The great coffee explosion that has engulfed the planet in the last twenty years is still growing and the result is that we caffeine fanatics are now able to get good and sometimes even great coffee from Tibet to Coonabarabran and yet many people are still very confused about their personal needs. Making coffee can be compared to driving a car so if you need a vehicle to take the kids to school, do the weekly shopping and visit grandma on the Gold Coast once a month then a Mazda 3 is the perfect vehicle. If on the other hand you are a racing car driver and require something that can pass the lead vehicle in a formula one race around the Gold Coast circuit then the perfect Mazda 3 is worthless and a complete waste of your money.
Many people buy a formula one coffee machine when their needs dictate a Mazda 3 coffee machine and they are frustrated when they discover that for all the money they spent they still don’t get the coffee they desire. This applies in restaurants, offices and homes where users who have decided they need to offer good quality coffee venture into the big, bad world of the coffee machine salesman and go home or back to the office with a machine that they will never have the time, energy or inclination to learn how to drive properly.
If you desire to have good quality, consistent espresso coffee at home and you want to experience different types of coffee from different roasters then you will need a good quality grinder, a good quality coffee machine and the time and energy to devote to learning how to us your machines and extract the best from the beans you are sourcing. For many people this is the Holy Grail of coffee to be able to play around with group-head temperatures, with extraction times and grinds to extract different results from their beans and spend endless hours discussing the results and possibilities. The Expobar Minore 111 is one of a number of prosumer (professional consumer) machines available for this segment of the market and Mazzer or Compak make wonderful grinders that are absolutely necessary to get the most out of your coffee machine and your beans.
If you enjoy the coffee-making process but have no desire to get a PHD (push here dummy) in Coffee Culture or a Masters in Barista Management then the Rancilio Miss Silvia and Rocky Grinder could be just the package to provide exactly what you want. There are options from all the major manufacturers of espresso machines for the prosumer market and budget plays a big part in deciding what options are needed but a basic machine with a good grinder will give you the ability to knock out great coffee every time and not break the bank.
For those that just want to enjoy a quick, easy coffee without any mess should seriously consider the cialde or pod coffee machines that are currently the fastest growing section of the market in Europe and rapidly catching on here in Australia. Not to be confused with the cheap, liquid capsule machines that are flooding the supermarkets, chain stores and even stationery shops the cialde machines always deliver excellent, fresh espresso coffee with a number of convenient features. Cialde machines do not require a grinder or a tamper and this provides an instant benefit in reducing the mess and waste associated with traditional coffee machines without sacrificing quality or flavour. You can also have on hand several different types of coffee to cater for individual tastes without being concerned about the coffee going stale or having to have multiple grinders on hand for the different beans. La Piccola produce the Sara for the casual user and the Cecilia for the serious addict, the corporate environment or the restaurant market where a professional barista is not always on hand. In ten minutes any reasonably intelligent person can be shown how to produce a great coffee on the Ceclia and be confident that the customer or guest will not be disappointed in the result, something that is not always achieved in our more exclusive establishments.
What do you need to know to make the right decision for your coffee needs?
* How much time, effort and interest do you have in the process of getting your coffee?
a. all-consuming – you need the top of the range espresso machine and grinder, consider the Expobar Minore 111 & Compak K3 grinder.
b. enjoy the process – you need a mid-range machine like the Rancilio Miss Silvia and Rocky grinder.
c. just give me a great coffee – La Piccola Sara or Cecilia.
YOU CANNOT MAKE GREAT COFFEE WITH A CHEAP GRINDER, NO MATTER HOW EXPENSIVE YOUR COFFEE MACHINE!
If you take nothing else from this article listen to my advice on buying a grinder. Do not spend less than $450 on a grinder and consider spending up to 25% of your budget to $1,000 on your grinder – than select your coffee machine. You will end up with better coffee and greater satisfaction than if you buy a great machine and skimp on the grinder…..it’s a very bad decision.