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Reg Barber Tampers - Bill Zarycranski's Review
Posted: May 15, 2002, 7:34am
review rating: 7.7
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Reg Barber Tampers
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More About This Product
Arrow The Reg Barber Tampers has 17 Reviews
Arrow The Reg Barber Tampers has been rated 9.21 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 13, 2006.
Arrow Reg Barber Tampers reviews have been viewed 95,110 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Davin Gegolick 9.00
Eward Sonneveld 8.77
John Roche 8.62
Carl S Lau 8.54
J M 8.00

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 9.8
Product Reviewed: Reg Barber Stainless Tamp
Manufacturer: Reg Barber Quality: 10
Average Price: Varies Usability: 10
Price Paid: $42.00 Cost vs. Value 9
Where Bought: WLL Aesthetics 10
Owned for: 1 month Overall 10
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: plastic tamper
Bottom Line: Highest quality and good looks, the Reg belongs among your espresso tools
Positive Product Points

Top shelf price for this product category but with quality to match, you can't ask more of a tamper and it looks good too.

Negative Product Points

Really none I can think of.  Many keep harping on the price but it is priced similarly to other fine tampers, i.e. the Ergo tamper, and should push finely ground coffee evenly just as well. The dosing lines on the Ergo tamper sound like a nice idea

Detailed Commentary

The job these tampers must perform is simple:  transfer pressure applied by a barista to evenly compact finely ground espresso across the entire width of the basket.  That's it.  Therefore most of the responsibility for the quality and consistency of the tamp falls on the operator, but this doesn't mean any suitably shaped object will do the job well.

Yes, the plastic tamper included with the Silvia and presumably other espresso machines is wholly inadequate and quite a joke at Silvia's price point and above.  Maybe the manufactures feel selecting a tamper should be a 'personal' decision so why increase their product's price $40 and include a product which the owner won't like?  Maybe, but at the very least the tamper they supply should fit the portafilter, in this case 58 mm.

Using the undersized plastic tamper meant multiple fine tamps to compact coffee along the edge of the basket and multiple fine tamps, especially with a convex tamper, means uneven compaction.  Enter the 58 mm Reg -- one light (5 lb??) tamp followed by a light tap on the portafilter side and then the 30 lb tamp with a twist.  That's it!  Simple and very effective with improved shot-to-shot consistency and better quality and quantity crema.  

I haven't tried the polished aluminum tampers available.  So long as the tamper fits the portafilter properly I would guess 90% of the relative effectiveness would be achieved relative to the more expensive stainless steel Reg, but the heft and feel of the Reg tamper when you are performing the tamp will probably help you 'feel' the tamp better (biofeedback??) and improve consistency.

This isn't a comparative review of all tampers available, but there should be little doubt that the Reg is competing for the top spot.

Buying Experience

Called WLL, they shipped same day, and I received tamper on the 3rd day.  Happy end of story.

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review rating: 7.7
Posted: May 15, 2002, 7:34am
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
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