WOW you're on the right trackHi Everyone,
I am very newbie and new to latte art, (<30 cups poured), still struggling with frothing/air integration and of course pouring, this is the best I can do for now (this image is on hot chocolate, full cream milk, steamed in 12oz/350ml pitcher then transported to 20oz pitcher for pouring, 2 hole steam tip on ECM classika), most of the time I found my milk is too thin? after the initial pour, I feel the shape/line is kind of spread away, i.e. the shape/round dot is not very stable.
Whats the best I can do now to improve quicker?
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Thanks for all the advice, noted! will be very helpful to my practice.It's hard to give all necessary advices in one go, because there's so many different variables that matter when pouring latte art.
From my work as a barista I would say:
- take your time to learn how to froth milk properly:
usually, you shouldn't have to move your pitcher at all, once you set it it up correctly. Use the spout of the pitcher as a guide to place your steam wand until the nozzle touches the milk in the center of the pitcher. then twist the pitcher, so the nozzle is half way between the center and the rim (steam wand still itself still sitting in the spout. For beginners I found this is a very good an stable position to get going. After opening the steam valve slightly adjust the pitcher so your pulling air into the milk. The volume of the milk will be rising due to the added air leading to the nozzle automatically going below the surface of the milk (without any further movement of the pitcher). The rest of the time is only about distributing the air evenly throughout the milk and getting the milk to temperature. If you got the above mentioned position correctly you should get a swirling movement of the milk. As soon as the milk reaches a temperature where you can barely hold the pitcher, close the steam valve asap.
- take your time to learn how the milk reacts while pouring:
If you mastered the first step, there's a few critical factors when pouring: height of the spout above the cup, speed of movement of the spout, how fast you pour and what is often underestimated the exact angle of the spout. The latter can be vital - especial when drawing more complex latte art, but even when doing a rosetta. Try to figure out what the milk does when going closer to the surface of the espresso and further away. Then play with the angle of the pitcher to see what that does. All of this with help you tremendously in getting your head around how things work.
Then you'll find out that doing a heart and even a tulip is not that hard to do.
Basic movement of doing a heart:
- spout approx. 4-5 inches above the espresso until the cup is filled 50%
- going down closer towards the surface about 1/2"
- start wiggling a little
- raise the spout back up (about 3") and pull through