From a wine perspective, a barista is half winemaker half sommelier in the coffee making process.
Like wine, I suppose you could consider it to be a three-stage production from farm to cup: grower, roaster, and barista. Of course you’d have nuanced in the process: tasting, blending, and tweaking.
For wine however, the product is complete, just pop the cork or less romantically crack the screwcap.
But to be the recipient of well roasted coffee and not to playfully destory it, you still have to surmount the extraction hurdle—so the eternal question. Is there an optimal extraction?
I entertained the idea of buying espresso machine—ECM Giotto after thorough research—but the idea of a professional quality domestic machine just didn’t gel with me.
Running a boiler, to prime the machine to get the grind right, for the optimal extraction was just not worth it.
I couldn’t see the point in all the ceremonious pomp for 30mL of coffee any time of the day. Even if you were to have six per day that means you’re going to be running the boiler all day too. Not only do I have better things to do with my time, it’s also not environmentally sustainable. Leave the espressos for a capable barista and pay them for it.
My theory is, keep the number of variables (for extraction) as low as possible which lead me to a type of paper filter extraction under the proprietary name of Chemex.
Another dorky named excellently designed American product. The yanks are good at that.