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TheDoc
04-01-10, 04:45
Hi, I'm new to the forum and would really welcome some advice. It's my husband's 40th Birthday coming up and I am going to get him a coffee machine as a suprise. He really loves the kitchenaid one (we have some of their other equipment) but having read some bad reviews I'm not sure it would be the best use of the money?

He loves espresso but also enjoys latte/cappucino, so a machine that can do all would be good. I have a budget of 500-600 to spend on it, so would really welcome some advice and recommendations.

Many thanks, The Doc.

Glenn
04-01-10, 10:19
Welcome to Coffee Forums UK

You have an extremely realistic budget to work with.
Do you have a grinder? If not, then budget for 150-200 for the grinder and the balance for the coffee machine.

For a grinder you will need the Iberital MC2 (http://www.coffeehit.co.uk/PRD_ProductDetail.aspx?cid=82&prodid=334&Product=Iberital-MC2-Doserless-Coffee-and-Espresso-Grinder) as a minimum to ensure you can grind fine enough. Many other entry-level grinders are not up to the task

For machines, 2 spring to mind within the price range.

Rancilio Silvia (best price I have found is here (http://www.theitaliandeli.co.uk/rancilio-silvia-espresso-machine-2009-model-3136-p.asp))
or
Gaggia Classic (best price I have found is here (http://www.anothercoffee.co.uk/products/item100301.aspx))

And you'll even have a few left over for some training (http://5mcoffee.com/Coffee-Training.html)

If you had an extra 200 on the budget (a lot I know) then this (http://www.coffeehit.co.uk/PRD_ProductDetail.aspx?cid=6&prodid=389&Product=Vibiemme-Domobar-Junior) machine might be within reach.

Hope this gives you some food for thought

TheDoc
05-01-10, 10:01
Thanks for the advice Glenn, I certainly prefer the look of the Rancilio machine, but can't open the link to the last one as my work blocks so many sites! I was also going to get him a grinder, possibly on top of the machine (funds allowing of course) so your options really give me some good scope.

Can I just ask, would you advise against the kitchenaid yourself as I know that was the one he really liked the look of-but he hadn't done any research into them as he didn't think we could get one yet!

Glenn
05-01-10, 06:17
In a word, yes. They do not grind fine enough for some drink types.

Grinders are ugly (grinder manufactureres take note!) but in this instance go for function over style. Your husband will thank you for it.

TheDoc
05-01-10, 07:15
Thanks again Glenn, I will definitely get the grinder you suggested. But ohhhhh now I love the look of the last machine you linked to, but it's just a bit out of my budget at the moment-well in stainless steel anyway. The black could be do-able but I can't find any pictures of it.

It's a pity the kitchenaid coffee machine is out of the question as it would match the mixer etc and the smeg, but you're right, function has to win over looks. And there are some lovely looking machines out there still.

TheDoc
07-01-10, 08:20
Can anyone tell me if this is a good deal or if I am better sticking to the Rancilio machine and the Iberital MC2 grinder? Getting excited now about getting him this! http://www.coffeeitalia.co.uk/proddetail.php?prod=set-ranc-2uk

Glenn, is it you that does the coffee training, if so do you cover the west midlands?

Glenn
07-01-10, 09:15
You could do a lot worse than the Rocky.
This is a solid, reliable grinder with a very good track record.
Make sure you get the doserless (as shown in the picture) as your level of consumption will not warrant the doser version.

The price is very good for the pairing too.

It is me that provides home coffee training and I cover the West Midlands area.
Feel free to PM me or contact me via the website and I'd be happy to call to discuss training options.

RisingPower
09-01-10, 01:49
Is 500-600 the maximum on your budget?

Just, a little more could get you an entry level heat exchange machine like an isomac zaffiro or the vbm that glenn suggested, which would be far better at foaming milk than a classic. Pair that up with the iberital, or maybe even a used mazzer/macap and you'd have a fantastic setup.

Failing that, a silvia paired with either the rocky, iberital mc2, a mazzer/macap is a great choice. I'm not sure you can rule out the doser because of consumption levels, it all depends on personal preference. Dosers produce less clumpy results and some of them are quite satisfying to use and allow you to concentrate on doing other things whilst grinding. Doserless versions can also retain grinds in the chutes.

I like the looks of grinders like mazzers, they're big commercial beasts but some other grinders are a bit more plasticcy.

These reviews may also be useful:

http://www.home-barista.com/reviews.html

I've also noted there is a spaziale vivaldi used on ebay, which would definitely be worth a look. It's a rather large machine, but is renowned for its quality. Again, just the machine would be at the top end of your budget, but it's worth considering.

Lucky husband though :D

TheDoc
10-01-10, 05:37
Thanks RisingPower, I think I am now decided on the rancilio for the machine. We are very limited on space in the kitchen so any bigger machine is out of the question. The budget is quite tight as I also want to get him some other bits to go with it-like a decent tamper , jugs, cups and possibly some training too. I will check out the grinders you suggets.

I had a private message from someone saying not to buy from the link I attached for the rancilio pack as they company are in italy and often don't supply the goods. The guy also gave me the number for another company but I am yet to contact them-my espresso I think it was?

TheDoc
11-01-10, 10:08
Sorry John, no you didn't. I think I read elsewhere that they sometimes don't come through with the goods. I did email them about delivery time and they responded, but I am taking your warning and not going with them. I am going to contact my espresso this week. Thanks again for the warning.

Baj1936
11-01-10, 12:18
I didn't want to risk being sued by them.
I'm pleased that I managed to stop you in time.
Their returns policy is confusing but appears to be: you always have to pay to return goods to Italy; after 7 days, but within 30 days, you also have to pay their carriage expenses to you plus a 10% re-stocking fee; packages shall not have been opened.

You won't go wrong with MyEspresso; I have purchased from him several times; give him a ring; very knowledgeable and helpful; he loves to speak to customers.

One more thing:-

If you love cleaning up scattered coffee grounds and playing with chopsticks, yoghurt pots and darning needles to breakup clumps of coffee, then buy a doserless grinder.

If you don't love cleaning up scattered coffee grounds and playing with chopsticks, yoghurt pots and darning needles to breakup clumps of coffee, then buy a doser grinder. The doser is used for transferring just enough freshly ground coffee to the basket filter under your control, with no mess and no clumps. It should not be used for storing ground coffee which would obviously go stale.

Do a Google search of these two words together:- chopsticks doserless

for more information on the role of chopsticks, yoghurt pots and darning needles when making coffee.

TheDoc
11-01-10, 02:48
Hmm, I am not liking the idea of extra cleaning up, so a doser grinder it is! Thanks for all the advice guys-I am 100% positive I will be back once we have the machine; or maybe my husband will.

So what accessories should I be looking to get him to make sure that he can make coffee as soon as he opens the machine-actual recommendations would be appreciated.

Thanks guys...getting closer!

BanishInstant
11-01-10, 03:00
I'm not completely convinced by a doser. It might be worth looking on this and other forums about for and against. Mine is doserless and I have a small tub underneath the chute for any spills. The chute is not difficult to clean compared to the doser.

As for other items, if its not been mentioned already in posts on this thread, then a tamper is needed. Those that come with machines are generally rubbish. If lattes or cappucinos are desired, then a stainless steel jug (size dependent on number of drinks: 1 or 2 per shot) and a thermometer.

For Christmas I received a knockbox and tamper station but I don't think you need these items initially.

RisingPower
11-01-10, 03:12
I didn't want to risk being sued by them.
I'm pleased that I managed to stop you in time.
Their returns policy is confusing but appears to be: you always have to pay to return goods to Italy; after 7 days, but within 30 days, you also have to pay their carriage expenses to you plus a 10% re-stocking fee; packages shall not have been opened.

You won't go wrong with MyEspresso; I have purchased from him several times; give him a ring; very knowledgeable and helpful; he loves to speak to customers.

One more thing:-

If you love cleaning up scattered coffee grounds and playing with chopsticks, yoghurt pots and darning needles to breakup clumps of coffee, then buy a doserless grinder.

If you don't love cleaning up scattered coffee grounds and playing with chopsticks, yoghurt pots and darning needles to breakup clumps of coffee, then buy a doser grinder. The doser is used for transferring just enough freshly ground coffee to the basket filter under your control, with no mess and no clumps. It should not be used for storing ground coffee which would obviously go stale.

Do a Google search of these two words together:- chopsticks doserless

for more information on the role of chopsticks, yoghurt pots and darning needles when making coffee.

I think they have had some good reviews also actually, and their customer service has been pretty good when they sent damaged goods. But yes, they're not strictly a UK business.

I don't think you can say that about all doserless grinders. Some like the robur, the versalab m3 and the vario provide excellent non-clumping results with excellent distribution without any of the above techniques.

My mazzer mini produces clumps even with the doser. It does slightly reduce them though.

RisingPower
11-01-10, 03:25
Thanks RisingPower, I think I am now decided on the rancilio for the machine. We are very limited on space in the kitchen so any bigger machine is out of the question. The budget is quite tight as I also want to get him some other bits to go with it-like a decent tamper , jugs, cups and possibly some training too. I will check out the grinders you suggets.

I had a private message from someone saying not to buy from the link I attached for the rancilio pack as they company are in italy and often don't supply the goods. The guy also gave me the number for another company but I am yet to contact them-my espresso I think it was?

The rancilio will do you nicely then and it's certainly a good choice for the budget.

As to things you could get alongside, a reg barber tamper would be something quite nice from coffeehit.co.uk.

TheDoc
11-01-10, 05:08
Oh now I'm confused about doser or doserless!

RisingPower
11-01-10, 06:27
Oh now I'm confused about doser or doserless!

It depends on which grinder you get :) On lower end models it makes more of a difference for breaking up clumps. On higher end models like the versalab m3, it really wouldn't make any odds or very little.

Dosers generally being designed to be kept full and in commercial environments, so they don't have to spend time grinding, just thwacking the doser.

I enjoy thwacking the doser though and I find it gives me time to do other stuff whilst grinding rather than standing there and waiting however many seconds for it to finish.

Glenn
11-01-10, 06:30
At home I use a doserless and find them easy to work with. The chutes are usualy plastic but as long as they are kept clean and they are not too long then you might not be affected by clumping. (The split of cafes with doser is greater than those with doserless - this has more to do with grind and store rather than grind fresh...)

Humidity, static, length of dosing chamber all have an effect on clumping

You can get clumps in a doser grinder too.

I find that Paper Towel in front of the grinder catches any stray grinds...

RisingPower
11-01-10, 06:46
I find that Paper Towel in front of the grinder catches any stray grinds...

I think the coffee grinds cackle at the notion that they could be caught by a mere piece of paper towel.

You'll never catch them all, they get everywhere :D

RisingPower
11-01-10, 07:45
Thedoc, some accessories to think about:

Reg Barber Tamper (Tamper is a must, but you may not want to spend as much on a reg barber):

http://www.coffeehit.co.uk/CAT_ListCategories.aspx?cid=28&pid=27&Category=Coffee-Tampers-and-Mats

Shot glasses (pretty and make it easier to judge the shot) :

http://www.coffeehit.co.uk/PRD_ProductDetail.aspx?cid=31&prodid=38&Product=Shot-Glass-2oz-Lined

Knockbox (easier place to knock out your spent pucks)

http://www.coffeehit.co.uk/PRD_ProductDetail.aspx?cid=29&prodid=46&Product=Grindenstein-Knock-Box-Silver

A brush to clean out a doser or a chute:

http://www.coffeehit.co.uk/PRD_ProductDetail.aspx?cid=32&prodid=673&Product=Coffee-Grinder-Brush---Round-Head

Essential blind basket:

http://www.coffeehit.co.uk/PRD_ProductDetail.aspx?cid=32&prodid=284&Product=Backflushing-Blank-Disc

Essential for backflushing with cleaner:

http://www.coffeehit.co.uk/PRD_ProductDetail.aspx?cid=36&prodid=74&Product=Urnex-Cafiza-Powder-for-Espresso-Machines-566g

Last but very important, a bottomless portafilter:

http://www.happydonkey.co.uk/rancilio-bottomless-portafilter-p2902.html

Baj1936
11-01-10, 07:51
Initial Extras Shopping List:

600ml. frothing jug
latte spoon
espresso cups
cappuccino cups
latte glasses
tamper
tamper mat
group cleaning brush
blind filter basket
cafiza cleaning powder

Brita water filter jug + Maxtra filters

<supplier recommendation removed by Admin>

This is a link to the rancilio instruction video -

http://www.rancilio.it/popup/popup_video.html

RisingPower
11-01-10, 08:20
Initial Extras Shopping List:

600ml. frothing jug
latte spoon
espresso cups
cappuccino cups
latte glasses
tamper
tamper mat
group cleaning brush
blind filter basket
cafiza cleaning powder

Brita water filter jug + Maxtra filters

<content removed by admin>

This is a link to the rancilio instruction video -

http://www.rancilio.it/popup/popup_video.html

Whaaaat? No bottomless portafilter :eek: And cooor, look at the clumping on that rocky.

Baj1936
11-01-10, 11:51
"bottomless portafilter"

You're wicked - The husband will not be well pleased when, at his initial attempt at using one,
his chest is scalded by the hot coffee squirting in all directions from the bottomless portafilter.

BanishInstant
12-01-10, 09:37
I forgot to mention that you need to make sure you have some freshly roasted beans timed just right for the big day.

There are plenty to choose from:
http://www.hasbean.co.uk/
http://www.coffee-direct.co.uk/
http://shop.squaremilecoffee.com/
http://www.londiniumespresso.com/

RisingPower
12-01-10, 09:56
"bottomless portafilter"

You're wicked - The husband will not be well pleased when, at his initial attempt at using one,
his chest is scalded by the hot coffee squirting in all directions from the bottomless portafilter.

I like being squirted by hot jets of coffee in the morning. It wakes you up :D

I think it's a challenge to get the most and strongest jets.

TheDoc
12-01-10, 10:58
Oh boys, let's not turn this thread into a dispute....I still need to find a machine and grinder!

I don't fancy my husband being scalded by a bottomless anything either he he. So I am set on the rancilio machine, and I love the suggestions for the accessories-I really like the reg barber tamper and it is his birthday...so will probably get that! But which grinder, I am not technical and don't understand clumping etc. This thread is making me feel quite coffee dumb!

RisingPower
12-01-10, 01:41
Sorry, but why has this thread been hijacked?

TheDoc, I'll provide some details in a pm for you about clumping, since this thread no longer seems to be at all helpful, just a place for people to troll.

TheDoc
12-01-10, 02:18
Thanks RisingPower, I really appreciate your advice.

BanishInstant
12-01-10, 02:30
Read as much as you can about the pros and cons about the doser:
http://www.happydonkey.co.uk/mc2review/mc2review.htm
http://www.coffeegeek.com/forums/espresso/grinders/388169
http://www.coffeegeek.com/forums/espresso/grinders/294157

I would not get a bottomless portafilter just yet. Your husband needs a journey to get the best out of this hobby and learning experience ;)

Admin
13-01-10, 12:46
Unfortunately I was unable to log in today due to prior committments and I am disappointed that the thread has degenerated somewhat.

A number of potentially defamatory statements will be removed so please accept that this thread may seem a little disjointed.

IF anyone has any affiliations with a supplier please disclose them voluntarily in a post or signature.

We encourage supplier recommendations and recognise that there will be positive and negative comments.

There are a number of suppliers who are active members of Coffee Forums UK so please respect each others businesses and keep all observations and reviews visible.

Lets get this thread back on track.

Glenn
13-01-10, 12:54
A bottomless portafilter is not recommended for a new coffee machine owner and is an unnecessary expense at this stage.

RisingPower has a decent list on the 3rd page

The new machine owner will probably want to accessorise their machine with accessories once they have got the hang of making a decent cup of coffee.

TheDoc
13-01-10, 08:23
I have had a look at some of the reviews provided by BanishInstant (admittedly, very quickly). Is the benefit of a doser that he could grind more coffee? He probably won't drink more than 2/3 weekdays and maybe we will make about 10 cups on weekend days. So is a doser worth while?

I have to say, being a girl, I would probably go more for looks. But obviously I want it to be the best it can be for him!

Baj1936
13-01-10, 09:21
IF anyone has any affiliations with a supplier please disclose them voluntarily in a post or signature.

We encourage supplier recommendations and recognise that there will be positive and negative comments.

Lets get this thread back on track.

I have no affiliation to any company whatsoever.
I have and do purchase coffee making equipment from both MyEspresso and The Drury Tea & Coffee Co.; I also purchase coffee beans from the latter company.
I have no hesitation in recommending both companies.
I recommended MyEspresso to TheDoc as the company is situated in Coventry in the west Midlands and the company would welcome a visit from her to discuss/advise/demonstrate/sell, whatever.
The Drury company is out of stock of Rancilio equipment.

I do have a very tenuous link with the Drury company: my father and the Olmi brothers (who founded the Drury company in 1936) were Italian economic immigrants
and lived in the same lodgings in Peckham Rye in the late 1920s - three generations ago.

Baj1936
13-01-10, 09:32
Is the benefit of a doser that he could grind more coffee? He probably won't drink more than 2/3 weekdays and maybe we will make about 10 cups on weekend days. So is a doser worth while?

Yes, a doser is worthwhile: I had a doserless grinder - it drove my wife mad; coffee grains everywhere. With a doser, you grind just the amount you want and then move it under your control into your filter basket - little or no mess.

The amount of coffee you grind depends only on how long you grind for.

Glenn
13-01-10, 09:40
Dosers are really more for the high volume commercial user and are not really suitable for home use as grinding fresh is best. You will prbably end up using less coffee (less wastage) with doserless. Just my opinion but of course everyone has a different opinion. Some people prefer dosers and there is nothing wrong with that either. They are tidier (bench-wise) and have a great 'thwack' sound but are more labour intensive to clean and maintain.

RisingPower
13-01-10, 09:50
Dosers are really more for the high volume commercial user and are not really suitable for home use as grinding fresh is best. You will prbably end up using less coffee (less wastage) with doserless. Just my opinion but of course everyone has a different opinion. Some people prefer dosers and there is nothing wrong with that either. They are tidier (bench-wise) and have a great 'thwack' sound but are more labour intensive to clean and maintain.

Well, they do take maybe a few more seconds to clean with a brush, but that's about it.

It is down to personal opinion though. You're not anywhere near cambridge are you thedoc?

RisingPower
13-01-10, 09:51
Yes, a doser is worthwhile: I had a doserless grinder - it drove my wife mad; coffee grains everywhere. With a doser, you grind just the amount you want and then move it under your control into your filter basket - little or no mess.

The amount of coffee you grind depends only on how long you grind for.

I think dosers like on the mazzer mini throw a bit left, so if you haven't modded it, it is in fact more messy than the equivalent doserless model which is very good at dispensing directly into the basket.

RisingPower
13-01-10, 09:54
I have had a look at some of the reviews provided by BanishInstant (admittedly, very quickly). Is the benefit of a doser that he could grind more coffee? He probably won't drink more than 2/3 weekdays and maybe we will make about 10 cups on weekend days. So is a doser worth while?

I have to say, being a girl, I would probably go more for looks. But obviously I want it to be the best it can be for him!

Whether it's a doser or a doserless, you don't want stale coffee in the grinder.

The benefit of the doser is the thwacking, that you can do other things whilst it's grinding other than standing there holding the portafilter and that it breaks up clumps, it would also be ideal for having people around, you can grind and produce a lot more espressos in a shorter space of time.

The benefits of doserless is you may have slightly less coffee remains, it can be marginally quicker overall and in the case of the rocky, you can easily remove that portafilter fork, if you were to use it for other things than espresso.

TheDoc
13-01-10, 10:46
Right-I feel I am getting more confused the more I ask, but I need to order soon as his birthday is the beginning of Feb. Pleaes bear in mind I love coffee and drink lots of it, but have never owned a machine at home-so I am sure some of my questions are very very basic!

RisingPower-what do you mean, we could make things other than espresso's if we had a rocky and removed the portafiler?

I like the idea of less mess with a doser (as I'm sure the cleaning will fall to me) and don't mind spending a few extra minutes cleaning the machine out if it means the kitchen stays cleaner over all! The two machine's I am still considering are the rocky and the iberital mc2. But I also don't want to be wasting lots of coffee each time we make a drink. We do entertain and usually then there will be 6-10 of us drinking coffee, not sure if that would affect it?

In terms of tampers, are they all standard sizes? If I order the reg barber one (love the zebra wood one!) will it work?

Thanks again, The Doc

Glenn
13-01-10, 10:55
In terms of machine and grinder - good choices

Coffee Grinders should only be used for grinding coffee.

On some grinders there is a forked device to rest the portafilter on when grinding, which can be removed and larger containers (eg French Press) can be placed underneath.

There is no forked attachment to remove on the Iberital MC2

RisingPower
13-01-10, 01:27
Right-I feel I am getting more confused the more I ask, but I need to order soon as his birthday is the beginning of Feb. Pleaes bear in mind I love coffee and drink lots of it, but have never owned a machine at home-so I am sure some of my questions are very very basic!

RisingPower-what do you mean, we could make things other than espresso's if we had a rocky and removed the portafiler?

I like the idea of less mess with a doser (as I'm sure the cleaning will fall to me) and don't mind spending a few extra minutes cleaning the machine out if it means the kitchen stays cleaner over all! The two machine's I am still considering are the rocky and the iberital mc2. But I also don't want to be wasting lots of coffee each time we make a drink. We do entertain and usually then there will be 6-10 of us drinking coffee, not sure if that would affect it?

In terms of tampers, are they all standard sizes? If I order the reg barber one (love the zebra wood one!) will it work?

Thanks again, The Doc

Indeed if you had a doserless rocky you could do that, or even with the doser but it would be very difficult to get anything between the portafilter and the doser.

If you don't want to waste coffee you can either put it on a timer, or just dose. If you're entertaining a doser would be helpful as you get exact quantities each time you dose providing it's kept reasonably full. So, just measure out 18-20g x however many people for a double when you're putting the beans in the hopper.

Reg barber I think do tampers to fit the basket, so you presumably tell somewhere like coffeehit, but a standard rancilio silvia basket is 58mm which is the standard size for most baskets.

BanishInstant
13-01-10, 02:28
I have the doserless Iberital MC2 model and as mentioned earlier I have a small tub underneath the chute to catch any stray grounds. But I find there are very few and they can be easily wiped away from a kitchen surface. Perhaps some other grinders explode the coffee out :eek:. From my reading you are going to fall into situations where there will be only one or two coffees made or sometimes nine to ten. If you have a reasonable sized party then it may be worth buying the doser version so you only have to grind once.

In most of the high street coffee chains they have the doser version of a grinder. But one of my favourite take-away places has doserless.

I think people are getting too hung up on this and I think you will be happy with either version. Making coffee this way is an experience in itself and can be entertaining for those that have never seen it before.

Just pick one and it will be fine ;)

TheDoc
23-01-10, 01:10
It's done! I have gone for the rancilio silvia with the rocky doser grinder. I have ordered it from my espresso and he gave me a good talk through the difference between a doser and doserless. I've also ordered him a knock box, tamper (not the RB one as I couldn't get the one I wanted, but will get him this later on), and a jug. I will then probably let him chose some other bits for himself.

I now want to get him some nice beans for with it-I've had a look at the thread by Glenn and also get him some cappucino cups.

Thank you all so much for your advice and now becoming totally fed up with my constant questions.

I am also going to see if he would like some training with Glenn as I think that would be a great thing to help him/us understand the machines.

RisingPower
23-01-10, 01:28
It's done! I have gone for the rancilio silvia with the rocky doser grinder. I have ordered it from my espresso and he gave me a good talk through the difference between a doser and doserless. I've also ordered him a knock box, tamper (not the RB one as I couldn't get the one I wanted, but will get him this later on), and a jug. I will then probably let him chose some other bits for himself.

I now want to get him some nice beans for with it-I've had a look at the thread by Glenn and also get him some cappucino cups.

Thank you all so much for your advice and now becoming totally fed up with my constant questions.

I am also going to see if he would like some training with Glenn as I think that would be a great thing to help him/us understand the machines.

I loved the toba sulawesi espresso blend from hasbean, it's earthy, tobaccoey, absolutely gorgeous in the cup. If you wanted something a little sweeter, I've also loved the costa rica fincha de lico, goes from slightly sour with cherry notes to huge sweetness.

TheDoc
24-01-10, 12:54
I loved the toba sulawesi espresso blend from hasbean, it's earthy, tobaccoey, absolutely gorgeous in the cup. If you wanted something a little sweeter, I've also loved the costa rica fincha de lico, goes from slightly sour with cherry notes to huge sweetness.
Brilliant, thank you again for all of your help and advice. Fingers crossed he likes it all now!

Glenn
24-01-10, 03:04
Fingers crossed.

You've chosen a good combination, that should serve you for many years to come.

BanishInstant
25-01-10, 09:38
Please let us know his reaction.

What a journey it has been for all of use ;)

Rowlybum
29-01-10, 02:49
Please let us know his reaction.

What a journey it has been for all of use ;)

I agree it has been some journey.

Well finally have all the bits and pieces. Ran the machine first of all last week, but it was scaled shut and the water wasn't flowing right through the shower head. Thankfully Glen offered some advice and I managed to get the head off and clean/decaled and that did the trick. I have to say first of all what a pleasure the Classic is to work with. I wouldn't dream of playing around with a basic machine as they are all sealed units, but the classic is an excellent machine to take apart and rebuild, even if you have little or no practical skills.

I had a play around with the grinder and pulled a few shots, nothing considered good(too coarse). Glen then came over a few days later and talked me through the setup of the grinder, how to pull a shot etc..... really everything you need to know about being a barista chapter and verse. I didn't realise there was so much to learn, not just about the classic as it does have it's own traits, but also the process by which you make the espresso.

Thanks to everyone on this forum who helped guide me through to where I am today. Special note to Glen who is just about the most helpful person I have ever had the pleasure to meet. Thanks Glen for taking the time to come over on your way home and teach me and my wife the science that is espresso making. I will stay in touch for sure.

Now even though you gave us the full monty, Regrettably the better half is still having trouble making the froth for the latte, whereas I have it down to a fine art (do you think she is playing me)?

Anyway here's to a lifetime of quality coffee. Thanks everyone for all your help.

cheers
Mark

TheDoc
29-01-10, 04:15
I think you might have posted in the wrong thread Mark? Great to hear you are happy with your machine though and good recommendations for Glenn-I must contact him.

The Rancilio and grinder arrived yesterday guys, along with a tamper, knock box and milk jug and I have just had some beans delivered today. I plan on getting him some syrups too as he loves these, and maybe some other bits-but not sure what. I haven't opened the machines as they are all stapled tight, but I think my espresso might have sent me a doserless grinder when I ordered a doser one-just trying to contact them to check this out.

It's his birthday next friday so I will be on to let you know how it goes!

TheDoc
30-01-10, 04:30
Well guys just a little feedback on my espresso for you all.
I have been sent the doser less grinder instead of the doser that I ordered, but seeing as it's my husbands birthday next week I will be keeping it...but I called my espresso just to check it was the doser less. I did this because I didn't want to open the outer box if I decided to sent it back. I was told that yes it was the doser less and offered no apology for being sent the wrong item. I then had the difference explained to me again between the two types and told that although I hadn't ordered the doser less it was really a fortunate mistake I had beenn sent it as it would be better for us.

I have decided to keep it as I won't be able to return it and get another one before next week. But this certainly isn't the great customer service I was lead to believe I could expect from my espresso. I also ordered a milk jug from them and when it arrived the box is all ripped. I haven't complained about this as it seems trivial, but it's still not what you would expect for a 20 jug-Nigella Lawson's is cheaper ;o)

RisingPower
30-01-10, 04:56
Well guys just a little feedback on my espresso for you all.
I have been sent the doser less grinder instead of the doser that I ordered, but seeing as it's my husbands birthday next week I will be keeping it...but I called my espresso just to check it was the doser less. I did this because I didn't want to open the outer box if I decided to sent it back. I was told that yes it was the doser less and offered no apology for being sent the wrong item. I then had the difference explained to me again between the two types and told that although I hadn't ordered the doser less it was really a fortunate mistake I had beenn sent it as it would be better for us.

I have decided to keep it as I won't be able to return it and get another one before next week. But this certainly isn't the great customer service I was lead to believe I could expect from my espresso. I also ordered a milk jug from them and when it arrived the box is all ripped. I haven't complained about this as it seems trivial, but it's still not what you would expect for a 20 jug-Nigella Lawson's is cheaper ;o)

I think you'll be fine either way, but if it was me I'd be also very disappointed with that level of service and I certainly wouldn't be recommending them. But then again, I'd have recommended the iberital mc2 from happydonkey or something from bellabarista/coffeehit who are known for their good service.

It definitely sounds to me like you've been fobbed off.

barrykensett
30-01-10, 06:13
I would reinforce the comments about some of the Companies advertising machines,they supply goods eventually but when they don't work they ignore correspondence, phone calls or e-mails. My credit card company are trying to get a dispute resolved for me after which I will return here for advice on where to start agin for a coffee machine and good backup service..
Barry

Glenn
30-01-10, 09:19
...Regrettably the better half is still having trouble making the froth for the latte, whereas I have it down to a fine art (do you think she is playing me)?...


:) without a doubt !

From what I remember she was able to steam milk quite well.
Keep practising with the fairy and see if you can get the bubbles as near small as possible. Listen for the sound change as the temperature increases and density of the liquid increases.

Rowlybum
01-02-10, 01:43
I think you might have posted in the wrong thread Mark? Great to hear you are happy with your machine though and good recommendations for Glenn-I must contact him.

The Rancilio and grinder arrived yesterday guys, along with a tamper, knock box and milk jug and I have just had some beans delivered today. I plan on getting him some syrups too as he loves these, and maybe some other bits-but not sure what. I haven't opened the machines as they are all stapled tight, but I think my espresso might have sent me a doserless grinder when I ordered a doser one-just trying to contact them to check this out.

It's his birthday next friday so I will be on to let you know how it goes!


DOH !! Sorry Doc, will post again on the correct thread.

I think part of the problem was that I was also keeping one eye on your evolving story also and forget to go back the correct thread ;)

Ps: you made the right decision keeping the doserless grinder. We find it very easy to just grind on demand, based on our consumption of 1-2 cups per day.

Glenn is certainly the right chap, I would still be making rubbish watery shots if it wasn't for his expert advice and tutition.

TheDoc
05-02-10, 07:25
Well guys he has not long opened his gifts and he loves it! He had got an idea that I might be getting him a coffee maching apparently but thought it would be filter or pod-he was 'extremely chuffed' (I think is the right expression!). Thank you all so much for your help and advice. I've told him all about this site and how helpful you all are and I am sure he will be joining soon to gain some coffee knowledge.

Thanks again-oh and it's a lovely looking machine! he he

Glenn
06-02-10, 12:46
Excellent - great news !

Please do encourage him to join as I am sure he will jump in head-first and be set on tne path to making a decent coffee

BanishInstant
06-02-10, 10:13
That's fantastic. I hope you are not going to let him have all the fun. After all the effort and research you've done it would be a shame for you not to get some benefit.

TheDoc
06-02-10, 10:50
We have just pulled the first shots (well my husband has). They were really nice and he made us both a great latte; but we have yet to master the crema so think it's possibly to do with the grind or the tamp. We need to do more reading and research on it and I need to contact Glenn about coming to do some training for us.

Any tips?

sandykt
06-02-10, 12:27
I have been following your story (!) and really pleased to hear your husband likes the machine. I am very, very tempted to get a Rancilio & Rocky myself - especially after all the research I have done.

Have fun with your new machine - you probably won't get much sleep this weekend!!

BanishInstant
06-02-10, 04:20
You need about 14g of coffee for a double shot.
When the coffee pouring into the cup turns blond and watery then stop.
How long did it take to pull a shot? - ideally you want around 25 seconds.
If the shot takes quicker then grind finer.
Was the espresso machine warmed up? Some say 5 minutes but 15 is better.

A few hints to be thinking about.

TheDoc
07-02-10, 09:36
We have crema! My husband seems to have mastered it now. We watched a video on you tube (so many rancilio and rocky videos on there!) and he is now pulling lovely shots with great crema. The shots are taking about 27 seconds at last timing!
Thanks for the advice Banish Instant-heating the machine certainly helps.

Does anyone else have a rocky and if so what grind setting do you have it on? When my husband first started he had it on 6 as recommended in the manual but the shots were a little bitter and had no creama, he's now increased it to 8 and we are getting much better results.

I think I might have a go later at pulling a few!

sandykt
14-02-10, 10:06
So come on, keep your story going Doc!! Its been a week or so since your husband has got his new machine & grinder. How's it going? ;)

TheDoc
16-02-10, 10:03
It's going really well. He is mega busy at work, hence not joining himself yet. He has been making great coffee for us including latte and cappucino-I had my first go at the weekend but I think I tamped the coffee too much as it took ages to come through and was very watery :o( But I need to practice I think!

we now have flavoured syrups as well so that we can make hazelnut and vanilla latte's.

We need to get more beans also now, if anyone has any recommendations?

Glenn
16-02-10, 11:05
This list should get you going...
http://coffeeforums.co.uk/showthread.php?t=1656

sandykt
16-02-10, 02:38
Doc - really pleased to hear you are both enjoying the machine & grinder. I am soooo jealous - I can an upgrade coming on this year! I hope your husband joins us soon, the more the merrier. I, too, need to order some beans on line too. Just waiting for a heads up from Glenn for any new blends out there (hint, hint):D

eonone
25-03-10, 11:28
Well guys just a little feedback on my espresso for you all.
I have been sent the doser less grinder instead of the doser that I ordered, but seeing as it's my husbands birthday next week I will be keeping it...but I called my espresso just to check it was the doser less. I did this because I didn't want to open the outer box if I decided to sent it back. I was told that yes it was the doser less and offered no apology for being sent the wrong item. I then had the difference explained to me again between the two types and told that although I hadn't ordered the doser less it was really a fortunate mistake I had beenn sent it as it would be better for us.

I have decided to keep it as I won't be able to return it and get another one before next week. But this certainly isn't the great customer service I was lead to believe I could expect from my espresso. I also ordered a milk jug from them and when it arrived the box is all ripped. I haven't complained about this as it seems trivial, but it's still not what you would expect for a 20 jug-Nigella Lawson's is cheaper ;o)

Yeah, really sorry you decided to buy from this store. If you remember back a few months I did post about the experience I had, only to be cut down by an individual on this forum and to promptly have the posts deleted by the Admin.

Like I say, certain dealers are all smiles and pleasantries before the sale, after the sale, well...

It seems Im not the only one now who would not recommend MyEspresso in Coventry (google tags are great arent they ;))

Hope you get on with your Rancilio kit tho :)

sandykt
25-03-10, 02:37
I recently upgraded to a Rancilio Silvia and I ordered it from My Espresso. I had no problems with them at all.