Archive for the ‘Coffee News’ Category
Indonesia: Indonesia is comprised of thousands of islands, many of which—like Sumatra and Java—have literally become synonymous with premium coffee. Most coffee production takes place on small farms of just 1-2 acres. One distinct product from Indonesia is their aged coffee, which as a deeper flavor than traditional brews.
Vietnam: In recent years, coffee production in Vietnam has grown exponentially, leading them to become one of the world’s leading producers. Many of the beans grown in the island nation of Robustas, which are best used in a cappuccino maker where you can use the heated milk and flavor add-ins to mask the subpar flavor.
Ethiopia: Many legends trace the origins of the coffee tree to Ethiopia. The beans from this region have an incredibly rich, bold flavor, making them ideal for use in an espresso coffee maker.
Kenya: Unlike many countries, Kenya has its own grading system for beans to ensure quality. By using this grading system, you can learn the size of the bean and whether or not it was grown on an estate.
Ivory Coast: As one of the world’s leading producers of Robusta coffee, beans from the Ivory Coast typically aren’t considered gourmet and usually find there way into espresso blends.
An expert operator of an espresso machine is a “barista,” the Italian word for a bartender. In Italy and other parts of Europe, a barista is considered a career position, often with specific skills and training passed down from generation to generation.
In other parts of the world, the job of a barista has been frequently seen as an employment choice for young people, mostly as a starting point in their career, but is not seen as a life career choice. As a result, many coffee shops have moved to fully automatic espresso machines which allow a minimally-trained employee to create an espresso drink by merely pushing a button.
In grade school, you most likely learned about the pulley, the wedge, the inclined plane, the lever and other simple machines. As your teacher may very well have explained, these are the foundation upon which even the most advanced, complex machines are based. This is certainly true of an espresso machine whose grinder blades are just a gussied up inclined plane and whose lever-based operation is fairly obvious.
The only difference between an automatic espresso machine and a “manual machine” is the amount of work you as a consumer and coffee drinker are forced to perform. Do you really want to think about such heady topics as mechanical advantage and spring-lever compression first thing in the morning before you’ve even had that inaugural cup of joe? For most people, the answer is a resounding no.
Still, the manual machine has a few benefits that aren’t always inherent to an automatic one. Some serious baristas use them in high-end coffee shops because they allow the operator to control every last aspect of the espresso that results. If you desire a tasty, reliably satisfying espresso or cappuccino in the morning, a no-fuss automatic is almost certainly the way to go.