This article first appeared on Sprudge in April. But it deserves another mention.
We are living in a Neo-Italian espresso preparation era. Espresso is being brewed meticulously by fastidious baristas around the world on top of the line equipment. Old world Italian methods like pre-ground espresso, full dosing chambers, 1:3 ratios, and 14 gram baskets are en vogue. What’s old is new again. Perfecting these practices with scales, better grinders, and much better coffee? Well, that’s what...
La Cimbali is a well-known, Italian manufacturer of professional espresso and cappuccino equipment. While it was initially established in 1912 as a manufacturer of copper goods, the company didn’t produce its first coffee-related machine until 1930.
The “Rapida” was created as Cimbali’s first columnar coffee machine. These machines had a copper boiler, which could be heated using wood or coal-burning systems. It functioned by forcing the water through the ground coffee by the pressure of steam from the boiler.
While this met and exceeded the standard for technology at the time, it...
When running a coffee shop (or any business for that matter), keeping the list of expenses at a minimum will always be a high priority. Balancing employee hours and overhead costs with the capacity and income of an operation can be a daunting task. So when you find yourself shopping for new commercial espresso equipment, less is not always more. Here’s why.
Oftentimes, the sticker shock keeps many from investing in a quality machine, but frugality is not always the consumer’s friend. Higher quality machines are a bigger upfront expense, but
their consistency in providing a quality product is...
While it might not be entirely necessary to understand the intricate chemical and physical structures of the coffee bean, the basics should be understood in order to adequately appreciate the art form of grinding the coffee bean. Whether it’s being ground mechanically or manually, the ultimate goal is to break the bean into smaller particles to create more surface area to allow a better infusion of flavor into water.
In addition to its dependency on good water and a quality roast, the brew is also largely dependent on a sound grinding process. Within realm of grinding, there are several...
Of course, the second ingredient of espresso is water. However obvious this statement may seem, the role of the quality of the water used in the preparation process should not be taken lightly.
Even if the water coming from public waterworks is safe for consumption, further treatment for the use of coffee and espresso purposes may be required. An operation should consider water treatment for two main reasons: the taste of the final product and the longevity of your machine.
Strange flavors that linger in the water after it’s purified for public consumption must be removed. Oftentimes,...
As a coffee retailer, you probably have a solid working knowledge of the coffee world, as so many new products, purchasing decisions, and flavors continue to surround such an antique drink. While your understanding is important to running a successful business, it is just as vital that your staff understands the product they are serving as well, as they are the link between the customer and that cup of joe. Here are a few basic questions that your staff should be able to answer:
How does the cost of the coffee relate to its quality?
Oftentimes, the cost of specialty coffee pertains to...
One of the biggest issues in terms of quality problems is the freshness. Oftentimes, it is recommended that you don’t brew more coffee than you can use in 45 minutes. Brewing an overabundance of coffee and leaving it to sit on heating elements until it is gone drastically changes the flavor of the coffee, regardless of the quality of the beans.
One of the most common problems is also one of the most basic: cleaning. Especially if you are switching between regular and flavored coffee, a thorough cleaning regimen is of the utmost importance, as the oils will linger and...
The "specialty" appeal of specialty coffee has already been established, and consumers have now come to expect high-quality, great-tasting product. To meet customer expectations, retailers focus on creating exciting beverage offerings prepared by knowledgeable employees and served in an ambience that is inviting. While all can directly affect your business' bottom line, one of the most fundamental requirements to create these specialty beverages is to have the appropriate equipment. Therefore, the decision on which equipment to purchase should not be taken lightly.
Be it an espresso...
The final product of any endeavor is heavily reliant on the skills, knowledge, and tools of the craftsman, and the perfect espresso is not an exception. Traditionally, the Italian rule of the 5 M's creates a sound set of requirements that guides the barista to the perfect espresso.
1. Miscela (Espresso Blend)
While it is possible to make a bad espresso from a good blend of coffee, it is impossible to make a good espresso from a poor quality blend. Ultimately, the blend you decide on comes down to personal taste, but the blend should be both fresh and of high quality.
If you are in the market for a new machine, do not stop your research short of the super-automatic machines. While they run a bit steeper in price, remember to consider what you are getting in return.
As completely automated machines,With programmable settings that allow different drinks to be created with the press of a button, these machines can replace a highly skilled, focused baristas and fill voids in high volume cafes or in circumstances that have inexperienced operators. Automatic refill devices and cleaning indicators take much of...