Originally from http://billykangas.blogspot.com/

Over the weekend I went up to Great Northern Roasting Company
in Traverse City Michigan with Jim Saborio of Comet Coffee. It was a huge adventure...

It was massive amounts of fun...

There was a Latte Art throw down and somehow I managed to win...

The prize was this Reg Barber C-Ripple Tamper...

It's basically a tamper with a ripple in the base so that it makes a ripple in the coffee. (Look at the pictures if you're confused...)

I wasn't really sure what it was supposed to do, and to tell you the truth I was pretty skeptical of it. It screamed gimmick to me.

I took it over the the Ugly Mug Cafe in Ypsilanti MI and pulled a shot with it... It tasted really good. Really sweet, very little bitters, but still a good body. I talked to Zak Rye a little about it. He told me that it was supposed to create a surface on the coffee that is more permeable so that coffee is extracted more evenly.
I was still really skeptical. It seemed like this couldn't really do much of anything.

I took it over to Morgan and York and did a Side by Side comparison with their staff. They noticed the same thing I did. The shot tasted noticeably sweeter and less bitter with the C-Ripple.

I wasn't convinced so I took it over to the Common Cup and pulled some shots on their Machine with it. In a side by side comparison the shots with the C-Ripple were once again sweeter and less bitter.

I figured it must be a placebo effect.

Today I brought it back to the Ugly Mug for Miro to try. He pulled to shots exactly the same except for the tamper and gave them to me in a blind test. It was clear as day to me which one was the C-Ripple. The shot was sweeter, less bitter, and had a much nicer finish. It passed the blind test with flying colors.

I have now tried the Tamper with 4 other tampers in side by side comparison. With 4 different espresso blends, on three different machines. Each time I have gotten the same results.

I have to concede that I was wrong. The Reg Barber C-Ripple makes a sweeter shot. It actually works!

Wow! Pick one up. It's worth it.

-Billy Kangas

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I couldn't agree with you all more. The Ripple tampers are just new tools. I just hope we can see people really develop new ways to use it!

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