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Tow Ball tamper for ROK and Presso now available in Canada

tow ball tamper for rok and presso

Thanks to our mates at our sister business, Presso Canada, the Top Shed “Tow Ball” tamper for ROK and Presso espresso makers is now available in Canada. Click for more details:

Unboxing a new ROK espresso maker

In case you haven’t had an opportunity to unbox a ROK espresso maker for yourself, our mate Scott has created a little taster for you. Check the video to see the ROK unboxed and used to make delicious espresso. You’ll also see cameos from the ROK grinder, Top Shed Tow Ball tamper and Top Shed coffee.

Where to buy ROK espresso maker:

New Zealand:

Yes, you can store coffee beans in the freezer

freeze coffee beans to keep them fresh

I’ve got a dirty little secret: for more than five years I have been freezing whole-bean coffee. I say this knowing full well that a thousand roasters and coffee purists from around the world may rain judgement upon me, but if done right, freezing extends the freshness and shelf life of your coffee for months. The key advantages of freezing are that you’ll save money by buying larger amounts of coffee at a time (freezing the excess), you’ll reduce waste, and avoid the inevitable declining enjoyment due to staling beans. Continue reading

7 Deadly Sins of the Home Barista

7 deadly sins of the home barista

You can make better coffee. Below you’ll find seven of the most common obstacles to producing cafe-quality coffee at home. Of course, there are countless ways to improve your coffee, but what you’ll find below will certainly put you on the right path. It’s worth adding that nothing suggested below includes spending lots of money on high-end equipment. You can actually improve your brews and save money at the same time. It’s a win/win scenario.

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Coffee + AeroPress + hiking in the Swiss Alps

Tim Shirey recently shared a great video of his newly purchased ROK espresso maker and naked portafilter producing a beautiful espresso pour. I checked out Tim’s other videos and found this great Aeropress demo with spectacular scenery and a clear guide to the inverted method. As a result, I’ve never wanted to be further away from my office and computer than I do right now. Amazing.

Dear Coffee Roaster, it’s not you, it’s me

coffee bags

I’m the first to admit I like to play the field. With so many roasters, blends, origins, and roasting styles available, I can’t imagine limiting myself to the same coffee, day after day, no matter how good it is. Even though I’m thoroughly enjoying the beans I have right now, I probably won’t buy another bag. I’m eager to find out what’s next.

How about you? Do you stand by your favourite coffee blend or do you prefer to mix things up?

Kryptonite for coffee grinders

piece of concrete in bag of coffee

This little blighter stowed away and travelled to Australia in a bag of coffee from Colombia. If I had not seen this tiny piece of concrete, smaller than a coffee bean, it would have easily cracked the ceramic burrs in my Porlex grinder. 99.9% of the time coffee companies will catch foreign material in a de-stoner before it can make it into bags of roasted coffee destined for customers’ kitchens. It’s still worth keeping an eye out for stowaways in your coffee through. Your grinder will thank you.

ROK Versus Bad Beans

Rok espresso maker and ROK grinder versus bad beans

A well-made espresso is photogenic and I often share pictures of my brews on social media. Admittedly, it’s easier to pull nice looking shots of espresso on the ROK espresso maker when you use super-fresh, high-quality beans. A more budget-conscious coffee drinker who buys less fancy beans from the local supermarket may end up producing coffee that’s not as photogenic (for what it’s worth) as the ones I put up on Instagram. I’m often asked by ROK users why their espresso doesn’t look like mine. It’s probably a bit short-sighted of me to just encourage folks to buy better beans, but that’s often my first response. Obviously, it’s not only about the beans, but also method and equipment play a big part.

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Camp Coffee: Cafflano Klassic

Cafflano Klassic coffee maker outdoors

There’s nothing like getting out of the house or office and making coffee in the great outdoors. This is especially true on a sunny Winter day, after a string of cold, gloomy days here in Melbourne, Australia.

This week I took the Cafflano Klassic and gave it the camp coffee treatment. I’m always interested in whether a portable coffee maker is any good once you take it out of the kitchen and try to use it in the wild.

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So you think the ROK can’t produce crema? These 25 Videos say otherwise.

So you think the ROK can't produce crema

A common criticism levelled at the ROK espresso maker is that it can’t produce crema. In almost all cases we’ve dealt with, the issue turned out to be the grinder. If your grind setting is off, or your grinder won’t grind fine enough, you won’t get the espresso you’re looking for from the ROK. Here are 25 videos of folks who have figured that out.

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