Anybody know much about automatic espresso grinders? I want one, but there are few I would like to find some more info on. also if you know of one that I do not mention please feel free to add it in.
Robur E- Or something like it. Automatic but no tamping technology except for like DYNAMOMETRIC TAMPER
Mythos- Nice automatic that has a tamping system built in, which is cool, but you still have to tamp it yourself
Volcano- Don't know much about, but interested.
Swift- Truly an amazing grinder if it works. automatic grinder and automatic tamp. I hear it jams and break often, but I wonder what causes it, and does it really happen? Are they worth it with unprofessional baristas?
Please post any cool automatic grinders you know of and any automatic tamping you know of
We have a super jolly and mini both are grinder-dosers to our 3 group machine. My situation is different than the average shop. We are in a church of 1,500 people and in between services we get mobbed by somewhere from 50-100 people that want coffee. Even more people want coffee, but there is just not enough time to serve them all. We are starting to offer pre-order and delivery this Sunday. My baristas are not formally trained, and the more I learn, neither am I. So, I want to make things easier for them, so they don't have to think as much. The more skill that I try to teach them, the more they stress and make mistakes. Eventually, I hope to go super automatic, but that is beside the point. I will make it easier in any way I can, from tamping, grinding, buttons, or anything.
The tamping device would just be for convince of use. No thinking just keep doing the same thing over again like a system.
Also, our customers are not really concerned about the quality of every drink we put out because they don't know what is proper, but I would like to be the best I can. I wan to do it right, and maybe the customers will taste it!
I completely get where you're coming from here. Church cafes are a dramatically different beast - you have all the challenges of the mad rushes that the biggest & best cafes get without the benefit of the highly trained staff that you can hire (and fire) train up, and retain for years. You also aren't being held to the same standard as they are - as long as it tastes close to right, your customer will be happy and more likely than not will be back next Sunday. Right?
I do think its possible for you to achieve quality that's at least better than average as well as adequate speed with your volunteer crew and standard tools. Training, menu, and workflow design can get you there.
I've had customers that were church cafes that built their volunteer bar staff around one or two really strong longer-term baristas. If you train up a core of people and give them the chance to do something good, chances are good that you can retain at least a few of them over time. So training them to do it right is certainly worth doing.
I'm not completely opposed to the dynometric tamper, but it has some issues. At $500, it isn't really much of a cost-saving device. Also, I suspect that it will slow your staff down vs using a traditional tamper. I've never seen fast bars use them. The nice thing is that you can always add it later if you find it necessary. I doubt you will though.
The Vario W is a fantastic home, commercial brewbar, and very light volume commercial espresso (decaf) grinder. I love them, and sell them at every opportunity. It is totally inappropriate for your bar.
I think the Super Jolly may be too slow to be anything more than a decaf grinder on your bar. The mini has no place on your bar, period. My family's shop ran the same setup as yours for a few years before adding a conical (Compak K10) and demoting the SJ to decaf. After working with that setup for 2 weeks, I couldn't believe how slow the SJ was, and could never go back. Ok in a lazy afternoon, but no good at all in a rush. A larger flat burr or conical will buy you something like 5 seconds per drink in time savings.
Hope that helps.