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Thread: Drool... tell me how to do this!

  1. #1
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    Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    :o

    I wanna do...

    Art by Colter Jones at WBC 2007 Tokyo. Picture sourced from Terra Keramiks tribute to baristas - larger picture on their site. (www.terrakeramik.com/barista.php)




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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    ... practice, practice, & more practice, with micro-foamed milk transferred & jiggled to ensure consistency, to a smaller jug with a finely honed spout for fine-leaf formations.

    ... & a thick, rich crema as your canvass.

    ... & some sort of deal with a milk supplier for practising - I recall reading that Jack Hanna would waste an absurd amount of milk when alone honing his latte art, just to have a multitude of flat-whites with pretty rosettas go down the sink after practising :o

    Darn waste of coffee for the sake of art.

  3. #3
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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Its pretty good, hey!

    On one level, its pretty simple - you just steam your milk perfectly, pour into the cup slowly at first, then speed up a bit when you see the white dot come up, shake the jug left and right whilst drawing backwards, then you push forwards to strike through. Getting the milk frothing, pour speed and flow rate juuuuuust right will, however, takes a bit of work.

    There are a number of web resources on it. Youtubing up a few videos will probably give you the clearest idea of whats involved. Theres a pretty good milk frothing guide here and a web page with a few good diagrams here.

    After reading the basics, its pretty much the three Ps. There are a few tips that will make it easier. First, the cup shape makes a bit of a difference. The more curved and bowl-shaped the cup and the bigger it is, the easier it is to pour latte art, at least when you are starting out. Dont try to learn using the straight-walled duralex cups, for example! The massive 16oz, soup-bowl-like monstrosities that the Americans seem to favour make it about as easy as it gets. The standard 7oz flat white bowl-shaped cup is also pretty user-friendly. Of course, you might actually prefer to use a smaller cup for flavour (I do). Second, stretch the milk less than you think you need to. Trust me. Adding 20% volume to the milk is usually about right, but try adding only 5% or 10% when you start out. Third, when stretching the milk, try to get the entire mass of the milk rolling over itself for the whole time and try to stop stretching as early as possible. Finally, fourth, Scott Rao suggests that if you dont want to throw away lots of milk, water with a very tiny drop of dishwashing liquid behaves similarly.

    Teaching yourself how to do it is possible, but its certainly doing it the hard way. Your best bet would be to get someone who knows how to do it to show you. Its amazing how sometimes it just takes a few pointers from someone in the know to get over that hump that youve been struggling at for months. Indeed, a good trainer can probably get you pouring latte art in as little as 15 minutes - check it out. If you know someone who can do it well, they can probably help you out. If not, you might want to do a training session.

    Im sure that most of the site sponsors will have latte art training sessions. In Sydney, I seem to remember that Di Bartoli had a few with Scottie Callaghan, who won the world latte art championships in 2006. (Fact: Australia is home to the last three world latte art champions!) Any decent trainer worth their salt will be able to teach you latte art. In Melbourne, I know that Makin Espresso, the Coffee Academy and Talk Coffee all offer good latte art courses.

    Cheers,

    Luca

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    .Thanks.

    I can do the crema. (Yay. Step 1.)

    Im microfoaming, but often tend to go a little too thick (thanks for the tip Luca about less is more).

    Im having a little success with the general rosetta profile, but couldnt work out how to get that lovely circle until I watched a vid today. If I start in the centre as you mentioned luca, and then go in small circles to get the crema turning, then start doing the rosetta? Does that help the crema edges not to break?

    I notice on some vids that the barista will steam in one jug, and then pour into another. Why?

    Is it not possible to get two cappas looking fairly similar from the same jug? Or is it a physics thing and one will always have thicker leaves than the other? <EDIT: Scotts vid answered this one.>

    Im working with el-cheapo latte glasses, wider than the duralex, 270ml and unfortunately with pretty straight sides. I start with a double ristretto. So Im probably doing not too badly... a nicely shaped cappa cup might help.

    I was unavailable for the latest Scottie Callaghan event at Di Bartolis (I was playing barista at home to guests) and am also waiting for their intermediate espresso to open up again. Patience...

    Im off to look at those links now. (Which might answer my questions...)

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Luca, the links are excellent. I like the diagrams, as Ive only ever done rosettas.

    I got excited and flipped on the machine for a steaming session. I tried a much better shaped cappa-sized cup (narrow base, curved sides), the results were pretty similar. For the smaller cup, I found I had to use the two-jug technique to get the right microfoam from my VBM and then pour about the right quantity into a second smaller jug.

    Forgot all about trying to do the circle thing. I think Im pouring too swiftly at the commencement and am breaking the crema edge.

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Sounds like youre off to a ripper of a start. *Ripping through a few litres of milk (or water + dishwashing liquid + soy or whatever) in a session will help you progress much further than doing the same number of drinks across a few weeks. *I attach a photo of a rosetta graveyard that my former boss created whilst teaching himself latte art at Maltitude cafe several years ago. *Apologies to Tony.

    I think that theres certainly a sense of satisfaction in learning how to pour latte art. *Personally, I think that its great fun, but I try not to let it obscure my goal of getting great tasting coffee. *After you get the basic rosetta down pat, you can start experimenting with doubles, triples, rosetta + heart, tulips, etc.

    Some brief responses to your posts:

    Im having a little success with the general rosetta profile, but couldnt work out how to get that lovely circle until I watched a vid today. If I start in the centre as you mentioned luca, and then go in small circles to get the crema turning, then start doing the rosetta? Does that help the crema edges not to break?
    I tend to start 3/4 of the way back from the edge of the cup closest to the jug. *If you start too far towards the jug, you end up with a heart or an onion. *If you start too far towards the opposite edge, you can have your leaves sitting right on the edge of the cup.

    Not quite sure what you mean about the crema edges not breaking. *If you want a thick ring of crema framing your rosetta, you need to start closer to the centre. *If youre happy for the base of the rosetta to touch the edge of the cup, you can start closet towards the edge.

    I notice on some vids that the barista will steam in one jug, and then pour into another. Why?

    Is it not possible to get two cappas looking fairly similar from the same jug? Or is it a physics thing and one will always have thicker leaves than the other? <EDIT: Scotts vid answered this one.>
    Looks like you already found out the answers to this, but these comments might be useful to others who see this thread in future:

    Your two questions are directed towards the same point: splitting the jug enables you to get two similar drinks. *As soon as you finish steaming, you pour the top 1/4 to 1/2 (I usually do 1/3) into a second jug, before the milk has split. *You pour the first drink from the jug that you steamed in, then you pour the milk from the splitting jug into the first jug, swirl to re-incorporate and pour the second drink. *If you dont do that, the milk will split as you pour and you will end up with more foam in the first drink than in the second; thats why barista competitors pretty much universally use the jug splitting technique for the cappuccino round. *Tips:

    1. *keep the splitting vessel relatively hot; I find that a blast from the steam wand will be sufficient to heat up a room temperature 350mL jug

    2. *when pouring the contents of the splitting jug back into the main jug, tilt the main jug and pour down the side instead of pouring the milk directly into the centre - this prevents it from bubbling up

    Keep at it,

    Luca


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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    so far all I have managed is a kind of pretty striped blob. ..


    there is a great video of Jack Hanna pouring rosettas on the crema website http://www.cremamagazine.com.au/:


  8. #8
    Super Moderator scoota_gal's Avatar
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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    I love the Rosetta Graveyard! ;D

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    all those rossettas were sinked???


    Oh the humanity... "-.-

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Luca, Ah. Ahhh. Ahhhhhh.

    Revelation after revelation!

    Thanks for all the specifics as theyre making perfect sense with what Im experiencing as I experiment.

    And the graveyard... *8-) I feel ok about my rosettas after all. Equally unpredictable! My friends think its fabulous to have any semblance of a rosetta on top of their coffee. ;D

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    my kids call mine either a leaf or a tree, but they are all pretty much a thin whispy line with some stalks shooting off at odd times.

    Occasionally I get one pretty close to ok, but very hit and miss. Still, its fun trying and regardless of how they look, I still love the taste

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Quote Originally Posted by Intellidepth link=1222917473/0#9 date=1223018042
    Thanks for all the specifics as theyre making perfect sense with what Im experiencing as I experiment.
    Glad - and somewhat surprised - to be of help. Most people usually dont find anything written about latte art to be especially useful.

    Cheers,

    Luca

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Quote Originally Posted by Senator link=1222917473/0#10 date=1223620161
    my kids call mine either a leaf or a tree, but they are all pretty much a thin whispy line with some stalks shooting off at odd times.

    Occasionally I get one pretty close to ok, but very hit and miss. Still, its fun trying and regardless of how they look, I still love the taste
    Gosh, your kids are kind. My kids have varieties like mushroom, orange, boat, Mount Perisher home ski run etc. I ocassionally get one right and that keeps them quiet. *:o

    Cheers

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    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Quote Originally Posted by luca link=1222917473/0#11 date=1223650700
    Glad - and somewhat surprised - to be of help. *Most people usually dont find anything written about latte art to be especially useful.

    Cheers,

    Luca
    Never underestimate your contribution to the forum Luca - sometimes controversial, always thought provoking...and I appreciate that!

    Cheers!

    :)

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    Kat
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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    I would love to get into the Latte Art. Is it possible to do so with a Lelit Combi? Someone told me it cant be done as its not powerful enough or something and you wont get the right microfoam? Is this true?
    Kat

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Hi Kat, If you think the steam arm doesnt have a lot of power, try a little jug to help get the milk moving. No bigger than a 300ml jug. Put about 120ml water in the jug and steam with that first to see how your steam arm affects the flow of water.

    For both attempts mentioned below, keep the tip of your wand just under/right near the surface of the water.

    Trial 1: Try it with the steam arm pointing straight down in the centre for one attempt to see if the water tumbles by going down in the centre, hitting the bottom, and being forced up the sides of the jug on all sides and tumbling back into the centre.

    Trial 2: Try it with the steam arm angled and its entry point half way between the centre and the side of the jug to see if it whirlpools with all water going in one direction around the circumference of the jug.

    You can try this with milk - water is just good to start with so you can get a look at what really happens under the surface.

    Personally, I found that my old less powerful machine that only whirlpooled and couldnt tumble was more difficult to get latte-art microfoam, and my new machine that tumbles with ease is better at it. Doesnt mean its impossible, just a matter of practise. Lots of it.

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    To do the "splitting jug" technique is necessary one big jug and other small jug? or same size?

    Could anyone tell me what are the most usual jugs sizes? I have to buy my first(s) jug(s) and im not sure about the size. thx. :)



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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Hola Oton

    All you need is 1 X 300ml Jug & 1 X 600ml Jug

    KK

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    All I need is love... ;D

    I looking at Motta Jugs, only in 500ml & 750ml sizes ... too big?

    I can buy Ascaso jugs too... 150ml, 400ml, 600ml, 900ml..


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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Hi oton, Ive purchased those two Mottas a couple of weeks ago. Start with the 500ml and find a smaller splitting jug. The spout on the Motta has the capacity to give a gorgeous fine leaf compared to regular cheapies (also still in my collection). Because of its narrower base and upper angled sides it tumbles milk more effectively than regular jugs, so you can steam smaller quantities of milk with better effectiveness than regular cheapies.

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    :o Well I am only new to your site and coffee art I dont think mine can be called art really it doesnt seem to resemble anything. My husband is getting very good so any tips you can give me would be great as I need to be better than him. He calls min ink blots.
    please help

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    Re: Drool... tell me how to do this!

    Welcome, Vanilla bean, youre in the right place for finding help! You might want to go up to the Art Gallery, there are some useful tips to be found there as well... ;)



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