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returning to coffee... but bitter!!
Rancilio Silvia - How to
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Chivalry
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Apr 2004
Posts: 33
Location: UK
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Vivi
Grinder: Eureka Mignon
Posted Sat Dec 22, 2012, 4:26am
Subject: returning to coffee... but bitter!!
 

Ok,, so its been a couple of years since ive manage to use my espresso machine  (2 new young boys and lack of space!!)

So i have fairly decent kit...  an Izzo vivi, and i just treated myself yesterday to an Eureka Mignon... :)

So spent last night doing a full descale and clean... got everything done.. or so i think... filled and emptied the tank about 5 times to get rid of any descaler... and so far have pulled about 10 shots through it while i dial the grinder in...

Got my pull time to 25/26 secs so about bang on...   a fresh bag of pre roasted stuff i picked up from Bella Barista...

But so BITTER?

am i missing something?   i know its been a while.. but my old shots were never this bitter...  do i need to flush the machine even more??  or is there something else im missing?

Many thanks :)
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NobbyR
Senior Member
NobbyR
Joined: 10 Jul 2011
Posts: 2,049
Location: Germany
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Poccino Opus One, Ariete
Grinder: Eureka Mignon Istantaneo
Vac Pot: N/A
Drip: Melitta Linea Unica de Luxe
Roaster: N/A
Posted Sat Dec 22, 2012, 4:43am
Subject: Re: returning to coffee... but bitter!!
 

Did you backflush the machine with coffee oil detergent before using it? Otherwise there might be some old rancid residues that deteriorate taste.

However, there might be one or more of the following reasons for bitterness:
  • The roast is very dark, and you simply don't like the taste of that particular blend.
  • The dose has been too high.
  • The grind has been too fine.
  • You have been tamping too hard.
  • Brewing temperature has been too high.
  • Brewing pressure has been too high (because of reasons 3 and 4).
  • Extraction went beyond blonding.

 
***
"This drink of the Satan is so delicious that it would be a shame to leave it to the infidels." (Pope Clement VIII on coffee, when he was urged to ban the beverage)
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Chivalry
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Apr 2004
Posts: 33
Location: UK
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Vivi
Grinder: Eureka Mignon
Posted Sat Dec 22, 2012, 5:00am
Subject: Re: returning to coffee... but bitter!!
 

hmmm.  well i can assume that as i am getting 25-26 sec pulls the tamp and grind are about right.....  takes about 8 secs from flipping the lever till i start to see coffee coming through..

Crema isnt blonding,,,,  if anything it seems a little dark,?  but loads of it and perfect texture..

Boiler temp... mmmm possibly?  the pressure reading is alternating from 1.2 to 1.35 as the boiler kicks on and off... seem about right it think?

Havent backflushed with pulycaf yet but i assumed the numerous backflushes i did while descaling would have removed the majority of stuff?   or do i need to do a few backflushes with pulycaf in addition to descaling?

Thanks for the help :)
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NobbyR
Senior Member
NobbyR
Joined: 10 Jul 2011
Posts: 2,049
Location: Germany
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Poccino Opus One, Ariete
Grinder: Eureka Mignon Istantaneo
Vac Pot: N/A
Drip: Melitta Linea Unica de Luxe
Roaster: N/A
Posted Sat Dec 22, 2012, 9:13am
Subject: Re: returning to coffee... but bitter!!
 

8 seconds seems just a little too long to me. I'd rather aim at 5 to 7 seconds.

I'd backflush with Pulycaf, because flushing with water of descaling agent doesn't remove coffee oil residues.

A dark crema can be a sign of burnt coffee, i.e. a brewing temperature that's too high. Is it a dark or a lighter roast you're using?

 
***
"This drink of the Satan is so delicious that it would be a shame to leave it to the infidels." (Pope Clement VIII on coffee, when he was urged to ban the beverage)
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