Video: Milk Texturing and Latte Art-ish

So this is the video I said I would put together for a few people who seemed interested in the latte art side of the coffee making process I posted recently. I should state formally and for the record that I am no expert or professional when it comes to milk texturing or pouring latte art… I practice the Jeet Kune Do of coffee… formalising my routines by taking the essence of understanding from as many different sources as I can find.

I’ve been playing around with my little coffee machine (the Rancilio Silvia) for the last couple of years now, and have picked up tips and tricks from all over the place. Most notably Coffee Geek, and Coffee Snobs (both of which I’m pretty sure I qualify for).

Music is ‘Woo Hoo’ by the 5,6,7,8′s which you can find on the Kill Bill soundtrack if you’re so inclined :)

For a few more indepth explanations of latte art, check out these links:
www.coffeegeek.com/guides/frothingguide
www.xpressivo.com/theespressoguide/recomended_latte.asp
www.xpressivo.com/theespressoguide/recomended_latte_art.asp

15 thoughts on “Video: Milk Texturing and Latte Art-ish”

  1. “the easy way is the right way” -so very bruce lee but yet so very, very, abstract gourmet…….

    choice bro!!!!

    dtm

  2. GP: Waste away ! that’s what practice is all about :)

    Lisa: Can’t say I’ve been to Portland (or Oregon), but hopefully my meagre efforts are almost as fascinating… They certainly keep me entertained.

    dtm: How did I know you would be reading the entire Jeet Kune Do page to find that quote… I’m going to have to check up on your skills soon…

  3. So that’s how you do it!
    Thanks for posting that. I can’t wait to try the technique. I noticed that the first two times, you tilted the mug as the milk was poured. The third time, the mug stayed flat on the surface. Does it make a difference whether the mug is tilted or flat?

  4. I am totally loving these little videos of yours. Your doing a fantastic job. Your teaching me a thing or three. I look forward to the next one. Cheers Amelita

  5. THAT WAS FANTASTIC! BRAVO! I LOVED IT!!!!! I am so going to try to make a tulip of my own this weekend! Thanks so much for making a part II!

    Oh! What software do you use to make your movies? I-Movie? Final Cut? Once again-great music choice!

    I agree with Lisa-Portland, Oregon is thee coffee town. I worked for a coffee roaster there and learned lots! You should put it on your list for places to visit!

  6. Bravo again my friend. Your instructional approach online is great for a latte art novice like me! I gave my Dad my old Cimbali Domus and took a leaf out of your book, doing an instructional DVD with subtitles and cool music. It was a giggle putting it together but I burnt my hand (not badly) trying to froth the milk and watch through the camera. Note to self. Must use a tripod next time! Ha ha :)

  7. Erielle: The tilting is personal preference. Some people think it helps to make the art come out, as the crema is all in one spot to start with, and you can get the shape of the rosetta happening before levelling it out… I mix and match my technique because I’m not sure which works best for me yet…

    Amelita: I have no idea what to do next… suggestions welcome :)

    Fer: Glad you enjoyed it… I am far less sophisticated in my movie making techniques than some, I’m just using Microsoft Movie Maker… which is simple to the point of mind numbingness… but does enough to keep me happy… I’ll have to add Portland to my list of must see places it seems…

    Alex: hope some of it is sinking in… I’ll have to come around and see how yours is progressing, and well done for making things easy on your Dad… There might be a market in instructional videos we can cash in on :)

  8. Matt, I have to admit to a fascination with latte art. The first thing I learned from your video — and I’m even more impressed now than I was before — is that it’s all in the pour. I’d had visions of someone working with a toothpick, I guess. Is there a way to practice that doesn’t require using up so much milk and espresso?

  9. Hey Rob, that’s the beauty of free poured latte art, and also the reason it’s something to aspire to for a barista, rather than just pointless decoration. The milk must be textured perfectly and the espresso shot nice and rich and dark for the free poured art to be in any way effective… So when someone can do it well, you can hope to be in for a great coffee. There toothpick thing does exist though, and is referred to as “etching”… which isn’t really my style… as it doesn’t require much skill in making the coffee itself, just some creative flair with assorted extras like chocolate sauce.

    As for how not to waste milk and espresso… there really isn’t one. I went to a latte art course recently and must have made 30 espressos and used up about 8L of milk in the process… Terribly wasteful… but great fun :)

  10. I think a great idea would be showing everyone how to maintain and clean an espresso machine. Alot of people really don’t clean their machines properly if ever and don’t realise what effect it has on producing an ok coffee compared to a simply gorgeous one.

  11. Amelita: I’ll keep it in mind… More likely is one of me making a bunch of shots of coffee that I think are really bad… and then making some that look good, and trying to explain to people what some of the element thats make a good shot are… rather than thinking crema is supposed to be bright golden yellow.

    Luca: I think I’ve got a long way to go yet… still, put me behind a machine for a few weeks and I think I could start knocking out some decent art in no time…

    Grendel: There is hope yet ! My efforts were sad little smudges when I first started… check out the very first shots I uploaded to flickr in my latte art set… not exactly awe inspiring… Still, there is no shame in admitting defeat, as long as the espresso is solid :)

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