We had a viewer query regarding lactose free milk: Was his inability to get great microfoam caused by the nature of the lactose free milk or did he just need to practice more? Milk is magically (OK, scientifically) transformed into lactose-free with the addition of the lactase enzyme, which will break down the lactose before you get your paws on it. Does this change on the molecular level inhibit the the milk’s frothiness?
We’re big fans of the Sowden SoftBrew for hot or cold coffee, so we thought we’d try this dainty little number on for size. Watch as Gail tests out making a delicious pot o’ tea using the Penrose SoftBrew teapot.
In a world where fluffy frothed milk is the line between good an evil, where whipping up dense microfoam at the touch of a button defines one’s fortitude, where selecting one of several frothing temperatures separates the women from the girls, there is only one tool that can stand up to the challenge: The Breville Milk Cafe!
Okay, okay, you know there’s always a little good with the bad and any weapon in the war against poorly frothed milk might not be perfection, but the Milk Cafe is pretty darn close. The only automatic frother that allows you to specify a temp, it’s the hottest auto-frother we’ve tested — and you know we’ve tested many. Watch Gail take us through the features and froth up a big ol’ batch o’ moo.
Taking your java on the road is one of the most important considerations for avid travelers, and several folks have recommended that we take a look at the Presso. Gail tests it out based on the manufacturer’s directions — many other folks have very different techniques for using this and achieving good results, but we were not very successful our first time out. We may try again … but with a few other portable models out there that perform better without a lot of tweaking, we’re not sure if the Presso is the one for us.
One-touch capabilities usually mean a large robot will take over more than it’s fair share of your kitchen’s counter. But Jura released an update to its Ena series last fall that is finally available to everyone who isn’t part of the Sur La Table set.
Featuring the sleek lines and space consciousness of the other Ena models, the 9 also has built-in, programmable milk frothing and one-touch functionality. Watch as Gail goes over the features and makes a one-touch cappuccino.
When we locked Gail in a room alone with the La Marzocco Linea and Mahlkonig K30 Vario, she was able to whip up 41 lattes in an hour. How many can she make with the assistance of the lovely Jess? Find out in this riveting video that demonstrates the importance of teamwork when making lattes — and, really, when trying to make it in life. There is a lesson in here for all of us.
For those of you looking to pick up a mid-range single boiler espresso machine, the Rancilio Silvia and the Ascaso Dream UP are two models worth investigating. Similar in function and price range, Gail walks us through their features and functionality, as well as what she likes and doesn’t like about them.
In the long term quest to improve consistency in shot — particularly in a high-capacity production environment — La Marzocco decided to analyze the filter basket. We visited them a few months ago and spoke with them about these newly engineered baskets, but now that we have them in stock, it was time for a taste test!
Don’t spend all that time making excellent java, only to serve it up in that chipped mug with coffee stains you’ve been rocking since 1986. Just don’t.
We have a ton of different cups (including the infamous Fisticup!) to choose from, and these new models from the Coffee House Collection, the 13 oz Cafe Au Lait or 8 Oz Coupe are amongst some of the more classically styled selections. Watch Gail show them off.