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Since the first lockdown started I've bought beans from many different suppliers and hated every single bean I've had from them. I only did so because my beloved Algerian coffee stores couldn't operate at times. Thankfully they have been back up and running for some time and I was able to restock on my favourite, Huehuetenango. Then Brazilian bourbon happened and oh my, what a bean. Not sure which is my favourite now. The bourbon is full on in every respect, which is exactly what I like, whilst the huehue is a little smoother. 

Still happy with my little bean to cup machine as there's no faff and the coffee tastes great. I conclude that if you have a bean that you love, it doesn't much matter how you turn it into a cup of coffee but if you don't love the bean, no fancy grinder or machine can save it. 

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Yeah, if you don't like acidic african floral tasting beans no grind setting or brew method is going to save that, you can tweak around the edges of something though to remove certain aspects of the brew (like bitterness, tannic/drying, thinness) and make it far more to your liking and drinkable. 

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It's a crude approach, but I find that some beans which are unpalatable as black coffee taste good with milk, and vice versa. That can salvage a bad bag.


Left to my own devices I tend to just buy whatever says it tastes like chocolate orange and drink it black, but I often get more esoteric stuff when friends and family give me beans as a present.

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That’s what I’m doing with the poor pulls I’m getting, just adding loads more water with milk and sugar for a regular cuppa. It still beats the instant shite I’ve been having all my life.


On the same topic I think that cup this morning has spoiled me. The ones since haven’t been anywhere near as nice.

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I have some grinder crystals. I have no idea if they are useful but it's like a sort of salty substance. 


The instructions say send it down your grinder then send beans down. It's supposed to pick up old oils on the burrs. 


Anyway, when doing so it's wasting beans because the ground coffee has that salty stuff in and while it's safe to ingest its hardly worth drinking, so that's become my use for "bad beans" or maybe stale ones if for whatever reason I've not drank as much. 



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This is escalating quickly:





I am selling this Gaggia Classic from 2014 because of a new espresso machine. A classic among the compact espresso machines, of which this is a special one.

I bought the Gaggia new but have given it due attention and upgrades over the years including:
- an improved temperature controller (PID), which is neatly built into the machine. As can be seen in the 3rd photo, a special new top plate has been designed. The PID is an Omron E5CC. On Thuisbarista there is a report of this installation, for the enthusiast.
- a brass boilerplate, instead of the original aluminum variant
- the well-known Rancilio Silvia steam pipe
- a quieter Invensys CP3A pump, to replace the old one
- adjusting the pressure to 9 bar

The machine has been well maintained and has always been given descaled water. I have never descaled it with citric acid and the like, but I have had it serviced periodically. The interior also looks good.

All original parts (such as the steam nozzle and the original top) are included. In addition, there is a good single and double filter basket and a new group ring.

I am selling the machine to another espresso enthusiast so it can keep making people happy for decades to come! The machine can be viewed in Delft, and will not be sent.

Feel free to message us with any questions!


LOL at the bit about him selling it to another enthusiast. I might just get a new one and carry out mods myself, when/if required. This feels a bit like buying a pre-built PC/MiSTer.

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