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Best Madison Espresso Bar and accessories....?

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Best Madison Espresso Bar and accessories....?

Postby Newtotown » Sat Jan 05, 2008 12:44 pm

Hey all,

I have recently taken up the hobby of espresso making -- or Barista, if you will...

So now, I can really appreciate a properly-made espresso/latte, etc...

Where is the best, hard-core place with talented baristas around town? I am not talking strong coffee from Starbucks with soap bubbles on top -- I mean REAL stuff...

In addition -- is there ANY place around (besides online) that would sell a Espresso Tamper? I have called 2 dozen places and no one does... Surprisingly, some people at so-called "coffee houses" didn't even know what a tamper was...


Thanks a ton in advance,

Matt!
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Postby Wet_Pavement » Mon Jan 07, 2008 4:31 am

Steep 'n' Brew has the best espresso in town in my opinion. But there are a lot of coffee houses that have good espresso which I haven't tried yet.

I bet tampers come with the machines, if you purchase one of those behemoth electric espresso machines. If I make espresso at home, I just use those metal Italian stovetop models whose name escapes me now. I tap the espresso down with a spoon.
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Postby jammybastard » Mon Jan 07, 2008 7:20 am

Hmmm...I'm a bit of a freak for good espresso and I don't buy local.
I swear I tried for a long time.
Steep and Brew has never tasted good to me and I think it's the way it's roasted. "Burned and overly bitter" is how I'd describe it and I like full flavored espresso with bite. Plus I'm not a fan of very oily beans.
I know people that love EVP and Ancora, and I do find EVP is good.
Plus it's really up to your palette and how you drink it. Straight, how you prep your milk, sugar or not, etc...

I've bought LaVazza Super Crema from this place for the past 5 years. Good price if you buy in bulk, fast shipping if you run out and start vibrating uncontrollably from withdrawl.
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Postby spanky » Tue Jan 08, 2008 12:09 am

Ask Zane...
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Postby lysander » Wed Jan 09, 2008 1:37 am

Espresso is hit-or-miss in Madison, mostly due to the fact that no one is making it their career to brew espresso. The pay sucks and it's a job held by people who identify themselves as other things (student, actor, etc). Everyone has their own idea of how it should be done, and no one making $7/hr is going to give that much of a shit. Most espresso machines are faced so that you can't see how it's being made, and few people can tell a tolerable shot from a perfect shot.

That said, I like Mother Fools and Java Escape on Willy. Michaelangelo's is usually good. I've had very few bad espressos in Madison (even Starbucks will do in a pinch), but few consistent shots at the same place unless the same barista is working.

Buy your tamper online. Google found me like 400 of them.
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Re: Best Madison Espresso Bar and accessories....?

Postby joey » Mon Jan 14, 2008 3:38 am

Newtotown wrote:Hey all,

I have recently taken up the hobby of espresso making -- or Barista, if you will...

So now, I can really appreciate a properly-made espresso/latte, etc...

Where is the best, hard-core place with talented baristas around town? I am not talking strong coffee from Starbucks with soap bubbles on top -- I mean REAL stuff...

In addition -- is there ANY place around (besides online) that would sell a Espresso Tamper? I have called 2 dozen places and no one does... Surprisingly, some people at so-called "coffee houses" didn't even know what a tamper was...


Thanks a ton in advance,

Matt!

Out of curiosity, what kind of machine and grinder do you have? machine should have came with one--mine did, but it was cheap plastic, so i bought one online. theres tons of places to buy and learn, but you're first and most influential site will be www.coffeegeeek.com . that place was and still is my bible for anything related to coffee.
as for where i buy beans, i love evp--but had some johnson brothers recently (it was a cup of excellence coffee....amazing) havent bought anywhere else that i remember...some parts and machines at orange tree and williams sonoma, but very limited.
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Postby d2drums » Mon Jan 14, 2008 6:13 am

I saw tampers at Orange Tree Imports over the weekend.
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Postby Newtotown » Fri Jan 18, 2008 6:59 pm

Hey all,

Thanks for the replies, I appreciate it.

Joey, I have a Saeco Barista machine -- I LOVE IT. I am trying to find a decent burr grinder -- a REAL burr grinder will be at least $400 new -- so I am looking for a used one...


Thanks again guys,

Matt!
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Postby joey » Sun Jan 20, 2008 4:12 pm

hehe..thats the machine i have. i remembered where i got the tamper for it. http://www.espressovivace.com/ergo_packer.html
it was around 40 bucks--kinda steep but great craftsmanship and it's the correct size, which is imperitive. when you buy it, you can change out the bottom for 20 bucks or so if you get another machine. also, you only need the tamper if you have the non-pressurized portafilter. the machine i have i got from starbucks and it came with a pressurized portafilter. to get better espresso you'll need a non-pressurezed portafilter.
i remembered i contacted saeco directly for it. www.saecousa.com is the website.
also, for a decent burr grinder, i got a mazzer mini. awesome grinder. kinda spendy but worth it. i got it at a great price from...www.espressosupply.com

ok..i'm done...
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