Saturday, July 12, 2008

Ranchilio Silva's Holiday Espresso

In France we ended up at the country house of Peter, Bettina and their daughter Tessel. A very nice family we knew from skiing last March. That was in Vallendry, this time the village was called Luxury and it's as nice as the name!

Seen the fact this is a coffee blog, i do not want go into holiday details, but move on to the coffee making.
In Amsterdam he got a very nice Vibiemme machine, but here just a Ranchilio Silva. If I would have known i would have taken some fine ground with me ; they only had pre ground mild Albert Heijn and a Arabica Lavazza.
Nice toys to play with, surely compared if I hear people at 'Koffiepraat' who only have some Nescafé of Handpresso with them.
But of course I'm a difficult man ; The AH was not my cup of tea and a not fine enough grind. The Lavazza on the other side was a too fine grind.
So, with the AH i had to go for 15 cl doubles and with the Lavazza I almost blew the pump. At 6 gram on a single basket i was able to pull singles shot with thin crema and lots of bitter.

So far the bad news, the good news was the steaming. A bit weird to feel so much power coming out of such a small machine with this small steam wand finishing on one steaming hole. The results were fantastic pitchers - yes they were fully equipped - filled with velvety micro foam. Although the crema of the coffee was never top, the latte art was good looking and lots of fun.

Regular readers of this blog know I adore the Eva Solo coffee brewers. The one i won finishing 3rd at the BBC in 2006 was partly broke, but an excellent one to take along on this Holiday.

At the Landes I started with my own Papua New Guinea. This first day I was overwhelmed by nice details, good balance and minor bitters, but as days flew by the quality dropped quickly. Sure thing you need fresh coffee if you want quality. Of course not only with this coffee brewer ....
In Luxury I opened this new bag of Puerto Rico, I bought in San Sebastian. The Eva Solo gave good strenght, but not too happy with the fruit and acidity. Disappointing for a coffee bean this expensive, or was the roasting off? Too old greens? Who knows.

I do know that making this great cup of Joe, every time again is an incredible challenge. Once you are used to 'so-called' God shots, it's difficult to find ease with an average cup. But on the other hand .... isn't that what is getting us up, time after time, to do better and try harder? .... I guess so.
The life of an Antwerp Barista and his struggles in the coffee kitchen ..... the story continues ....

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