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Coffee: Intermediate to Advanced


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#181 of 195 OFFLINE   Carlo Medina

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Posted April 01 2014 - 02:30 PM

I can easily tell that the espresso I pull from my $2000 dual boiler machine is superior in taste and consistency to what I could pull from my $700 machine. I can tell that the $800 burr grinder I now have yields more finely ground espresso for my shot, yielding a smoother extraction, than my old $300 grinder.

 

However I can also tell that the drink made from $2,000 titan grinder and a $20,000 two-group espresso machine from Intelligentsia and Blue Bottle are better than the drinks I make at home. But on an absolute scale, the jump from my entry-level to enthusiast-level home setup yielded a vast, dramatic improvement. The jump in taste quality from my enthusiast-level setup to truly professional level setup is not as pronounced. Certainly not enough to warrant spending nearly 10X as much (unless I win the Powerball, of course).

 

I think it's wise to spend as much as you can, within reason, if it's for something you care passionately about. For brew/pourover coffee, my palette is much less refined, so yeah, I do tend to agree with the marco.org article. My french press and toddy (for iced coffee) suit me just fine, no need for that crazy goose-necked, pourover system with strictly timed concentric pours of hot water over...eh never mind. :D 


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#182 of 195 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted April 07 2014 - 12:30 PM

Tonx and Blue Bottle are merging!

a special note from the tonxians Joining Forces  
 

April 7, 2014

Today we’re very excited to announce that Tonx is joining forces with Oakland based coffee roasters Blue Bottle Coffee to further our mission to bring great coffee into more kitchens.

It was nearly three years ago that Nik and I founded Tonx out of the trunks of our cars, calling in some crucial favors, borrowing what we could, and tapping a lot of experience from our individual successes and failures. It was a small and quiet launch. Our very first handful of customers were good friends and family. As our customers have grown from the dozens to the thousands, we still feel a strong sense that everyone who gets our coffee is part of a big family, and that sharing in their coffee rituals is a great privilege.

As Tonx has grown we’ve added friends to the team, assembling top talents in green coffee sourcing, coffee roasting, software development, design, marketing, and customer service. One thing we lacked though was a dedicated production facility that would allow us to continue growing and improving. Getting there meant either raising a serious wad of venture capital (no picnic!) or finding a partner in the industry that shared our values and ambitions.

With Blue Bottle, we have found a more established company that still has an innovative startup culture, continues to evolve, and is dedicated to improving people’s experience of coffee on an ambitious scale. And they have resources we could only dream of.

What does all this mean for Tonx customers?

- In the beginning, nothing much will change. We’ll keep to the same production schedule, beans will arrive delicious, fresh, and timely. The digital engines of Tonx will continue to hum in all the familiar ways. Our commitment to quality, great customer support, and our oddball personality is here for the long haul.

- As we start to tap into and integrate with the Blue Bottle team and resources, we’ll be able to expand our production schedule, explore more variety, do more limited releases, and offer many more coffee options for our customers.

- And most exciting for us is that many of the ideas we’ve had for taking the coffee delivery experience to the next level – ideas that have been collecting dust on our whiteboards and in our dreams – will begin taking flight. Further down the road we will sunset the Tonx brand and unveil a new and even richer experience closer to our original ambitious vision under the Blue Bottle banner.

To our friends, fans, and customers that have encouraged and supported us in this journey, we give much thanks. The Tonx team and our new friends at Blue Bottle are excited for what the future holds and eager to wow the world with delicious coffee.

- Tony "Tonx" Konecny


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#183 of 195 OFFLINE   Carlo Medina

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Posted April 07 2014 - 02:36 PM

Wow, I guess Blue Bottle is starting to really use up that venture capital money. They also acquired Handsome Coffee (and I have been loving their Dapper espresso blend recently).

 

http://la.eater.com/...ts_district.php

 

If they discontinue the Handsome brand I'll be a little sad. Ironic, though, since Handsome was started by three ex-Intelligentsia employees. I guess Blue Bottle really is trying to be the Apple to Bucks' Microsoft...


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#184 of 195 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted April 07 2014 - 04:59 PM

Wired on the deal:
http://www.wired.com...-handsome/all/1

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#185 of 195 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted May 19 2014 - 01:02 PM

Hmm:

https://www.kickstar...e?ref=discovery


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#186 of 195 OFFLINE   Carlo Medina

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Posted May 19 2014 - 04:09 PM

Haha I saw that on Coffeegeek. If they ever get a model that can also steam, I might be interested in maybe a second machine for the office.


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#187 of 195 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted June 30 2014 - 08:59 AM

This won't work:
http://www.theverge....fee-pod-pirates

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#188 of 195 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

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Posted June 30 2014 - 09:18 AM

^^^^

 

It's a temporary stop, I'll give it that...

 

...but in time, as with everything else, pirates look at the mechanisms

in place and find new ways to get around them.

 

On another note...

 

Bought my second bag of Rook coffee.

 

The first was months ago.  It was Sumatra, their darkest blend.  Surprisingly,

it was nowhere as overpowering as my regular Starbucks bean coffee is.  Much

smoother.  I was really afraid to go that dark -- but it was a walk in the park.

 

This time out I tried their Costa Rican coffee.  Again, very smooth.  Kind of a

sweet finish to it.

 

It's expensive coffee -- even compared to the Starbucks beans I buy at the local

price club.  However, I do find it to be a more soothing cup of coffee that isn't 

overpowered.


Ronald J Epstein
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#189 of 195 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted June 30 2014 - 09:29 AM

If you like Sumatra you are gonna LOVE Flores!

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#190 of 195 OFFLINE   Carlo Medina

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Posted July 07 2014 - 02:10 PM

This past Saturday was personal vindication for my investment! I had a few friends and colleagues over for the second World Cup game. I met a few people for the first time (boyfriends of female coworkers) who were into coffee. Like way into coffee. They were recent L.A. transplants from elsewhere and knew of roasters I'd never heard of. Furthermore they preferred to drink espresso straight, whereas I make lattes and mochas personally, so I was not at all confident in my ability to make what espresso connoisseurs would appreciate.

 

Anyway, long story short, I made a half-dozen drinks, all of which were met with glowing reviews and several asked for seconds by the end of the match. The Vetrano V2B kept up with demand and was able to recharge between drinks just fine. I made the first six in about 10 minutes (two were lattes, one americano, three double shot ristrettos) and the coffee gods were kind, the amount of crema was beautiful, and the shots tasted fantastic according to those who had them.

 

Now a few want to come back for a future "coffee date" where they offered to order and bring in different roasts for all of us to sample! It's always good to see an investment pay off! It's akin to the feeling I had when I first built my home theater, and the response it garnered from friends who were amazed at what they saw and heard.


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#191 of 195 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 07 2014 - 08:47 PM

I'm dying for a HTF meet just to get a taste! =)

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#192 of 195 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 08 2014 - 06:20 AM

No. Just.... No.
http://jezebel.com/b...ined-1591594091

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#193 of 195 OFFLINE   Dennis Nicholls

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Posted July 08 2014 - 01:31 PM

Why is adding butter all that different than adding cream? 


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#194 of 195 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted July 08 2014 - 03:47 PM

Salt?

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#195 of 195 OFFLINE   Dennis Nicholls

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Posted July 08 2014 - 05:15 PM

The recipe said to use unsalted butter.


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