2023 was a year when not much happened. Not too many new releases and it really was a case of “Little to see here…” We’ll keep it brief this year, but as always, if you have something in mind, just call for a chat. We call them as we see them and with 100% transparency.
At HOST 2023, Rocket Espresso released a volumetric prosumer machine: The Bicocca. This represents their first volumetric prosumer focussed machine in over 15 years and if initial interest from our client base is any indication, it’s destined to be a big hit. This machine will be a fantastic platform for customisation and we’re just waiting to see what will be on offer in terms of tweakability. We’re hopeful for control of preinfusion time on this gorgeous machine. It’s a miss on the name though. Check out the translation on it! 🤦♂️
We have one on order and it will be front and centre on the demo bench. Pricing is expected to be around $8k and we feel that life will become somewhat challenging for the LM Linea Mini which sells to the same market. To our eyes, the Bicocca wins easily on looks and we have little doubt that it will do the job in the cup too!
Miss: Sanremo You
12 months ago, this new offer from Sanremo was looking like it might be a hit. Unfortunately we don’t know. In all of this time it’s been impossible to even look at one! We even tried to buy one so that we could offer some informed opinion on it but for Melbourne, it was a case of the too hard basket. Our local rep. offered one for an hour to “evaluate”. Pass. We need to look inside and drive this machine as our own for a least a week to come to any informed opinion.
Some owners complained of very noisy cooling fans (supposedly since rectified by purchasing a new one!). Others complained about drip tray issues. Who knows?
At present, this machine may be offered to clients pending evaluation.
Wow wee, this one is good and we’re calling it the best single dose grinder at <$2k.
It’s absolutely spotless without the use of a spritz (aka RDT), quick and not too noisy.
Burr swapping is easy and there are plenty of options. In Aus. spec. with standard DLC burrs, it’s an absolute winner: So good that it has displaced our home single doser which was a whole heap more expensive.
Big miss: You can add a Lunar scale and have it work as a grind by weight grinder. We were super excited by this, but sadly in this configuration, it’s a 3/10. We have found it to be really inconsistent in getting everything to communicate. In particular, the scale interfaced well at home and not at all at the roastery. Seems you’d better not have anything else running bluetooth or you might be on your own. It’s a lottery. In addition, it’s supplied with a beautiful magnetic dosing cup- which doesn’t fit under the spout if you add the scale. In GBW configuration, you also want to be careful not to touch the spout when removing the dosing cup, because there will be a gram or two of retained coffee grounds on the scale when you return. We’re calling it a love/hate relationship. As a GBW grinder, there was no romance at all. Acaia has plenty of work to do here.
Big miss: Any machine or grinder which requires an app. to drive it. To manufacturers, just stop it!
There were some absolutely mind blowing coffees for 2023 and a last minute entry has taken our gong:
#1 Colombia Chiroso Las Flores 90+ Naturals. Wow, wow, wow! Never before has there been a coffee which has amazed with such incredible aroma- from green, to roast, to cup.
#2 Costa Rica Cordillera de Fuego Termico B6 . Sadly all gone, but geez it was good!
#3 Colombia Tabi Natural el Divisio. Also all gone, but it was special!
#4 Colombia El Divisio Ethiopia Landrace Washed. Ethiopia Heirloom coffee grown with Colombian finesse. This is by far our favourite washed coffee for 2023
#5 India Ratnagiri Estate Jeri Patte Carbonic Maceration Natural This was an eye opener as you don’t really see CM coffee from India. The care shown in processing has delivered the most refined CM of 2023. It’s super clean and complex and represents incredible value. We have some more to roast into early 2024.
Misses: None! We didn’t buy them!