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Thread: What We Do When It Gets Busy

  1. #1
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    What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hey Snobs,
    Thought i would start a post For everyone to share their tricks of the trade during busy and high volume periods, Or Whenever it is busy!
    Tricks people use to really pump out the coffees?
    Wether it be using 2 jugs at once or 2 operators, here is the place to share it!
    ;)

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Learn where to place the steam wand to heat the milk after stretching so you can leave it and pull come shots. Only works for single operator can get a bit risky with other hands around. Another "trick" is to have a hot water urn so that long blacks dont smack your boiler pressure about. Would love to see what others do.

  3. #3
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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    This is the way we work when the going gets tough:
    3 operaters working from left to right (grinder on left hand side) barista 1 loads groups, barista 2 pulls and observes shots, and conducts the instructions to barista 1 & 3. Barista 3 steams and pours drinks. Only problem we have when it gets really busy is the quality of latte art slides, but at least the quality of the shots are still good. This could be solved by a 4th barista like i have seen over in WA at Epic. *
    Cheers,

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    I run a small sushi bar and offer coffee too (yes weird combo but people seem to enjoy it).

    As such, Im on the machine by myself most of the time. I keep several jugs so I dont have to wash them regularly and of various sizes - 2 1-litres, 2 600mls and 2 400mls and 2 more 600mls on standby nearby.

    Like moto coffee mentioned, once I have stretched the milk, I use a thermometer to watch the temperature while I do other things - grind, pull shots, add sugars, etc.

    Whatever free time I have, I reorganise and clean up. Nothing beats an organised workspace to churn those coffees out!

    Works well if youre alone.

  5. #5
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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    faddy, Im heading to melbourne this weekend... Whats the name of your sushi bar?

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    try the local fish and chip :

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    Senior Member Luke_G's Avatar
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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Lucky for me i have a foot operated steam arm :) Combine that with a thermometre and a well designed drip tray and i can stop stretching my milk without having to stop dosing groups handles and loading shots.

    The look on some customers faces is funny sometimes when things seem to be doing themselves!

    I can put the group handle in the mahlkonig grinder to dose its self while texturing milk with one hand and take money from custamers all whilst talking to them about what they have planned for there day :) :D ;D

  8. #8
    A_M
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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Quote Originally Posted by 162F313F051D5A0 link=1248769600/6#6 date=1250591511
    Lucky for me i have a foot operated steam arm :) Combine that with a thermometre and a well designed drip tray and i can stop stretching my milk without having to stop dosing groups handles and loading shots.

    The look on some customers faces is funny sometimes when things seem to be doing themselves!

    I can put the group handle in the mahlkonig grinder to dose its self

    while texturing milk with one hand and

    take money from customers

    all whilst talking to them about what they have planned for there day :) :D ;D
    giggled like a schoolgirl... I needed that.... prior to going up an attempting to roast some beans... Got the shakes with Anticipation.

    But I have to ask... So what do you have rigged up in the bedroom ;)

  9. #9
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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    When it gets busy, I tell the boss to get the heck outta the way! *;D

    Like today, when he decided he wanted his coffee NOW when I had a line up of customers. I was polite! Shock! I did ask him to just wait a few minutes till I got the customers drinks out...yes...he was a bit miffed but it is his mantra that I have in my head and that is..."the customer is always first!"

    Anyway...generally, in my situation, I make sure that everything is organised, and with my workspace, I can reach pretty much everything without having to step far, if at all...If I spot the other women only doing prep work, I will call them over to take out any dine in drinks as I find that that is the most time consuming. Often, I get caught out on the floor as a customer wants to have a quick chat...small town usually means I know who Im serving and they know me!

    I know that there have been times when Ive had a huge list (for me about 10 to 15 drinks to push through in a short time, ranging from coffee, tea and milkshakes) and I find that if I work on the takeaway orders, I can clear them out of the way for the sit down orders where I can afford the luxury of getting any art and presentation right. Putting a lid on a coffee means I dont have to worry too much about presentation!

    Things that slow me down are having to swap milk. Even just going from skim to fat or vice versa is often time consuming. We have to store our skim out in the back coolroom, so if I run out, I have literally have to run out! *;D

    We also have a great girl at the moment who is quick on her feet too and if she sees me about to run out of coffee, cups, milk whatever, she will replenish and let me continue working. Having someone like that around helps with speed I can tell you. Sadly, were losing her soon...and as yet, no one else is that clued up...


  10. #10
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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Hot tip; learn to hang jugs, and be organised.

    We usually have a 3 man setup on the machine where I work. One on shots (and hanging a second jug while loading up another group in betweeen), another just spinning jugs and adding sugars/stirring and lidding, and the third only if we are absolutely nuts to pour and call out numbers. Its usually doable with 2 baristas on. Thats running at about 11kgs within 4.5hrs 8-)

    Another thing that is a good thing to learn is load up 3 groups with shots, have them running (helps if its volumatric ;)) Hang a large (1L) jug on one steam arm, run over to the other arm with a smaller jug (600ml) and spin that, and by the time youve finished spinning that one, the 1L should be done at the same time and have enough milk for the 3 groups you just loaded.
    Good systems and communication between the operators are the key.

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    I like to keep aware of whats coming up, often joining 2 or 3 tickets together. I also work on small tables before moving onto orders with 5 or more drinks on them. knock out lone juice orders as soon as they come up so i have that one less ticket in my rack! also, i throw rosettas out the window. theyre lucky if they get a heart - its jellybeans all the way

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Good thread

    At my cafe its always 2 people on a 3 group Rancillio,we find any more is no different, actually worse. Barista 1 reads tickets, grinds, pull shots, and adds sugars/sweetner/syrup, spin milk when free; Barista 2 spins milk and distributes coffee to waitrss and t/a customers

    Barista 1, usually me, as I enjoy pulling shots, and dont trust others dosing and adjusting grind throughout the day. what I try to avoid is pulling too many shots as the crema will thin out. Also I try to avoid the big 1 litre jug as it doesnt heat evenly and the microfoam is useless from the big jugs. Usually on a good run we can easily and consistently go 5 hours straight and do around 9-11kg after that Im spent and need some KFC to reload

    We have Hot choc syrup/concentrate premade in a 1lt squeezy bottle and a spare in the fridge, makes it tastier and heaps quicker. We also avoid leaving the machine if possible so we try to get a spare staff member to do all cold drinks and occasionally filling of grinders or bringing more milk

    moto ... I must try having a hot water urn, I hate when we get a table wanting 4 teas or long blacks and it will ruin the boiler pressure and my rhythm good idea thanks

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Bigbean, didnt quite understand the crema thinning out via pulling too many shots, what did you mean by that?

    The only thing I could drop in this thread has already been recommended, and maybe the three step rule. Everything you need should be within three steps, if youre close to running out of something, just giving any of the wait staff a hola to top up the hamper is always a great idea. But if theyre mindful, they wouldve already noticed.

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Crema dissipates if it is left for too long, you shouldnt leave the shots for more than 1 min before adding milk (less is better.)

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    So thats what he meant, of course I understand the dynamics of crema, but it just wasnt clear in the wording to me. :P

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Sorry to have bad wording but what moto said; thanks m8

    My business partner at work went to a Gloria Jeans on a public holiday with his sisters family and they were seriously busy; so much so that their idea of coping involved pouring shots randomly into 4oz takeaway cups then lining up 40 of them for the second machine to use with milk vas needed. The second barista then took the shots and poured them as needed into the various sized orders and requests. the shots were constantly being topped up and were sitting there for ages till some slow bugger spun milk. My partner waited forever and struggled to swallow a sip before leaving it, his sister is a GJs fan with no taste for coffee or anything really. But the shots themselves would have been cold before some overheated milk was added, I just dont get it??

    Another tip we do is make the iced coffee shots beforehand and have them sweetened and refrigerated in squeezy bottles first thing in the morning. Its a good way of getting rid of yesterdays coffee beans that were stored overnight

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Ive always been meaning to find an efficient way of pumping Iced Coffees out apart from pulling the shots for one right, there and then. Some people have tried ideas of storing coffee the night before the day in the fridge, made with some method and that it tastes more refreshing then freshly brewed coffee.

    With the coming summer months, wouldnt be a bad idea, or would it.

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    Re: What We Do When It Gets Busy

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    At work we find its better if you just have one person on the machine, but have a second person go runner to get more milk n cups or whatever. A second person on the machine usually just gets in my way, although there is a couple of people (the A-team) who can work smoothly together.

    Basically if the second person looks like theyll be more of a hindrance than a help I push em out of the way and tell them to grab stuff, but if it one of the regular crew we just sort of flow around each other like water over river-stones.

    Switch to big jugs, keep communicating which shot is what and try to do the full rack (two double groups and a single) each time, even if its across a couple of dockets. Setting cups down in order is probably the real key to not losing our shit. Also do lattes into shot glasses not straight into the latte glass cause theyre too tall to sit under the group - fine if you have time to stand there watching it pour in, but too hard in a crush.



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