When Breville’s YouBrew was first released, we weren’t in love with the grinding functionality. Of course, we’re crazy when it comes to high concentrations of coffee particles suspended in our water, so a ton of people loved its grind and brew functionality without issue. With the recent release of their glass carafe version, Breville has tweaked the grinder and improved the consistency and dosage functionality to produce a stronger cup. So, of course, we had to put it to the taste test!
In this video, we brew up batches of java on the Technivorm and on the YouBrew, then ask our trusty crewmates to taste them and give us their opinion on which they prefer. Find out which coffee maker — if any — prevailed!
We’re featuring one of our favorite new products in our semi-regular Flash Sale this weekend, so thought we’d delve a little into its manufacturer: Kaffeologie.
Initially on the search for something to improve the flavor of their beloved french press coffee, founders Nate Jones and John Custer created the Coffee Catcher in 2009. This little gadget removed more silt from the coffee press, but wasn’t as popular as they would have liked.
‘We have the competency of working with stainless steel mesh,’ said Jones. But he wondered ‘if there are any other products in coffee that need that?’ Fortunately for them, they discovered that their talent for creating reusable filters gained more traction with folks who enjoy pour over coffee preparations like the Chemex, Hario V60 and AeroPress.
By following this new direction and expanding from french press to pour overs, Jones and Custer have seen their company thrive. Based on customer input and a desire to produce the best quality stainless steel filters available, they completely redesigned their model for the AeroPress, the S Filter, which was produced in part by funding through the community site KickStarter.
‘We’ve connected to customers and have found a lot of folks who shop with us just want a better cup of coffee,’ Jones said. Stay tuned for more awesome filters for your favorite coffee preps coming from these Seattle-based designers.
We love innovations in the coffee makin’ world, so when Joe Behm talked to us about his new Brazen coffee maker, we were super excited to test this baby out against our tried and true: The Technivorm!
Watch as Gail brews up batches on these two coffee makers, then our trusty crew mates give us their opinion on which they prefer. One thing’s for sure: Yummy coffee was definitely had by all.
When discussing the sound differential between rotary and vibratory pumps, we’re often asked which one is more quiet; our answer is invariably: Does it matter? Your coffee grinder’s the loudest thing in the room!
But how loud is it? We devised a practical test to basically show the difference between the grinders, decibel-wise. What did we learn? The tone’s the thing! While the decibel levels are actually quite similar, there were models that ‘sounded’ louder than others, simply because of a difference in tone. So the moral is … they’re all loud.
Watch Gail’s test in action!
If convenience is king in your household, your espresso machine selection will likely center on superautomatic, capsule or pod-friendly options such as those made by DeLonghi, Jura, Nespresso and Saeco.
But which of these three machine styles produces a better shot? Does it matter? Of course it does! Watch as Gail demonstrates making an Americano on a pod-friendly semi-automatic, a capsule machine and a superautomatic. We compare flavor and discuss the relative convenience and ease of use.
Given that she had to coerce us into cleaning our bedroom by rather surreptitiously hiding small change in the corners (and encouraging us to ‘find what the fairies left!’), our mother would be quite relieved to know of our passion for cleanliness in adulthood! And while you won’t find nickels and dimes in the brew head or the water tank — at least, you shouldn’t — Breville’s maintenance supplies make it easy and almost as fun to keep your espresso machine clean.
She then discusses their charcoal/resin filters, shows how to install them and explains why they’re necessary — especially with the Dual Boiler.
Added to the majority of smaller single boiler semi-automatic and superautomatic espresso machines on the market, a panarello has the benefit of incorporating both air and steam into the milk during the frothing process, enabling even the most green home barista to produce a nice, frothy milk for lattes and cappuccinos. And while it’s true that it does enhance a machine’s frothing functionality — especially when you’re working with a smaller boiler or a thermoblock — the ability to control the end product is very limited: If you’re not looking to produce a dry cappuccino, the foam can sometimes be a bit too, well, frothy.
For those that want to employ some actual stretching-the-milk skill to their drink creation on the Odea Giro, we thought we’d experiment with removing the panarello to see how well it works out. Sometimes, wands without the panarello end up being too short and, therefore, make the process even more difficult.
Watch as Gail demonstrates this simple mod and shows how well it performs in this demonstration video.
You wake up one morning and think, I want to open up my own cafe! Or perhaps you’re already running a small business and you want to add espresso as a complementary service. Or you’re the operations manager at your company and you think espresso in the break room would be an awesome idea. But how do you choose from the plethora of machines available? Do you need a one group, two group — four group?! — machine? What do the terms ‘semi-automatic’, ‘automatic’ and ‘volumetric’ mean in terms of actual functionality and your business’ workflow?
In this overview, Gail walks us through a few things you should consider as you’re researching commercial espresso machines. She discusses how to plan for your busiest times, your budget, your workflow needs and — of course! — grinders! If you’re just getting started and don’t know where to start, this video primer is the place for you.
It’s not just about how sexy it looks on your countertop, baby. Well, okay, that’s definitely part of it, but you also need to make sure you’re choosing the tamper that will best fit your portafilter. In addition to basic diameter considerations, there are some models that feature filter baskets with shapes conducive to different styles of tampers.
Watch as Gail shows us portafilters for several different models and provides her recommendations on which tampers fit best.
If you’re experimenting with different styles of coffees — roast styles, bean blends, etc. — you’ll need to adjust your grind to dial that specific coffee in for your machine. It’s definitely not a set it and forget type of scenario, and there are general rules of thumb one might follow when switching between coffees that have a significantly different roast profile.
Watch Gail provide tips and advice on things to keep in mind when dialing in different coffees.