Category Archives: Espresso Machine

Men are pigs

You know that saying….

Let me illustrate the story of this man…

He got himself a pretty baby…

And like most men, he is never satisfied.

He complained that her limbs are not flexible enough. Cannot manipulate to his expectation.

Then he complained her mood fluctuates hot and cold.

Also, she always gave him lots of pressure.

So… like many men, he forced her to go under the knife and therapy.

And what do you know… the changes were very noticeable.

She is more flexible now. Controls her temper very well. No longer blow hot and cold and does not over-pressure him again.







Here’s how she looks like after the operation.

Notice the steam wand above? It’s from a Silvia.
Frothing milk is much easier now. Microfoam? No problem.

PID-ed… She’s more stable now. Brew at the temperature you want.

OPV. The original brew pressure was about 13 Bar. Way to high.
Now tuned to 9.5 Bar and pulled lovely espresso shots.

Vibiemme Domobar Junior Double Boiler

When it comes to making excellent ESPRESSO, it is hard to find any coffee machine in this class that can match the Vibiemme Domobar Junior Double Boiler in Malaysia.

Need a mirror? Ladies can do their make facing the side panel.

This is a TRUE ESPRESSO Machine.
Espressos pulled from this machine are some of the best I have tasted.


  • It is a Double Boiler Machine
    You can brew espresso and steam milk at the same time.
    Double copper boiler that can operate independent of each other.
  • E61 Group Head with Pre-infusion and thermal syphon
    Exposed Original E61 Group Head. Very consistent temperature stability.
  • Commercial size portafilter with a 58mm double basket
    Make real international standards double espresso.
  • 3.5 Litre water tank
    Enough water to make more than 50 cups of espresso per filling.
  • 1.8 Litre boiler
    Plenty of steam power to make smooth velvety milk.
  • Safety Switches and Controls
    Brewing temperature can be adjusted.
    Brewing pressure can be adjusted.
    Low water level alarm warning.
  • Twin pressure gauges
  • Hot water dispenser
  • Cup warmer with enough space for 6 – 8 cups
  • Stainless Steel Body
  • Large and easily removable drip tray
  • 360 degree movable steam wand with safety grip

Price = RM 7,200.00

Expobar Office Control

The Expobar Office Control

Finally, the Expobar Professional home espresso machine reached Malaysia.


  • It is a Heat Exchanger machine
    You can brew espresso and steam milk at the same time.
  • E61 Group Head with Pre-infusion and thermal syphon
    Consistent extraction and temperature stability.
  • Commercial size portafilter with a 58mm double basket
    Make real international standards double espresso.
  • 2.7 Litre water tank
    Enough water to make 50 cups of espresso per filling.
  • 1.8 Litre boiler
    Plenty of steam power to make smooth velvety milk.
  • Multiple Safety Switches and Controls
    Low water level electronic sensor that auto-fill the boiler.
    Automatically turn off heater when low water in reservoir is detected.
  • Programmable Buttons
    4 volumetric buttons to program the amount of coffee to be extracted.
  • Brew Pressure can be adjusted
  • Hot water dispenser
  • Cup warmer with enough space for 12 cups
  • Stainless Steel Body
  • 360 degree movable steam wand with safety grip

Very suitable for small cafe and beverage kiosk.

Different Types of Espresso Machines

This is an excellent write-up on the many different types of Espresso Machines by KK Yoon.

If you still have not visited the forum, now is the time.



Cold water is pumped through a serpentine path inside a thermoblock ( heated metal block ) to brew espresso. To produce steam, the thermoblock is heated to a high temperature and the pump is then turned on in pulses. Each pulse feeds a small amount of water into the thermoblock – the water immediately boils into steam.

Click on the Picture to go to the main article.

Upgrading my Oscar Espresso Machine

The Nuova Simonelli Oscar Espresso Machine is one of the best professional home machine you can find. The price is reasonable for the Malaysian market. It is not too heavy, around 18kg. Huge 2litre boiler. Plenty of powerful steam to make excellent cappuccino and latte. Commercial grade brew head and a Heat-Exchanger machine that allows you to brew espresso and froth milk at the SAME time. Specifications here.

But there are 2 “flaws’ with the Oscar.

1. The 4-holes steam tip
2. Brewing pressure

Steam Tip Problem
The original 4-holes tip has a very wide angel of dispersion. Trying to make microfoam has been really difficult. Many of us has resort to plugging a hole or 2 with toothpick. The toothpick idea does work. I plug one hole and has been able to make good microfoam. It still requires a steady hand and full concentration to achieve perfect velvety smooth frothed milk.

Finally, Irving and I got ourselves a NEW 2-holes Isomac steam tip and microfoaming has become a piece of cake.

Here is how it looks like:

High Brewing Pressure Problem
Another problem for espresso lovers are the brewing pressure. The original settings of the Oscar came with a brewing pressure of around 13 to 14 BAR. The official recommendation of espresso extraction is set at 9 Bar.

The overly high pressure resulted in espresso that is slightly more bitter and less sweetness. After we installed in an OPV (Over-Pressure Valve), the improvement is definitely noticeable. Using my favourite Supremo Highlander Blend, the improvement is obvious, less bitter and much livelier.

Do note that if you are not  a regular espresso lover and drink mostly cappuccino or latte, you will not notice much difference and this issue may not concern you at all.

Here’s what happened when Irving installed the OPV on my Oscar Espresso Machine.

Before the setup.

Installing the T-Joint

The OPV is on the right of the T-Joint.

The final measure of the pressure. It is NOW at 9Bar. (I forgot to take a pic of the original settings at 13Bar)

If you have an Oscar Espresso Machine that is more than 1 year (after warranty), you may want to consider doing the upgrade.

The New 2-holes Steam Tip cost RM55.00

The OPV cost RM200 + RM150 for installation charge.

Signature Drink

What is better than Kopi Luwak?

After Kopi Luwak, it’s time for some “better” drink?

This is the Signature Drink (Coffee Beverage) with slight modification I used for the Barista Competition recently.

Of couse, it is made from the ever reliable Oscar Professional Espresso Machine.

Here is the SECRET ingrediant.

With some cream + brown sugar.

Some fresh Supremo Blend

Dosed… 18g


Tiger Stripping

Look at the crema!!!

Frothing the milk. Pleanty of steam from the Oscar.

A Heart

A Rosetta.

It is good…


FHM 2009 – My Favourite Event of the year

This FHM is not For Him Magazine.

FHM 2009 is the Malaysia’s Official Food and Hotel show. The previous show was in 2007.
The event held in KLCC Convention Centre on the 11th to 14th August 2009. For Trade Vistors only.

Of course what were really interesting to me are all those coffee players bringing their best for the show. Who was there? Barista Coffee, Bon Cafe, Classic Coffee and Beverage (previously Simplex Maju), Dankoff Coffee Specialist, Mister Coffee and a few smaller players.

Noticeable missing was Coffex Coffee. They had a pretty large booth in 2007.

There were others quite interesting showcase of food technology, pastry art, bakery course, equipments and many more. Of course, one gets to sample some pretty tasty food too.

Ok, back to coffee. Well, I drank quite a few cups of coffee… espressos, cappuccinos, hot chocolate…yum yum yum.

Here are some photos to tell the stories.

Expobar in action in Malaysia. Serving Lavazza. Lavazza is making a comeback too.

Expobar 2 group on display

Here is the Expobar G-10 Single group. Really glad to see the Expobar entering our market. Price is decent and if you have a good barista, it can make you very good coffee.

Nuova Simonelli Aurelia, Official Machine for the World Barista Championship

2 Group Aurelia. Really love the red colour. Really sexy but sexy stuff cost money.

2 Group Francis! Francis! A capsule machine. The IPERESPRESSO.

1 Group Francis! Francis! If all you want is convenience and very average espresso, Francis! Francis! will give you that and looks good at the same time.

The Pressto SuperAuto. Looks expensive. Didn’t bother asking about it. Will make your life easy if all you want is average coffee.

Avanti Espresso. I don’t dare to ask for a drink. First, in such a specialized exhibition with many competitors, and they used UHT milk!!! Not even in a chill box!!! And the espresso extractions I saw were mainly “gushers”.

Korean Stone Coffee Roaster. This guy is interesting. The only exhibitor showing a roasting machine and they were Roasting Coffee thoughout the event. This roaster cost USD5K.


Another interesting product. Rice Biscuit Maker. This machine can make a rice cracker using only 1 teaspoon of rice. And a rice cracker is produced every 10 seconds. Really cool man. Oh Yes… tasty and healthy too. Imgine they sell for maybe RM5 for 10 pieces. 10 pieces only uses 10 teaspoons of rice man. This machine cost USD5K.