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  Reply # 814028 8-May-2013 21:57 Send private message

Kensington machine was on the pile of reduced clearance stuff at my warehouse for $99 today. Not sure if thats just because they are replacing all the red shelves with grey ones and moving stuff around the store or because they are discontinuing it.




Richard rich.ms

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  Reply # 814052 8-May-2013 22:33 Send private message

Edwood:


In other news... how can I tell what the max power draw is for the Nespresso U?  I want to know if I could have it on a boat where things like kettles, hairdryers, etc are no-no's. (my AC/DC understanding really only relates to music).





1260W peak.  It's up there in kettle/hairdryer territory. If I tried to justify that to my wife, she'd insist on a hairdryer for the boat. 


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  Reply # 814147 9-May-2013 07:00 Send private message

Bugger.
Thx Fred.

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  Reply # 814405 9-May-2013 11:48 Send private message





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  Reply # 814484 9-May-2013 13:25 Send private message

Just adding my 2 cents:  Vibiemme Domobar Junior+ Mazzer Mini Grinder

The VBM is great, E61 group head (thats the real deal) and double boiler so no probs drawing a number of shots then steaming the milk.  MM is a conical burr grinder so great grind.

Not cheap (~$3k all upwhen I bought them) but commercial quality so will last forever.

And +1 for coffeesnobs forum, some really useful chaps (and chapettes) on the site.

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  Reply # 815208 10-May-2013 12:34 Send private message

Cynic: Just adding my 2 cents:  Vibiemme Domobar Junior+ Mazzer Mini Grinder

The VBM is great, E61 group head (thats the real deal) and double boiler so no probs drawing a number of shots then steaming the milk.  MM is a conical burr grinder so great grind.

Not cheap (~$3k all upwhen I bought them) but commercial quality so will last forever.

And +1 for coffeesnobs forum, some really useful chaps (and chapettes) on the site.


This is a good deal for ~$3k.
Note that the Domobar Junior is a HX (heat exchanger) machine - not dual boiler.  It's arguable whether or not dual boiler has any practical benefit over HX for domestic e61 type machines - I expect you'd have to be able to pull shots fast than a pro to see the difference.
The Mini Mazzer alone retails for just under $1000.
The machines have been terribly over-priced in NZ, but Vibiemme and also Cuadra seem to have caught up with the fact that buying power of the NZD is much greater than a few years ago, and are offering some good deals.  A different example I've been looking at, Rocket EVO II, retail price in NZ = $4050.  Euro price is about 1280 (excl VAT), discount codes will reduce that to about EU 1200, DHL to NZ is about EU 150.  So EU 1350 x 1.55 = NZ$2090, with 15% GST and customs entry fee, that's about NZ$2450 - $1600 less than the NZ price.   Crazy stuff.
A little courage needed to order something like this on-line, and local agents will tell you that it won't meet NZ electrical standards (not true, they are both CE and AS/NZS certified ex-factory).  They also say that they need pre-delivery "adjustment" by dealer - as they're "set up" for italian style robusta beans.  This could be true, but the example of above machine I've seen was perfectly adjusted ex-factory (default boiler pressure at 1 bar, pump pressure fine - but anyway both can be user-set with less skills needed than to change the oil on your car.  Of course you'd be out on your own for warranty (unless you want to pay to ship it back to Italy), but parts are available, and there's good support for maintenance instructions on the net.  I guess if a local service agent refused to service a grey import machine, then grow a moustache, eat some garlic, carry a violin case, and say that the machine was a present from your godfather.

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  Reply # 815263 10-May-2013 14:18 Send private message

@FRED99 - well spotted, my bad. Domobar Jr is an HX. In regard to the cost I have a "contact" so did score a good deal. If you can get a Rocket for that money, I'd say go for it.

In regard to maintenance, the machines apretty robst and parts are actually fairly reasonable. I had to replace the pressurestat on mine (probably the nominal "weak link") - only $75 incl fitting by my local tech.

Overall I still like having an E61 machine over anything else, but it does make you picky at cafes - sometime syou just know you could do better at home !

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  Reply # 815273 10-May-2013 14:33 Send private message

Cynic: @FRED99...Overall I still like having an E61 machine over anything else, but it does make you picky at cafes - sometime syou just know you could do better at home !


Sometimes? I'd go as far as to say 'usually'. 
However, at home you have all the time in the world and you're making coffee with a perfectly clean machine, portafiller, handle, jug, etc... 
Cafe's are generally flat out making a gazillion coffees and dont have the time to clean everything nicely after each coffee, so there's always residue.


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  Reply # 815347 10-May-2013 16:52 Send private message

Edwood:
Cynic: @FRED99...Overall I still like having an E61 machine over anything else, but it does make you picky at cafes - sometime syou just know you could do better at home !


Sometimes? I'd go as far as to say 'usually'. 



Yes - I'd third that.
Right about having time to experiment and make a little mess at times too.
Some cafes have deals with roasters / equipment suppliers to maintain their equipment as well as supplying coffee, so inconsistent coffee and machine performance can be included in a quality assurance line.  Once they eliminate / reduce those variables, I expect that auto volumetric dosing on commercial machines can free-up a lot of time, but it can't eliminate the need for a good barista, else they'll end up serving consistently bad coffee if they get it wrong.


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  Reply # 816520 13-May-2013 09:52 Send private message

Cynic:  If you can get a Rocket for that money, I'd say go for it.


I did:


It was a very nervous week or so waiting for delivery from Italy, the vendor does not have Paypal, which added to my nervousness.  Anyway, it arrived perfectly packaged, double-boxed, shrink wrapped and on a small pallet (total package is 37kg).  Everything was there, double/single/blind filters, handles, Rocket metal tamper (nice), plumbing kit, manuals, DVD etc.


This photo does not do it justice - it's truly a thing of great beauty, and very shiny.  The rotary pump is very quiet.  I expected some trouble dialing in grind etc, but the commonly expressed wisdom not to skimp on a grinder really paid dividends now, the Mazzer was almost perfect on factory calibrated zero setting using two different blends over the weekend, it's only needed tweaking by about one line on the ring.  We have been enjoying the best coffee I've ever tasted - bar none.

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  Reply # 816613 13-May-2013 11:47 Send private message

Who was the vendor you used?

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  Reply # 816646 13-May-2013 12:16 Send private message

morrisk: Who was the vendor you used?


As per the labels on the carton espressocoffeeshop.com, but I bought through their .it site http://www.espressocoffeeshop.it/

Talk to them first via online chat app  - top right of page) - and politely ask for a discount code to save an extra $EU 75 or so from listed prices (at least that was the offer I got).
The machines - once freight and GST and customs service fee is paid are still much lower than NZ RRP ($4050 for the machine I bought - but cost me a few dollars over $2400 all-up).
This price is also much less than the price in the USA - good to see that for at least one category of toys the yanks don't have the best prices.
Grinders - not so much cheaper, and perhaps worth buying locally, as quality grinders like Mazzer come with a more-or-less lifetime guarantee (25 years), saving a couple of hundred $ isn't a big deal IMO. 
The performance from this vendor was 100%, but sample size is only one.  There are a few others from around the world who report good experiences going back a few years - but really not a lot of reports.  I still thought it was worth a punt.
There's a site sponsor on the aussie coffeesnobs forum who jumps on anybody in Aus who suggests importing a "grey-market" machine.  Read his posts and make up your own mind.


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  Reply # 816650 13-May-2013 12:24 Send private message

Thanks for the info - will followup.


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  Reply # 816772 13-May-2013 14:36 Send private message

I've had and used the same Nespresso machine for 8 years now.  I bought it in Italy and brought it back to NZ with me.  It's never been serviced and it has probably done 4-8 coffees every day of it's life.  The quality of each coffee has been consistently excellent.  The capsules store the coffee very well, and the system is very easy and clean to use.  I must say, however, that after 8 years the pump is starting to go...the pressure isn't really there anymore, and the results are becoming increasingly under-extracted...so I'll probably be buying a simple Delonghi U in the near future.

I think that Nespresso machines produce as close to Italian (Rome/Naples) bar coffee as you can get at home...and I've tried many, many home-made coffees from people with all sorts of extremely expensive machines (Rocket's included) and who've said they've perfected the art.  None have ever come close, and most have been terrible.

My view is that you can only get consistent, top notch coffee from a commercial, Italian made multi-bank machine that is frequently serviced and calibrated...which is not very practical for home.  Next choice would be Nespresso...sure it's a little on the expensive side, but you totally get what you pay for.  

The Nespresso system eliminates the following variables: coffee quality, grind, humidity, tamping, water pressure and temp.  After that, there's not much left that can go wrong!




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  Reply # 816903 13-May-2013 17:26 Send private message

Nakedcity: I've had and used the same Nespresso machine for 8 years now.  I bought it in Italy and brought it back to NZ with me.  It's never been serviced and it has probably done 4-8 coffees every day of it's life.  The quality of each coffee has been consistently excellent.  The capsules store the coffee very well, and the system is very easy and clean to use.  I must say, however, that after 8 years the pump is starting to go...the pressure isn't really there anymore, and the results are becoming increasingly under-extracted...so I'll probably be buying a simple Delonghi U in the near future.

I think that Nespresso machines produce as close to Italian (Rome/Naples) bar coffee as you can get at home...and I've tried many, many home-made coffees from people with all sorts of extremely expensive machines (Rocket's included) and who've said they've perfected the art.  None have ever come close, and most have been terrible.

My view is that you can only get consistent, top notch coffee from a commercial, Italian made multi-bank machine that is frequently serviced and calibrated...which is not very practical for home.  Next choice would be Nespresso...sure it's a little on the expensive side, but you totally get what you pay for.  

The Nespresso system eliminates the following variables: coffee quality, grind, humidity, tamping, water pressure and temp.  After that, there's not much left that can go wrong!




I think you're completely dreaming.
Nespresso has it's place, but to compare it with a good cafe or good home brewed coffee (and you don't need an expensive machine - just a little skill) is absolutely ludicrous.


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