Category Archives: Coffee & Tea

Crew Review: Saeco Exprelia Evo

The best of both worlds! This is something you don’t always see. But on the Saeco Exprelia Evo, you truly get the best of both. I am referring, of course, to the traditional steam wand and automatic milk frother.

Exprelia EvoWhen it comes to super-automatic espresso machines you typically get exactly that, super automation! Which is great if what you want is to push a button and the result be delicious espresso and milk based drinks. But sometimes you want more. Maybe it’s your curious side peeking out or maybe you are feeling especially creative. Whatever it is, with the Exprelia Evo you can have that automation and the control over your milk’s texture and temperature with the steam wand.

The removable milk frothing carafe has an automatic cleaning cycle as well. Simply fill it with milk, plug into the machine when it’s time to brew, and then pop it back in the refrigerator for next time. The swiveled handle goes off to the side to dispense frothed milk into your beverage, then swivels back into place for an automatic rinsing cycle. It’s a pretty fantastic design. And Gail confirms, it makes a hot drink!

The Exprelia Evo‘s dual boilers are stainless-steel, so it is always ready to brew! It has a  removable water tank can hold 1.6 liters of water. Each drink type can be customized to your liking. If you are like Gail and prefer a stronger cup, go ahead because you can!

Watch the full Crew Review below! Then head over to our YouTube channel and subscribe!

 

Ask Gail: Coffee Bean Comparison

coffee beanWe all know that we shouldn’t use a oily coffee bean on a superautomatic espresso machine because it will eventually clog it up, which can be costly to fix.

But the question still remains, what does an oily coffee bean look like? Where in the proverbial sand is the line drawn?

Well you are in luck because Gail is here to answer your questions! She took a few different beans from a few different roasters and compared them based just on their looks.

Be sure to check out the video below! Do you have a question for Gail? Ask her in the comment section on YouTube!

 

 

Crew Review: Saeco Intelia Class

Saeco Intelia ClassBlack or stainless steel. One touch or panarello. With so many choices it might be hard to find the best machine for you! But not to worry! Gail is here to show you through the Saeco Intelia Class.

In this Crew Review Gail takes a closer look at the Intelia Class with the cappuccinatore. What’s a cappuccinatore? It’s a milk frothing device that draws milk up from a pitcher and combines it with steam before dispensing your frothy milk into your cup! Perfect for those who can’t function in the morning until that first cup of coffee!

The Saeco Intelia Class is much more than an automatic milk frother though (obviously). It is also a powerhouse superautomatic machine. Complete with a ceramic grinder, pre-brewing technology, and a bypass doser in the event you like decaf in the evenings.

The menu on this model offers some great programmability as well. So if you are the type that likes to tweak a variety of settings ranging from temperature settings to dosing strength to display contrast, you are in luck!

Be sure to watch the complete Crew Review below! And while you are at it, subscribe to our YouTube channel so you never miss our latest videos!

 

Ask Gail: Can I Use Grindz In A Superautomatic?

GrindzWe are always say, the cleaner you keep you espresso machine the longer it will last. And we will continue to say so until the end of time. But sometimes cleaning your machine improperly can cause more damage than just leaving it dirty! Who woulda thought?

Case in point, using Grindz in a superautomatic espresso machine. Running Grindz Cleaner through your burr grinder every few weeks will work wonders  in terms of keeping your grinder clean and keeping your coffee tasting fresh. It also happens to be  all-natural, gluten free and completely food safe. But this is only useful on a stand alone grinder!

If used in a superautomatic, the Grindz will go into the brew unit and expand due to the brewing water. This expansion is really bad for the inside of your superautomatic, and will cause damage.

Watch the full Ask Gail below, and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel for daily coffee videos!

 

 

 

Cold Brew Temperature Test

Cold BrewAs you know, we get tons of questions and requests. And we try to answer as many as we can! Some may call it science, but we just think of it as an excuse to drink more coffee!

Since summer is right around the corner we started getting a lot of requests around cold brew coffee! This question in particular was interesting to us. The viewer asked us if there is a difference in flavor if you steep your cold brew out at room temperature vs. steeping the cold brew in the refrigerator.  Well, there is really only one way to find out!

We used the Primula for this experiment. Using the same dosage for both, we steeped one bottle at room temperature for 16 hours and we steeped the other bottle in the refrigerator for 16 hours.

Watch as Gail gives these two a taste test and compares the methods!

 

 

Ask Gail: Coffee Cans vs. Coffee Bags

The question was asked, why are some coffees bagged in cans while other coffees are bagged in, well, bags? A great example of this can be found in Lavazza’s product line. The Qualita Oro Espresso comes in a can while the Top Class Espresso comes in a bag, and this goes on and on. So what is the real reason for the different packaging, coffee cans and coffee bags?coffee can

Naturally, we had to Ask Gail. She looked into this for us and came up with her own hypothesis. And it really came down to two things:

Cost and availability of equipment.

For a local roaster, packaging his or her roasted coffee in a can just isn’t  feasible. The equipment and space to store said equipment would simply cost too much. So why then do we see cans of coffee on the shelves? It turns out the raw cost of a can is cheaper than the raw cost of bag. So for a roaster at a large enough scale it would make business sense to package some coffees in a can.

Be sure to watch the full video below! Do you have a question for Gail? Ask her in the comment section on Youtube! And while you are there, subscribe to our channel :)

 

A Look Inside A Breville Oracle

Breville OracleIn case you haven’t noticed, we like to take things apart here at Seattle Coffee Gear. So anytime we are offered a Breville Oracle that is cut in half, we obviously take it.

And now we get to share it with you!

The Breville Oracle is a cross between a super-automatic and a semi-automactic espresso machine. Which means we knew there would be parts inside we had never seen before! Gail was particularly interested in looking at the auto tamping machinery. And of course it was just as cool as we imagined.

Take a look at the video below to see what the insides of the Breville Oracle looks like! You will not be disappointed.

 

 

Crew Review: Sowden Tea Maker

Gail has the tea, you should bring some muffins! Seriously, she is waiting.sowden tea maker

Gail took the Sowden Tea Maker for a spin. You may recognize this clean and modern look from our Cold Brew Comparison video, but there is a key feature that separates the two products! As Gail demonstrates in this video, the screen that filters the tea or coffee out of the water is designed differently. And rightfully so, coffee grounds are much finer than teas. The removable stainless steel filter is large enough to allow the tea to breath as it steeps, so you get a perfect pot everytime.

The Sowden Oskar SoftBrew Tea Maker is easy to clean, a simple rinse after each use and you will keep it looking like the day you got it. Be careful when handling the pot after you steep the tea, it can get a little hot.

Watch the Crew Review below! Thanks for watching :)

 

 

 

 

Crew Review: OXO Cold Brew Maker

OXO Cold Brew Is that….the sun?! This is a question we are hearing a lot up here in Seattle. And it can only mean one thing, summer is right around the corner! And for us at Seattle Coffee Gear, that means cold brew.

And to celebrate the magnificent sunshine,  we are taking a look at the newest cold brew coffee maker on the market. The OXO Cold Brew Coffee Maker! We all know the OXO products, you might even have their vegetable peeler in a drawer at home. But the OXO Cold Brew Maker won’t be slicing any vegetables, and that’s a good thing! This cold brew maker sticks to what is does best, brew cold brew!

The OXO Cold Brew Maker features a rainmaker design that you pour your cold water though. This design allows the grounds to be evenly saturated with water and bloom properly, resulting in a tastier finished product. The glass carafe that catches the final product is constructed out of borosilicate glass, which is extremely durable.  After steeping, all that is needed to be done in order to drink the tasty concentrate is flip the brew release switch and let gravity do the work!

The cold brew that this brewer yields is concentrated , so diluting 2 oz of the cold stuff with some ice or milk is suggested. You could of course dilute it with hot water if you prefer a hot beverage. The choice is up to you!

This brewer won our unofficial Cold Brew Taste Test. Be sure to check out that video if you haven’t already. Watch this Crew Review below before heading over to our YouTube channel and subscribing!

 

Brewin’ With Brandi: Chocolate Espresso Waffles

Chocolate espresso waffles, need I say more?

This time on Brewin’ With Brandi, Brandi and Leslie whip up a batch and top it off with more chocolate chips and espresso syrup. Is it breakfast or dessert? That is really up to you to decide!

Watch the video recipe below and be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for all things coffee!

 Ingredients For About 5 Waffles:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teasponns baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 shots espresso
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons light olive oil
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate chips

Ingredients For Espresso Syrup:

  • 1 cup brewed espresso (about 8 shots)
  • 1 cup sugar

Process:

To make the espresso syrup: Combine the espresso and sugar in a pan over medium heat. Stir consistently for 10-15 minutes or until the mixture is thick like a syrup.

To make the waffles: Mix together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl. Add the milk, sugar, espresso, and oil. Blend until well mixed.

Preheat a waffle iron. While the waffle iron is preheating beat the egg whites and salt with an electric mixed until the form soft peaks. Fold the egg whites into the batter until mixture is just combined.

Spray the waffle iron with cooking spray and add enough batter to cover the waffle iron, about 1 cup of batter. Cook 3 to 4 minutes or until cooked through. Top with chocolate chips and espresso syrup and enjoy!