Any coffee dorks?


I ended up buying a Breville Infuser.

Somewhat infuriatingly, it’s $50 cheaper than it was when I bought it? I guess I will be immediately getting in touch with them to see if they want to refund me the difference…

It’s awesome, though. I’ve been having a lot of fun dialing everything in. Pulled the first shot I was really happy with just a few minutes ago – 32 seconds with the pressure right where it should be. Steamer works okay. Not as good as a commercial one, of course, but far better than the ones I’ve used on less expensive machines.

I was also moved to buy one of these, which feels like a ludicrous extravagance.

It’s a box with nested screens to sift out only the grounds of the proper size. It seems like it makes sense in theory. I’m not sure whether it’s just a coincidence that my first good shot was pulled the first time I used this… I did stick with my Encore grinder, which is on the low end for espresso use. According to the Kruve, it was definitely not grinding much that was fine enough. I ended up grinding some extra and basically throwing away my “boulders”. Not the most cost-effective way forward, so I will have to think about what to do.

Overall, though, I’m super happy with the espresso machine. Recommended so far.


You can always make pour oven with the boulders. Getting uniform grind/size is definitely what you’re shooting for with espresso. Congrats on your purchase!


Congrats! Sounds like a great setup!


I’ll be in San Francisco for a few days just after New Years, staying near the Moscone Center. What I want is either an awesome espresso (not an ‘espresso drink’) or straight black coffee. Maps tell me there is a Blue Bottle in easy walking distance - is that likely to be the best option, or does anyone know of a better spot?


You can probably also check out Equator in the lobby of the LinkedIn building. There’s also Red Door that serves Four Barrel, and a bit more of a walk would be Philz.

You’d also be extra SF-hipster with these options, as Blue Bottle got acquired by Nestle while these roasters are still local.

A fun novelty for LOLZ/“let me tell you about the coffee I got from a robot barista” is Cafe X at the Metreon. If you go that route, I have a referral code for a free coffee or something, I think.


Equator sounds promising - the Market St location will be right on the way to where I think I will be parking the rental car.

I would poo-poo Blue Bottle over the Nestle bit, too, but I have a Nespresso machine sitting here in my office that I use most every day. Even if I wasn’t already sold out to Nestle, what really matters is if Blue Bottle have changed their roasting, etc since the takeover.

Speaking of sellouts, I’m not sure if I’m going to go over to the East Bay, but it would be both nostalgic and really sad to pop in to the Walnut St Peets that I used to hit on my way to class in the late 70s.


Using NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto Mini Me Automatic Coffee Machine. Anyone tried it?


Equator at the Market St location proved to be a winner. I went ahead and splurged $4.50 for a 10 oz pour-over of their Panama Finca Sophia. I’ve been preferring African coffees lately, and I rarely describe what I taste with anything like the puffery typical in “tasting notes” - but this was really excellent. Even I came away wanting to describe ‘fruit notes’ and such. I went back for another the next day. And at $39 for a 4-oz bag, I guess $4.50 for a 10 oz cup is a relative bargain. I came home with a 12 oz bag of their “dwarf Geisha” from Columbia.. Haven’t tried it yet.


That’s the most expensive coffee I’ve heard of outside of Kopi luwak. $160 a lb is a bit steep for me, though I’d definitely try a 10oz pourover at 150% of that price…just to try it.


Heh–that’s a bit steep for me too, by an order of magnitude! I’d love to try it, though.

Curious about the fruit notes, which I usually associate with Kenya. But Central America is my usual go-to.


Well. like I said, I don’t really go for those ‘hint of ginger-infused sweatsocks, balanced by the most delicate of fresh concrete’ kind of descriptions.

But I will say that I thought ‘strawberry’ when I first tasted it.

The price is interesting to think about. Lots (and lots) of people happily shell out $4.50 for a bunch of frothy milk with some lousy coffee and a bunch of flavored syrups, and do so every day. If I lived near an Equator cafe I would only visit every once in a while as a treat, but $4.50 is in no way out of line for such a unique coffee experience.

The beans would, if I did all my maths right, work out to about $4 for a 6-oz cup. Way outrageous, and I wouldn’t do it (more than once, anyway) - but that makes the 10-oz cup they prepared for me seem even more reasonable.