Results 1 to 21 of 21

Thread: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    229

    Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I was at a well known coffee house in Sydney yesterday with my parents, and all three of us ordered milk drinks. Each drink came with a very nice rosetta - better by far than what I can fluke at home on a good day.

    I encouraged them to try it before they decided to add sugar, which they did. To my surprise my mums response was "you make really good coffee". I took a mouthful of my own coffee and was surprised at the lack of sweetness and texture of the milk in my mouth vs what I do at home. It was by no means a bad coffee, just not the level I would have expected.

    My theory (that Im hoping someone can confirm) is that optimal art milk doesnt necessarily result in optimal taste milk.

    Any thoughts?

    Grant

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    116

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Hi Grant,

    I think that theory is bollocks! and that its most likely just the brand and type of milk in use. *Probably most likely just the brand :D

    cheers,
    James

    (EDIT: speeling)

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    921

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    The only thing I can think of is that if the milk is cooler than normal (optimal for latte art) then the milk wont taste as sweet. Something to do with the higher temp making the sugars (ie lactose) taste sweeter in the milk.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    433

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    my wife commented yesterday that the taste of the milk from the new Ikon machine at our shop was a lot creamier than we get from our 6910 at home. I have commented that the Ikon is a lot more powerful than the 6910 (and it has a 2 hole spout) and requires a different technique to steam milk and has different sounds. Milk brand is the same.

    I would hazzard a guess that the differing speed at which milk is heated plays a part in the taste?

    who knows

    Sen

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    569

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Quote Originally Posted by 72444F40554E53210 link=1231884504/3#3 date=1231893172
    my wife commented yesterday that the taste of the milk from the new Ikon machine at our shop was a lot creamier than we get from our 6910 at home. I have commented that the Ikon is a lot more powerful than the 6910 (and it has a 2 hole spout) and requires a different technique to steam milk and has different sounds. Milk brand is the same.

    I would hazzard a guess that the differing speed at which milk is heated plays a part in the taste?

    who knows

    Sen
    I moved from a 6910 to a VBM and found a huge taste difference in the milk. From what I was told, it is that the VBM steam is drier, i.e. introduces less water into the milk. Which kinda makes sense

    B

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    229

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Quote Originally Posted by 5D565A415245370 link=1231884504/1#1 date=1231887934
    its most like just the brand and type of milk in use
    Theres not enough room in this thread for logic thankyou very much!

    Grant

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,946

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Quote Originally Posted by 54405B5C55576D5645575E5E5740320 link=1231884504/0#0 date=1231884504
    I was at a well known coffee house in Sydney yesterday with my parents, and all three of us ordered milk drinks. Each drink came with a very nice rosetta - better by far than what I can fluke at home on a good day.

    I encouraged them to try it before they decided to add sugar, which they did. To my surprise my mums response was "you make really good coffee". I took a mouthful of my own coffee and was surprised at the lack of sweetness and texture of the milk in my mouth vs what I do at home. It was by no means a bad coffee, just not the level I would have expected.

    My theory (that Im hoping someone can confirm) is that optimal art milk doesnt necessarily result in optimal taste milk.

    Any thoughts?

    Grant
    It is easier to pour latte art with thinner milk. If you see a photo of a rosetta on the internet with fifty very fine leaves, chances are that the layer of froth is very thin. I probably prefer more froth than that and Im sure that Im not alone.

    Andrew came up with an awesome drink at Maltitude shortly after he made his first bottomless portafilter. We noticed that the Guinness effect seemed to be more pronounced with espresso from the bottomless portafilter, so Andrew came up with the idea of having two baristi make a piccolo latte so that the steam was cut as soon as the shot was, the milk was poured instantly, without waiting for the milk to split, and served to the customer eagerly waiting two feet away from the espresso machine. In this way, you get to drink the drink as both the crema and the foam split from the underlying liquid and latte art is basically impossible.

    Quote Originally Posted by 58535F445740320 link=1231884504/1#1 date=1231887934
    Hi Grant,

    I think that theory is bollocks! and that its most likely just the brand and type of milk in use. Probably most likely just the brand :D

    cheers,
    James

    (EDIT: speeling)
    Seems like a very good hypothesis to me!

    The other reason why commercial coffee could be tasting bad at the moment is simply the temperature. Australian summer heat can be an absolute nightmare for coffee storage in cafes if it isnt managed cleverly. Again, Andrew had a brainwave to contribute here - he stores his stuff in a wine fridge during the summer. Other shrewd cafe owners might simply look for the coolest place in the cafe or use a styrofoam box.

    Finally, theres every possibility that something was simply buggered up. I mean, people bugger things up all the time at home!

    Cheers,

    Luca

  8. #8
    Senior Member redzone121's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    1,162

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    I have noticed the milk I stuff up (comes out thinner) and seems to sit underneath the foam with a very thin layer of foam on top tastes like normally heated hot milk with coffee. I personally hate this look and taste sometimes pouring them down the sink. If I can then rectify this with a slightly better texture it is not just the look that changes but the flavour of the Flat white changes too IMO anyway.

    Cheers

    Chris

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    790

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    hhmm some thoughts as i read...
    1. latte art does not mean great coffee because you need a good espresso/ristreto base for great coffee. milk hides some flaws, but not all.
    2. moto coffee: milk LOSES sweetness the hotter it gets. roughly speaking, milk steamed to 60-65deg will be a heck of a lot sweeter than milk steamed to 70-75 deg. im pretty sure thats fact.
    3. different milks (lets say comparing various brands of full cream) taste different in a variety of ways. two that come to mind are sweetness and mouthfeel/creaminess
    4. luca - i think i understand what andrew at maltitude was doing with having two baristi simulatnaeously taking care of milk and the shot, and yes, a naked handle produces airier crema, but its not all THAT hard to have one barista set up his/her milk jug prior to dosing up, and then starting the shot as s/he starts the milk. milk is going to be done before the shot is (assuming decent steam from the machine), cut steam, cut shot, pour together, etc... so i dont QUITE get what makes andrews effort all that different, with respect to andrew of course. can you clarify?

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    921

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    roknee, what you say about milk losing sweetness is true but I was talking about the difference between 45-55 (supposedly a better temp for latte art) and 60-65 which is generally considered the ideal temp for coffee consumption.

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    790

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    ok motocoffee, so youre saying that milk sweetness increases up to a point (60-65deg) and then decreases.....i guess i dont usually pour milk (even for art) at those kinds of temps you talk of. youre probably right though!
    cheers
    aaron

  12. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    921

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    My understanding is that in latte art competitions they use temps that are much lower than what you would usually drink coffee at. Apparently it makes it easier to come up with the designs.

  13. #13
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    15

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    I really enjoy my cappucinos, when the coffee does have at least 1/4 or 1/3 creamy microfoam. I love sipping 1/2 the foam with chocolate off my spoon then stirring the rest of it through my coffee. Hence my total dislike of the trend these days of sending out flat cappucinos that are under temperature with only about 3mls of foam all so that people can oooh and aaah over the pattern. For one thing, as my coffee now resembles a flat white, the taste has been spoiled for me with the addition of an extra 20 to 30mls milk. The temperature is more at about 55 degrees (too cool for my liking) while the microfoam is watery and not enough of.
    At our cafe, our cappucino, flat white and latte drinkers are evenly split. We send out art on flat whites and lattes and just lots of chocolate and chocolate shavings on our cappucinos. The flat white and lattes are at about 60 degrees and the cappucinos at about 63 degrees.
    When Im out drinking coffee, as soon as I see a really detailed leaf pattern, I know Im going to have a very disappointing cappucino. :(

    SC64

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    437

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Microfoam size retention changes at higher temps if not carefully managed. To explain in a broad way: at low temps, accidental slightly larger bubbles are able to be generally reincorporated, however at higher temps they dont reincorporate down to microfoam level. Thus the risk is less at lower levels - around the typical 55*C.

    Ive personally found that going much above 55*C increases the risk level for me. I can reach 60*C at a stretch, but certainly when Im requested to reach 70*C, latte art microfoam becomes too big a challenge. Im no professional barista however, so Im sure Luca will have more to offer.

    Im surprised youre receiving art on cappas SC64.

    Having said that, I can quite happily pour art with the cappa depth microfoam ratio you mention, but they are much wider leaves and less well defined than those possible on latte/temp/depth microfoam because the depth of the microfoam rebounding and settling during the art pour affects the definition of the leaves. Which, I guess, is why art generally isnt poured on cappas. :D

    Back to the taste question: I love properly microfoamed milk with coffee. To me, its not just ratios. The creamy texture and partial incorporation of the crema/coffee oils/solids is a fabulous introduction to the next mouthful or two when the richer fuller flavours reach into all areas of the mouth. And, yes, milk quality plays a large part in that too.

  15. #15
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    15

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    My point exactly. I shouldnt be getting art on cappas....when I see art (usually chocolate shaken followed by pour resulting in rosetta), then I know that Im going to get something in between a flat white and latte , approx 5mls) with chocolate pattern.
    My husband drinks flat whites so more often than not nowadays, we both end up with the same thing.
    Being in the industry, I dont really make a thing about it as I realise that achieving art seems to be the "Holy Grail" nowadays. It just really makes it that much more delicious when I do receive an "old school" cappucino with creamy dense microfoam, approximately 60 to 63 degrees and lots of chocolate on top and definitely NO ART.

    SC64

  16. #16
    mwatt
    Guest

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Quote Originally Posted by 60700507330 link=1231884504/14#14 date=1233533122
    Being in the industry, I dont really make a thing about it as I realise that achieving art seems to be the "Holy Grail" nowadays. *It just really makes it that much more delicious when I do receive an "old school" cappucino with creamy dense microfoam, approximately 60 to 63 degrees and lots of chocolate on top and definitely NO ART.
    Its all about preferences really, isnt it?

    I generally prefer milk-based drinks at about 55C. On the odd occasion I feel like having milk in my coffee, I wouldnt ever order a cappuccino at a café, cos I cant stand the chocolate powder.

    Ive also judged excellent cappuccini in barista comps that had both a good 1-2cm*of foam and latte art. So it can be done.



  17. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    229

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Quote Originally Posted by 63730604300 link=1231884504/14#14 date=1233533122
    achieving art seems to be the "Holy Grail" nowadays
    For me, seeing art doesnt make me think its going to be a great drink, but it does indicate that whoever is on the handle side of the pf actually takes pride in what they are doing.

    Grant

  18. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    164

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    *
    Quote Originally Posted by 7A60766363170 link=1231884504/15#15 date=1234492905
    On the odd occasion I feel like having milk in my coffee, I wouldnt ever order a cappuccino at a café, cos I cant stand the chocolate powder. *
    Like Michelle, I dont get the chocolate. *Although I did use to like cappuccinos I stopped ordering them because of the occassional chocolate surprise. :P

    In my experience the appearance or absence of latte art is rarely an indicator of the quality of the coffee below. *Ive had delicious and horrible lattes both with and without beautiful patterns on top. *I appreciate them on a good coffee, but get really annoyed when I get a lovely rosetta on top of a c*#%py coffee. :-?

    -Carrie


  19. #19
    Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    75

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Tastein a

    You can change the steam wetness on the em6910s to be drier or wetter according to preference. *Setting it on the highest pump rate will invariably make it wetter, setting it down fairly low will produce drier steam, but at the cost of time taken to steam milk. *I was pretty interested in the talk of wetter or drier steam, but I think that is not the biggest issue here in the discussion of milk texture and taste. For a lot of people it comes down to control and repeatability of the steaming process. When you get that then you can play around with the little variables afterwards and tweak your steaming style to affect milk taste and texture.
    *As for the well known sydney place- maybe they had a bad batch of milk come through and they had to use it anyway.

  20. #20
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    124

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    Quote Originally Posted by 4B51475252260 link=1231884504/15#15 date=1234492905
    Ive also judged excellent cappuccini in barista comps that had both a good 1-2cm of foam and latte art. So it can be done.
    Could anyone comment more about this?

    When I pour some art I can not get an enough thick layer of foam to call the drink "cappuccino". Its more like a flat white or caffe latte.

    So how is possible to get a thick layer and pour nice art?

  21. #21
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    921

    Re: Art, Milk Texture and Taste

    My theory is that it depends on the quality of the foam, I have recently improved my technique and can now get quite good art on cappuccinos.



Similar Threads

  1. Latte art quality milk texture
    By NewToEspresso in forum Milk Froth and Bubbles
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 27th March 2008, 10:24 AM
  2. milk changes texture at 30ºC...
    By early_morning_ in forum Milk Froth and Bubbles
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 5th January 2008, 12:31 PM
  3. Milk Texture
    By pace207 in forum Milk Froth and Bubbles
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 17th December 2007, 10:43 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •