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We use the Baratza Encore grinder and Moka pots in lieu of an espresso machine.
To get really strong coffee, I use a bigger size and half the water. If "jittery" was my goal, I've succeeded. Then I whip the milk with a whisk.
I wimp out and only buy whatever organic coffee that's fair trade that Costco has on hand which changes pretty often.
 

H-Lowe

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I'm quite new to this hand grinding malarkey and the grinder only cost me £11 #Cheapskate. I've only used cheap beans from Aldi #Cheapskate but I've managed to work out how to grind really fine or a bit coarser, it just takes a bit of fiddling about with the dial on the burr.
Hope this is some help.

Those Aldi beans are probably pretty good?
I've bought a lot of stuff in Aldi and LIDL and the quality has always been decent.
Are you happy with them?
 
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I spend almost as much on coffee as I do beer! I use a bean to cup expresso machine and have a coffee importer and roaster within walking distance of my home so I lucky to be able to get fantastic beans easily.
 

Wobbly13

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I have an aeropress, have had it for years and recently purchased a replacement plunger as it was getting loose. Also replaced the paper fillers with a metal one. I bounce between grinding my beans and buying pre-ground. One thing I do is put in the water then add the plunger but don’t push it down. It then forms a vacuum and I let the grounds steep for 4 minutes before plunging. Always makes great coffee.
 
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I have an aeropress, have had it for years and recently purchased a replacement plunger as it was getting loose. Also replaced the paper fillers with a metal one. I bounce between grinding my beans and buying pre-ground. One thing I do is put in the water then add the plunger but don’t push it down. It then forms a vacuum and I let the grounds steep for 4 minutes before plunging. Always makes great coffee.
You could just use the invert method for a longer steep.
 

Wobbly13

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You could just use the invert method for a longer steep.
London, did that for a while but couldn’t see the point, and virtually all of the coffee stays in the aeropress till plunged doing it the other way. Cheers W
 

Hoppopotamus

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Just remember - if you want to have stronger coffee - don't buy a dark rocket fuel roast use more coffee.
You don't make stronger beer by using grain that has been "roasted" for longer - coffee is no different.
In fact roasting lowers the caffeine levels so light roast coffe as well as being more tasteful is also stronger gram for gram.
As a presenter at a coffee tasting I attended once said - roasting coffees is like toasting breads - if you do either long enough they all taste the same - burnt!
 

Wobbly13

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Just remember - if you want to have stronger coffee - don't buy a dark rocket fuel roast use more coffee.
You don't make stronger beer by using grain that has been "roasted" for longer - coffee is no different.
In fact roasting lowers the caffeine levels so light roast coffe as well as being more tasteful is also stronger gram for gram.
As a presenter at a coffee tasting I attended once said - roasting coffees is like toasting breads - if you do either long enough they all taste the same - burnt!
Never thought of it like that, but makes perfect sense. Thanks
 

Braufather

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i wonder if anyone has any input on this. I have had a gaggia. classic for years and it makes great espresso and Americanos so happy days as these days I drink a lot of those. i use illy coffee, bought ground, various roast levels.

However whenever I try a flat white or latte etc, I find adding milk gives the drink a noticeable bitter/ burnt finish, that isn’t there if I have it straight or with water.

My espressos/ Americanos would be as good as you get in costa or neros but bring milk into the equation and everything tastes bitter. I use the frothier and semi or skimmed milk. Same results if I microwave the milk.

I used to always have milk in my coffee so stopped using it for a year or two. it was only when I started drinking it without milk I appreciated how good it is and use it most days now.

The Mrs always has milk and just thinks I’m a useles barista ( at least I think that’s what she calls me)

anyone else have this issue or have an idea why?
 

Braufather

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Have you tried de-scaleing the machine? If you live in a hard water area then mineral deposits in the machine's plumbing might be impacting the tast which may be exacerbated by the addition of milk.

I think I flushed it through with citric acid last year.
 

Agentgonzo

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I think I flushed it through with citric acid last year.
Last _year_? Either you have lovely soft water, or you could do with maybe upping the frequency? My previous machine (gaggia baby classic) didn't get descaled enough and eventually (after almost 20 years hard service) it calced up and died. I descale my new machine every couple of months (it's a fancy one, so nags me to do it).

How regularly do you clean it out with Cafiza or some other cleaning compound? My coffee always tastes far better after a good clean of the system, though I'm not sure I'd describe the taste as bitter. I normally clean it though with Cafiza every month or two. Again, my old gaggia want cleaned enough and one time before cleaning, I took it apart and was horrified. The shower screen was disgusting and covered in an oily tar. After a serious number of hours cleaning the whole thing, the coffee stopped tasting like "my home made coffee" and more like "what you get in Italy" 😂.
 

Braufather

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I probably should clean it more but it strange that it tastes great as an espresso or Americana just bitter when with milk!
 

AlDaviz

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I’ve had a gaggia classic for over 15x years, no problems, but I have been thinking about getting it a service/refurb if anyone can recommend somebody as it does make some funny noises !! 💥
 

Jon Luke

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i wonder if anyone has any input on this. I have had a gaggia. classic for years and it makes great espresso and Americanos so happy days as these days I drink a lot of those. i use illy coffee, bought ground, various roast levels.

However whenever I try a flat white or latte etc, I find adding milk gives the drink a noticeable bitter/ burnt finish, that isn’t there if I have it straight or with water.

My espressos/ Americanos would be as good as you get in costa or neros but bring milk into the equation and everything tastes bitter. I use the frothier and semi or skimmed milk. Same results if I microwave the milk.

I used to always have milk in my coffee so stopped using it for a year or two. it was only when I started drinking it without milk I appreciated how good it is and use it most days now.

The Mrs always has milk and just thinks I’m a useles barista ( at least I think that’s what she calls me)

anyone else have this issue or have an idea why?
What temperature are you heating your milk to. Anything above 65C will remove any sweetness from the milk and make the whole drink more likely to taste bitter
 
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Don’t know - but that was what we used in Saudi Arabia to get the scale off two Reverse Osmosis plants!

I’ve used it ever since on a variety of kettles, coffee makers and mesh filters. Left overnight it does the business!
:hat:

PS
Only yesterday I bought a litre of Malt Vinegar in Lidl but failed to find the Lemon Juice! According to the lad at the checkout (&FYI) it is in the “Home Baking” section! athumb..
 

Chippy_Tea

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We use this from Tesco to descale our Tassimo there are 3 sachets in the box,

1654690616140.png




Oust All Purpose Descaler​

Quick and easy limescale removal
Specially formulated to work quickly and easily to restore small household appliances to their best in just 10 minutes; its super-fast action is ideal for use in kettles, coffee machines, steam irons and shower heads.
  • Removes tough limescale
  • Results in just 10 minutes!
  • Helps prolong appliance life and restore good as new shine to appliances.
  • 3 treatment sachets suitable for kettles, irons, coffee machines and shower heads
 

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