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  • Help Newbie

    Just purchased a gaggia classic (first machine). Have made a few brews, however not so good. Coffe seems to be to thin and not much crema. I have followed instructuons - tamped coffee, used fresh shop ground beans but water seems to run past coffee to fast. only thing i can think of is tamper is to light (only cheap plastic one supplied with machine) or shop grind to course or possibbly both. Shop owner says grind is his standard grind for expresso (Hope its not the machine).
    Would appreciate Any pointers.
    REGARDS:
    Handtsteel

  • #2
    Re: Help Newbie

    Using coffee ground in the store just doesnt work for home brewed espresso. You must have a good quality grinder and grind immediately prior to brewing.

    The grind you use will change from day to day and even through-out the same day to adjust for changes in temp and humidity as well as the age of the beans.

    Ground coffee goes stale with-in minutes. If you want to enjoy good espressos at home youll need to invest in a grinder capable of producing a good espresso grind.

    You can produce acceptable espresso with mediocre brewing equipment, but not with-out a good grinder. Youll find yourself chasing your tail and constantly dissapointed if you dont have a good grinder at home. With-out a proper grind even the best of brewing equipment is doomed to produce substandard espresso.

    By all means get rid of that plastic tamper and buy one thats properly sized for your portafilter.

    Java "Its all about the grind" phile
    Toys! I must have new toys!!!

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    • #3
      Re: Help Newbie

      Confirming Javaphile... As Above :-)

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      • #4
        Re: Help Newbie

        Thanks for your advice, will do some research on purchasing a grinder.
        and a better tamper.

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        • #5
          Re: Help Newbie

          Handysteel,
          You are spot on with your diagnosis, well done. It took me days to digest all the stuff on espresso before Id come to the same conclusion.
          Dont sweat the grinder, it will come. Can we concentrate on getting a decent brew from this little baby first?

          I love testing, I also love lists. Coffee Snobs has given me the chance to justify my obsessive compulsive tendencies and create tests and lists of everything and I feel great about it.

          I wasnt as quick off the mark as you, I persevered with multinational preground blends for a long while before I realised that the variables I sought to control were out of reach as soon as I opened that bloody vac pac.

          Have faith in your local roaster, they live for coffee, tell us where you live and we will hook you up with a roaster who will get the Gaggia firing while you save for a conical burr grinder!

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Help Newbie

            Thanks Presso,
            I have to confess i had done some research on this great site before i posted, so i did have an idea of what my problem was but i was not totally sure however. So was it my new machine (does it work properly) or was it my new found brewing skills, LOL.

            So some advice from experienced brewers could conferm may suspicions that is was my skiils and not my new baby.

            I dont think that the shop i purchased the coffee from roasted them, just sold them. I must admit tho i did not ask the question.

            If you or any one else can point me to a good local roaster in the northern suburbs of Melbourne ( EPPING) it would be greatly appriciated.

            REGARDS:
            Handysteel

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            • #7
              Re: Help Newbie

              Originally posted by handysteel link=1158755574/0#5 date=1158836649
              If you or any one else can point me to a good local roaster in the northern suburbs of Melbourne ( EPPING) it would be greatly appriciated.

              REGARDS:
              Handysteel
              Being a Sydneysider, I dont know where Veneziano is in relation to Epping, but I can tell you I ordered coffee from their website and it was excellent. I tried the David Makin WBC Blend and will be going back for more of that, and giving something else a try as well.

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              • #8
                Re: Help Newbie

                Hi Handysteel.

                I also have a Gaggia Classic and be assured that you can pull a decent shot from your machine with, as has been suggested before, the right grind and a good tamper. The plastic one is rubbish. I bought one of Greg Pullmans Tampers and it is great. A good grinder is a must, but in the meantime, find a good roaster.

                Have a search through the archives for tips on how to check/adjust the Over Pressure Valve (OPV) which will regulate the pressure/flow of water to the group.

                The Classic is a good machine to cut your teeth on. There are better ones and there are worse ones as well.

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                • #9
                  Re: Help Newbie

                  Great advice Flo, now for that roaster in Epping.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Help Newbie

                    Checked the yellow pages today and found a local roaster in Reservior called Dimattina Coffee ( dont know their quality ), add says wholesale only but i went past and sign said sales to public so i purchased 250g of what they call Prima Tazza ( their recommendation).

                    When i got home i tested my newly purchased Prima Tazza, boy big difference in brew time. The pour was much slower than with my first try at brewing, looked much more like all the promo clips pours.

                    So i am feeling much better now about my new machine, with a better grind it can work!

                    However i found the shot was a little bitter and no sweetness, but had a better fuller coffee flavour. Could the bitterness just be the coffee type or is it still my skills? Have been told a good shot should always be on the sweet side.

                    Once again thanks for your help.
                    REGARDS:

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