Loads of people think that make an espresso is simple but is not. Professional baristas are actually a sort of coffee sommelier and chefs at the same time.
They should be able to analyze and evaluate a coffee using their sensory skills and, after that, decide how to cook it in order to exalt the pleasant caracteristics and eventually fixing some defects where possible.
All the coffee industry ( the specialty in particular) strive to get the best they can:
- farmers and pickers from the coffee cherries and beans,
- green coffee importers and buyer from shipping and storing the green beans the best way possible with the best conditions possible,
- roasters from roasting the green beans and studying how to “squeeze” the nice stuffs from them
There are 4 things you need to get right to extract your espresso correctly:
Make sure you have the correct amount of ground coffee in your basket, it seems picky but it is not: use a scale and scale youR coffee.
It is crucial to be consistent in your tamping. The tamping affect the waterflow and you should care about:
- You should tamp always with the same pressure (technically speaking you are looking for a 10-12 Kg of pressure).
- Your tamping should be always parallel to the filter bottom (it will avoid the water to flow mainly from one side of your coffee puck instead of being spread uniformly)
- Never tap your porta-filter and filter after tamping (it creates cracks on your coffee puck resulting in a fast flow through and nearby the cracks and a poor extraction of all the other grounds)
The grind size will basically determines how fast or slow the water will flow trough your coffee grounds. After setting you espresso recipe there are 2 reasons why you may need to adjust your grind size: the age of the roasted beans, or, moisture and temperature.
How Do I Know My Espresso Shot Is Good?
When an espresso shot has been correctly extracted you get a balance of three key components:
If an espresso is extracted too quickly it will taste sour and feel thin and watery on the palate, because the sugar and oil are missing.
If an espresso is extracted too slowly it will taste overly bitter and acidic, because too much of the acid has been extracted.
What Is A Good Extraction Time For Espresso?
USING A SINGLE BASKET: A pour of 30mls including crema running for 25-30 secs from a single 9g basket.
USING A DOUBLE BASKET: A pour of 30mls including crema running for 15-20 secs from a double 18g basket, or, a pour of 60mls including crema running for 30-35 secs from a double 18g basket.