I spent last weekend in Sweden visiting some friends in Helsingborg. While there I picked up a Mini Santos. The mini model of the santos is not available in shops in Norway. The big brother eSantos however is everywhere. I met a Bodum tech guy in a shop once and asked him why I've never seen the smaller model. He said that is was available by special order, but only a selected few shops have been interested in stocking it. The bigger eSantos had apparently been troublesome since so many customers returned it because of failures (mostly because they didn't clean it sufficiently), so maybe that is why the mini is nowhere to be seen.
My first impression of the Mini was that it looked even smaller than I had imagined. The handle has a nice feel to it. The general impression is all good.
First brew was fun even though the brew was slightly weak. "Up north time" was only about a minute, but that was as expected. I had read lots of posts about tweaking it before buying. Last night I tried some of the tricks like angling, putting quarters under the front end and so on. It didn't work that well and I mostly ended up around 1 min 30 secs. Btw, "up north time", means the period of time that all the water is in the top part of the brewer mixing with the coffee grounds. The brewing process consists of three parts : 1. Water heats up in the bottom part and rises slowly to the top part slowly mixing with the coffee grounds, 2. All water is in the top mixing powerfully because of hot air bubbles rising from the bottom part, 3. Water has evaporated in the bottom exposing a sensor that cuts the power. The temperature drops and the vacuum sucks the coffee dwown again and through the filter. The results is a brew very much resembling french press tastewise, but a lot clearer and almost without mud in the bottom of the cup.
Bodum has a nice video (click "view product demo") demonstrating the process.
I will continue to experiment with it in the coming days. I think I will have to grind a bit finer to compensate for the short extraction. 5/11/2004 09:25:00 AM