Saturday, November 24, 2007

   from AndyS

It's all done with magnets

OK, so I was reading the Herrington Catalog and came across an item called the Magnetic Wine Collar. You slip it over the neck of your wine bottle and then:

"Simply pouring a glass with the Collar in place has an immediate and salutary effect on wine molecules. The power of the Neodymium magnets both breaks down large astringent tannins, and accelerates aeration — much like decanting — resulting in a smoother, softer and more balanced taste."

Of course, if it's being sold in the Herrington Catalog, it's got to be for real, right, kids? :-0

Who will be the first to offer a Magnetic Press Pot Collar? A Magnetic Portafilter?

Terry????? :-)

Monday, November 19, 2007

   from Nick

Podcast #73 - We're BACK!

From Caragay Manor, Hunt Valley, MD.

After a long hiatus, we're back... for better or for worse!

2 hours 19 minutes and 50 seconds - MP3 format, 64.1 MB

See the sidebar to the right for more information and how to subscribe or download.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

   from AndyS

Stirring it up


OK, I have to admit: I love tiger-mottle as much as the next aficionado. But today I caught up with a five-month-old home-barista.com post by Pete Licata that I found pretty amazing.

Basically, Pete suggested folks experiment with mixing the espresso shot before serving. This allows the components that are extracted early on in the pull to blend with those that are extracted later.

After trying it with just two shots this morning, I am very impressed for a couple reasons. One, it really does make a difference: the heavier, sweeter stuff from early on mellows and balances the drink. Two, it is so simple a concept, why haven't I been doing this for years? The only explanation is that I am a complete idiot.

Oh well, that is what makes coffee so interesting. The slightest change in procedure can have a profound effect. I am sure that even without deliberate mixing, the height from which one's espresso falls into the demitasse will promote or inhibit self-mixing, thereby changing the flavor balance.

From now on I will always experiment with mixed shots vs layered shots. Of course for photos such as the one above, I like the unmixed tiger-mottle. But as always, it's a matter of taste. Which do you prefer?