Had a great time subbing in at Spellbinder today!
It was really fun to see all the old crew, make drinks, talk smack... Super fun.
And the skills don't really seem to go away.
I had some Hairbender sent down from Stumptown (Portland, OR) for the occassion. Damn!!! That's one fine espresso! It was fully appreciated by a lot of the folks.
I also pulled some shots with an interesting dry processed Brazilian from Carmo Estate. Very chocolate-toned with great dried berry notes. Quite nice actually.
About half the shots were pulled using the Naked Portafilter. For what it's worth... I'm still a believer; not only as a training tool but for the quality of the shots. But... it's much easier and better to use a double basket (tip of the day).
Finally, I played around with the distribution technique used by WRBC Champ Tim Wendelboe today. It's an unusual "circular" method that is seen on video. It seems to work at least as well as the more traditional "schomer" technique and is much more efficient.
I miss being a barista....