Page 1 of 1

Bialetti Brikka

PostPosted: Sun May 22, 2011 2:07 pm
by walts
Anyone any idea if Bialetti have any intentions, ever, of manufacturing their aluminium Mokka Express stovetop in stainless steel? It would be brilliant, given the Mokkas ability to turn out a passable Espresso with a decent show of crema. You only have to put a little water in any aluminium pot, rub the surface a little and see the black residue that stains the water and which, according to the experts is a deadly poison.

I have often thought of buying one of these and seeing for myself this crema that it is lauded as being able to produce, but the thought of all that cast aluminium has always turned me off. I have, in the past, written to Bialetti and sugested that it would be a charitable act and save millions from poisoning if they could change the material from aluminium to stainless steel. But they have never even bothered to reply.

A shame really as they do produce other stovetop appliances in stainless steel. I wonder what other members think to this?

RE: Bialetti Brikka

PostPosted: Sun May 22, 2011 2:52 pm
by bruceb
I don't know who "the experts" are, but I have been involved in translating many papers on the potential "dangers" of aluminium used in cooking utensils of all kinds and I can say without question that all of the Alzheimers, metal-poisoning, etc. data is rubbish. What's more, the amount of Al++ ions that are released from metal cookware is negligible. I would definitely worry more about getting run over while walking along a street than suffering from any negative health effects from aluminium cookware, including mocha pots. Stainless steel is virtually a heat insulator with a thermal transfer coefficient of 21 W/mK vs. aluminium - 221 W/mK. The black residue you rub off is insoluble aluminium oxide that is harmless.

The only exception to the above is when cooking highly acidic foods like tomatoes, which can cause dissolution of aluminium, whereby no one has ever shown that this is a serious health hazard. Cooking eggs in aluminium can cause discoloration because of the reaction with sulfides, but this is an aesthetic problem rather than a health danger.

All that said, I have never had a really good cup of coffee from a mocha pot. :shock: :lol:

I have 22 different models, roughly half of them stainless steel. They are quite decorative.

edit: Sorry, this pressed all of my buttons. Maybe I should note that I have no personal interest in the aluminium industry, no stocks in any related companies, etc. I have revulsion for bad science and sensationalism, scare mongering and FUD. I think I need a coffee.

RE: Bialetti Brikka

PostPosted: Sun May 22, 2011 4:50 pm
by walts
Hi Bruceb. Extremely well put and who am I to argue against such a knowledgeable gent? No. I think I shall turn back before I hit the buffers and invest in one of the Handpresso Domepods. Well I have the CO2 and I have the coffee, so maybe with a little (or maybe a lot) of practise, I shall be able, at last, to sit and enjoy a nice espresso. We shall see. Many thanks for the pleasure you have given me. Enjoy your espresso.

Re: RE: Bialetti Brikka

PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2011 12:19 pm
by GreenBean
bruceb wrote:..... I have revulsion for bad science and sensationalism, scare mongering and FUD. I think I need a coffee.

You are not alone Bruce.:twisted: Unfortunately the main stream media is full of these very things. Luckily, as you suggest, coffee helps ease the pain. :D

RE: Re: RE: Bialetti Brikka

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:01 pm
by zix
Aluminium issues or not (I am not worried, though, as Bruce says, there are more worrying things happening every day) the Brikka is by far the best moka pot out there if you ask me. At least of those I have tried - but I have tried many.
Don't wait until they make a stainless variant, buy it because it makes a good moka cup. Then feed it with freshly roasted coffee and the coffee will shine even though the Brikka doesn't (it is semi matte ;)). You have to set the grind and dose if you want a nice and controlled extraction - and you'll have to watch the pot too. You can help the coffee up by giving the weight a twist or two when you hear that the water is boiling. Be quick, everything happens faster with a Brikka. Start pouring the coffee into a cup as soon as you see that the extraction is building up and the first quarter or so of the pot is filling up with crema-topped coffee. Don't wait for the gurgling sound, the coffee coming out last has a more burnt taste (although not as burnt as with a common moka pot), you don't want all of that anyway, perhaps just a little.
BTW, hello again to anyone that may remember me, have been elsewhen for a while but back for now :)