Thursday, November 28, 2013

Adjusting the Pump Pressure on Rocket Evoluzione v2

I have owned a Rocket Giotto Evoluzione v2 for about 1,5 year now and therefore have brewed a lot of espressos in that period. During that time I had tuned the extraction process and thought that things couldn't be better. Nonetheless I found that the second manometer only showed the pump pressure and therefore not the pressure at the brew head.

During the extraction process, the arrow of the pump pressure manometer would show a satisfying 9 bar and I assumed that the brew pressure at the brew head would be similar to the pump pressure. I was in for a chock when I discovered that this wasn't the case.

I have thereby created a short and simple how-to guide, that will show you how to adjust the pump pressure on the Evoluzione v2, so you will achieve the correct 9 bars of pressure at the brew head. To perform this guide you will need a portafilter with a manometer/pressure gauge (above picture).

The Rocket Evoluzione v2 comes with a rotary pump and therefore has the ability of connecting the machine directly to a water source, instead of using the water tank. Rocket have designed the machine so you easily will be able to adjust the pump pressure from the outside of the machine.
1. Turn on the machine. 
2. Locate the adjustment screw (above picture).   
3. If you want to increase the pump pressure, turn the adjustment screw clockwise and anti clockwise to decrease the pump pressure. 

4. Mount the portafilter and start the brewing (Remember to tighten the portafilter firmly, because it will unmount when the pressure is building up).  
The pressure gauge will now show you the actual pressure at the brew head, and if your machine delivers 9 bar at the brew head, then all is perfect. If your machine - like mine - was providing a pressure of 8,0 - 8,5 bar at the brew head, then you should adjust the adjustment screw like described at step 3.

When I was done adjusting the pump pressure, the pump pressure showed about 10 bars of pressure, to perform the optimal 9 bars of pressure at the brew head.

Did the adjustment have any affects on the espresso?
YES - the main change was the extraction flow! Before, the espresso could run perfect in the start off the brewing process and afterwards the water could soak though the puck, causing a very thin and bitter extraction. The pressure is now creating a firm puck and therefore preventing channeling, which leads to a way better extraction.

// Hendrup

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Just Received My New Reg Barber Tamper

Just received my beautiful new Reg Barber Tamper in Bubinga Wood and Custom Art Work from Canada --> Happy as hell!!!

Review coming in the nearest future.

// Hendrup

Monday, November 18, 2013

Espro Toroid Steam Pitcher - Review

At Coffee Channel we came across this pitcher. It seems to good to be true. Luckily Øristeriet has supplied us with one, we can test.
Basically Espro claims that your able to produce flawless microfoam with very little effort.

First off is the official presentation

Following this link, you can see a full presentation and a video
For some reason I can't insert the video directly
Only our pitcher is a version one !

As shown in the video, the steamwand could be placed right in center, and the bump in the bottom of the pitcher should do the work.

What made me wonder, is that the pitcher isn't used in the video. There's only animated illustrations of the functionality. Also, there's no actual latte art pouring. Only pictures, of latte art drawn with chocolate ?

I have tried approaching the steaming in different ways, and also filmed the attempts.
It can be rather difficult filming and steaming simultaneously, but you should be able to get the bigger picture.

First off I tried like the presentation, right in the center. No movement at all.

The result is actually pretty good. It's hard to capture all the details in the video. But the foam is pretty shiny, there's a bit of hard top foam - and some bubbles. 
The foam is descent, and any one should be able to do that. With months of practice I can only imagine improvement.

Of corse I have done several attempts before shooting the videos.

To get the above result, you have to fill up at least till the spout. Any less, results in to much power at the bump in the bottom. And this

Way to much air in the milk, no way to control it either.

Next off I steamed with the same technique  as I do in my standard pitcher. A small angle, wand resting on the side, introducing a small amount of air all the time.

The result are defiantly better. Much more smooth and less bubbles.
I believe this shows, that the technique the pitcher is sold upon isn't the best one available.

Now a video of my standard pitcher and routine

No bubbles, very shiny and wet foam. I believe this is much better than with the Toroid.
That said, keep in mind I am very used to this pitcher, and I know exactly how to hold and rotate it to get the effect I want.

Well... I don't think the pitcher lives up to its promise.
I doesn't produce perfect microfoam with the technique shown in the presentation video. But, it does make descent foam with no effort what so ever.
Also because of the bend walls, it's tricky to pour from. You have to tilt the pitcher quite a bit to get anything out. I couldn't make any kind of art. But then again, if I gave it two months -  I'm sure I would be use to handling it.
If you are an ambitious upcoming barista, I would recommend buying a standard pitcher recommended by known baristas. Then work towards the correct technique and nice microfoam. Flawless foam requires practice and many tries. Maybe you would be able to get flawless results in the Toroid, but as a novice it doesn't make it for you.

If you would like a latte without being a geek about it, this is defiantly an option. Also my wife is fond of it already. She couldn't get the hang of my technique, so she has always done mediocre foam with a very hard top. With the Toroid she can make foam exactly like the first video. Time after time.
And honestly I have to agree with the misses. It is a prettier pitcher than the standard ones !

It can be bought from Øristeriet following This Link


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

How To Install Thermosyphon Restrictor In a Rocket Giotto (HX)

Ever since I bought my Rocket Giotto I have been annoyed with the need and amount of flushing involved.
My pressurestat are set at 0.9-1,1 bar, which gave me an idle temperature of 98-100 degrees Celsius. I flushed about 1,5 oz before every shot. Not only did I use a lot of water, I also spend a lot of time doing it.
So I bought a thermosyphon restrictor.

 A small piece of brass, designed to reduce the water flow to the group head, and lower the temperature. Very simple, inexpensive and relatively simple to install.
After installing it, my machine idles at 88-90 degrees Celsius - and I now flush UP in temperature. Just like a dual boiler. My flush time is 2 seconds. I think the upgrade has been awarding in a very big way.

First of take of the top.
Remove the tank, sides and rear.
It's a lot easier when the work space is as big as possible.

Locate the pipe, coming from the boiler to the brev head and take it of.

The restrictor is suppose to fit inside the 90 degree bend on the boiler.

Make sure the inside of the bend is clean, if there's a bit of scale on the walls, the restrictor won't fit.
Even though my walls were clean, the restrictor didn't fit. I had to grind it a bit. You should be able to push it inside, but still have a tight fit, so that it doesn't tilt inside.

Install the restrictor with the small end in the bend.

Remount the pipe, lube the ends a bit with food grade lubrication, and be gentle with the tightening.

Turn on your machine and activate the water, do a couple is bachflushes to make sure it doesn't leak anywhere.
When you are certain everything is sealed properly, let the machine heat for 30 minutes.
When it's heated install your pressurestat at 0,9 when it's at the lowest. That way you should end up with a "cold nose" !

With the low pressurestat setting, my steam power went down a little. To compensate for that, I removed the silicone hose inside the steamwand. Basically the silicone hose make sure the metal doesn't heat when steaming, providing you with a no burn steam wand. But at the same time it makes a lot of resistance in the steam.

The easy way is to take of the steam tip, and just pull hard in the hose.

The better way is to take it all apart and lube everything at the same time.

Disassemble the wand from the machine, be careful with the spring.

Take of the ball joint and remove the hose.

Assemble everything in the same order, but lube the Ball joint and spring with food grade lubrication.
Now your wand will rotate flawlessly and still deliver a lot of steam.
But remember its hot now !

As mentioned this is a profitable modification to any HX machine that idles at high temperature. So get going and do the mod.


Friday, November 8, 2013

Panama - Duncan Estate Review

After visiting Great Coffee in Aarhus, we took a bag of their new Panama home with us.

The Panama Duncan Estate is a Arabica Bourbon, 100% organic bean. Roast master Søren Stiller describes it as tasty orange peel, blueberrys with sweet milk chocolate and notes of lemon. 

Great Coffee is a very respected and recognized roastery.Like many other roasters in the north, their doing the Nordic approach which is very light for espresso.Looking at the bag I'm just amazed. This is a clear sign, that the roast master wants nothing but perfection. A recipe for the perfect extraction.

18,5 gr dose. Extract to 34 gr espresso in 26-28 seconds, giving a brewratio at 0,54%

This tells me, that someone has made a lot of effort to make my experience with this coffee, as good as possible.But I came to miss some sort of closing system.. I had to use a bag-clamp, which is meant for the purpose I know, but the thick structure of the bag made it impossible to seal completely with the clamp. Besides that, only positive about the bag.

Still a bit worried about the light roast though.Honestly, this color would be my home roast drip coffee....

It took me quite a while to dial it in. I had to adjust, a lot, towards finer.But when I hit the recommended brew ratio, I could actually see that it ran just about perfect.

Nice dry, and hard pucks

The texture is fantastic, an the color of the crema is unbelievable ! The smell is surprisingly doll. Notes of lemon mostly.. And, if it smells like lemon, it usually tastes like lemon.

My first taste, and I looked like someone who just eat an lemon ! Really, really not my thing these light roasts.

However I have a feeling that I have to get used to the new flavors for a while. Of course I tried it as a capucinno as well, did pretty good.

So for the past week I have been sipping a bit from every shot, before turning it in to my cappa.I have to say it grows on me, there's much more flawor, liveliness and fun in a light roast.I'd still prefer my own an other darker roasts in the future.. To me they taste better. I'm just a more in to chocolate and sweetness, than fruit and apple acid.

The Panama has a medium body, with a lot of power in it. The notes of blackberry, oranges and lemon are as mentioned almost overwhelming. Getting to know the coffee, sipping it the right way, and at the right temperature, it's very tasty.When it's cooled a bit it tastes better to me. The high notes of fruit has toned down a bit. At that point the body enhances, and the darker notes are more visible. At that point I can also sense the blueberries and chocolate that the roast master describes.

I mainly consumed it as capucinno, and it was actually nice getting some variation in my coffee routines. A light fruity roast combined with rich milk is a great combination. For a while. But, for every espresso consumer there is a different opinion in taste, luckily !! This is just my opinion.

Even though I'm not the biggest fan of Nordic Approach, I do like this coffee, and I can tell its a superb roast with a lot of dedication in it.

If you are fond of light roasts, fruit, high acid and perfection. You should defiantly try this.1 kg costs 250 kr/40$ - and that's cheap for premium coffee like this !

A small bonus is, that I seem to make much better latte art with this coffee, and much easier. Maybe it's just me, but still worth mentioning !

 Still have some troubles with bubbles in light roasts

                                                                                Enjoy !