Thursday, April 19, 2007

Cold Chillin'

It's been awhile since I placed an order for the PolyScience AntiGriddle. The rep said they would call when it was ready. They never called and I presumed it was just taking a long time for them to work up another batch.

I roll into Spro today to find a very large box sitting on the floor.

From PolyScience.

Suddenly, it's like Christmas and I'm giddy with excitement.

It's Thursday. Just another Thursday. And I've joined the ranks of some of the finest chefs in the world.

The box is pretty big. And pretty heavy. About seventy pounds. After a few moments of composure, I tear into the box, unpacking my destiny.

The AntiGriddle. It really is about the size of a microwave. A small microwave. We hoist it into its' position of honor next to the La Marzocco Linea 3AV.


Within a few moments, Spro Coffee has the unique distinction of being the first and currently only coffee bar in the world featuring the AntiGriddle.

Clover? Bah!

Spike from Artifact Coffee asks me the question that everyone asks: "What are you going to do with it?"

Honestly, I really don't know.

Instead, I realize I'm without my camera and rush back home to get it for some "First Look" pics.


Giddy with excitment but without a clue.

After a few promo shots with the AntiGriddle, I'm left with the excruciating task of figuring out what I'm going to do with this technological wizardry. A month or so ago I was thinking about using the AntiGriddle for the USBC and today I feel how Nick Rhodes must have felt right before Duran Duran's "Sing Blue Silver" world tour in 1984.

Back then, the Fairlight CMI was the "to die for" sampling keyboard. All the cool kids, like Thomas Dolby and Devo, had one. Nick Rhodes had finally acquired his right before the tour and said in a later interview that he hadn't the time to really get into the meat of the Fairlight and thus the keyboard was reduced to very basic duties.

Now that the AntiGriddle is here and the United States Barista Champion is in a couple of weeks, I'm left pondering whether I'll have enough time to tweak and fiddle with the thing to create something smashing for the competition using the AntiGriddle. Or will it just sit there looking pretty?

As of yet, I have no answers. Just a world of possibilities.

In the meantime, here's some pics of some quick experimentation with the new AntiGriddle. You'll see that I'm going to need some molds.


The Glory. And yes, that is a bottle of grain alcohol and Pam.


The griddle surface freezing to -40 Celcius.


A dollop of honey.


The honey freezes in just a few seconds time.


On my finger and ready to eat. The texture was very creamy and sensuous.


Double shot of Hines espresso looking quite tasty.


Pouring the Hines.


Letting the Hines set up.


Breaking off a chunk of some of that funky stuff. The texture was wild but the bitters were pronounced. Need to do more experimentation.


James Hoffmann said...

Oh sooo jealous!

Get some foams on there sir, not sure if it will work, maybe some egg white or something from an ISI. Crunch brittle outershell and soft wondrous inners.

Let us know what you come up with!

Chaff Collector said...

Very nice!

Try maybe using an egg round or paper cup with the bottom cut off to control the run of the espresso.

Some toddy coffee might taste pretty good too.

Steve said...

Neat! Have fun experimenting...

Ethan said...

Man, thats really cool.

A foam could be pretty cool, also a brulée would also be something cool to try.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jay,
I'm the guy who invented the Anti-Griddle. I hope you are having fun with it. Some things that I have enjoyed are crème anglais lollypops. Grant at Alinea has done some wonderful sour cream with caviar. He also uses it to hold things vertical such as sticking a sorrel "branch" in and flash freezing it in place while keeping the rest of the dish semi liquid. Another chef told me about creating a pattern of olive oil and balsamic and putting it on a salad as a sheet. When it thaws the oil thaws first leaving balsamic crystals. I have also seen a meringue infused with a Darjeeling sugar quick frozen then put on sous vide rhubarb. The possibilities are endless. I started with sweets and evolved toward more challenging savories.

onocoffee said...

Thanks for writing, but more importantly, thanks for reading.

We've been playing a bit with the AntiGriddle and I've got another post coming soon. Cool stuff. The thing I'm discovering about the AntiGriddle is that it's challenging me to think in new ways about food and uses for this technology.

BTW, might you take a moment to e-mail me privately? I have a question or two that I'd like to ask. Thanks.