Microfoam in 8 oz. Pitcher

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks.

Postby Sideshow » Mar 20, 2016, 7:00 pm

Hi all, I looked but couldn't find a thread with this dedicated subject so here goes.

When doing research regarding my initial set up (I'm about 2.5 months in from owning my first set up), I saw that the consensus was that 8 oz was the smallest you really want to go as far as milk pitcher size while still getting good microfoam. As I don't crank out multiple milk drinks in one sitting, or when I rarely do it's only two or three, I decided to get the smaller size to avoid waste. So far I'm happy with my choice.

My frothing skills are improving, but slowly, more slowly than my brewing skills, which is surprising. At the moment, I'm finding that at the I'm getting foam somewhat in between the dry stiff stuff and microfoam. The taste and texture are totally fine, but I'd like to be able to get that cafe look of styling SOMETHING on the top of the drink. Occasionally, I do get good texturing microfoam, but I'd like to get this more consistently.

I do all the right things as far as using ice cold milk and chilling my pitcher. I concede that I'm not using the optimal milk. I use 1%. However, I see people get microfoam with even skim, so I'm not ready to change my fat percentage yet. I start with 3 oz in the pitcher for a macchiato and 4 oz in the pitcher for a cappuccino. Again, I like to avoid waste.

Recently, my routine is to put my two holed frothing tip into the middle of the milk initially, getting the ch-ch-ch sound for a few seconds and then moving the tip down and to the side to swirl for the remainder. I'm attaining more and more success, finding that the less air I add the better my results usually.

My question is do members here have any tips specifically geared toward 8 oz pitchers? I've read the general milk frothing tips (no need to just repeat those here), and I've seen that people seem to achieve microfoam success using all sorts of methods. There's obviously more than one way to skin a cat. I figured that there might be some specific tips with respect to the smaller size of the 8 oz pitcher as it holds less volume, consists of less material, and thus heats faster.


Postby jwCrema » Mar 21, 2016, 4:54 am

I use different sized pitchers depending on the number of victims that will receive drinks. The process takes less time with the smaller pitcher which means I can't make any technique mistakes if I foam at full power. With a big pitcher there is plenty of time to recover if I am too shallow and make huge bubbles by mistake. If you're having trouble you can use less steam power to slow things down a little bit. But, the real need is to practice and there are plenty of threads with video available here.


Postby Sideshow » Mar 21, 2016, 7:42 am

I usually open up the steam nozzle all the way; maybe I can try seeing what happens if I open it partially. Thanks.


Postby Bill33525 » Mar 21, 2016, 8:58 am

The V2B has nice variable steam output. For small pitchers just open enough to get a swirling motion going. When making a single macchiato I use a 4 Oz pitcher. Takes only a few tries to get the hang of steaming small amounts of milk.