Barista Group partners explain how the Übermilk and Markibar Izaga W streamline workflow

Barista Group

BeanScene talks to Barista Group partners on how the Übermilk and Markibar Izaga W streamline a café’s workflow by reducing waste and improving cup quality and consistency.

Over the past six years, Barista Group had built a portfolio of products that streamline many elements of coffee making, from grinding and tamping to brewing and steaming milk. Two of those products are the Übermilk automatic milk frother and Markibar Izaga W grind-by weight coffee grinder.

Designed for workflow and purpose- built for speed and efficiency, Three Beans Director Matt Howe says these products are exactly the type of high calibre equipment he looks for in his cafés, combining excellence in practicality and functionality.

“We’ve worked with Barista Group for five years now, and the first product we implemented into our cafés from (Barista Group General Manager) Joe Chalhoub was the Übermilk device when he first imported them into Australia. I think we actually received two from the first batch he bought into the country,” Matt says.

Übermilk automates the milk frothing process, delivering a consistent, ready-to- pour micro foamed milk at the barista’s desired temperature. Compact and customisable, the system looks right at home sitting next to a grinder and espresso machine on the coffee bar.

“It really reduces the amount of time spent training staff. One of the main assets of the machine is that a new barista can produce milk the same quality as, if not better than, someone more experienced,” Matt says.

A hose directly connects the unit to milk sitting in the refrigerator, reducing the time it spends out of the fridge and clutter on the bar.

The desired volume of milk is syphoned into an aerator, where a needle valve is used to control how much air is incorporated. It then runs through a high-power heater and filter, resulting in micro foamed milk pouring out of its nozzle.

“We are always looking for ways to incorporate innovative products into our cafés. For example, I visited a café in Queensland a few years ago and saw that they were using an espresso takeaway cup to dose shots. I saw how we could create a more efficient process and printed a 3D plastic dosing cup before making our own aluminium ones,” says Matt.

“The most important thing for us was that our coffee tasted the same whether a customer visited a café in Brisbane, Manly, Miranda or Parramatta. When we saw what Joe was doing and how he was incorporating innovation into the industry, we wanted to be a part of his network.”

Campos Coffee is another company that saw Barista Group’s reliable and competitively priced equipment and decided to support the brand and its products.

“When I started at Campos in 2020, they’d recently brought in the Markibar Izaga grinders. Part of my role was looking at what equipment we could offer our wholesale customers, and I quickly realised this grinder was designed for establishments with high volume output and for those wanting to eliminate steps in their workflow,” says Campos Coffee Program Specialist Geoff Clarke.

Geoff says the Markibar Izaga W features innovative Grind-by-Weight technology with instant scale-controlled dosing that guarantees maximum consistency and a constant quality in coffee, without barista adjustment.

“The grinder delivers consistent doses despite changing the grinding point, which can be altered to finer or coarser without affecting the coffee dose delivered to the filter. It also isn’t affected by natural burr wear and tear, changing the type of coffee used in the grinder, or environmental factors like temperature, humidity, or sunlight,” he says.

Users can switch between the Instant Dose and On Demand grinding modes on Izaga W grinders at the touch of a button. The work mode and status of the dosing chambers are shown in real time on the alphanumeric display.

Geoff says when it comes to supplier relations, Campos Coffee takes careful consideration into who it partners with.

“We always look for a few key things in our partnerships. Firstly, we look at the quality of the product and the coffee that comes out of it. Secondly, we consider the reliability of the equipment, and if it will reduce technician callouts and in turn reduce costs. Thirdly, while we do put a lot of investment into training staff, any way that the machinery can reduce that requirement is also super important to us,” he says.

“We want consistency to represent our brand in each of our cafés and we want to replicate that same quality through all our wholesale partners. The equipment we’ve received from Barista Group certainly helps us reach this goal.”

The Shed is another brand that takes its coffee seriously. At each of The Shed’s 23 stores, Operations Manager Frank Bilgic says quality coffee is the heart and soul of the cafés.

“We decided from day one that we must use high grade specialty beans. Our house blend regularly scores between 84 and 86 points, and we wanted the best equipment to honour those beans. That starting point allowed our head baristas and owners to work their magic on the frontline,” says Frank.

“All our stores work with a recipe and we are strict in keeping within our ranges. When we kicked off the franchise in 2014, we only used a scale to dial in the coffee. We quickly realised we needed to weigh every dose to the milligram to achieve consistency in each cup.”

Frank says the Izaga Grind by Weight has been “incredible” in achieving not only the exact dose but speed with an instant dose option.

“The exact dose was an instant game changer for our stores. It allowed for more efficiency when pulling shots. We clean our grinders every day and it’s super easy to clean as well,” he says.

Frank says the Übermilk rounds out the equipment used in The Shed cafés that offers increased consistency and workflow.

“Übermilk has not only improved efficiency but also the quality of milk being served with perfect foam and temperature in each cup. Most head baristas are unsure at first to use the Übermilk, but give them a day or two with the machine and they fall in love,” he says.

“One of our main priorities is achieving and maintaining quality across all stores. The Izaga Grind by Weight and Übermilk have become a standard part of equipment and have helped with scalability and bridging the gap between all levels of baristas. By combining high quality beans with high quality equipment, we have achieved great results across all stores.”

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This article appears in the February 2024 edition of BeanScene. Subscribe HERE.

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