*Ahem* Sounds like some members need to revisit Hall of Shame: ''What I did when I was a newbie''
jsweeney wrote:It seems that I need the perfect crema device that comes with the original, but since mine was purchased second hand off Ebay it wasn't included. Is there a way to get a new one without purchasing an entirely new portafilter or is that the only way? Could there be another way to pull a proper shot without the device?
Below is a photo of a "perfect crema device", or what is more commonly called a pressurized portafilter basket by non-marketing types:
That teenie tiny hole introduces air, producing a "fake" crema. The marketing people probably figure it's better to have something
visible they can call crema than nothing, since it takes fresh coffee, a good grinder, and good technique to produce "real" crema. Like learning to cook a fine meal, many consumers don't have the patience, funds, or interest in such ventures, they just want a fast cuppa joe.
My last comment is not directed at you, but a musing I would apply to myself: If I were to do it all again, I would start with the absolute best grinder I could afford and get an espresso machine later. I would prefer a couple years of fantastic French press made with fresh coffee than mediocre espressos. Even my dad, who used preground coffee for countless years, raves about the drip coffee he makes today using a Solis Maestro+ that I bought him for Christmas (his first comment was: "This grinder is huge! What's wrong with my Braun grinder?" Good thing I didn't get him the grinder I really wanted to buy -- a Rancilio Rocky).
cannonfodder wrote:You can pick up a grinder in the $150 range that will do the job, even cheaper if you can find someone that is selling their machine for an upgrade. I recently parted with my almost new MDF for $100.
Sometimes just posting in CG's Buy, Sell, & Trade
that you're looking for an "upgrade fever victim" will push someone over the edge and they'll sell their grinder.