“Dr, every time I drink coffee, I get this stabbing pain in my eye”... 😂😂😂
I received this email from a customer who goes into great detail in describing their coffee issue with my reply below. Its a fascinating journey in the pursuit of great coffee!
On Thu, Feb 7, 2019 at 6:21 Dave wrote:
Hi James, I need some help here. I'm using a delonghi retro manual machine. I use a Bodum burr grinder. I set size to max fine for espresso. Each grind for a cup is about 8 grams. I use a stainless steel tamper diameter 3mm smaller than the basket. I usually press down hard to get a good solid tamp. Coffee beans are kept in wine bottles with air extracted out using vino wine pump and stoppers.
I take mostly espresso. Each cup of extraction is around 40mls. The crema is sufficient & very beautiful. Once started, in 7sec liquid starts to flow, by 14 sec I already have 40ml extracted. I stop, avoiding going into 3rd stage, as that will be bitter.
I think the extraction is too rapid, flow is too strong. I watched your video showing start to finish of extraction taking over 30sec. If I do that I'll get a cup 240ml of diluted bitter brew!
My espresso is not bad, but I think if I could slow down the rate of flow get longer duration of 1st and 2nd stage extractions, I may get a more flavourful cup.
I couldn't grind any finer, tamp any harder, couldn't change the basket. What could be wrong? How can I improve?
Any advice from you will be greatly appreciated. I'm trying out my first order from you. Look forward to tasting a great coffee with Bay Beans. Thanks James.
On Thu, Feb 7, 2019 at 6:42 James wrote:
Thanks for taking the time to email.
I really enjoy your detail - its a pleasure to read!
I'd say you've figured the grinder is most likely your issue here, it would be good to see a photo of the grinds in your hand and also spread on a white piece of paper.
There are also faults that can show up - a cracked basket base will look fine to the eye, but under pressure can open up a little, increasing flow. Id also like to see a photo of the used coffee puck right after it is extracted and knocked out onto white paper.
Don't worry too much about the tamp pressure, so long as you are consistent with the pressure, that is all that is required. The Italians generally grind finer and tap lightly.
One last thing I can think of is channelling, however that is difficult to determine without a bottomless portafilter. Channelling will result in a faster flow of water through only some of the puck. One way to check for that and attempt to defeat it is in your grinds settlement and tamping technique. Try grinding into a cup, then give it a good shake to loosen and separate all the grinds so there is no clumping, then pour those grinds into the basket. When you tamp, try rolling the tamp around the outside perimeter of the basket in such a way that you will end up with a slightly convex mound of coffee in the basket, then tamp (in the middle, and flat (as you normally would).
Let me know how you get on!
Chief Espresso Officer
Mobile: 0428 555 535
Voicemail callback: 02 8208 3477
[I reply to all emails personally]
Help me! How long will it take into the new year before I stop writing 2018 and start writing 2019? I’m guessing somewhere around March!! Yes, old habits die hard.
Talking about habits, it’s a great time to think about how you’re going to treat yourself this year. We get into the daily grind pretty fast, commute to work, put in a full day, commute home, fulfil our home duties and responsibilities, pay the bills, rinse and repeat!
Sure, a holiday is a great way to escape every now and then, but I am thinking about something a little more personal that treats you every month, without thinking about it - just like receiving a gift in the post from the mailman without ever having to lift a finger!
A coffee subscription will do exactly that. Fresh roasted coffee delivered every month, or week, or fortnight if you prefer. Settle on deiveries of just your favorite blend, or choose the Random Variety to receive a different blend of fresh coffee every delivery. It’s a great way to spoil yourself just a little. Go ahead, you deserve it!
A two part email from a customer expressing appreciation for good old fashioned customer service - it’s a model that I feel passionate about...
After placing an order and receiving my confirmation email, I received this wonderful email;
As a first time user, if the coffee is as good as the initial service than I will be delighted. I have not experienced this level of service before. Looking forward to testing the coffee.
And then two days later, this put a smile on my face;
Order received less than 2 days after ordering. First coffee this morning - Espresso Master - sensational. Well done on having such a good business model, service ethic & terrific product.
When you receive great customer service, how do you let your provider know?
I am just like a Father announcing the birth of a new child in the family! These super cute box bottom bags are the new homes for 250g and 500g coffee varieties, including the Variety Pack, which just so happens to be the perfect gift for that hard to buy for coffee lover, and we know the gift is in the giving!
These bags include a Zip Lock for resealing as well as a box design to help them stand proud on your bench. If you want to check it out, grab the Variety Pack or or a 500g bag of your favourite coffee and make them jealous!
Great news for coffee lovers in Australia! Bay Beans coffee remains open every day this Christmas and New year, except for public holidays. It would be a good idea to add an extra day to your delivery estimate to allow Australia Post a bit of extra time during this peak period - Santa's helpers are working hard!
Grab a bag of fresh roasted coffee, or if your looking for a great gift, grab the Variety Pack of four different coffees.
Have you been looking for a high quality drinking chocolate that is perfect for Hot Chocolate and also great as a sprinkle on Cappuccino? I know, its hard to find. Cadbury's makes a drinking chocolate, but its expensive and when it comes to cafe use, just not enough for this cafe staple!
We've been providing our cafe customers with this 2kg pack of dark drinking chocolate for around ten years - i've only just now added it to the online store so you can grab a bag anytime. This chocolate, which is actually better known as Milk Chocolate - but in the world of drinking chocolate, the name Milk Chocolate is reserved for white chocolate - confused? I was. To make it easy, this dark chocolate is the one you'll use when making a hot chocolate and its also the chocolate you'd use for sprinkling on cappuccino.
If you're buying this for home, and you've got kids in the house - 2kg will last you about a week... well, it feels like that in my house! Its going to last you a while, so you wont have to worry about running out in a hurry. It comes packaed in a zip lock resealable bag too. I sometimes share my bag with a family friend, but mostly keep it all to ourselves. If you're running a cafe, this is absolutely what you need to go with your coffee.
A mocha coffee is a variant of coffee with milk. Like this one, it usually takes a third of espresso and two thirds of vaporized milk, but a part of chocolate is added, usually in the form of chocolate syrup, although some machines use instant chocolate powder. The mochas contain dark chocolate or milk.
Like the cappuccino, the mocha has the famous milk foam on top, although sometimes it is served with milk cream instead. It is usually sprinkled with cinnamon or cocoa. You can also add marshmallows on top to decorate and flavor.
A variant is white mocha coffee, made with white chocolate instead of black or with milk. There are also variants in which the two syrups are mixed, a mixture known by different names, including Black and White Mocha, Brown Mocha and Zebra.
I received this email today from a long time Bay Beans coffee customer - its moments like these that bring a huge smile to my face!
I Just wanted to let you know. I've been ordering coffee from you for almost a year and in parallel I quite often experiment with other brands, but every time I try different provider, I see that your coffee is better. Not sure how you achieve such high quality, but the difference is big. Thanks for doing great job, I hope my email will keep you a little bit more motivated about the thing you do.
This coffee packaging machine allows the roasted coffee to be weighed and dosed accurately and repeatably so that the coffee customer receives a perfectly packaged coffee as fresh as possible. This machine incorporates a heat sealer so the foil line coffee bag is sealed perfectly every time. This coffee is then loaded into cartons, collected by courier and delivered to coffee loving customers all over Australia in record time!