Today, I had a few new things to look forward to. A new bag o’ beans, and now I have some help with frothing the milk with a new stainless steel pitcher and thermometer. The bag of beans was actually a trade I made with one of my coworkers, who I shall call Jetting Judy. I was asking her about the beans she liked to use for espresso at home, and she mentioned that her favorite was the Espresso from New York called The Laughing Man, bub. It’s a coffee source started by Hugh Jackman, aka Wolverine. So awesome! From the About Us page over at Laughing Man, Wolverine was in Ethiopia and made a promise to a coffee farmer to help produce and sell coffee to consumers with no middle men.
So, this morning, I ground the beans with the “Tornado Claw” grinder and pretty much did everything the same. I made one double shot of espresso and it came out too watery. I tasted it straight, it had a little more sour note than the Ritual and Blue Bottle varieties and more chocolatey. Once I finished that, I decided to increase the fineness of the grind and try an extra double shot. This time it was a tad too fine (tomorrow I’ll get it right). The pull was really hard and there was some grinds that filtered through, with what appeared to be some healthy crema. I’m starting to think the beans have something to do with producing crema. Any experts out there want to verify?
Once the espresso was pulled, I decided to test out the new pitcher. I filled some 1% milk into the pitcher, and started with frothing. The small diameter makes it a lot easier to have the milk swirl around, but I still need to work on that nozzle positioning. I’m still creating medium sized bubbles, ruining the goal of getting that nice consistent froth. The amount of time frothing increased, since it seems like the stainless steel didn’t heat up as fast as the glass. Banging the pitcher on the counter to bring the bubbles to the surface wasn’t as scary as well.
The taste with the milk completely transformed it for me. For some reason, I’m getting a spice taste to it (possibly from the sour notes earlier.) It almost reminds me of a mellow chai tea with a rich chocolate taste.