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Breville es830XL - poor results
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Breville es830XL...  
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qualin
Senior Member
qualin
Joined: 30 Jun 2012
Posts: 646
Location: Calgary, AB
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Alex Duetto 3
Grinder: Mazzer Mini Elect. Type A
Vac Pot: Looking to buy
Drip: Manual
Roaster: Considering?
Posted Tue Sep 25, 2012, 11:43am
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

When I grind for espresso, the grinds come out so fine that I can leave my fingerprint on the grinds. If the grinds are like salt, they're not fine enough.

I would say that $200 is a good start for an entry level grinder, but if you can spend more, do so. The Breville Smart Grinder is capable of doing espresso grind,
but you may have to get a free shim kit from Breville to get it to grind fine enough for espresso if you still can't make good shots with it. Earlier versions
of this grinder couldn't grind fine enough even on the finest setting. There is a whole thread about it on the forums here, you may want to read that first.

I would suggest stepping up, biting the bullet and buying a Baratza Vario. It will be head over heels over what you are using now.
You can buy one for about double what the Breville sells for. The investment in a good grinder makes even the cheapest machine shine.

 
Garbage In, Garbage Out, for every step of the process. From Beans to grinder, grounds to machine, coffee to cup.
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qualin
Senior Member
qualin
Joined: 30 Jun 2012
Posts: 646
Location: Calgary, AB
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Alex Duetto 3
Grinder: Mazzer Mini Elect. Type A
Vac Pot: Looking to buy
Drip: Manual
Roaster: Considering?
Posted Tue Sep 25, 2012, 7:15pm
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

qualin Said:

I would suggest stepping up, biting the bullet and buying a Baratza Vario.

Posted September 25, 2012 link

I know it looks weird to quote myself, but I kind of figured that if you are short on budget and don't want to drop the cash on a Vario,
A Baratza Precisio may actually be more within your budget. The Lelit PL43 or the Lelit PL53 are also options. They're a bit cheaper than
the Baratza ones. They've got some positive reviews on this site.

Good luck!

 
Garbage In, Garbage Out, for every step of the process. From Beans to grinder, grounds to machine, coffee to cup.
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 2,753
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, 2 Macap M4s, OE...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Wed Sep 26, 2012, 6:33am
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

^+1.  Also...

gordco Said:

Just to confirm, my Starbucks Barista looks exactly like the Solis Maestro and is made by Barazta. A detailed review by this website, said the following:

The Final Word
In its class, this is the best grinder you can get as of this writing. Does a fantastic job at coffee grinding, and is suitable for espresso.

Posted September 25, 2012 link

As suggested previously, that is a Solis 166.  It is not capable of making good espresso, despite what you quoted.  Also, your supposition that it is similar to the Maestro is also accurate...and, no, a Baratza branded (Solis) Maestro is not capable of making good espresso either.  Sorry to have to confirm that, but been there, done that (and went through much, much more than you to find out these facts.

Don't blame your Breville machine...you have a grinder problem. Well, you have a bean problem too, but more on that shortly.  To dial in the proper grind setting, you should adjust the grinder to go finer than your machine can handle, and then back off until you're getting the shot completed in about 25-30 seconds (as a basic starting point).  If you're getting crema, great, but crema (presence or absence thereof) does not translate to whether or not you have a good shot.  True, most good shots have a large quantity of crema, but it's not a requirement.  Check out frcn's website...www.espressomyespresso.com and look for article 12 "...guide to better espresso..." about midway down the right hand column (under "how-to").  It's one of the best tools out there for helping correct problem shots.

You said you opened a new bag of *$$ and still had problems (or something to that effect).  Your beans need to have been roasted within about 2 weeks of using them to be fresh, and to make a good espresso.  This is nearly impossible if you're using *$$ beans.  You need to find some fresh beans.  Go read about the "4 Ms" of espresso making.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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gordco
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gordco
Joined: 24 Sep 2012
Posts: 11
Location: Waterloo
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Starbuck Barrista
Posted Wed Sep 26, 2012, 7:02pm
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

Thanks to everyone. This gives me a few things to ponder on........more money for a better grinder?
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qualin
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qualin
Joined: 30 Jun 2012
Posts: 646
Location: Calgary, AB
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Alex Duetto 3
Grinder: Mazzer Mini Elect. Type A
Vac Pot: Looking to buy
Drip: Manual
Roaster: Considering?
Posted Wed Sep 26, 2012, 8:57pm
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

gordco Said:

Thanks to everyone. This gives me a few things to ponder on........more money for a better grinder?

Posted September 26, 2012 link

Well, the other question you may want to ask yourself is, do you plan on grinding something other than espresso?

Some grinders adjust very well to grinding between french press right straight through to Turkish with Minimal adjustment.

Other grinders have a "Bias" adjustment screw or a shim which changes the range which they grind. So, the "Coarse" and "Fine" grind
settings are redefined within the grinder.

Then other grinders still have one purpose in life and that is to grind espresso and nothing else.

If you think that spending $300 on a grinder is too much, consider that there are people who buy the Malkhonig ProM, Which is a $1600
grinder. I personally think that this is a bit much to spend, but that's my own personal opinion. The kinds of people that buy a grinder
like that are really obsessed with their espresso. :-)

 
Garbage In, Garbage Out, for every step of the process. From Beans to grinder, grounds to machine, coffee to cup.
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emradguy
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emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 2,753
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, 2 Macap M4s, OE...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Thu Sep 27, 2012, 9:25am
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

qualin Said:

Well, the other question you may want to ask yourself is, do you plan on grinding something other than espresso?...
Some grinders adjust very well to grinding between french press right straight through to Turkish with Minimal adjustment...other grinders still have one purpose in life and that is to grind espresso and nothing else.

Posted September 26, 2012 link

Those are good points to consider, if you're buying your first grinder, replacing an "unrepairable" grinder, or simply can't or don't want to have more than one grinder in your home. Otherwise, since you already have a decent drip/fp/pour over grinder, you needn't worry about limitations of an espresso only grinder. (IMHO)

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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gordco
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gordco
Joined: 24 Sep 2012
Posts: 11
Location: Waterloo
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Starbuck Barrista
Posted Sat Sep 29, 2012, 3:30pm
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

Wow, the information on http://www.espressomyespresso.com/, is amazing. Thanks for the tip. I look forward to spending some time to improve my shots.

Although a few folks said that my Breville ES830XL is not the problem, I returned it to Costco. It seems there was a lot of negative info on it, especially regarding longevity, so I'm contemplating stepping up to better quality. I noticed there are numerous refurbished ES830XL machines out there (ebay), which should speak to quality. I then looked for refurbished Rancilio Silvia, and don't seem to see many of them. I'm thinking about the V3, but am a little concerned I'll have to also spend $300+ on a new grinder. I'm not sure if there is a way to tweak my Barazta Barista to grind a little finer, if that'll be required. A little more research, I suppose.

Cheers
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gordco
Senior Member
gordco
Joined: 24 Sep 2012
Posts: 11
Location: Waterloo
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Starbuck Barrista
Posted Sat Oct 13, 2012, 9:54pm
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

gordco Said:

Wow, the information on http://www.espressomyespresso.com/, is amazing. Thanks for the tip. I look forward to spending some time to improve my shots.

Although a few folks said that my Breville ES830XL is not the problem, I returned it to Costco. It seems there was a lot of negative info on it, especially regarding longevity, so I'm contemplating stepping up to better quality. I noticed there are numerous refurbished ES830XL machines out there (ebay), which should speak to quality. I then looked for refurbished Rancilio Silvia, and don't seem to see many of them. I'm thinking about the V3, but am a little concerned I'll have to also spend $300+ on a new grinder. I'm not sure if there is a way to tweak my Barazta Barista to grind a little finer, if that'll be required. A little more research, I suppose.

Cheers

Posted September 29, 2012 link

Update

I found a reasonable pkg deal at espresso planet in mississauga. Picked up a rancilio Silvia and a barazta vario. I'm still trying to dial in a good pull, but I might have to invest in fresher beans. I'm currently using Costco beans by starbucks.

I figured out a good way to use the timer for dosing. I set it for 4.7 seconds, which fills the pf half way. I then shake to even out, and then hit my timer for another 4.7 seconds. That gives me 16 grams.

I just need to get better crema. Oh, and I do temperature surf, as shown by the SeattleCoffeeGear  gals, when I make a latte.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,499
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major
Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Mon Oct 15, 2012, 6:10am
Subject: Re: Breville es830XL - poor results
 

The Sylvia is a solid SBDU machine and it should serve you for a long time.

The beans are hopelessly stale and you will never get a good shot from them, take what you have left and throw them in the flower bed.

I do not have and have not used the Vario but it has a good rep from lots of members here so you should be OK there.

The majority of the members here consider beans roasted to the level of producing oil, to be over roasted and burnt. Everyone has their own taste that they prefer so if you like that, great but do not expect any beans bought from Costco, Sams or the supermarket (some exceptions such as Costco store that ROAST IN THEIR OWN STORE can be good but for the most part, if there is a BEST BY date on the bag, walk on by)

Find a good local source for FRESH beans or buy over the internet but please do buy beans that are less than 2 weeks FROM THE DAY THEY WERE ROASTED, it really makes a big difference!

A CLASSIC SIGN OF STALE BEANS IS NO CREMA, that and fast shots. The number one problem we see here from people not having "good luck" pulling shots is stale beans. YMMV!

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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