Saturday, October 27, 2001
ahh. . .the italgi jr./demoka m-203 grinder has arrived. . . and it is all good.
came yesterday; this morning i washed it, plugged it in, ground a couple of doses to see what would work best for silvia. started off where fellow coffee fanatic mark a. of alt.coffee fame had left it. mark a. has a pasquini livia, a super machine, and one a couple of steps up from my little silvia.
then for experiment's sake turned it back to 3, which was too fine for silvia. there are two sub-notches between 3 and 4, and i tried it at both of them. but 4 proper seems to do the trick for me.
at 4 i get the slow-syrup coffee after 8 seconds, where it dribbles out in little spiralling mousetails. i think the spiral may indicate my coffee's stale?
so after switching beans, and running some more trial shots, i did get some lovely shots, with the beautiful pompeii red crema you see on schomer's book (without the latte art, tho'!). this was the first time i had done this without brand-new fresh-ground coffee from some place like caffe d'arte or caffe orsini.
so a huge thank you, mark a. -- you're a real gentleman with whom it's a pleasure to do business!
Friday, October 26, 2001
the new york times gettin' hip to espresso. . .
r.w. apple -- the legendary political journalist, famed phrasemaker and well-known coffee lover -- writes on coffee while in italy, chatting up dr. ernesto illy of illy caffe fame.
while the byzantine workings of capitol hill don't faze apple, chemistry does seem to. . emulsion, dispersion, colloidal. . poor apple. colloidal suspension vs. colloidal dispersion. . .somebody give him a chemical dictionary! the difference seems mainly to be in the stability of the substance; one will settle out, the other won't. . .
chemistry whizzes, please chime in here!
apple does seem to worship illy, and no doubt few know as much about coffee than he does, even though most coffee fanatics find illy's product a tad under-roasted. i myself haven't used illy with my silvia. . .maybe i should give it another try. . illy packs all its coffee in argon gas to prevent staling, but of course, once you've opened it at home, it's gonna stale fast. . .unless you can vac pack it yourself!
Thursday, October 25, 2001
working now on yoga. . .
long-time readers may recall that i started a little yoga program at my job. now that we've moved temporarily to the woolworth building, we really don't have any space at all for yoga. it's a problem! as a result i'm looking for nearby space. . .a ymca, a yoga center with some empty time in the afternoon. . .
i thought i had hit the jackpot when walking down chambers i saw a sign for yoga. however the space turned out to be not a yoga studio, but a religious center devoted to something called dahnak. i'm sure dr. lee is a nice person, but i can tell from the vibe it's not gonna happen for us there. . .
space! i need space! as tourist dennis tito said, "space is paradise!"
Wednesday, October 24, 2001
just when i was in despair, alt.coffee comes through!
it seemed like i couldn't find the demoka m-203 grinder anywhere in the country. when one mark a. of alt.coffee emailed me to say that he had bought one, rebranded as an italgi jr. and he wanted to sell it, since he actually needed a higher-volume machine; the single dose thing wasn't working for him.
he has a pasquini livia and found the demoka/italgi perfect for that demanding machine. so it should certainly be fine for my silvia. counting the days until the mail comes. . .
Monday, October 22, 2001
well, let me say it's so sweet to know that flash geniuses are concerned about my sad fate!
so it's a big hello to j. edelman of five palms and the incredible phil torrone. i'm alive and well and surfing the net! speaking of flash genuises, has everyone seen the awesome but completely practical site r. blank designed for bob thurman?
i did have the good luck to go back to work today; long-time readers know that my little software company found temporary refuge in the woolworth building. such a lovely gothic pile! after breezing through the gilt-mosaic lobby and up the grand staircase -- so gone with the wind -- it's a total mindchange as you hit the mezzanine.
the new owners of the woolworth building remodeled the floors in full dot-com decadence last year -- the steel herman miller furniture, the aeron chairs. you'd think we're gonna party like it's 1999 -- again. not that i'm complaining mind you! it's beautiful and i'm so happy to get over recent tragic events and start moving on with our lives!
but still in this all-toys-all-the-time luxury, they forgot. . .you guessed it. . .the espresso machine! must work on building services. must work hard. . .