
Coffeenoobie

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

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mickey1
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Joined: 26 May 2013
Posts: 5
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 2:06pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

Coffeenoobie Said:

"Please read before you post New Machine buying question."

Have a look at this and answer the questions so we have more info to go on.  It is my understanding that cuban coffee is boiled and strained through a fish net looking thing with fine weave cotton in it.   At any rate I am not sure I would call it espresso.

Click Here (www.cubanfoodmarket.com)

The fact that you don't list a grinder makes me think you need to wait on the depressurized basket.

Posted May 26, 2013 link

I'm not sure you read, or perhaps you did not understand, my post. I'm not thinking of buying an ECMP50. I bought it already. I own it.  I'm asking about buying and using a non-pressurized basket with it.

I said I use Bustelo in it, which is a vaccum packed fine ground coffee used to make Cuban Espresso. So a grinder does not enter this equation. So, no, I do not own a grinder.

Also, in the original post, I have a hot link that describes, in depth, the ECMP50 which should help the pros here tell me if buying a non-pressurized basket.

By the way, why do you call it a "depressurized" basket? "Depressurized" implies that the basket at some point was ""pressurized" and the "pressure" has somehow been released or removed in some fashion.

And as far as "Cuban Coffee" vs espresso, all I can tell you is the Cubans in West Tampa, Fl call what they serve "Cuban Coffee."

It's not strained through a fish net, sock, cheese cloth or anything else. In restaurants, it comes out of machines. And the people who make it call it "Cuban Coffee" or "Cuban Espresso." Who am I to disagree with them? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuban_espresso

In many Cuban homes and small businesses around town, it is made with those cool little percolators.
Many, if not most, of the small business owners I know here have one of these tiny percolators and a hot plate somewhere in the store.

When a friend comes in, it's colada time. And it's almost ceremonial in nature. From the measuring, to the making, to the pouring into those 1 oz cups, to who is presented the first cup all have rules. I have learned them through observation.

I'm even allowed to make the Cuban Espresso when I visit these places sometimes. And I feel like a very privileged Anglo when I do!

So anyway, about getting a non-pressurized basket for my ECMP50 ....?

Thanks
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Sigma
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Joined: 2 Apr 2013
Posts: 33
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 2:26pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

Pressurized baskets lets one get away with using stale coffee and a poor, inconsistent grind. An espresso-quality grinder is a must for using a non-pressurized basket, as is a fresh roast. The reason lower end machines like this come with these pressurized baskets is that most people don't have a good enough grinder to use the non-pressurized baskets.

If you don't have the grinder and fresh coffee, you'll produce a significantly poorer espresso. If you have a good espresso grinder (that $250-500 range minimum), then it is worth it, as you'll get a better espresso.

>The machine is advertised as having a 15lb pump.
For what it's worth, it's probably in bars, not lbs.
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D4F
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Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 2:44pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

mickey1 Said:

In many Cuban homes and small businesses around town, it is made with those cool little percolators.
Many, if not most, of the small business owners I know here have one of these tiny percolators and a hot plate somewhere in the store.

I'm even allowed to make the Cuban Espresso when I visit these places sometimes. And I feel like a very privileged Anglo when I do!

So anyway, about getting a non-pressurized basket for my ECMP50 ....?

Posted May 26, 2013 link



I am curious as to your use of "percolators" and hot plate and now your machine.  Percolators probably make Cuban coffee vs Cuban espresso.  Are you duplicating the process?  Yes, I read your link.

For real espresso, including Cuban espresso (not Cuban coffee), you need fresh beans, freshly ground, proper pressure adjusted to about 9 bar for non-pressurized, and proper temperature.  You machine can probably deliver temperature and pressure as you learn to use it.  The temperature is not automatic.  If you want to depressurize you will need an espresso grinder with enough adjustments to keep your grind in the necessary range.  If you do not understand this or think the advice is for the CoffeeGeeks only then you will be most happy with pressurized.  You sacrifice some, a lot, quality/flavor in the cup for convenience and easy with pressurized.

We are happy to help, I still am not sure about coffee or espresso.

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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mickey1
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Joined: 26 May 2013
Posts: 5
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 2:47pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

Sigma Said:

Pressurized baskets lets one get away with using stale coffee and a poor, inconsistent grind. An espresso-quality grinder is a must for using a non-pressurized basket, as is a fresh roast. The reason lower end machines like this come with these pressurized baskets is that most people don't have a good enough grinder to use the non-pressurized baskets.

If you don't have the grinder and fresh coffee, you'll produce a significantly poorer espresso. If you have a good espresso grinder (that $250-500 range minimum), then it is worth it, as you'll get a better espresso.

>The machine is advertised as having a 15lb pump.
For what it's worth, it's probably in bars, not lbs.

Posted May 26, 2013 link

Asking a question here is like trying a case in front of the Supreme Court with all the Justices in foul moods with bad hangovers. Hee hee hee.

IF it's worth getting a non-pressurized basket for the ECMP50, I can get fresh ground coffee with no problem. I pass this place every day.. You tell them what you want, how much and how you want it ground and they grind it in front of you. http://www.elmolinocoffee.com

And as far as my egregious faux pas saying 15lb instead of 15 bars, mea culpa.

So I ask the jury, will buying a non-pressurized basket for the ECMP50 be worth the minimal expense?

Will it produce a better tasting, er, liquid, given that I will be using FRESHLY ground coffee from the Naviera Coffee Mill which I can buy daily.

PS - I'm not sure how much their grinders cost but they seem to work okay. :)
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dana_leighton
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dana_leighton
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Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 2:58pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

mickey1 Said:

I can get fresh ground coffee with no problem. I pass this place every day.. You tell them what you want, how much and how you want it ground and they grind it in front of you.

Posted May 26, 2013 link

Sorry - that coffee will be getting stale by the the time you get home from the store. Fresh means ground just prior to making espresso.

will buying a non-pressurized basket for the ECMP50 be worth the minimal expense?

Not if you are not using freshly ground coffee (see above).

I'm not sure how much their grinders cost but they seem to work okay. :)

That's funny, but unless those grinders are moved into your house, you're not using fresh coffee.

Really, for this machine, pressurized portafilters and coffee ground at the store might be as good as you can get. According to the review you referenced, the brew temperature is way too low for good extraction, and the brew pressure is way too high if there's no OPV.

 
Dana Leighton - Espresso hack and CoffeeGeek moderator
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Sigma
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Joined: 2 Apr 2013
Posts: 33
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 3:09pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

Asking a question here is like trying a case in front of the Supreme Court with all the Justices in foul moods with bad hangovers. Hee hee hee.

Sorry, I'm not sure what I said to be offensive. I'm just trying to help. The fact is, getting OK espresso out of non-pressurized baskets requires a step-up in terms of both financial investment and time. I have an EM-100 that I went from a pressurized basket to non-pressurized. It was quite a jump in difficulty. The first of many shots were just watery crap OR under extracted, sour garbage.

will buying a non-pressurized basket for the ECMP50 be worth the minimal expense?

If, and only if, you grid your coffee with an espresso-calibre grinder right before pulling the shot and are willing to spend the time to play around with the grind setting. You will need to be able to vary the grind depending on the bean and age of the bean to get something worth drinking. This isn't the difference between awesome and god shots. Being able to make these changes is the difference between undrinkable to anyone with taste buds and OK espresso.

At the moment, from the sounds of it, I suspect it isn't worth your effort. I'd get good with what you have, spend some time reading about grinders and what it takes to make that elusive "amazing" shot.
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mickey1
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Joined: 26 May 2013
Posts: 5
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 3:13pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

Why do I feel as if I'm trapped in a Saturday Night Live skit?

Can we forget the half-life of fresh ground coffee and all the rest of the "technicals" which go into making a "perfect" cup of liquid?

Now, ALL that aside, ALL of it, will using a non-pressurized basket in a ECMP50 make the liquid taste better?

Now, I have to add, if some of you went into a Cuban restaurant and started spouting off this stuff, you'd get some mighty funny looks.

A lot of these places don't even post prices. They just have a sign on the wall that says what you can order.

You'd probably be charged double (sometimes called "the Anglo price) for your coffee and Cuban cheese toast.
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D4F
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Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 2,015
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Sun May 26, 2013, 3:22pm
Subject: Re: Should I buy a non-pressurized basket for this machine?
 

mickey1 Said:

Can we forget the half-life of fresh ground coffee and all the rest of the "technicals" which go into making a "perfect" cup of liquid?

Now, ALL that aside, ALL of it, will using a non-pressurized basket in a ECMP50 make the liquid taste better?

Posted May 26, 2013 link

Perhaps an easy answer to that.  No, it will not be better, unless you do all of the "technicals." We are trying to save you from depressurizing without the commitment to do the rest, appropriate grinder at home.  That is about a $250 technical.

No offense, but if this a SNL skit, then it is your script as we are trying to help  :)  Yep, I probably stayed one post too long!

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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