We’re back with double the latte art videos! Today Chad breaks down the elements of pouring a latte art heart and a latte art rosetta. Try each, impress everyone you know and then let us know how it went!
If we had to choose three words to describe the video below, they would be “Chad is awesome!”
When he’s not helping out customers in our Seattle Coffee Gear Portland store, Chad teaches barista classes. Which means that as soon as he joined the team we started hitting him up to make some sweet latte art videos for us. After all, we could write out the steps to latte art all day long, but having a visual aid is at least 100 times better (if not 1,0000).
In this video, Chad walks us through latte art basics. Pay attention, because you’ll need these next week when we post some advanced techniques!
When we think of reliable and hardworking, we think of the Rancilio Rocky grinder. Is that weird? We don’t think so…
The Rocky is available in a doser version, for those that go through a decent amount of coffee and/or rarely change their grind, or a doserless version, which grinds directly into your portafilter. Each one gives you a sturdy build and 55 different grind settings, so you can go from espresso to drip (and back again) with ease.
Given that the Rocky is the apple of our eye, we decided it was time for an updated Crew Review. Check it out below and watch as Gail and Brendan walk us through features, dialing in the grind and removing the burrs for maintenance!
Oh, how we love a great scale! It’s the basis for a beautiful shot of espresso or a perfect pour over, as dosage of coffee to water has a huge impact on the outcome of your caffeine beverage of choice.
The Bonavita Electronic Scale not only meets the features a scale is pretty much required to (you know, weighing things properly), but it also is quite pretty. Look at that glass! Measuring accurately to .01 grams, the Bonavita Electronic Scale is now flying solo and can be purchased on its own versus just bundled with other Bonavita products.
We’ve all been there: A leaky machine! A lot of friction occurs within the Saeco Water Tank manifold when you remove it, fill it up with water and then insert it back into the machine. Over time, the seals and spring can wear down and you’ll begin to notice dripping from the water tank when it’s not inserted to the machine. These kits will replace those seals and springs to get you back in working order in no time!
Join Gail and Brendan as they discuss the new Nespresso Inissia capsule machine! The smallest of the Nespresso bunch, the Inissia also comes in at the lowest capsule price point we’ve seen of $99. Easy to use, you simply drop the capsule into the brewing chamber and press a single button. Occasionally clean out the drip tray and empty your capsule “dregs” box for a crazy clean machine!
If you’re not into the factory settings (1.4 ounces for an espresso shot and 3.7 ounces for a lungo), you can program the buttons to your preferred volume. Simply hold the button and, when the shot gets to the volume of your liking, release the button. Volia – you’ve just programmed your Nespresso!
Want to see the Nespresso Inissia in action? Just watch the video below!
We’re pretty over the moon, crazily thrilled to introduce the Saeco Gran Baristo Espresso Machine with Removable Bean Container. We realize that’s a really long product name, so let us point out the really important part: “with removable bean hopper.” Ummmm, yes please!
We’re really excited about it, as you may have been able to tell from the first sentence of this post, but what does this mean in practical terms? Well, you can now have multiple, whole bean blends at the ready to switch up your espresso routine. As we all know, fresh ground coffee creates the best tasting shot, so you can officially say “goodbye” to a pre-ground alternate. Though the bypass doser option technically still exists with the Gran Baristo, so you can really go wild with your on-hand bean selections! Extra bonus points for the coffee empty cycle, which grinds through the leftover beans in the grinder chute, allowing your next shot to be the blend that is currently in your hopper.
There are about nine other things about this machine that we’re in love with, but we don’t want you to doze while we ramble. So, without further ado, a Crew Review to answer all of your burning questions about the new Saeco Gran Baristo!
Oh, Miss Silvia! A beloved home espresso machine among many a household, she can pull an espresso shot like nobody’s business. However, like other single boiler espresso machines, you need to do a bit of temperature surfing after steaming your milk in order to get a quality shot of espresso. Unlike regular surfing, though, you don’t need to wear a bathing suit, so that’s pretty sweet.
Why do you need to temperature surf? Well, steam temperature is right around 212 degrees F, whereas brewing temperature is between 195-205 degrees F. If you steam your milk and jump immediately into the brewing process, you’re at far too hot a temperature for a tasty shot of espresso. Yes, it will still pull the shot, but there will be plenty of burned taste to be had!
Luckily, Gail and Brendan are here to walk us through the simple process in the video below. And let’s try to keep daydreaming about the beach to a minimum, shall we?
Sarah and Dori are back (at the same bat time on the same bat channel) and ready to share their brew tips with you! Up this time is the macchiato, but not the one drenched in caramel that you are accustomed to seeing in a big chain coffee shop. While, admittedly, those are delicious, this is an old fashioned foamed milk and espresso type o’ macchiato.
Composed of two parts espresso to one part foamed milk. And by “foamed milk” we really mean either the foam off the top of the milk or really, really well frothed milk. So milky coffee lovers may want to look at a cappuccino to get their espresso beverage fix!
How to Make a Macchiato
1) Clear the extra water out of the steam wand.
2) Follow our steps for frothing milk for a cappuccino (yes, even though you are making a macchiato) when preparing your milk.
3) As you froth your milk, keep in mind that you should be expanding it quite a bit and incorporating in as much air as you can. Remember: We’re looking for that milk foam!
4) Clean up that steam wand while you pull your espresso shot.
5) Give your frothing pitcher a firm tap against the counter and swirl to incorporate the foam into the milk.
6) For a macchiato with very foamed milk, pour the milk directly on top of the espresso shot. For a macchiato with a dollop of foam, let the milk sit for a minute to let it separate from the foam (or don’t tap and swirl initially) and then spoon a few tablespoons onto the espresso shot.
You can be as pro as Sarah and Dori, too. Just watch the video below and then follow the foolproof steps to macchiato mania!
We hear from customers quite frequently that directions for pluming in a Rocket Espresso machine are needed…desperately! We’re not going to lie, we’ve even heard from plumbers calling in on behalf of their customers, as they are in their homes trying to complete the installation. And, on more than one occasion, we’ve had stories recounted of multiple hardware store trips and a fair amount of frustration.
So we’re here to set the story straight: You don’t need a plumber to install your plumbed in machine. You don’t need to spend hours, or really more than 10-20 minutes, on the installation. Last, but not least, you certainly don’t need to suffer through sixteen trips to [insert name of your favorite hardware store]. What you do need is to watch the video below, which is a step-by-step walkthrough (with SCG’s very own repair technicians!) of how to plumb in your Rocket home espresso machine!
They’ll even explain how to disconnect the hoses, in case you need to remove the machine for a repair or relocation, and show you the steps for programming the PID to accept a direct connection the R58. Espresso lovers, unite!