Unocorto Senior Member Joined: 10 Jan 2012 Posts: 3 Location: San Antonio, TX Expertise: I love coffee
Posted Sun Jan 29, 2012, 6:05pm Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine
Well, I have a new Ascaso I mini grinder. I don't weigh the grinds but fill the portafilter to the rim and tamp. No matter what I do, the coffee almost always tastes somewhat bitter and leaves a long-lasting unpleasant aftertaste. I also make sure that the grinds that get stuck in the shoot are out so that old grinds don't affect my subsequent shot. I've tried different coffees with the best being Starbucks Colombian from which I probably only brewed a couple of really good cups. After that I was not able to replicate the taste again. I have been following instructions to the letter steaming and then temperature surfing before brewing. I really prefer a somewhat mild but distinctly European tasting coffee and have been using the single basket for my lattes/cappuccinos. I've only just started timing my shots and the last couple seemed to flow fairly well with the single basket. I just tried brewing with the double basket for the first time and was surprised to see that with the same grind, the flow was way too fast. I used only one of the shots which tasted pretty weak with milk but still...... that aftertaste!!
diggi Senior Member Joined: 28 Nov 2011 Posts: 382 Location: Halifax, NS Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Spaz vivaldi S1 V2 Grinder: B Vario, OE LIDO Drip: Chemex, Espro Press,... Roaster: Poppery I
Posted Sun Jan 29, 2012, 6:13pm Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine
So hopefully someone chimes in with a 'standard' reply. I'll fill in a bit of the basics for now before I sign out for the night.
Sounds like you need some fresh beans. SBucks wouldn't qualify as they can't be any older than 2 weeks from the ROAST date (not date of opening bag). You'll need a local roaster (which I use) or get some shipped online. Many posts about great beans on this site. Most here would say that a medium roast is what you should be looking for (I like slightly darker, but probably nothing close to how dark SBucks roasts). If running too fast, make your grind finer. As starting point, a single should be 1oz in 25sec and double 2oz in 25 sec. (I personally like double 1.5oz in 30sec). I think silvia does better if up-dosed. Standard dosing is 7g single and 14g double. I like 18g double. Of course this would vary depending on bean.
I'd also start with the double basket....why not start here if the single basket has such a crap reputation. Silvia is enough trouble anyway.
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