Posted Thu Sep 5, 2013, 11:29am Subject: Steam pressure on gaggia deco too high, ideas on dealing with it.
I have recently started my Barista training and will be doing my level two training soon. I have been getting my machine hours with a local cafe/restaurant to practice. The machine is a Gaggia Deco. I am working on my microfoam and I am finding the machine quite unforgiving to the inexperienced Barista.
The steam pressure is definitely too high and I have been battling with it ever since. I seem to have just under 2 seconds to incorporate air, longer than that and the milk has too much foam and the beverage is compromised. My issue is that I am not in the position to get the pressure adjusted ect, so are there any tips on how to deal with such high pressure? I am going to try purge steam wand for a few seconds before texturing to see if that helps. Any other suggestions?? Thanks in advance!!
Ryebread119 Senior Member Joined: 30 Jul 2013 Posts: 11 Location: Maine Expertise: Pro Barista
Espresso: Elektra Sixties Grinder: Mazzer Mini Drip: Chemex
Posted Thu Sep 5, 2013, 12:13pm Subject: Re: Steam pressure on gaggia deco too high, ideas on dealing with it.
I'm assuming this is a commercial Gaggia since it's in a cafe, correct? Is the steam release a lever, button, or wheel? Is it possible to turn the steam wand on "half way"?
I've gotten into the habit of sinking the head of the steam wand first, turning the steam on, and quickly bringing it back up to the surface to texture the milk. If the pressure is too much and you're getting a lot of spitting, you may be too far "off the surface" of the milk. You can also try dipping the wand a few millimeters below the surface and the come back up to froth again, dip, froth, dip froth...that will draw out the texturing portion a bit before you do your final "dip" and bring the milk up to temperature.
Listen to the steam, the sign of a good drink is in it's acoustics.
Posted Thu Sep 5, 2013, 12:50pm Subject: Re: Steam pressure on gaggia deco too high, ideas on dealing with it.
Yes it's a commercial 2group. It's a wheel but it does not seem to have much play, when it's turned it's full throttle no half way point.
I put the steam tip just below the surface whilst I turn on the pressure and raise it up after a second as not too spray milk everywhere, the real issue is not having much time to texture, it's over textured within a blink of an eye, literally 1.8 seconds and anything past that seems to be too much. As I am a Barista in training I need to have more time to texture, on an astoria 2group I have up to 4 seconds and that is a good amount of time.
I'll give the dip and froth, dip and froth a go but I'd be worried about blowing bubbles into the milk as it rises.
calblacksmith Moderator Joined: 25 Nov 2007 Posts: 6,824 Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A. Expertise: I live coffee
Espresso: ECM Veneziano A1 Grinder: Many different commercial Vac Pot: 40s era Silex Drip: Milita, Bunn&Curtis... Roaster: Cast iron pan, gas burner
Posted Thu Sep 5, 2013, 1:11pm Subject: Re: Steam pressure on gaggia deco too high, ideas on dealing with it.
Try not trying to incoperate air into the drink. Keep the wand under the milk at all times and concentrate on a VERY strong whirlpool. The mixing action of the whirlpool will also incoperate air into the milk. I can sometimes nearly double the foam on a drink simply by keeping the strong whirlpool. Give it a try, you have nothing to loose.
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Posted Thu Sep 5, 2013, 1:19pm Subject: Re: Steam pressure on gaggia deco too high, ideas on dealing with it.
Great idea I shall try that out, I do recall a few days ago after incorporating a 'tiny' amount of air I tilt the pitcher and was focusing on a whirlpool and it rose up to an exaggerated amount, I just presumed I let too much air in. Thank you all for the help it is greatly appreciated.
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