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About mathof

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  1. VST. baskets come with test certificates that show the degree of their conformity to the standards they are expected to meet. VST rejects baskets from their manufacturer that don't meet these standards. This process adds to the price but it should reassure you that you don't get a lemon.
  2. mathof

    End Game Kit

    I have no itch to replace my 2014 Londinium 1 or my early version Monolith Flat (with Mythos burrs). The combination is so reliable that my focus now is on coffees – single origins and blends – how to roast them and how to dial them in.
  3. As I understand it, VST baskets are intended for light roasts, which are naturally hard to extract. Because VST baskets have larger and more holes than normal baskets, the user must grind finer for the same flow rate. The finer grind exposes more surface area to the brew water, and this produces higher extraction. I don't know how this affects darker roasts, as these extract relatively easily, anyway.
  4. Whether the La Pavoni Pro would give you the same in the cup depends partially on your skills. A spring lever (L1) gives you a repeatable pressure profile. A manual machine is in your own hands. One reason I moved from an LP Europiccola to the L1 was for the spring; I never was sure how fine to grind/how hard to pull the lever on the LP. Another difference is the behaviour of the large heat sink (group) on the L1 compared to the relatively tiny one on the LP. My temperature measurements indicated a rising brew water temperature during the course of LP shots versus a falling brew water temp during L1 shots. You can make very satisfying shots with the LP, but given the difference in temperature profiles I doubt they will ever taste exactly the same.
  5. Which Philly suburb? I’m originally from Pottstown, although I live in London. I’ve always used spring lever machines but you seem to have got off to a good start with your choice of equipment. The one thing I would advise is initially to use beans you are familiar with and stick to them while you are learning. That way you can taste how changes you make in preparation and extraction methods affect your espresso.
  6. The L1 uses an Italian group, which is designed for medium and medium/dark roasts. However, I find that mine performs well with light roasts if I give them a 5-10 seconds pre-infusion at boiler pressure followed by lifting the lever to the catch point and holding it there until drips arrive (5-15 seconds, depending on bean and grind). But I do grind with a Kafatek Flat, which may be a crucial ingredient in this process.
  7. I'm not sure the common wisdom about the early (pre-R) L1s not being suited to pulling light roasts is true. I recently bought a Tonino roast colour meter, which gives me an objective measurement of roast levels. I find that very light espresso beans from Tim Wendelboe and other light-roast specialists (Tonino ~120) respond well to the following formula: 15g in a 15g VST basket; careful puck preparation; 5" pre-infusion at boiler pressure (1.2bar); then raise the lever to catch point to complete the pre-infusion (drops appear in a few seconds) and release lever. I normally cut the shot after ~30g of liquid (total time of pour after lever release ~24"). The result is dense, sweet, tasty and measures ~21% Extraction Yield.
  8. I too would be grateful if someone could send me the code. Thanks in advance.
  9. You should not need to worry about the steam wand, assuming the vacuum breaker is working. That valve vacates accumulated air in the boiler when it heats up, and then closes to keep any more air from entering.
  10. Thanks very much for taking the trouble. That’s very reassuring.
  11. The coffee is El Salvador Finca Los PirineosRed Bourbon. It’s from Coffee Compass, but they don’t say how it was processed. Here’s a photo: brown on the left, greens in the centre, and unsorted on the right.
  12. I often notice that some of the beans in a quantity of greens are actually brown. Should I take them out before roasting? I suppose if they would turn into quakers during the roast, I could remove them afterwards. Or might they look like the others after roasting, but taste wrong?
  13. This may be what you are looking for: https://www.edesiaespress.com/bezzera-bottomless-naked-portafilter-espresso-handle-triple-shot-21g-basket/ I bought the single-spout version of this one for my L1, but you would be well-advised to double-check the measurements with the vendor before purchasing.
  14. There's also the matter of taste. This YouTube coffee influencer finds he prefers coffee that comes out of spouts:
  15. I've tried both kinds of seals and they both work splendidly in my early L1. I can't even tell which is in there now without dropping the group to look.
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