The tale of three puck screens

Puck screen is the common recommended tool to people starting their espresso journey. It is said to improve water distribution at to the puck, which promotes even extraction which means better tasting espresso. My my best of effort, I can’t detect any change in flavor with or without the puck screen. The benefit of using puck screen – is to keep your group head clean. When you stop the pump, some of the coffee ground will be suck up to the


Thickness: 1.7mm

This is a mesh puck screen, which means it has several levels pressed together with a laser etching. It is the thickest and also the heaviest (but not by much). It used to cost around 250kr on but it is now 185kr.

Pros: It is probably the one that works best.

Cons: it feels bulky. It probably works the best but it is also the hardest to clean. I had to soak it in puly caff from time to time to clean it even after putting it in disk washing machine. There could be concern that it will cold the water down more than it should, but given its thermal mass compared to the group head it should be very negligible.


Thickness: 0.8mm

It is a hybrid puck screen, with a plate with bigger holes and a net with smaller holes. Price is around 140kr on Aliexpress but I bought 5 for 330kr.

Pros: Of all three, this one is the best looking, not as bulky as the normcore but not as slimy as the Temu one. It also seems to work great – on par with Normcore, while much easier to clean.

Cons: it’s asymmetric so if you put it in the puck up side down, it is not as beautiful.

No name Temu puck screen

I had I hope for this but it turn out to be quite a disappointment. It is by far the cheapest, for around 2 pieces/35kr. It is simply a very thin metal place with holes

Pros: It is the thinnest (0.2mm), and also the lightest (2.7gr), so virtually no impact on thermality. It is also the easiest to clean.

Cons: it is too thin it is easy to bend, harder to hold as well. When you store 2 or more of them, they are easy stuck together. Performs the worst as the holes are big enough for grounds to get through.

All in all, my favorite is the 3MHW-Bomber. It has the best craftmanship, it has a nice balanced between size and function. After some trials I decided to put away my Normcore and Temu, and use it exclusively.

Green coffee bean suppliers in EU

Why the criteria

FOB Price: one of the important aspect of specialty coffee is fair trade – farmers produce high quality coffee, and they should get fair price for what they harvest. FOB Price is basically what the importer (in many cases, the supplier themselves) pays for the coffee. It’s a great deal of transparency. And while it’s not required, I would be happy to know what the farmers are getting.

Cupping score: Coffee that is rated as specialty has to at least 80 cupping score by SCA (it’s not the only criteria, but an important one). If you are paying 200/20 EUR or more per kg for green coffee beans, you should know what you get. While a higher cupping score is not necessarily more expensive, it depends a lot on the supply-demand balance, but I’d be happier to pay more money for higher cupping score.

Year of harvest: Green coffee beans have much longer shelf life than roasted coffee ones. While for roasted, you should finish your bag within 2 months (and some purists might say just 1 month), green beans can be keep for 12 months in proper storage conditions, if not more. But they do not last forever, the fresher the beans = the better, which is why it’s important for the supplier to disclose the year of harvest (or even, month of harvest)

Suppliers in Sweden

I started with Whileelkcoffee and Rawcoffee. Too early to tell about the bean’s quality, but I must say I really like Whiteelkcoffee’s packaging. They are a branch/subsidiary of Kafferosteriet Koppar AB, which has some great coffees.

It is told that almost any roasters will sell your raw coffee if you ask nicely, so you probably ask your favorite roaster if they have green beans to sell. The commonly accepted “rule” is green coffee is 1/2 price of roasted ones, so you might offer that to the roasters.

I would recommend to buy from suppliers that focus on coffee beans – they usually know more about their stuffs – than the suppliers that sell general groceries. But you can always try your luck, maybe there is a hidden gem somewhere.

SiteUrlFree shipping thresholdBag sizeFOB priceCupping ScoreYear of HarvestNote
White elk coffeeButik: Råkaffe – White Elk Coffee350kr1, 10kgNoNoNo10% for order over 1000kr
Raw coffeeKaffebönor – RawCoffee350kr1kgNoYesYes10% coupon code for next order
Drop coffeeBuy Coffee – scroll down to buy your coffee – Drop Coffee300kr1kgYesNot specific, 86+YesSelect unroasted coffee from drop downlist
Muttley & Jack’sUrsprungskaffe – Muttley & Jack’s ( free shipping, 69kr regardless of order value1kgNoYesNo
BaristashoppenRÅKAFFE – ROSTA SJÄLV – Baristashopen350kr250gr, 1kgNoNoNo
MoccazinoHuvudkategori 3 ( free shipping, min 229kr, shipping cost increased with weight0,75kgNoNoYes
Humle gårdenGreen coffee for those who roast their own coffee – Humlegårdens EkolagerNo free shipping, 99kr shipping, increased with weight500grNoNoYesReduced price for 10 bags

Suppliers outside Sweden

Of course I would prefer buying from Sweden for obvious reasons. But I can’t resist the urge to try some exotic beans, so I have been looking around to see where I can source my green beans from EU.

This is inspired by EU Green Coffee Sources List 2023 (, but with more information you can find in one place. Sadly many of them are are not shipping to Sweden, but you probably can arrange some shipping if you ask nicely.

SiteUrlCountryShip to SwedenShipping costFOB priceCupping scoreBag sizesYear of harvest
fleurdecafeUnroasted coffee beans – Green coffee beans | Fleur de café (
groenekoffiewinkelUnroasted Coffee Beans | Up To 15% Discount At Green Coffee Shop (
fascino-coffeeGreen Coffee Beans | Coffee roasting company Fascino (
godincoffeeUnroasted coffee beans – Green coffee beans | Fleur de café (
roastrebelsBuy green coffee in small quantities (1kg / 5kg / 15kg) | Roast RebelsGermany/SwizerlandYes9.9EUR, free if order value is 120EUR or moreNoNo1, 5, 15kgYes
rohebohnenGreen Coffee | Rohebohnen.deGermanyYes13.9EURNoNo500gr, 1kgNo
hoofdkwartierUnroasted Coffee Beans Archives – Headquarters Coffee Roasting (
ShokuninGreen coffee – ShokuninNetherlandsYes22 EUR, free if order value is 200 EUR or moreNoNo
RoestartRohkaffee ( EURNoNo500gr, 1kgNo
goodkarmacoffeeRohkaffee – Good Karma CoffeeGermanyNo
docklandsRohkaffee kaufen und selber rösten (,5 and 10kgYes
rjavitukanSurova kava Archives – Rjavi tukanSlovakiaYes21.9EURNoNo1,3,5, and 10kgNo
koffiebranderijdekoepoortGROENE ONGEBRANDE KOFFIEBONEN – Koffiebranderij de KoepoortNetherlandsYesFlat rate 24.5 EURNoNo1kgNo
Falcon-microShop Europe – Falcon Micro ( (EU warehouse)Yes246kr for minimum 5kg, increased with weightNoYes5 and 10kgNo
88 grainsShop | 88 GrainesFranceYes6.9EUR minimum, increased with weight, free for 300 EUR+NoYes1kgYes (Month/year)
kaffeboxKaffeabonnement med Skandinavias topp mikrobrennerier – KaffeBox.noNorwayYesMinimum 62.5NOK, increased with weightNoNo250grNo
risterietGrønne/Rå kaffebønner – WebshopDenmarkYesNo, 350DKKNoNo1kg, 5kgNo

Cheap coffee stuffs from China – a review

A word of warning, buying stuffs from China means long shipping time, and you will have almost no support or customer service (including warranty) ever. If things go wrong during transport – with very cheap items it’s not trackable once it leaves China, so it’s potentially

Timemore Black Mirror Basic Plus – $40/400kr

This is the most “luxurious” item I bought, and I think it’s well worth it. It’s well built, it’s fast, it’s accurate. Maybe it’s not as good as an Acaia – I have never been able to justify spending $200 for a scale, but I’d say it’s more than enough. It does not really matter if your espresso is off by a few tenth of a gram.

My rating: Buy!

Sprouted cup – 70kr

Once upon a time I made a double shots for me and my wife. I used the sprouted portafilter to divide the espresso into 2 cups, nice and easy. But that poses 2 problems: first i lose the fantastic view of bottomless portafilter extraction. Second, the sprouted portafilter is a PITA to clean properly. So I tried a different option – sprouted cup.

You can see in the photo above, a cup with sprouts that makes it easier to divide the espresso. It works, much better than normal cup. But it is also thinner and loose heat much faster.

We have now switched to 2x18gr shots every time I made coffee, so this cup just sits idle around, as it should.

My rating: Buy if no option is available to you.

Bottomless portafilter and balanced tamper

The balanced tamper is to fix the unbalanced tamping – with the traditional tamper, you might title your tamper a bit – i.e. it is not completely balanced and that might result in an uneven tamping. The plate will sit on the wall of the portafilter, and the base will do tamping. Because of that, you are guaranteed a perfect tamping every time.

The balanced tamper is very nice and I liked it a lot. But it has another design flaw – coffee ground gets into between the base and the outer plate. You will have to clean it as often as daily.

My rating:

Bottomless portafilter: Skip. Save and buy some nicer one

Balanced tamped: Buy if you can keep up with cleaning.

No name coffee scale – 20kr (96% off)

I am happy with my Timemore but I hate to move it back and forth between grinder and espresso machine, so I bought another one just for weighing coffee beans – because of crazy deal on Temu. It is a copy of the Black Mirror but smaller. The scale is quite flimsy, and not intuitive to use – you have to hold down the Power button for a few seconds to turn it on. The scale is fairly accurate, but slow to respond, and despite being tout as a coffee scale, there is no silicone pad to protect the scale from heat.

For 20kr, because I got the 96% off discount for first order on Temu, it’s OK. No way I would buy this otherwise. Certainly not at the “full” 250kr price.

My rating: Avoid. Buy Timemore.

Coffee bean dosing bowl – 65kr

When you get into single dosing, a dosing bowl is a must – it is nice to pour beans into it and then pour them into the grinder. I ordered one but it arrived broken (who could have thought a china would not stand shocks of ~10.000km traveling without a lot of wrapping?).

The bowl looks good in photos and seems practical. In the end China is known for their china, so what could go wrong. Well, it’s well made, but with one flawed design – as the nose is very low, beans will jump out of the bowl when you pour them into it. Not much, but 1 bean out of the bowl is 1 bean too many. The bowl was meant for tea (which is not as jumpy as coffee beans)

If you compare the design of this bowl

With the equivalent of Loveramics:

You can clearly see the difference. Loveramics obviously thought about the issue and their design is meant to fix it! I’m ordering the loveramics ones, although they are much more expensive!

My rating: Avoid. Buy Loveramics.

WDT – 100kr

You can see from some of photos above this WDT – I actually bought it for much less, but the price you can get now is closer to 100kr. It is as simple as some long, thin needles attached to a base. Surprisingly it works well to distribute the coffee ground. This is one thing you should own, and because it is so simple, you can’t go wrong. This is one thing that you can buy from Aliexpress without much thinking.

My rating: Buy!

Dosing cup – 70kr

When I decided to try single dose on my Eureka Mignon Specialita, I bought two things: the hopper and the dosing cup.

The dosing cup allows you to grind into it, maybe give it a few shakes then pour it to the portafilter. It easier to use in cases you can’t hold a portafilter, and the shakes are equivalent to using WDT (but some people still use WDT after that), so it has some values. However, the dosing cup has marks inside the cup which allows coffee ground to stick. You will eventually have to clean it daily to avoid build up.

Once you get a hold of Niche Zero dosing cup – you immediately notice the differences in craftmanship and finish. It is much better built, and it is entirely smooth inside. It’s unfair comparison because while the NZ dosing cup is $39.99 without shipping, but as you only need to buy once, maybe save up for that if you need a dosing cup.

Single Dosing Hopper – 200kr

The idea is by slamming on the cover, it forces the remaining coffee grounds inside the burr out. It was pretty well made and fits well to my Specialita (and was advertised to fit with any Eureka Mignon grinder). However, it has the bad plastic smell. Not really strong but definitely there, which made me question if it is safe for food. The It works, but I hate the smell. the main problem is that Eureka Mignon Specialita is not designed to be a single dosing grinder, so while it works to some extend, the workflow is not smooth or intuitive

Closing thoughts

So my advice when it comes to ordering cheap coffee stuffs from China (or with Chinese sellers) is … don’t. If you have to, stay with some establish brands like Timemore. Others are cheap for a reason and don’t expect them to feel nice or perform well.

Cleaning/maintaining routine for espresso machines

“There is no too clean espresso machine”. That is my favorite quote when it comes to cleaning espresso machines and equipment. When you use your machine, the coffee ground and oil build up, and it can, and will affect the taste of your espresso. Why spend thousands of USD buying fancy machines, and few dozens for each bag of specialty coffee, without getting the best out of it.

Property cleaning and maintaining machine is also helping to prolong your machine and increase your enjoyment of using it.

For every machine

Keep your group head clean after each use. There are several ways of doing that, and you can do a combination of them that you like best

  • Draw some hot water from the group head with an empty portafilter to clean any debris remaining
  • Use a paper filter or a puck screen. This prevents the coffee ground from being attached to the group head.
  • Wipe the group head with a wet cloth (preferably microfiber) after the shot
  • Use this fancy tool from Espazzola to clean it up.

You will also need to backflush – i.e. using a blind basket – a basket without holes so water can’t be escaped. It will flow back to the machine and escape through the OPV (over pressure valve), bringing with it any coffee ground and oil that is inside the group head. Each type of group head needs a different backflush schedule – more on that later.

For milk wand

  • Purge the wand before each use.
  • Wipe the wand right after frothing. Immediately if your is not non burn – i.e. it gets very hot to touch. Otherwise the milk will be baked and is very hard to remove.
  • Purge the wand as soon as possible after each froth.
  • If your milk wand has removable tip, remove it once every month to check for blockages

For equipment

If you are using a bottomless portafilter, either wipe it or rinse it under running water after each use to remove any stuck coffee ground. One quick way to check if the basket is clean is to use a household paper to wipe it. If it comes out clean, you are good. If it comes out black – you need to clean a bit more.

If you are using the normal portafilter with sprout, pop the basket out and clean both it the portafilter (if you have never done it, you might be surprised, yuck!). This is also one of the reason I’d prefer the bottomless.

Every week, soak your equipment that have been in contact with coffee ground in a detergent that can clean coffee oil. I recommend to use puly caff as it’s effective, safe (it’s NSF-certified), and cheap to use. Add 10gr of pulycaff to 1 liter of hot water, stir it well then soak your equipment for 15 minutes, then clean and rinse them thoroughly.

For Integrated/saturated group head

Those group heads can be backflush as many times as needed.

  • Once every week, use 3-4gr of pulycaff in a blind basket, and draw a few shots until the pulycaff is dissolved, then draw a few more until the water in blind basket is “clean”. Remove the blind basket, and draw a few more shots without the portafilter locked in.
  • Every 3 months, or less, open the shower head and clean it. (tip: make sure that the group head is cooled down and completely comfortable to touch. it can retain heat for a long time)
  • Change your gasket every year if it is rubber (as it degrades with heat), or every other year if it is silicone. That is just the guideline, check if it is hard and has lost its elasticity.

For E61 group head

E61 group head needs lubing with food grade silicone grease, and backflushing with pulycaff washing that away, so you need to be conservative about that. Instead:

  • Backflush with water only after the final shot of the day.
  • Backflush with pulycaff every other month, then grease your lever. If you do not, your lever will be squeaky, it will feel tight to open/close, and it will wear much faster.
  • Open your shower head every week and clean it up. Use a spoon and gently remove the shower head. If you have a hardened rubber tool to avoid scratches, even better.
  • Change your gasket every year if it is rubber (as it degrades with heat), or every other year if it is silicone. That is just the guideline, check if it is hard and has lost its elasticity.


Limescale is the #1 enemy of espresso machine, especially for dual boilers ones with the steam boiler – as the water boils, it leaves the remaining mineral behind, the TDS in the water increases, and the chance for limescale build up gets higher.

  • If your water is relatively soft, always use the water softener and change it when it is used up.
  • If your tap water is very hard, you might need some other options instead of using it directly. You might have to use distilled water + added mineral (distilled water does not taste good, and it can also be harmful with electronic component in the boilers. Certain sensors rely on the ions available in the water to work (properly).
  • Draw 200ml of water from the hot water tap to increase the water exchange, use that for heat your cup. Don’t draw too much as it can expose the heating element to the air and fry it. This ensure that your steam boiler gets fresh water every day, avoid high concentration.
  • Descale according to the manufacturer guideline. NOTE: be more cautious if one or both of your boilers are brass, as descaling chemical can cause harm to them.


Each use

Draw some water from steam boiler if you have dual boilers

Clean group head and portafilter

Wipe and purge milk wand

Wipe splashes of coffee (from channeling) or milk (from frothing) if any

Every day

For E61: backflush with water only after last pull of the day

Weekly (or every 3 days, depends on our usage)

Soak portafilter, basket etc. in pulycaff solution, and clean them thoroughly

Clean the dip tray

For saturated group head: backflush with pulycaff

For E61: remove and clean shower head

Every other week

Clean water tank with some disk soap, rinse it thoroughly

Every other month

For E61: backflush with pulycaff, then lubricate the lever

Every 3 months

For saturated group head: remove and clean the shower head

For E61 with flow control: lubricate the o rings of the flow control

Every year

Check gasket and replace if they become hard

Remove cover and check for internal for any sign of leaks

Every other year

Consider descaling if necessary

The economy of making espressos at home

Making espressos, and espresso-based drinks at home is not about the joy of a hobby, but also an economic way of drinking high quality coffee. Let’s talk about it.

An espresso at a cafe costs around 30kr, while a big latte costs around 45kr.

if you drink twice a day, your and your partner would cost between 120kr and 180kr

Assuming you drink 300 days a year – then each year, it’s around 36.000kr and 54.000kr for coffee 😮

Now if you are making espressos at home.

Each double shot espresso needs about 18gr of coffee, but we have to consider waste and throw away (for example when you dial a new coffee), so let’s be conservative and assume that 1kg of coffee makes around 45 shots.

A good 1kg of coffee is between 250kr to 400kr (specialty grade – and that is usually much better than what you are served in a normal cafe). So it’s about 5.5 to 8.9kr for coffee for each drink.

A big latte needs around 250ml of milk (including waste and throw away), so each 1.5l of milk can make 6 latte. A 1.5l of Arla standard 3% milk costs 17.9kr (as we always buy at Willys), so it’s 3kr per drink for milk.

Of course you need electricity for heating up the machine. My machine which is an E61 uses around 0.6 kwh-0.7 kwh per day for 4 lattes. Electricity price has gone up a bit, we are quite lucky to only have to pay a fixed price of 1.3kr/kwh, but let’s say you have to pay a bit more, 1.5kr/kwh, it’s 1kr per day for the machine.

And you need other things for cleaning and maintenance – you need water softener. I used Lelit 70l water softener which costs around 110kr/each, and I change every 2 months, which means almost 2kr/day. I also need pulycaff for cleaning machines and other stuffs, but after 2 years I haven’t gone through 1 bottle of 900gr yet (costs around 150kr), so the cost is very minimal.

Basically, it’s 22-36kr per coffee per day, 12kr per milk per day, 1kr electricity per day, and 2kr per cleaning per day, it’s around 37kr- 51kr per day for 4 lattes.

Now you have coffees at home and you will drink more often, let’s say it’s 365 days per year because you also have friends come over, it’s 12,410kr to 18,615kr.

Even with some fancy machines and equipment to start with, you would be break even in one year. That includes things like fancy cups, WDT, scale etc.

Machine costN/A10.000kr – ∞ 
Per drink30-45kr8.5-12.5kr
Drinks per year4x per day, 3 days4x per day, 365 days
Cost for coffee36000-54000kr12410kr-18615kr

Some might argue that the making espressos also costs time, but you also need to walk down the street (assuming that you have a cafe right around corner) and wait for your coffee. Also need to factor the time to put on/off clothes.

Not to mention the relaxing feeling when brewing espressos is priceless.

Of course those numbers only apply if you drink coffees frequently. Things will change if you drink less, or more, or without milk.