Welcome aboard jakes, I might run into you some time at Di Bartoli.
I signed up a few weeks ago, but havent yet had cause to post. Part of the reason I joined CoffeeSnobs was because I found the Bean Bay, and really wanted to try roasting my own coffee. Ive now done a small batch from my starter pack (Peru Segunda) in a crazy popper - I think I need a little more practice :) - but Im really looking forward to trying the other varieties. I guess the thing thats motivated to post tonight is because Im going tomorrow to get a Silvia. It will be my first espresso machine, and Im very much looking forward to it. Ive been using an aeropress for the past year or so, and have used plungers and moka pots, but theyre just not proper espresso (even if they do make okay coffee on their own terms). But, I dropped into Di Bartoli last weekend just to have a look and ended up convinced that it was time for a proper machine.
Im digging the site, theres plenty of excellent info that has helped me, and Ive been spending a fair bit of time reading through as much of it as I can recently.
Thanks for listening (reading), Im sure Ill have plenty to ask (and hopefully contribute) in the near future, once Ive got my Silvia home.
Welcome aboard jakes, I might run into you some time at Di Bartoli.
Welcome Jakes, I hope you have budgeted in a decent grinder to go with the planned Silvia.
Another Sydney-sider to add to the bunch :)
Thanks for the welcome, guys.
Coffeechaser, I received a Sunbeam EM4080 for christmas so Im going to be using that. Am reasonably confident that it should do the job okay - the grinds I was getting to test the Silvia when I got it home this morning seemed to be working okay. (But thanks for the warning - Im really hoping the Sunbeam will be okay because I couldnt explain the need to upgrade this soon after I got it, and the budget just wont stretch any further at the moment).
Thundergod - may very well see you there some time.
Hi jakes and a belated welcome to CoffeeSnobs...
The sunbeam EM480 (I assume that is the model you meant) is perfectly adequate for Miss Silvia.
The steps might be a little bigger than ideal - but should give you adequate adjustment. Just keep an eye on the grind size- some owners have suffered a slow increase in grind size (requiring you to set the grinder to a lower and then lower number - until you are at the lowest setting).
If you have one that does that- back to Sunbeam (there is also a fix on CoffeeSnobs - using a piece of string or thin paper under the burr - which corrects the problem).
Enjoy your coffee and the journey!!
Thanks JavaB, your reply is much appreciated
Yep, my mistake its the EM0480. Up to now I havent worried too much about the grind size, but now that it matters Ill be keeping an eye on it. Thanks for pointing out the potential fix on the EM480 thread - I had seen it, but have been hoping I wont have to worry about it. Just made two coffees (my first attempt at doing it properly, not just practising) - they were pretty good. And from here, I guess it can only get better :)
hi folks - joined late last week and have been to shy to post in case someone asked what type of machine I use...but feel much better now and should have my shiny new Giotto on Wednesday - thanks Chris...roll on Wednesday evening when I get it home...am sure I wont get any sleep that night
Welcome Dennis! Were coffeesnobs but I dont think we knock anyone too much for whatever gear that theyre using to make their coffee! Still a Giotto, woohoo! Nice machine and good luck with it, youll have a lot of fun! :D
Now thats something to be snobbish about, Dennis!! Well done. Just dont rub it in too much later. That might make some of us feel inadequate and rush for the Upgrade Chequebook.
Originally Posted by Dennis link=1163710606/45#56 date=1171864962
Welcome to the Giotto fold Dennis and thanks for choosing Talk Coffee! Hope you love your new kit!
Must be time to have a CS/Talk Coffee Giotto owners reunion ;)....There are quite a few in CS land * 8-)
I attach for all Giotto owners, a pic of a Veneziano- which just goes to prove there is no immunity to upgraditis!:P
Not quite a newbie now, but cant figure when promotions from Green Bean happen and so forth, does anyone have the scale of promotion to next level on CoffeeSnobs?
50 posts i think
Here are the "grades"
GreenBean up to 50 posts
and with my number of posts.... and a few other Snobs..... there will probably either be a "HasBean" or "OldCharcoal" grade soon ;) ;D ;D ;D
This is my first post and Ive got a few questions.
First my gear. Extremely modest Breville machine which makes good coffee if the cup isnt too big and you use the double group handle insert and a breville top-down grinder. Personally I dont know why Id need anything better, the laborious process keeps my intake down and the coffee I make tastes heaps better than the $2000 saeco machine at work (and I have to have double shot long black to get anything decent there).
Anyway, my question is about the bean-bay. Are ALL the beans on sale here unroasted? I usually by Vittoria Brazil Rex from my local deli which is very nice. Can anyone recommend a similar type of bean from the upcoming bean-bay?
Yes they are "Green"/unroasted coffee beans.
I have no idea whats going to be in the upcoming bean bay...except for the Guat Decaf I will try to score for myself.
I wouldnt have a clue what type of blend Vittoria Brazil Rex is. Id just assume a bunch of different Brazils with some other beans to boot.
Have you roasted coffee before? It might be wise to read a few tutorials and threads on CS and other websites like sweet marias.
If youre keen to use the intarweb to purchase beans, then you may be interested to know that you can buy roasted beans from several of our site sponsers as well. Just check them out for yourself, they are all to be recommended for service and quality!
Id alway dismissed the thought of buying a coffee machine, using the oh but i like to go to cafes to get coffees - now with a new baby and a toddler those days are pretty much non existent so when i was out looking for a new coffee table, i thought hey i need a coffee machine to make the coffee to go on the table!! so rushed into the good guys and got a Sunbeam EM3600 not realising the intricacies involved in making fantastic coffee!! The machine does the trick dont get me wrong but as Ive since found out it probably doesnt work with very freshly ground beans as there is only one hole in the basket, Sunbeam told me you cant get baskets with lots of holes in for that machine. ANyway Im really new at the coffee thing and still can only manage a flat white or a long black! so Im keen to learn some new tricks. I did a freebie Sunbeam course at the weekend which was pretty helpful but looking to read some good posts on how to refine the art!!
Hi annb and welcome to CoffeeSnobs,
Pressurised baskets - the ones with the small single hole- will work with fresh beans- the grind will have to be quite a bit more coarse than stale beans - and you wont get the most out of the beans as far as flavour goes....
Whilst Sunbeam dont have "normal" baskets for your machine - most small domestics will take either a saeco or a krups "normal" basket..... and they will then give you correct extraction from fresh beans....
If you take your portafilter to a coffeemachine spares / service centre which supports either of those machines you will probably be able to get a basket which fits - for under $20.
Enjoy your journey
Welcome to coffeesnobs.
The beans being too fresh should not be the cause of the issue (unless they were roasted less than 12 hours prior).
The issue is more likely to be the grind.
How are you grinding?
To get the best out of any machine, you really need a good quality grinder (IE: Not a blade grinder). You need to adjust the fineness/coarseness of the grind in accordance with a few factors such as bean age, ambient temperature/humidity, machine idiosynchrasies etc.
So, to start getting reliable and repeatable results, you need to be in control of as many variables as you can be. Grind is a big one.
As for the basket, the ones with one hole are called a pressurised basket. They are common on a lot of name brand home coffee machines. They help the machine to create a kind of fake crema. Given that you are using the EM3600 (53mm?) it might be hard to find a non-pressurised basket, but it can be done. I think there was a discussion about it a few months back. When Sunbeam say you cant get them, they mean that they dont make/supply them.
Hope that helps.
Ask more questions as you need to. Plenty of people have been down the same path ;-)
Thanks JavaB and Wushoes for that information.
On another note, have been looking what is written on this site about machines, and its all quite confusing when thinking of a machine to replace mine when the time comes.
I plan on spending around $1200 to $1800 for a machine, and want a quality one that has two boilers, as does my Sunbeam 6900.
Can anyone on this site tell me some quality brands for around this figure, and perhaps point me to a site (preferably one that supports CS) so when Im ready to buy I know where to get it ;)
smoky,Originally Posted by smoky link=1163710606/60#69 date=1172390482
mmm dont think you will find a twin boiler machine in that price range.
Firstly the 6900 isnt twin boiler - its twin thermoblock. Different and much cheaper technology than genuine twin boiler.... (and as far as I know - the only manufacturer using it now)
For the dollars you want to spend you are on the edge of the prosumer machines price wise. These are heat exchanger machines (the same as my machine -and most commercial machines) These only have a single boiler which is used to produce the steam, and also heats the water for brewing via the heat exchanger. This allows you to texture milk and brew at the same time.
Twin boiler machines are a lot more expensive than this technology (and a lot, lot more than thermoblocks!!)
Depending on your state, check out the site sponsors - they can explain the machines to you better than we can, and help you choose the right one for you.
Hello, where else in Perth can I buy pre-roasted beans of good quality. I have bought from Epic but cant always get there.
Yes I will start home roasting soon, but until then...
Thanks JavaB, appreciated. Will do some ringing around from site sponsors when ready to get next one, and the heat exchange idea you have seems to be ok from what you wrote, it will do both at once (tell me if wrong) and thats what I originally purchased the Sunbeam for.
Figured if shopping within the range I specified it may give me a class machine that will keep going for quite some time, not that this Sunbeam wont from what I can see of it, but who can tell, and nothing like a bit more class sitting on the bench (providing it does a better job of brewing...helping the brewers craft! ;)
Yep, heat exchanger machines are the norm for most commercial machines (some of the top end commercials do have multiple boilers but they are mega $$$$$$$) and most prosumer domestic machines.... so that will more than meet your need....Originally Posted by smoky link=1163710606/60#72 date=1172395879
And the prosumer machines look really great on the bench as well 8-)
Ive just found this site, and Ive gotta say Im loving it already!
Ive been starting to appreciate coffee more over the past year or so, and I think I have the potential to turn into a full blown snob.
Im lucky enough to live a couple of kilometers from the main Italian coffee roasters in Melbourne, and have until recently been purchasing fresh ground coffee for use in my stove-top mokka pots. Last weekend, after reading heaps of info on this site, I went out and purchased a Sunbeam em0480 grinder and have already noticed a difference in flavour using the same coffee and brewing equipment. My next step is to purchase an espresso machine, and Im currently trying to decide between the Silvia and the Sunbeam em6910 - luckily there is heaps of great info on this site to help me decide.
Anyway, thats enough from me for now. I look forward to learning heaps and maybe even contributing a little once I get into this a little more seriously.
Welcome bean_junky! Glad you could find something useful on this site! I had a laugh!
Love your "potential coffeesnob" moniker. Good one! Happy journey!
Thanks scoota gal.
I just found the beanbay section of the site, and couldnt help myself... I should have a starter pack delivered in a couple of days! Now I need to go purchase a popper as well as an espresso machine. ;D
I just found this site while researching a new coffee machine. Great stuff! Browsing around really helped, so thankyou to everyone whos contributed. Although now I want more than just a new espresso machine. ;D
Im in Canberra, so it sounds like Ill have to check out the local sponsor and see if I can take a look at one of those silvias Ive heard so much about.
Welcome to CoffeeSnobs Geoff.
You must get a good grinder too.
Its on my list...
Now THATS dedication!Originally Posted by bean_junky link=1163710606/75#77 date=1172493271
Yeah, I tend to get excited easily when I start a new hobby!Originally Posted by askthecoffeeguy link=1163710606/75#81 date=1172602833
Ive been reading up on all the different ways to roast the beans once they arrive, and am now trying to decide between buying a popper and starting small and cheap, or purchasing a heat gun to use with my bread maker... whats everyones thoughts? I see the advantage of the heat gun being that I can roast larger batches and roast a little slower (thats an advantage, right?), but Im a little concerned about damaging my bread machine. Decisions, decisions!
Hi and welcome to coffee snobs....
Poppers are cheap- but if you go that way get a Breville Crazy Popper or a similar quality one.... the el cheapos ones vary too much in fan speed... making roasts too fast or too slow....
If you are happy with about 100 grams per batch and pretty fast roasting they work really well.....
But if you dont want to roast every other day (or several times in one day) then the BM / heatgun is the way to go..... Batches up to a kilo (depends a bit on style of the bowl).... extended roast times which are very controllable and a better tasting coffee (most flavour develops between first and second crack) - make it longer and you get better flavour. I regularly do 500-600 gram roasts with about 8 minutes between cracks....
You could damage your bread machine - but this is unlikely. Ive dedicated mine to the much higher calling as a coffee roaster (modded so the motor runs continuously) ..... altered the length of the paddle and drilled holes through the bowl for temperature probes.... so no more bread making!!
I wouldnt go back to a popper.... the BM / heatgun is just so much better.
Thanks JavaB. It does sound like the bread machine/heatgun is the way to go. I have no idea what heatguns cost, but I might go to Bunnings tomorrow to check them out. I saw some Mistrel poppers for sale on the weekend for $14, so it would be a very cheap way of testing the water if heatguns turn out to be too expensive.Originally Posted by JavaB link=1163710606/75#83 date=1172657640
Check out my post on the Mistral Popper.
Admittedly mine had been sitting in a cupboard for a year but it died on the first roast. So I replaced it with a Breville and have done 2 more roasts without any problems.
Even if I setup a Corretto (BM + HG) I can use the breville for small batches when I cant be bothered setting up the BM etc.
I use a x1 heatgun from Bunnings for $15 - does the job.
Gday again BJ,Originally Posted by bean_junky link=1163710606/75#82 date=1172656825
It might be possible to buy a "spare" bread-pan for your BM that could be dedicated to bread-making and use your existing one for the much higher calling of Roasting Coffee. Thats what we did with our BM (cost $14.00 from Breville I think) and its a few years old so I spose as long as your BM isnt too old you might be able to get one. Id say that over time, the Teflon Coating on the inside of the pan will slowly erode away with the constant stirring of the beans, although mine shows no signs of that yet after about 7-8 months of use.
Might be worth a try though :)
Hi! Im new here! Go easy on me! =D
Ive just lucked into a Faema e98 compact and a Mazzer Luigi manual grinder. Myself & my wife have wanted to buy a quality machine for some time but other priorities have kept this item down the list. So when we were offered these two machines for whatever we thought was a fair thing we said sure. I had no idea what we were getting & still dont other than the research Ive done today.
So the next question for us is how to get a manual for the e98 & then how to make sure the things working properly. Weve got no idea when it was last serviced & when we turned it on last night it pumped water ok & we can get water coming out of the head(?) but the thing dosnt seem to want to heat up. It came up to temp & pressure once so we got one shot out of it but it since dosnt want to know about it.
Love the site & it seems theres quite a bit to learn.
Hi Little and welcome to CoffeeSnobs.
Faema e98 - nice machine. :) :)
Well first off its an automatic - like mine - so lots of electronics... and they are subject to far more faults / failures than the more manual semi automatic. :( Did you check for dead mice ( and other assorted creatures) which find their way into the electronics "box" during storage and short out components - causing board failure when you first power up. :( And a new board will set you back hundreds of dollars.
Secondly if it has been sitting around idle for a while - the boiler has probably been empty. Scale which has built up during past use - when the boiler is empty - can become loose and when you fill it up and turn it on you will get bits flaking off and they can block up all sorts of small openings (like maybe the pressure stat which controls the heating).
After a long period idle the machine probably needs a really good total service - if it were me Id be stripping down the boiler and doing a complete descale as well.
If you are handy with electronics and plumbing (and can get the manual) it is possible to do this yourself (as I did) but the manual wont provide details on how to service the machine - only how to operate and maintain it (as a user).
It is potentially a great machine.... but in need of some professional help I fear. And that is generally very expensive. I bought a second hand machine which I could see working (and actually try myself) - and even then I did a strip down before putting it into "home" service.
Used Commercial machines (IMHO) are only practical for those with a lot of engineering skills (electrical, electronics and mechanical) and also lots of time on their hands to undertake the restoration. The only other option is to seek professional help - and be prepared to pay a lot of money. You have to be very lucky to pick one up and be able to use it straight away. :(
Sorry for the bad news. Whilst many desire to own second hand commercial machines- you need to be very, very wary when purchasing one! You can end up paying a lot more than a smaller (and cheaper to run) prosumer - which will produce the same quality coffee.
Thanks for the reply. Sounds like scale will be an issue (one of them?) How do you go about locating techs to have a look at these things? Sounds like it needs a professional eye cast over it. Theres no money in the machine at this point so a little wouldnt hurt but theres little point chucking hundreds down the drain if its going to be a constant exercise.
How do I get into the electronics box? I might have a poke around & see if theres any large rodents hanging about :) That at least is something I can do.
Firstly where are you located? I, or another member of CS, might be able to point you in the right direction for service.
The electronics box is located in various places on different manufacturers machines. In my La Cimbali its under the drip tray (the coolest spot on the machine) but many brands have it either just behind either the back cover or one of the side covers...
I dont know the Faemas at all so I cant point you in the right direction. But the comment re the dead mouse - I saw a "blown up" board on Monday caused by just such a problem. A lot will depend on where it was stored (e.g. a shed down the back is a likely place to have population of visiting "creatures").
If you can get it sorted you will have a great machine and the coffee will be superb...... Ill keep my fingers crossed for you.
I live about half way between cronulla and wollongong. The lights on the front board all seem to be working ok. All of the buttons were given a test last night on the one occasion the boiler managed to get going. The problem at the moment is that it wont heat up & one of the led lights flashes after it has a crack at heating up & cant manage it. Last night the light went out and the machine seemed to fire up nicely (to the untrained eye). Pressure came up to just over 1 bar & we were able to generate steam without any dramas. It was stored in an internal room in an apartment complex so hopefully it will be ok. Thanks for the help & input - time & an experienced eye will tell me what Im up for.
Im in WA so the places I know wouldnt be much use ::).
A flashing light normally means a fault condition - possibly it has detected the water level is too low..... and so aborts the heating (dont you love these smart devices)..... Possibly scale on the water level sensor as a wild guess. The machine is connected to an appropriate water source?
Well the storage sounds pretty good so its probably just a clean and adjustment and all will be well. :)
Ill leave it to someone in Sydney to suggest a repairer.
Perhaps the water source is the issue. We were ony relying on the reservoir at the back of the machine for water supply & were refilling that as required. It has a plumbing attachment - a braided piece of hose. I was assuming this hose fed water into the reservoir at the back of the machine, which in turn filled the boiler. The machine is definitely drawing water from the resevoir through a filter. Ive chased down a rep in sydney who should be able to put me onto a service person & hopefully hell be able to send out a copy of the manual. Pity theres no pdf manuals available.
Thanks to everyone on here for their suggestions and comments. My starter pack of coffee arrived today and I went out after work to purchase some roasting supplies. First stop was Bunnings, where I took TimOs suggestion and bought an X1 heatgun for $15. Next stop was Harvey Normans, where I bought the Breville Crazy Popper (without packaging, as they only had the display model left) for $35 (thanks JavaB). Next I went straight home, put 75grams of Indian Tiger Mountain into the popper and went for it... It was much easier than I thought it would be ;D On the weekend Ill probably try to setup the bread machine/heatgun to see if the result is much different.
Heres the result...
I cant wait to taste it in the morning! Too bad I only have a stove-top mokka pot :(
Looking good there bean_junky.... nice and even roast.
Freshly roasted and ground coffee tastes so much better - regardless of the coffee maker..... Plunger coffee made this way is excellent for example.
You can try tomorrow but generally you need to rest the beans 24 to 48 hours before the flavour develops..
Popper roasts have a more "sparkly" flavour - not correct term but its how Id describe it- where as corretto roasts are more smooth, mellow and IMHO have a better flavour.....
But in the end its down to what you prefer..... its all good 8-)
Wow, great roast!
Much more even than mine in the cornelius popper. Id love to read your "cupping notes" once youve tried it!
Thanks for the kind words JavaB. I have a plunger here somewhere which Ive never used... I may give it a try in the morning. Im sure eventually Ill get a chance to let the beans rest for 24 or 48 hours - its not going to happen this time though!Originally Posted by JavaB link=1163710606/90#97 date=1172743530