My new coffee machine just arrived

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  • My new coffee machine just arrived
  • Tom B
    Member

    Any tips stwers? It’s a Gaggia Cubika plus. I got bought a selection of Whittard coffee for christmas, will these be ok to use or do I need to use a specific espresso grind? I’ve never owned/used one before, so any wisdom will be well received. 🙂

    It will need to be ground for use in an espresso machine, yes. It should say on the bag. Unless they’re beans?

    Tom B
    Member

    No it’s ground coffee:

    http://www.whittard.co.uk/coffee/coffee_gifts_1/coffees_of_world_9x66g.htm

    It doesn’t say anything about espresso on the bags/box?

    I reckon that’ll be cafetiere grind myself, but only guessing (also one of the reviews said “cafetiere”). I’ve tweeted a mate who works for Whittard to ask.

    If it looks like powder, then it’ll be an espresso ground, if it’s more like tea sized grounds, it’ll be for a cafetiere/filter type affair.

    EDIT: mate tweeted as soon as I hit “send post”. Indeed, it is for cafetieres.

    Tom B
    Member

    Cheers DD!I take it that you can get espresso grind coffee from Whittard? I’ll probably look into has bean etc, but want to get some to try today!

    jon1973
    Member

    Out of interest, is it just the grain size of the coffee that makes is suitable for espresso rather than filter?

    Tom B
    Member

    That’s what I’m lead to believe. Some people post on forums saying certain beans aren’t strong enough for an espresso either, but at a guess that is just personal taste? I’m no expert as you can tell 🙂

    I take it that you can get espresso grind coffee from Whittard?

    I’m sure you can, as can you in any supermarket.

    If you want something special to try for your first drink in your machine, go out and get yourself a can of Illy. (somebody will tell me it’s shite of course.) You’ll find at around £6 a can, you won’t be buying too much of it though.

    If that’s a bit saucy on the price front, then a bag of Lavazza will do nicely.

    Once you’ve found something you like, you’ll probably want to invest in a burr grinder and buy beans in small quantities to grind as you make your coffee. I eventually did this (with the help of a, ahem, cheap grinder, from above mate).

    Like all things in life, feel free to disappear as far as you want up your own bum. 😀

    Out of interest, is it just the grain size of the coffee that makes is suitable for espresso rather than filter?

    I’m no expert either, but, AFAIK, yes, it’s mainly the grain size. I also believe some types of weak coffee (eg. Kenyan, some South American) aren’t really suitable even if you grind it down to espresso size. Also, espresso coffee will have a darker roast. TBH though, I just try different coffees and once I find one I like, sometimes I’ll make an espresso, sometimes I’ll make a cafetiere from it.

    There are far more on STW that know a lot more about coffee than me. But hey, it’s your machine, your drink, so find what you like and go from there.

    Tom B
    Member

    Cheers DD-who said big hitters only argue 🙂 I’m going to break my vow of not entering tesco until 2013 and buy a tin/bag of each of the aforementioned!

    Your coffee machine is shit though.

    (only joking) 🙂

    Premier Icon bruneep
    Subscriber

    http://coffeeteawarehouse.com/coffee-grind.html

    Coarser the grind the faster the water will flow through.

    Tom B
    Member

    Jesus tesco was a bad idea! I almost shouted at 3 different people!

    I bought a tub of Illy and a bag of tesco finest fairtrade stuff to practice with. I’ll report back in a short while 8)

    boblo
    Member

    Get ready to be shouted at by SWMBO for leaving used grinds all over the kitchen…. :-/

    Tom B
    Member

    First try wasn’t strong enough-it was a mixture of watery/bitter in equal measure! Is sugar in coffee a no no?

    MrSmith
    Member

    That’s because it’s mediocre coffee that is not ground fine enough to get a good pour no matter how hard you tamp it.

    boblo
    Member

    30 lbs of tamping pressure for a 20- 25 second extraction. Them’s the roolz 🙂

    Tom B
    Member

    Illy was much nicer….still a little quick though. More tamping required I think. I’ve stopped now, three espresso’s 45 minutes is enough for now!

    boblo
    Member

    Don’t drink it all silly billy. Just taste it and spit until you’ve perfected it. Otherwise, you’ll be bouncing all over the place 🙂

    TooTall
    Member

    Have you got the right quantity of coffee in there? Single or double (the answer should be double) filter? That plus tamping should help with the speed of pull (if the grind is right).

    I think the idea is to tamp it very firmly, but not, y’know, diamond forming pressure. 🙂

    Premier Icon flap_jack
    Subscriber

    I use diamond forcing pressure…espresso so thick it’s like chocolate. mmm

    grim168
    Member

    I got a a gaggia baby for christmas. Coffee is ace but the milk frothing is taking some experimenting

    Premier Icon Harry_the_Spider
    Subscriber

    I got a Gaggia Cubika Plus too. I’ve having a day off after yesterday’s espresso frenzy which left me feeling a bit odd.

    I’m running it on Coffee Direct Italian blend at the mo which is working well.

    Tom B
    Member

    I’m bloody wired now tbh! Any tips Harry? I was only putting one scoop of coffee in…and not really tamping it too much. Hopefully i’ll have stopped twitching by tomorrow and I can resume experimentation.

    Premier Icon Harry_the_Spider
    Subscriber

    I’m doing 1 1/2 scoops and just tamping it flat. I got the sweats yesterday after 4 brews. 😯

    4 brews?

    Lightweight! 🙂

    fine grind, 3/4 full bottomless filter, hard tamp and a 15 second extraction with heavy heavy crema.

    Now thats how you do it 🙂

    Premier Icon Russell96
    Subscriber

    With the pre-ground Illy (The Red can or the Green for Decaff) two really level scoops tamped in with one of these heavy Wooden tampers >>
    http://www.happydonkey.co.uk/coffee-tampers.html

    Into a bottomless Portafilter >> http://www.happydonkey.co.uk/gaggia-domestic-portafilter.html Then you soon know if you have it right or not as it’ll spray all over the place if you get it wrong or give a really great pour if you get it right.

    I usually go for a light to medium roast, too dark a roast and it tastes too bitter to me.

    Here’s a Double Double

    Dog Ears
    Member

    Hello Tom,
    Think I recall you saying on the “other” Forum you were getting a coffee machine.
    I just use a stove top espresso one and it makes great coffee. Have been using Has Bean Espresso Starter packs of five for some time now and IMO they are great. You may even know where the company is based as it’s just outside Stafford; not that far from you really eh.

    Dog Ears
    Member

    Hello Tom,
    Think I recall you saying on the “other” Forum you were getting a coffee machine.
    I just use a stove top espresso one and it makes great coffee. Have been using Has Bean Espresso Starter packs of five for some time now and IMO they are great. You may even know where the company is based as it’s just outside Stafford; not that far from you really eh.

    the “secret” is to go for …………..this will be a long tale by the way

    Get a heavy weight tamper (as above from happy donkey, as is mine), a measured shot glass with a marker line on it (from HD)

    Then you need to learn to make a consistent tamp to get your extraction time to about 15/20 seconds.

    The pump should start and you get no coffee appearing from the filter for about 5/7 seconds.

    This means the hot water is “extracting” the coffee from the grind.

    Add to this mix a good burr grinder, keeping your fresh beans is an airtight “grolsh top type jar”, only grinding what you need at that time, going for a bottomless filter, getting as said before a consistent tamp as well as grind then bobs your uncle.

    I just use the plastic tamper that came with my machine. It’s all about the pressure you apply Shirley.

    Tom B
    Member

    Cheers Mick!

    Premier Icon Harry_the_Spider
    Subscriber

    Pro-grade coffee tamper featuring iconic cycling style

    Horse Shit.

    A ponce and his money are easily parted. 😉

    I use this one, despite being a ponce

    Premier Icon Harry_the_Spider
    Subscriber

    Wannabe Ponce.

    /injoketwitterreference

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