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  1. #31
    Senior Member
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    134
    Quote Originally Posted by EsspressB View Post
    CoffeeJunky, you aren't bursting my bubble, I completely understand that the Gaggia machine I got is not a long-term thing. As a matter of fact, I told my SO that the Baratza will be a one-time purchase and should last for many years. I'm hoping for 2-4 years out of the Gaggia. I'm okay with that.
    Use the Gaggia to learn on, figure out if the whole espresso thing is for you, then start saving up for this:



    It's made in the USA, and it's fantastic. I own one and use it daily. I chose it because for $1200, it matches machines costing $500-700 more, and it's simply built better. No machine is perfect, and it has its quirks, but they are niggling issues far smaller than others exhibit. If you are ever interested, I'd be happy to go into depth on it. Here, I'll leave you with this, a shot of espresso pulled with my beans, on my Astra:


  2. #32
    HRC
    HRC is offline
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    Apr 2013
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    65
    That looks positively delicious. I'm ordering a Gaggia Classic today.

  3. #33
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    Jun 2013
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    Poison, I saw your photos and the exact words out of my mouth were "ooooooo," "ahhhhhhhh," and I really want to come over to your house for a shot. Or three.

    Back to practical, should I run out and buy a scale? I'm anticipating delivery of my new grinder today and I'm really excited. Also, how often should I clean it? Like after every time I grind or what?

  4. #34
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by HRC View Post
    That looks positively delicious. I'm ordering a Gaggia Classic today.
    Congrats! Got your grinder lined up?

    Quote Originally Posted by EsspressB View Post
    Poison, I saw your photos and the exact words out of my mouth were "ooooooo," "ahhhhhhhh," and I really want to come over to your house for a shot. Or three.

    Back to practical, should I run out and buy a scale? I'm anticipating delivery of my new grinder today and I'm really excited. Also, how often should I clean it? Like after every time I grind or what?
    That'll be you soon enough. A naked portafilter is a fantastic training tool, btw, though not essential. Scale? I'm torn on that. On one hand, it is of course more accurate, but on a persona note, it's so very nitpicky and anal. You can do great with or without. You don't have to go crazy with the grinder cleaning, either, just get a majority of the grounds out after each brewing session, and once in a while do a deeper cleaning.

  5. #35
    Junior Member
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    Jun 2013
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    13
    Well, I got my new grinder Friday afternoon, it is now Sunday afternoon and I'm one scoop shy of using 1/2 pound of coffee and finally got a passable drink. Not all that good, but at least it doesn't have that salty and/or bitter taste. That link you sent me to is excellent (did you write it?) and I'm learning a lot. I have a whole new respect for baristas! Next step: sampling the micro roasters around here.

    Again, thanks to all who responded and shared their expertise!

  6. #36
    Junior Member
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    Jun 2013
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    13
    Oh, I just wanted to add that I am so glad we went with the extra $70 and bought the Baratza Preciso instead of the Virtuoso. Until you see it, you might not realize what a difference those micro adjustments actually make in the grind. I can't imagine trying to embark on this hobby/journey with anything less. I'm really glad I listened to the experts here about that.

  7. #37
    Senior Member
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    Aug 2012
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    134
    Hell no, I didn't write that! Glad you found it useful, though. Beyond that, it's all just putting in time behind the portafilter, and tasting everything. If it astes bad, you did it wrong. Good? Hi five, you're doing it better>right!

    The Preciso is good stuff. Of course, there are better grinders out there, but for $300, it gives you the ability to upgrade espresso machines and not have to wonder if the grinder is up to snuff. It most certainly is!

 

 
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