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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Expobar Office  
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wll
Senior Member


Joined: 24 Jan 2002
Posts: 7
Location: Victor
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Pasquini Livia 90 Auto
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 8:56am
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

phaelon56 Said:

What's the deal with steaming on the Giotto - is it too powerful to allow for easy control or does it need a tip modification to perform at its best?

Posted September 13, 2002 link

Definitely not too powerful. At first I found it a little on the weak side but this is compared to my Livia. I need to get out the thermometer so I can get a better feel. My preferred tip is the Giotto's so I stick with that one. I also tried the Rancilio S24 and Livia tips but didn't like them. I do get good results on the Giotto and I expect them to get better yet. I think the Giotto is a fantastic choice.
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phaelon56
Senior Member
phaelon56
Joined: 11 Feb 2002
Posts: 1,144
Location: Syracuse, NY
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: LM 4 group , Isomac Tea,...
Grinder: Major, Super Jolly,...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos
Drip: Fetco, Melitta
Roaster: Sivetz , Diedrich
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 9:17am
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

Webslave - Thanks for the Giotto steaming appraisal. After a substantial amount of practice I can now actually get decent steaming results from my Gaggia Baby so I'm guessing that with practice I could do well wiht the Giotto. I have also appreciated your commentary on the Giotto in general - it's among the info that's been pushing me in that direction.

 
Owen O'Neill
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blkeagl
Senior Member
blkeagl
Joined: 11 Mar 2002
Posts: 306
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Isomac Tea
Grinder: Mazzer Mini, Solis Maestro
Vac Pot: Bodum eSantos, Silex
Drip: Whassat?
Roaster: Hottop Bean Roaster, HW...
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 10:18am
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

phaelon56 Said:

What's the deal with steaming on the Giotto - is it too powerful to allow for easy control or does it need a tip modification to perform at its best?


See the whole article about the Giotto at lucidcafe, but here's the gist of it from Mr. Schomer:

David Schomer from LucidCafe:

Drawbacks include the steam pressure. It contains just enough power to texture 1/6th of a liter, enough for one cappuccino, of milk in a narrow 1/3rd liter pitcher. Remember, to texture the milk the steamer has to have enough power to spin the entire volume of milk in the pitcher.



phaelon56 also said:

I'm looking ahead to a machine upgrade and despite the great stuff I'm reading about Zaffiro and Tea (and Expobar) I seem to be fixated on the Giotto.


From what I'm hearing, the primary difference between something like the Tea and the Giotto on a technical basis is visuals and small features like plumbing, resevoir size, etc..

I don't know how the Tea or similar machines compare for steaming to the Giotto. Keep in mind that Mr. Schomer is comparing it to his stable at work more than other home machines.

phaelon56 also said:

If for some reason the Giotto is not as good for steaming then I really need to know which machine in the sub $1,200 category is best for that purpose.


Livia has the power but needs a tip mod for best texture (unless you like dry foam, which I used to until I tasted the velvet). It sounds like Giotto has the basic power, but doesn't meet Mr. Schomer's preferred requirements for technique (swirling all the milk).

Tarik
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phaelon56
Senior Member
phaelon56
Joined: 11 Feb 2002
Posts: 1,144
Location: Syracuse, NY
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: LM 4 group , Isomac Tea,...
Grinder: Major, Super Jolly,...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos
Drip: Fetco, Melitta
Roaster: Sivetz , Diedrich
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 10:40am
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

I did read that article but appreciate the feedback I get here because it's from folks whose reference point is home machines or semi-commercial in home use rather than commercial machines. I was a bit puzzled by the 1/6 liter reference - it seems so low but maybe Schomer has such exacting requirements that he can't recommend it be used for more than that. I typically steam about 6 - 8 oz with my Gaggia Baby  and although it took me a coupel months of practice and some useful advice from folks in this forum, I now get velvety foam on a fairly consistent basis. I'm still working on the pouring/shaking techniques for decent latte art but am making progress. I'm just a bit puzzled/surprised that steam power is not better on the Giotto. Perhaps there are are other similar grouphead machines that are better performers for steaming milk but still have a great look?

 
Owen O'Neill
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blkeagl
Senior Member
blkeagl
Joined: 11 Mar 2002
Posts: 306
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Isomac Tea
Grinder: Mazzer Mini, Solis Maestro
Vac Pot: Bodum eSantos, Silex
Drip: Whassat?
Roaster: Hottop Bean Roaster, HW...
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 10:55am
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

My take is also that he has a commercial reference point and is not totally in tune with what the average person can or will put up with in the home. He has very exacting standards and that is great.

phaelon56 Said:

I was a bit puzzled by the 1/6 liter reference - it seems so low but maybe Schomer has such exacting requirements that he can't recommend it be used for more than that.


I don't think it's really an issue of how much you can steam with that machine. I think it's how much you can steam using the technique that he feels is best for achieving the milk texture he thinks is best.

But the beauty of it all is that while there are clear scientifically derived principles we can arrive at, the palate is still a subjective experience. I would suspect that there are other techniques for achieving an excellently textured milk that are perfectly acceptable and enjoyable. Maybe not as quickly or as easily as his published and documented technique, but...

I'm just a bit puzzled/surprised that steam power is not better on the Giotto. Perhaps there are are other similar grouphead machines that are better performers for steaming milk but still have a great look?

Posted September 13, 2002 link

Remember that the pressure stat can be adjusted also to increase steaming pressure. It could be that adjusting it for good comparable steam to other similar machines causes the brew temp to be too hot (distance from HX to brewhead could be different?).

I'm sure it would be a machine most of us wouldn't complain about in the home. I personally like having the extra diagnostic pressure gauge of the Tea (even if I don't necessarily need it on a daily basis) and also happen to think it looks better.

See, eventually it does boil (heh) down to a subjective experience.

Tarik
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jim_schulman
Senior Member
jim_schulman
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 3,772
Location: Chicago
Expertise: I live coffee
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 12:35pm
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

blkeagl Said:

Remember that the pressure stat can be adjusted also to increase steaming pressure. It could be that adjusting it for good comparable steam to other similar machines causes the brew temp to be too hot (distance from HX to brewhead could be different?).

Tarik

Posted September 13, 2002 link

This doesn't work on small boiler machines like the Isomacs or Giottos. On these, the pressure drops to .8 to .9 bar when the steam valve is opened, and the heater runs continuously. This makes for steadier steam than on the Oscar where the heater cycles, but it means that any pressure setting higher than this "steam point" will have no influence.

 
Jim Schulman
www.coffeecuppers.com
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blkeagl
Senior Member
blkeagl
Joined: 11 Mar 2002
Posts: 306
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Isomac Tea
Grinder: Mazzer Mini, Solis Maestro
Vac Pot: Bodum eSantos, Silex
Drip: Whassat?
Roaster: Hottop Bean Roaster, HW...
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 2:07pm
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

another_jim Said:

This doesn't work on small boiler machines like the Isomacs or Giottos. On these, the pressure drops to .8 to .9 bar when the steam valve is opened, and the heater runs continuously. This makes for steadier steam than on the Oscar where the heater cycles, but it means that any pressure setting higher than this "steam point" will have no influence.

Posted September 13, 2002 link


So then pressure stat adjustment is only useful for brewing temp?  Seems a little odd.. isn't 1 bar = 1 atm.. if the pressure in the boiler was < 1 bar, the steam wouldn't come out under pressure.  Or maybe I'm misremembering my calibrations...

Tarik
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jim_schulman
Senior Member
jim_schulman
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 3,772
Location: Chicago
Expertise: I live coffee
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 2:46pm
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

blkeagl Said:

So then pressure stat adjustment is only useful for brewing temp?  Seems a little odd.. isn't 1 bar = 1 atm.. if the pressure in the boiler was < 1 bar, the steam wouldn't come out under pressure.  Or maybe I'm misremembering my calibrations...

Tarik

Posted September 13, 2002 link

See my "Mini Faq" on boiler pressure

 
Jim Schulman
www.coffeecuppers.com
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blkeagl
Senior Member
blkeagl
Joined: 11 Mar 2002
Posts: 306
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Isomac Tea
Grinder: Mazzer Mini, Solis Maestro
Vac Pot: Bodum eSantos, Silex
Drip: Whassat?
Roaster: Hottop Bean Roaster, HW...
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 3:33pm
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

another_jim Said:

See my "Mini Faq" on boiler pressure

Posted September 13, 2002 link


I was going to ask where, but I found it really quick. For anyone else looking for it: Boiler Pressure in HX Machines: Mini FAQ.

Thanks, Jim!

Tarik
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wll
Senior Member


Joined: 24 Jan 2002
Posts: 7
Location: Victor
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Pasquini Livia 90 Auto
Posted Fri Sep 13, 2002, 5:51pm
Subject: Re: Expobar Office
 

I'm not a very technical guy but I had asked Todd (or tech) about increasing the pressure stat. She said it would do something to the brew temp and create steam from the group head as well. Above my head...but I took it as a "don't do it".

As for steaming with the Giotto...I always use a 20oz pitcher for my morning latte. My guess is that I use about 10oz or so of milk. I get the swirl that Schomer looks for. I do not yet get the texture I desire. I know the machine can do it but it will take longer.

I wouldn't recommend a tip mod for the Livia, yet a tip replacement. The Giotto tip fits right on and combined w/ the LIvia's pressure you'll get tornado like swirls in the pitcher. Fantastic texture.

I've yet to use a machine that has the steaming of the Livia with the shots of the Giotto (or other E61 style group). I'll keep working on the Giotto steaming though and will let y'all know :)
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