Roughly 80% of the machines that come into our repair center are having issues due to lack of regular maintenance, but keeping your machine tip-top also means your coffee will taste better as well. We know this and we hope you know this, but who really knows this (from a biased, albeit rather caring perspective) is coffee gear cleaning company Urnex, who manufacturers some of the best loved cleaning solutions on the market.
To promote their love of sparkly clean machines — and also make it easy for you to know exactly what to do to keep your machine in excellent shape — they have introduced the 1, 2, Brew Kit for Drip Coffee Makers that features the following accoutrement:
Dezcal Espresso Machine Descaler
Cleancaf Cleaning Detergent
One Sample Pack of Grindz Burr Grinder Cleaner
1lb bag of Velton’s Coffee Beans — your choice of Treehouse, Twilight or Decaf blends
Coffee Scoop with bag clip
We’re including this kit with our drip coffee makers now as a free item, but it’s also available for individual sale — great for yourself or a gift for someone else. And while this is specifically designed for drip coffee makers, we are working with them to develop one for espresso machines that will be released early next year…so stay tuned.
What’s that looming on the horizon? Some fat guy in a red suit? No, it’s not your Uncle Larry staying past his welcome (again), it’s Santa! And maybe it’s still a couple months away, but the early bird almost definitely gets the caffeinated worm up in these parts. To help you find the perfect gift for the coffee lover in your family — even if that’s you — DeLonghi is offering a rebate on several of their machines.
Here’s the rundown:
Drip Coffee Makers: DC514T, DCF212T and DCF210TTC models. Check out the full details & redemption form.
Pump Espresso/Combo Machines: BAR32, BCO130T, BCO264B, EC155, EC270, ECO310BK models. Check out the full details & redemption form.
Superautomatic Espresso Machines: ESAM 6700, ESAM 6600, ESAM5500M, ESAM3500 and ESAM 3300 models. Check out the full details & redemption form.
These rebates apply to purchases made from 10/01/2010 through 12/31/2010.
We’ll never know how Marilyn Monroe’s figure would have held up over time, but that’s not the kind of Hourglass we’re talking about here, baby! We’re talking about the cold coffee brewing system that creates a smooth concentrate that you can use to make hot or cold coffee for up to two weeks afterward.
Or so they say! But can you, really? These are the big questions that only the crew at Seattle Coffee Gear are prepared to take on. We had Gail brew up a batch of the Hourglass coffee; she then tested it the next day for a baseline flavor assessment and then we followed it up 1 week and 2 weeks later to see how the flavor stood up.
Where do espresso machines and coffee makers go to die? Not in the landfill, if we can help it! At Seattle Coffee Gear, we launched a recycling program last year in an effort to keep as many fully assembled machines from landing in the trash. Many of these are pretty complex — they have circuit boards, electrical wiring and miscellaneous metals that are best kept out of our ground water supply.
Our partner in this venture is Uesugi USA, a Japanese company that (as luck would have it) have a US presence here in the Seattle-area. We pulled Henry into the mix and headed out to their facility to talk about what they do and see how they take these machines apart, break them down to their components and funnel them back into the commodity supply chain as cleanly as possible.
We spent an afternoon up at Hario USA (now Roustabout Products) earlier this year and posted a wide array of videos from that field trip. But there’s nothing like a Gail review, is there? So we asked her to show us the ropes on how to use one of the Hario pour overs. Watch as she talks to us about the process and whips up a smooth cup of coffee using Velton’s Twilight Blend. Delish!
You may recall a post we wrote last year that measured the temperature in a Technivorm thermal carafe, testing it at brew and then tracking it hour by hour to see how the temperature held up over time. In general, we have had a small percentage of customers report that their new Technivorm coffee makers don’t brew hot enough; after testing some returned models, speaking with the manufacturer and testing known working models, we determined that, ultimately, this was largely a question of personal preference.
Some people love their coffee to be really, really hot — and that’s cool! But the Technivorm is designed with a different end goal in mind. Watch as Gail talks to us about what you can expect from this drip coffee maker.
When the weather starts heating up, we love nothing better than a rich iced coffee drink. Seriously — nothing. In the past, we have be known to brew espresso directly onto ice or pour out hot-brewed drip or press coffee into an iced cup, knowing that there would be dilution in the mix. We are now converts, however, of the cold brew coffee preparation — specifically, Hario’s Cold Brew Pot makes a deliciously smooth and rich cup of coffee.
Gail tried it out with Velton’s Twilight Blend and there were cheers all around. For the coffee AND the cups, obviously. Check it out!
Mineral content in your water will play a part in the coffee that you make and your machine’s longevity. In this video, Gail talks to us about a few different filters and softeners available for espresso machines, as well as explaining how a filter and softener differ.
We heartily believe that there is a market for every machine; none of them are perfect, but if you can find the one that hits closest to your mark, you’ll be a happy camper.
The Capresso 4 Cup Espresso & Cappuccino machine is steam driven, so many espresso purists may dismiss it purely for this fact alone. However, if you are fond of stovetop/moka pot espresso makers, cafe con leche, cafe au lait, or any variation of strong coffee mixed with hot milk, this machine could be the one for you.
Watch as Gail demonstrates its functionality and gives us some tips on usage. You can read our initial Crew Review from a few weeks ago here.