We have a deep love for and commitment to the home espresso enthusiast, but as our passion for making excellent espresso at home has grown, we have been exploring commercial-grade equipment, too. Obviously, comparatively few of us can afford to drop $15k on an espresso machine for our homes, but if you’re looking to either upgrade your business’ existing setup or thinking about launching a new espresso-based business, we have a wide selection of machines that is going to continue to grow.
Currently featuring primarily La Marzocco and Nuova Simonelli and Rancilio commercial-class espresso machines & grinders, we’ve also included a few of the prosumer class of machines that could work well in a smaller-scale business that has espresso as a complementary service — such as a bookstore or an art gallery. We also have tons of quantity discounts on accessories and wholesale pricing on coffee and syrups so just ask.
We’re excited to venture into a new realm within the coffee world and look forward to talking with you more about it! This blog will also expand as a resource and start offering up information that may be of interest to cafes and other small coffee businesses, so stay tuned.
Easily dose out your coffee beans or grounds and keep ‘em fresh at the same time! The Scoop ‘n Clip has a 1-1/2 tablespoon scoop on one side and a press clip on the other side, perfect for affixing to the top of your coffee bag and keeping it closed.
While it’s no vacuum-sealed coffee container, it is very easy to use and we dig it’s multi-tasking approach to life. Now, if only our toothbrush clipped our nails and our vacuum cleaner washed the windows, our life would be complete. We have modest needs, really.
We just expanded our Rocket inventory to include the sleek Cellini semi-automatic espresso machine! Not as stylized as its Giotto counterpart, the Cellini is functionally exactly the same for a bit less. Gail introduces us to the machine and talks about the aesthetic-only differences.
We sent Gail out on a little recon this past weekend, to the International Home & Housewares show in Chicago. Here’s what she’s reporting back:
Delonghi: Charity Auction
Delonghi had a few artists design different front panels for a limited edition Artista machine — only 5 of each design will be made. They plan to auction these babies off on eBay, with the proceeds benefiting Oxfam International. We’ll post an update here with photos and details once this goes live.
We wrote about this machine last week, and Gail had a chance to meet with this group at the show. No samples yet, but it is one of only two products at the show that are made with BPA-free plastic.
Handpresso in Color
One of our favorite gadgets for delicious espresso on the go, the Handpresso team has now added different colors to their available models, plus they’ve developed a travel pack that includes a thermos for hot water, 4 demitasse cups and a carrying case — we’re looking into adding some of these to the store.
On Chicago, and Her Cheap Date Ways
“I did go to a pub called Dublin last night and experienced quite a few characters. It was one of the local hang outs. Does that count? One guy bought a round for the bar, myself included. He was well lubed up. I had already had one beer and was quite full from that, so I was a little disappointed I didn’t get to choose my second poison. I hadn’t had much food all day so wandered out for chow. It was interesting and Chicago is pretty cool.”
The show ends tomorrow, so we’ll post a follow-up later this week with Gail’s final notes on the show and possibly photos of the grand event.
Infuse your espresso with a little heavy metal! After an incredibly creative and customized development cycle, the Slayer professional espresso machine will be introduced to the specialty coffee world at this April’s SCAA exhibition in Atlanta.
The brainchild of Seattle-based Slayer, this uniquely designed and conceived machine is an extension of Slayer’s enthusiastic mission to positively impact the coffee industry — and the world. They accentuate the art inherent in espresso, and this little baby’s design speaks volumes about their singular approach to aesthetic form and function.
We can’t wait for this machine to hit the market and, hopefully, a cafe near us so we can check it out. And we almost made it through this whole post without making references to buttrock and mullets, but clearly our restraint is limited and easily overcome.
Ah, yeah….we dig curves. Especially if they come bearing low-acidity, cool brewed coffee. Okay, they usually don’t come with that — but now they can, thanks to the Hourglass Coffee Maker.
Debuting at the International Home Housewares show this weekend in Chicago, this voluptuous little number cold brews a coffee extraction, which results in 69.6% less acidity in the java. For hot coffee, you add hot water to the extraction, or you can take the cold extraction and mix it up for an iced coffee.
We’ll be at the show and can’t wait to try it out — cool, smooth coffee never looked so good!
We can’t help but hear Patricia Arquette’s refrain in the second-to-last scene of True Romance when we look at the Jura Capresso Cool Control Automatic Milk Cooler. But instead of slipping it a note with hearts on it, we’ll just write about it here.
This handy little gadget is fairly lo-fi, costs pennies to run each day and will keep your milk cool and easily accessible on your counter top for all of your favorite latte or cappuccino drinks. It directly connects to the frothXpress adapter that is featured on many of the Jura superautomatic espresso machines (such as the Z7, C9 & S9, and Ena 3 and will cool your milk to 39F, the perfect temperature for fluffy, frothy foam!
If you’ve ever forgotten about your thermal milk container and suffered through cleaning up some nasty ol’ milk, gift yourself with never doing that dirty job again! The Cool Control will keep the cottage cheese out of your lattes and in your favorite…dish? We’re not actually sure how people use cottage cheese.
Arguably the best little workhorse in the business, the Saeco Aroma is a robust machine that had really only one major flaw (in our opinion): Its pressurized basket. Lauded as a triumph for non-grinding, quick-n-dirty espresso lovers everywhere, the pressurized basket gives merely the illusion of crema by aerating the espresso as it’s extracted. People that don’t want to put the time and effort into learning how to fine tune their grind and tamp love this contraption because it does give a fairly good shot without much fuss.
But if you’re a geek like us and love yourself some rich, thick crema, you’re going to be thrilled with the latest release out of the Saeco camp — a non-pressurized portafilter handle that uses the same baskets that came with your original pressurized portafilter. You can pull a delicious shot with this new non-pressurized portafilter — one that may rival the Rancilio Silvia!
In addition to the Saeco Aroma, this portafilter is compatible with the following machines:
- Starbucks Barista
- Starbucks Via Venezia
- Estro Profi
- Saeco Magic Cappuccino
- Saeco Gran Crema
- Saeco Via Veneto
Watch Gail pull a shot with the new non-pressurized basket on the Saeco Aroma:
Love your Ascaso Basic, Dream, Arc or UNO Special Edition espresso machine but wish that it produced a better shot? Well, we did, too — so we talked with Ascaso and asked them about creating an upgrade kit! While the original screen and water delivery works well for E.S.E. pods, its concentrated-stream functionality just doesn’t properly moisten ground coffee to the level required for a great extraction, so the upgrade kit includes an improved screen that showers water more evenly across the coffee.
The resulting espresso is rich, creamy and has a thicker crema — as good as any shot you’d pull from a Rancilio Silvia. This easy-to-install upgrade is essential, we think, but especially so if you dig using ground coffee in your Ascaso.
We often see folks struggling between two points: Which is more important, convenience or flavor? It’s the base notion in the semi-automatic vs. superautomatic debate and is one of the main questions we try to understand when helping a customer find the machine that is best for them.
But maybe it doesn’t have to be! We were lucky enough to get our hands on the new Quick Mill Superautomatic espresso machine, which sought to marry the convenience and excellent flavor factors in a prosumer-level home espresso machine. While it took us some time to dial in the machine and we wasted quite a bit of coffee (and a couple of hours) in finding the right balance between bean and machine, the shots we ended up with are the best we’ve ever tasted on a superautomatic — most likely due to the fact that it’s internal workings are not plastic, so temperature regulation is definitely superior.
We also love the traditional — and powerful — steam wand, although getting used to it’s position on the right side takes a bit of ergonomic adjustment if you’re more used to working with a wand positioned on the left. The high-quality stainless steel design, while bulky and taking up perhaps a larger footprint than many might want to sacrifice to their java needs, is sleek and definitely built to last.
All in all, we think this is a great first outing from Quick Mill in the superautomatic space and look forward to its continued evolution — we’d love to see more programmability in the future.