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Found 47 results

  1. Consistently excellent service.Sound and impartial advice given freely. Claudette has always answered all my questions with patience and understanding, and enabled me to make informed choices about purchases. Always delivered on time and as promised. Despite a large volume of business being the supply of high-end machines, she has always made time to advise on items costing a few pounds. And if you do end up buying a machine from BB, you can be sure that it will have been tested before delivery, and amazingly well packed.
  2. Needs no introduction to regulars on this site. Steve's approach sets a benchmark for customer service. Rapid response to E Mails (does he never sleep?) consistent quality of products and delivery as promised. Typical of Steve's approach was when my Behmor roaster broke down, he shipped out a new one before I had sent the broken one back to him.
  3. Thought some might like to read this from Lewis at Crankhouse: https://www.crankhousecoffee.co.uk/blogs/news/from-budget-to-boutique-a-particle-distribution-love-story
  4. Let's be quite clear about this. This coffee is not for everyone so if you are a third wave poof who faps over apple and cinammon, leave now. This coffee is not for you. This is a coffee for men. This coffee is not for people who worship at the altar of the Ginger God, those who arrange their sacred Red Bags in their Shrines to show their devotion to Coffees of Mediocre flavour. Don't drink this coffee and expect to recognise any tastes on your poncy coffee 'flavour wheels'. This stuff transcends attempts at description. Why? Because it doesn't need to. It doesn't need to be described in terms of other things because it tastes of what it should taste of. ****ing coffee. Drinking Compass Coffee Hill and Valley is like being kicked hard in the balls, but then being given an immediate soothing massage as you come to, after actually having drunk a coffee that tastes of something. I'm too scared to try this as espresso. I'll wait until I've grown a beard. And not an effete Hipster chinny one but a proper tramp beard that is the outward manifestation of virility and a refusal to told what to do by people with annoying midlands accents. Try this coffee as a flat white. Its indescribably good. The closest thing that can get to it is sucking on a Hookah pipe with one corner of your mouth, whilst simultaneously using the remaining corner of your mouth to suck in the sweetest and most satisfying of Mummy's breast milk. Try this if you dare, but if you are scared you might actually taste something, be warned and stay away.
  5. Hi all I am looking to learn more about the Fracino cherub and for the life of me I didn’t managed to find any proper reviens. Could someone kindly point me in the right direction ? Many thanks Claude
  6. Amazon link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Electric-Gooseneck-Variable-Stainless-Controller/dp/B075GJJWCN/ref=sr_1_2?s=kitchen&ie=UTF8&qid=1517314193&sr=1-2&keywords=Doctor+Hetzner Price: £50 For a long time I've planned on purchasing the Stagg EKG. However I had to accept that this won't be available in the UK for a while. This kettle is my temporary fill-in whilst I wait for that. Likes: Overall size. With the controls on the handle, this allows the footprint/base to be smaller than the Bonavita and Brewista variable kettles. This does not sacrifice ergonomics, the handle is fine even with my small hands. Spout. Very controllable, I can get the water to flow in drips. Very impressed and surprised. Dislikes: It beeps. Handy if you walk away and want to know when it's reached your desired temp. Annoying if you are afraid of waking someone (assuming your grinder hasn't done this already!) I'd like it so when I take the kettle off to pour, and then place it back on the stand, it would then automatically re-engage and bring the temperature back up to my set temp. I have to keep turning it back on every time - prompting more beeps. Other notes: No save preset function. No timer. Buttons are a little 'mushy', but I expected this at the price point. Those of you who are particular about that kind of thing might be put off, but it's not the end of the world for me. I don't see them breaking anytime soon. 2 year guarantee. Has a keep warm function that lasts 1hr. Kettle switches off moment you lift it off of the base however. Max capacity 1litre. I believe that both the Bonavita, and the Brewista comparable versions are better. However I saw the opportunity to save a little bit of cash, and opted for this. Since I do plan on upgrading regardless. Do I recommend it? Yes, if beeps, auto shut off, and no timer doesn't bother you. Disclaimer - I was not, and have never been paid or associated with any brand/s. This is my honest opinion. UPDATE: I have noticed once the kettle has been taken off the base, and placed back on. The temperature reading defaults back to 100c. Meaning you can not effectively reheat water quickly between pours, as it won't let you activate the heating element if it thinks its already boiling - Very frustrating! This kettle is therefore suitable for one-pour methods, or Tea drinkers.
  7. This is an interesting recipe that consists of coffee, unsalted grass fed butter, and a derivative of coconut oil called Brain Octane oil. It claims to be able to help with concentration, focus, and losing weight. Though it all sounds to be a big pot of snake oil, I made this video to break down each ingredient and weighing the pros and cons, in terms of health benefits, of each ingredient. What do you think of Bulletproof coffee? Is it a load of bologna or do you think it carries some merit? [video=youtube_share;8SC0QD2f48c]
  8. I have been speaking to Mahlgut over the past month or so and they have agreed to send a Grist (Their grinder) over here for review. In addition to having a look at this grinder myself I am hoping to get it as thoroughly looked at as possible by other experienced members here. It is easy to compare this (as it looks so similar) to the Pharos, but considering the price this should realistically be a step above, however this will be an important comparison when it comes to review. Another important comparison is to the HG One, as this sits between the price of the Pharos and HG One it will be interesting to see how it stands up to them both. I can do neither of these comparisons, which is why it is important to me to put it in the hands of people who can. A final review will be written when it has done the rounds including everyones take on it. Considering the above please feel free to PM me if you feel you can add something to the review, the grinder will only be sent to members I feel I can 100% trust as whilst this is in the UK it is my responsibility. Many members are happy to have others over to their homes, so if it is making its way to someone near you and you are thinking of buying then you may well be able to go and see it in action. Lastly I understand there will be a Grind Off Event happening some time in the next few months, I would like this grinder to be there, but I need to communicate the date to Mahlgut, if anyone has any further info on when this might be happening (even a rough idea) if they could shoot me a PM that would be super.
  9. It seems as though we have all been wasting our money and giving the wrong advice and guidance - I for one will not be able to trust which magazine on any subject again. The BEST BUYS are Delonghi, Kitchen aid and Morphy Richards - I for one am rushing to those fine purveyorsof electrical goods- argos to purchase one of these epic machines, I just hope they haven't sold out. Here are some fine words of advice from their professional reviewers "In the supermarket look for espresso ground coffee which has a finer grind" "just 7g of coffee is enough" "don't pack it so firmly that water can not go through it" " keep your baskets clear using a pin" we all have to start somewhere but which is trusted by many people, and this kind of advice is not going to get anyone off to a good start - ironically ive owned one the machines listed in the past it was craptacular on many levels.
  10. Gail has posted a new Crew Review for the Sage Oracle - here:
  11. As you may have noticed from other posts of mine on here, I've recently acquired a Gaggia Classic and have been looking for a suitable grinder to pair with it. I'd narrowed it down to two relatively low-cost options, the Sage Smart Grinder (ideally the newer "Pro" BCG820 with dose timer and adjustable upper burr carrier) or a Graef of some description. Both seem to offer similar grind performance from a very similar (around 38mm conical) burr set and what looks like largely similar construction. The Sage is £199, and the list price of the Graef's is between £150 and £250ish, depending on model - BUT they seem to crop up on eBay at bargain prices (unlike the BCG820). So - when faced with a nice chrome Graef CM95 on eBay, with timed on-demand dosing, unused and essentially 'as new' for about half the full retail price, I jumped at the chance and bought it. I've never seen or used a Sage BCG820, so can't comment on it further, but if anyone wants me to (and can supply one) then I'm willing (and would actually quite like) to compare the Graef and Sage further. Anyway, it arrived yesterday and was unpacked and sat next to the Gaggia. It's small and light - certainly compared with any other serious grinder that I've owned, but looks very nice and matches the Gaggia nicely. Obviously, before I did any serious grinding with it I was eager to tear it to pieces and see what was what. The hopper has a good interlock on it, and the gate (to stop the beans coming out) has a nice positve action when you close it - and when it's closed it's properly closed (unlike my K10 Fresh gate, which is crap compared with the rest of the machine). So the hopper rotates and pops off. The grind adjustment collar has 1-25 stepped adjustment settings across a fairly small arc of the rotation (some of the other Graef models offer 40 steps, but it appears that Graef have simply widened the scale so that it goes further "fine" and further "coarse" rather than making the steps any smaller - infact the steps appear to be identical). Once rotated to "fully coarse" you can press the lock-release button at the back and continue to rotate the collar until two arrows (one on the base and one on the collar) are aligned, and at that point the grind adjustment collar complete with upper burrs just pulls straight off. Exposing the lower burr - and allowing the upper burr to be lifted out (using the little handle). Simples. Other Graef models (other than the 90/95 and 800) have a non-adjustable upper burr carrier (much like the Sage Smart Grinder) and you need to shim the lower burr in order to adjust the grind range into the fine espresso / turkish settings. The CM95 (along with the 90 and 800) have an adjustable upper burr carrier - very similar if not identical to the Sage Smart Grinder Pro. This allows for 'macro' adjustment of the grind through rotation of the upper burr carrier, and then micro adjustment with the grind adjustment collar. Note: I tried rotating it a stop or two finer - and got what felt like talc out of the machine, slowly. The standard grind setting for the upper burrs will still go fine enough on the normal collar adjustment to choke the Gaggia Classic. The entire burr set looks very similar, from what I can tell, to the Sage Smart Grinder Pro. More in the next part...
  12. Hi all, I have been offered an MC2 Doser very cheap (£40). Reading around I think I'd prefer the auto version but I can't really turn it away at the price and funds are tight. These seem like popular models so I was wondering if anyone with one could give me a few of the pros and cons of the doser model - specifically in comparison to the manual? To get an idea of use it would be paired with a Gaggia Classic. It would be 'working' for two people and 90% of the time we drink espresso based drinks rather than filter. Thanks again for any info!
  13. Finally Plymouth has somewhere to get a decent coffee - The Jacka Bakery on the Barbican. This is one of the oldest bakery's in Plymouth but has been recently taken over by a family doing decent quality 'artisinal' bread (The sour-dough with spelt is amazing) and origin coffee. The shop has: - Origin seasonal blend from a Mythos clima pro - rotating Origin single origin (so far I've had the ethiopian and kenyan, both sweet not sour), again from a mythos clima pro - La Marzocco linea PB The barista and head baker do a decent job on their extractions and latte art, usually sticking with Origins suggested recipes rather than experimenting too much. I can't see them using anything other than Origin as it's part of the lease deal on the gear. http://www.plymouthherald.co.uk/Plymouth-s-famous-Jacka-bakery-bought-family/story-26533658-detail/story.html Also a Boston tea party has recently opened serving decent quality coffee from Extract not far away from Jacka, it's not as good but it's still miles better than what we had a year ago.
  14. I have a pile of beans that I've had over the last two weeks, I have cupped and I have filtered and I have espresso'd. *are they worth it* in case anybody is interested in picking any of these up in the future. The Great Has Bean - Pulped Natural Pacamara (Nicaragua) - what is there to say about this? It explodes, EXPLODES with thick banaanananana goodness. Cupped amazingly, aeropresses like a charm - haven't braved it as an espresso yet, that's tomorrow's job - but it's so good elsewhere that it's already an insta-classic Has Bean - Patio dried Caturra (Costa Rica) - I'm not sure what I was expecting with this, just another caturra right? Naaaah - lots of fruit popping out, intense sweetness, as an espresso it was thick and felt like drinking a hug. Foundry - Rocko Mountain - We've all had this, super light, super fruity but yet surprisingly developed. Strawberries - in milk its like drinking an actual milkshake, down in one all too easy. It's impossible to make a bad cuppa with it. Get fatigued after 2-3 cups though because it's "too much"; Rocko mountain was one of my favourite coffees over xmas and it's good to see it still floating around. Random sample from Papercup: It was an ethiopian, no providence given - tasted like a yirgacheffe, smelt like a yirgacheffe, was probably a yirgacheffe - it looked like a natural, I'd make a guess it's another heirloom (I'll ask next time I'm in). If Papercup release an ethiopian in the next few weeks I'll be snapping it right up because this was amazing. It sang of bananas and sweetness. It was very well developed too like most of their coffees and yet I loved it. The Good Has Bean - Washed Caturra (Nicaragua) - I liked this for a time and I've had a few good espressos made with it. (some by me, some by shops), as an aeropress it does indeed have that green apple flavour, but I've fallen out of love with it this week - it cupped really badly and tastes dull compared to everything else I've got on my shelf. Has Bean - Brazilian CoE - a natural (uh.. Brazil) I managed *one* good cup of this in the aeropress where it blew my mind and I thought I was drinking a washed ethiopian, and then it disappeared and the rest of the 500g tasted "stressed" even with the exact same recipe. A few good espressos made with it too, bold and fruity, very clean - but not my favourite. Has Bean - Washed Pacamara (Nicaragua): I'm uncovering a preference towards naturals and their ilk so perhaps I'm biased, but this feels sterile compared to its pulped natural counterpart, some of the fruit remains and I suspect it'd make a tasty pourover (not my kinda thing), too subtle for me - might work as an espresso, we'll find out. The ... less than good [Not mentioning any names, all local roasters, all tasting "roasty" no matter what I do to them, all with tasting nuts of "nuts" or "toffee", sod that for a game of soldiers.
  15. I have had this grinder for a while, and I'll start by saying I don't have anything to compare it to hand grinder wise, so this is just my experience of it rather than an exhaustive review on how good it is in comparison to the market. Its safe to say the Hario Mini Mill is one of the cheapest hand grinders you can buy, bar a few unknown brands. Mine cost me £17 delivered to my door at the time which is dead cheap when a Porlex will set you back around £30. Cheap, however, I think for a good reason. The grind consistency is really very poor. Again this is just in comparison to Mazzer SJ I use at home, but the difference in the size of the grinds it produces is huge: (Click to make bigger) The above was with a particularly tough bean, I had to put some real welly into it to grind it, and this is where it is at its worst, it fares slightly better with darker/more brittle roasts. This has to be largely down to the somewhat loose floating bottom burr: [video=youtube_share;BIyWfbJHGhs] Which just has a huge amount of give in it, I can see exactly why a tough chunky piece could get through one side whilst smaller pieces grind up on the other. Grinding fresh coffee in this will be better than buying pre-ground, but if you care enough about the flavor of the coffee to be buying fresh in the first place, it probably pays to save a bit and buy a more respected hand grinder.
  16. This week I had the pleasure of being one of the first people in the world to see and touch the LONDINIUM I spring lever espresso machine. Taking a trip to Londinium Espresso's roastery with camera in hand I wasn't sure what to expect. I had been following the Londinium Espresso Blog with interest and there was a growing amount of chatter on Twitter & other coffee forums around the world too, but nothing prepared me for seeing it in person. The LONDINIUM I has been designed from the ground up. The aim was to create the world’s first commercial spring lever espresso machine designed especially for the home. Seeking to use the best parts available, the LONDINIUM I has the same group as some Kees van der Westen lever espresso machines. The hot water dispenser has a lovely spray nozzle, and the knobs have been seated flush (no threads showing unlike some machines I have come across). The internals of the machine are easily accessible - and can even be viewed behind the tempered glass on the Luxe model. Visually the machine looks the part, sporting highly polished stainless surfaces and all sharp edges have been deburred - which your hands will appreciate. After taking photos of the machine I was offered the chance to put a LONDINIUM I through its paces - in my kitchen!. I have always had a soft spot for lever machines and relish every opportunity to pull shots on them, so naturally I jumped at the chance. My first hands-on experience with the LONDINIUM I has been amazing and this weekend I have enjoyed some of the best espresso I've had all year. Reiss at Londinium Espresso gave me good instructions on how to to prime the machine and walked me through what to expect when I first switched it on, as well as what boiler pressure readings to expect. Installation was a breeze - truly plug and play. I filled the reservoir (I have a manual fill version - although a plumbed in version is available) with Volvic mineral water - my standard go-to water when evaluating a machine (and also used in preference to the hard water where I live) and attached the portafilter. With such a small footprint and no ballast in the machine to weigh it down, any worries that I had that the machine might tip forward (as some lever machines feel they they will) went away the minute I pulled the lever forward. The spring lever has a lovely action and the machine feels nicely weighted, staying flat on the bench at all times. I had read questions online about flex in the body, based on other machines produced in the factory where the LONDINIUM I was assembled. That doesn't seem to be an issue with the machine which I've been using this machine all week and haven't noticed any flexing at all (even with a fairly hefty pull - which isn't needed due to this group) There are 2 short videos which backs this up; Inserting a portafilter Inserting a portafilter Pulling on the lever Pulling on the lever Cooling flushes are a thing of the past with the LONDINIUM I. I've been measuring extraction temperatures with a Fluke and k-type probe through the base of the portafilter. Pre-extraction the water was exiting at 93c. Measuring again before the next shot, the temperature was again 93c. Coming back to the machine an hour later, the water was still 93c (all +/- 0.5) but near enough consistent. Occasionally during the hour you could hear the boiler kick in, but it's a quiet machine on the whole. Even the pump isn't too noisy and only comes on in short bursts when required. I have pulled back to back shots (3 doubles in a row) and not noticed any difference in taste (all were weighed at 16.7g from the same beans) and will be pulling more later in the week to put it through a dinner party routine. However, making 4 flat whites last night was a breeze and felt quick too. The steam pressure is powerful, and 290 mls of 4% milk steamed from 4c to 65c in 16 seconds. I used TempTags calibrated to 65c when timing this and confirmed using the Fluke as well. The milk was textured nicely and the LONDINIUM I comes with a 4 hole steam tip as standard. This evening I have been comparing extractions (*for taste and aroma only) of different coffees on the LONDINIUM I and a Gaggia Classic - using a Mahlkonig Vario grinder to grind the beans from a number of different roasters. I've used less coffee on the LONDINIUM I than the Gaggia Classic and have found it likes a finer grind too. The flavours are noticeably better on the lever machine than the Gaggia and overall you feel in more control. The pucks are also knocking out nicely. I've broken apart a couple and they are evenly extracted. I know the 2 machines are not similar, but that's the beauty of this side-by-side test. It makes you appreciate the LONDINIUM I and the control it gives you, along with the consistency. I'd love to check my extractions with a bottomless portafilter but can't fault them using the standard double one supplied with the machine. Over the next week or so I will post more thoughts and reflections, but right now I'm off to pull another shot. Please post any questions here and I will do my best to answer them. For further information please read the LONDINIUM I Press Release and visit the londiniumespresso.com website
  17. Hi Everyone, I am looking for a bit of assistance if you would be kind enough to spare a few minutes? I recently started a Blog to look at the UK Coffee scene and its culture and to try and be a bit different with my articles by taking to the founders/owners to find out what makes them unique. my first article in this style can be found at: http://beanabout.co.uk/2015/03/10/bogota-coffee-co-milton-keynes/ and the home page at http://beanabout.co.uk I was wondering if you guys would be nice enough to have a read or look over and give me your honest thoughts on what you think with regards to the content, design, direction etc. I appreciate your help Thanks Matt (Mod's I have checked with Glenn and have his approval)
  18. wintoid

    Coffee Real

    I've been ordering from various suppliers recently, casting my net a bit wider than before. I really enjoy the Hasbean IMM thread because you get to talk about the coffee you've been drinking, and get others' opinions. So I figured perhaps it would be useful to give my feedback on the various coffees I'm trying, and see whether it stirs any debate or useful comments. I'm using an HG One and a Cremina, and I feel like I'm only just hitting my stride in terms of producing coffee that I personally enjoy. I tend to favour a small volume milk drink like a cortado, but usually sip the espresso before I pour the milk on, and am not above a flat white either. So, yesterday I took delivery of 4 bags from Coffee Real: Latin Connection blend, Gone To Lunch blend, El Salvador Decaf, Salvation Decaf blend. They're not rested yet, so to be honest I should be waiting. Nevertheless I dipped in, and this is what I found. First up was Latin Connection. Yup perfectly serviceable coffee, which tastes to me like what I expect from an Italian style blend. Good dark flavours, but definitely a bit active, and could use a rest. Will return to this in a few days. Next up the El Salvador Decaf. OK I'm not sure I nailed this. I didn't enjoy what I made, but I am pretty sure I can do better. Will also return to this. Gone To Lunch was next. Woo. Fantastic mouthfeel, definitely a tad fizzy/active but really really sweet and a great nutty aftertaste. The sip of espresso I had was lovely, and the cortado fantastic. I am not sure I am going to be able to keep my hands off this if I can reproduce the results I just got. Finally, the Salvation Decaf blend. Good texture as espresso, but the flavour seemed to do better in milk than as espresso. I would be quite happy drinking this as a cortado. Other stuff - shipping was prompt and reasonably priced. The bags are plastic with a seal at the top, like the Hasbean bags, but when I ripped them open I felt like I was going to rip across the seal.... it never did... but it felt like it was going to. I'm definitely interested to hear of other people's experiences with Coffee Real. I will certainly shop there again, based on my initial reaction. Once rested, I'll give some more feedback. My one complaint is that I'm not used to buying 250g bags, but at least that means I am getting to try a variety, including some decafs.
  19. Hi! If you've read some of my posts you'll know that I'm new to espresso and am having difficulty trying to identify what my personal tastes are. I've read on the forums about a chap called Richard at Coffee Compass being helpful so I emailed him about the beans/blends I have tried from different companies and my abbreviated tasting notes on each and asked for his advice. He got back to me quite promptly and proposed to put together a pack for me of different coffees and different roast levels to try and identify where my tastes lie. He also confirmed my suspicions that I do not like higher acidity brighter coffees so we will work around that. This tailored level of service is remarkable and a relief to my growing frustration. So, credit where credit is due. I echo the praise I've read on these forums to Richard at Coffee Compass and would recommend getting in touch with him. Looking forward to my tailored selection of beans!
  20. Good evening everyone, Here is a short review of my The "Eureka Zenith Club E" that I recently purchased by a retailer based in Italy, apparently well known on this forum and other German and French ones where I’m registered as well: Gianni from Elektros.it I’ve got to say, I’m a newbie in Espresso making, so I had no real experience to compare it with other grinders. All I found on the Internet, was a single review here claiming it with a performing equally with a Mazzer Super Jolly Electronic. I’ve got my parcel home 2 days after the purchase, that was pretty fast. My, first impression after unboxing: This is big, massive, I didn’t really expect, it weights, it’s heavy (23 pounds), well stable. The body is well built, it’s in aluminium, available in black or grey colors, no chrom version. The paint work is awesome; it’s a very soft black surface that doesn’t keep any finger traces. The grind is not sticking at all, this is such easy to wipe it off. It’s 56cm tall, bear in mind to measure the height of your furnitures in the kitchen depending where you plan to set it, otherwise you might want to swap the hopper instead. The cover of the electronic display is made of plastic, just like the plate you put in front of the grinder. The manual is in Italian and English. I pretty much appreciated that all major functions were such intuitive. One key for a single dose, one for double dose, (+) and (-) to adjust the timer. Some key combination to switch off the timer, an electronic dose counter, buttons lock. That’s it. I put some beans in the hopper, put a portafilter, and there, the first good surprise, is that it stands on its own. It’s not only a fork where to put the portafilter, but a hook as well to keep it standing without need of holding it yourself. The second good surprise, this is the low volume. I do not have that many comparisons beside videos I saw on Internet, where I was considering the Eureka Mignon and the Macap M4D as well. I’ve got the “relative feeling” that the Eureka Zenith Club was slightly quieter in use. The burrs are 60mm, they are adjusted with a wheel of good size that provide an excellent feeling and that is very precise: if I turn the wheel just one half grade, I’ll see a difference during the extraction. By the way, when comparing with the Macap M4D I was considering, I have to confess this tuning wheel on the side appeared more comfortable than the burrs tunings of the Macap located in the back of the grinder. There is a LED to light up the portafilter, this detail provides a great control on the finest of the grind. The hopper has a slider to close of the distribution and allow removal. It’s very clean to use: in single dose, everything falls into the PF, in double dose, there is a few grind falling over, but it’s not really significant, and it falls in the plate anyway. Clumping : I read pretty much about this topic, saw videos, and with the beans I have used, and with a fine grind, I haven’t noticed anything. The fork holding the PF is adjustable, just like the chute as well. Imagine you want to grind some coffee for a filter coffee or a French press, just lift up the chute and you can fill a different receptacle. Retention: very little, with such a chute, the grind has no surface to attach to which is pretty enjoyable because I couldn’t figure out using a burst all the time to clean it. To conclude with of all of this, the adjective that describes this grinder the better is its comfort of usage. I'm certainly missing some experience to comment now about the negative sides of this grinder, but here is a summary of the qualities I have appreciated: The stability The body which doesn’t leave any finger traces left The low volume in usage The light on the portafilter The very intuitive commands The PF stand which holds it tightly Remains pretty clean in usage The little retention The tuning wheel, that fits nicely in the hand, and is also easy to fine-tune, very precise The price which make it competitive against the Macap M4D I initially wanted and against a Mazzer Mini, and also way cheaper than a Mazzer SJ if these two models can really be compared just like pretended in the other review mentioned above. The adjustable chute, which allows filling up something else than a PF, because I also have friends who enjoy filter coffee. If you feel like doing a purchase to Elektros.it , and see the product is currently not available, I would highly recommend to drop a mail to Gianni first. Because the stocks of this product is not always live updated on its Internet site: I preordered mine, just like other customers, means after there was only one sample left, that gone sold few days after.
  21. As you may have spotted when Coffee Omega posted about the availability of this grinder, I mentioned that it looked "interesting" and asked them for a unit to review. They kindly sent me one to play with, use for a while and provide my impartial thoughts and findings - as would be applicable to normal home users. I've done all of this purely in the interests of getting my hands on a grinder that I thought may interest serious home users, and obviously there are a few of those on here - and to write this review to give those prospective users some good information about the grinder before considering spending any money on it! Anyway, my thoughts and a review of the new DIP DKS-65 On Demand grinder, available exclusively from Coffee Omega: (PDF version with more photos - the right way round - available here) ) DIP… Who? A little known Romanian manufacturer of grinders, that for over 20 years has had an ethos of designing and producing a simple, quality, well-engineered product – manufacturing as much of it as possible in-house. Metal parts are tooled and machined in house, plastic parts are tooled and injection moulded in house – ensuring that they have full control over the quality of the finished product. DKS-65 On-Demand Grinder The DKS-65 is the only on-demand grinder that DIP produce. With a range of retail/shop grinders, using a variety of flat burrs from 64mm right up to 180mm, the DKS-65 uses the smallest burr set in the range – the 64mm – but has on-demand timed dosing, with a good front-end control panel and hassle free dosing directly into the portafilter. At a price point of sub £380 ex VAT, it appears to fill a niche in the home-user grinder market for a relatively small, low-cost, simple yet high quality on-demand grinder with programmable timers (for single and double shots) and ‘push button’ ease of use. Recognising that this grinder would probably be quite attractive to many home users, I asked Coffee Omega (the exclusive UK distributor for DIP) to send me a unit for impartial review. So – this document provides my thoughts, quantitative findings and subjective results – and as I’ve mentioned, I have no commercial connection to Coffee Omega or DIP and have produced this review impartially in order to hopefully help prospective home users / purchasers make an informed decision to buy or not. So – what’s it like? Packaging… It’s shipped and delivered ‘double boxed’ – an outer branded box of thick cardboard, and then inner boxes – one containing the grinder base unit and instruction book, the other containing the 1.3Kg hopper with lid and grinds tray.   Physically… It stands 57cm tall, including the hopper – but a much more concise 34cm to the top of the grind adjustment collar. It’s comfortably smaller than a comparable 64mm flat burr dosered grinder, like a Compak K6 – but with the hopper it’s taller in total than the Compak K10 with small hopper. A small hopper doesn’t appear to be easily available, but would be a useful accessory. At 27cm deep and 15.5cm wide (about the same footprint as an Iberital MC2), it’s a good compact shape that will fit nicely on a kitchen work surface – and weighing less than 10Kg makes it easy to move around when required. The housing of the grinder is all black steel, with the front panel being polished stainless. Portafilter supports are fixed, with a portafilter dose button immediately behind them. An E61 portafilter fitted and works well. The grind adjustment collar is plastic, but it’s a solid and robust piece of plastic – and there’s no fear of it breaking. There’s also a removable grinds tray (black plastic) that fits at the front of the grinder. What are the Buttons and Controls? The DKS-65 is very similar to many other on-demand grinders in the way it’s used: -A main on/off rocker switch on the right hand side of the grinder. This powers on and off but doesn’t initiate any grinding. -A grind adjustment collar (though rotating in the opposite direction to many others – so clockwise is finer, and anticlockwise is coarser) -A portafilter ‘dose’ button -A control pane with backlit LCD display and four touch sensitive buttons: o* (for menu access and setting the timed dosing) o0/1 (for on/off and exiting menus) oSingle dose/- (for selecting single dose or decreasing set values/changing options) oDouble dose/+ (for selecting double dose or increasing set values/changing options) -A grind adjustment collar lock tab oMore on this later, but there’s a metal tab that locates in notches under the grind adjustment collar – making this a stepped grinder (as it locks in stepped positions) but with a standard ‘micrometrical’ rotating adjustment collar. -The hopper has a metal bean-sheet – to stop the beans falling out when you remove the collar. This rotates in and out and provides a good positive action and good closure of the bean hopper for removal. One minor annoyance is that when you turn the grinder on, it always defaults to Single Dose. If you’ve previously been using Double, it still defaults to Single – so you could get caught out. Whilst you could simply use the Single button as a double dose (ie 4.3s or whatever) and set the Double button to single (2.0s), it also has a dose counter – and records 1 dose for every use of the Single dose and 2 for every use of Double – so it’d confuse the dose counter somewhat.  Using the buttons and controls When the grinder powers up, as I said, it defaults to Single dose – so it’s normally necessary to press the “Double dose” button to select double dose timing. With the dose size (single or double) selected, the display shows the dose size and total doses. Pressing and holding “*” for a few seconds whilst in this mode allows the user to set the timer for single or double dosing, in tenths of a second – and down to 0.1s. (The lowest setting that reliably does anything is 0.2s though – which delivers around 0.3g. Setting to 0.1s is allowed, but doesn’t always activate the motor – simply increasing the shot count). I had the Double dose set to 4.3s, which was giving around 17.5g of ground coffee, and Single set to 0.3s – for topping up if necessary. Using the grinder in “Continuous” mode allows for a single press of the portafilter dose button, and the grinder activates for the set duration. With the dosing panel off (pressing the 0/1 button) the user can press and hold “*” again, to enter the setup menu. From within this menu you can set language (English, French, Spanish, etc.), view partial and total shot counts, and also set the dosing mode to: -Continuous: Pressing the dose button once causes the grinder to run for the programmed time. There’s no way to stop it from completing the timed dose once it’s running, and pressing the dose button again simply restarts the timer. (I used it in Continuous mode for 99% of the time – as would most users). -Pause: Pressing the dose button once causes the grinder to run for the programmed time, but pressing it again during that period ‘pauses’ the dose. Pressing it again resumes, etc. This can be annoying, as it never cancels or times out… so if the dose is set to 5s and you pause at 4s, the next activation of the dose button will deliver 1s, period. It would be better if the firmware were adjusted so that the ‘pause’ function timed out after 30s or something, so that a partial dose could be delivered – but then the timer reset back to a full dose for the next actuation (if after the timeout period). -Manual: Pressing the dose button grinds and releasing the dose button stops the grinder. Completely manual. Some On-Demand grinders have totally dumb ‘manual’ dose – bypassing the fancy electronics of the timed dose control (K10 Fresh for example) – so that the grinder can still be operated if the electronic timed dosing components fail for any reason. The DKS-65 doesn’t appear to have this – with the main on/off switch having just two positions – on (which powers it up but doesn’t start grinding) and off. Similarly, in keeping with many other on-demand grinders at this lower-end price point, there is no additional button or facility to “top up” and perform a quick grind to add a small amount. I set the “single dose” timer to achieve this – as once it’s grinding there’s no way to stop it prior to the programmed timer finishing, and no way to press anything else to grind manually. Again, clever reprogramming of the firmware by DIP could address this (for example, to set it so that if the “*” button is pressed within 10s of the grinding finishing, then it acts as a manual grind button… but after 10s it reverts to its normal ‘menu/program’ function).   cont...
  22. Hello everyone I am new to the forum and have recently started my own coffee review blog/twitter/other social media etc. I am currently trying to get it off the ground and would greatly appreciate any help and or feedback. Thanks again! Link: http://ukcoffeereview.tumblr.com
  23. I had the opportunity to visit Nude (26 Hanbury St, near Brick lane - London) again yesterday and to re-evaluate them after my previous review on Beanhunter, and am pleased to report that they are still turning out great coffee. Nude have leapt into their roasting operations now too, and have a selection of coffee to purchase in 250g bags. Their roasted coffee is realistically priced and if you buy a bag of beans (which can be ground if you wish) then you get a free coffee. I'm already looking forward to going back to Nude, who manage to keep below the radar of most coffee bloggers, but deserve more recognition than they receive.
  24. Admin: This thread has been split from the Sage White Glove discussion - and focuses on value perceptions There's been a lot of discussion on the forums about the Sage Dual Boiler: Value for money and what the White Glove Service offers, etc. so I thought I'd start this thread and post about my experience with the White Glove Service. First, a disclaimer: I'm very new to home espresso. Although I really enjoy my coffee, this is my first real espresso machine, so my experience and understanding is severely limited. I bought the machine and the Smart Grinder last Friday from John Lewis (along with a 3 year John Lewis warranty for an additional £28 - seemed worth it). I called Sage on their helpline number on Monday to book in the white glove service. Absolutely painless: took 2 minutes, and I was able to choose a day and time of my preference. (They offer the service Mon-Sat, 8 am to 6pm.) They also called me today just to reconfirm the appointment, which I thought was a nice touch. Let me know if there's any questions you want me to ask the person tomorrow. I'll also try and take some pictures to share. Stay tuned...
  25. Admin: This thread is to discuss the Sage White Glove Service There's been a lot of discussion on the forums about the Sage Dual Boiler: Value for money and what the White Glove Service offers, etc. so I thought I'd start this thread and post about my experience with the White Glove Service. First, a disclaimer: I'm very new to home espresso. Although I really enjoy my coffee, this is my first real espresso machine, so my experience and understanding is severely limited. I bought the machine and the Smart Grinder last Friday from John Lewis (along with a 3 year John Lewis warranty for an additional £28 - seemed worth it). I called Sage on their helpline number on Monday to book in the white glove service. Absolutely painless: took 2 minutes, and I was able to choose a day and time of my preference. (They offer the service Mon-Sat, 8 am to 6pm.) They also called me today just to reconfirm the appointment, which I thought was a nice touch. Let me know if there's any questions you want me to ask the person tomorrow. I'll also try and take some pictures to share. Stay tuned...
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