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I recently bought a Gaggia Classic with a steam wand. I don't have a stainless steel pitcher for frothing my milk and am using a ceramic one.

Does anybody know whether this has a significant impact on the ability to froth the milk properly?

I could imagine it has lower thermal conductivity, but higher mass, so it may influence how quickly or how evenly the milk is warmed up during the steaming. And the shape may have an impact on how well the milk is aerated.

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I think ceramic shouldn't pose any problem in terms of heating. Since the heating element is in the center, sticking in the milk, it shouldn't affect evenness. The material may absorb a significant amount of heat and slow down the steaming process, but that may actually be helpful. It may give you more time to spin the milk and make the nice microfoam.

The big disadvantage I think is going to be weight. In order to be sturdy and resistant to shattering, the walls have to be pretty thick. So it may put more strain on your wrist and arm and take more effort and energy out of you.

So, IMO the biggest issues with ceramic vs. steel are that the ceramic will cause more "human-factor" problems. But the product should be just fine.

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    I have a very small pitcher, so weight is not an issue, and I think I've finally figured out how to get proper milk foam in it. The problem was not pitcher or wand, but user error and position of wand in/above the milk. Feb 8 at 15:04
  • Good deal. For the best tips on steaming, search for "David Schomer". He's the guy who invented latte art.
    – luser droog
    Feb 8 at 20:06

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