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Looks Great, Tastes Great, Runs too Fast?
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Looks Great,...  
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Senior Member
Joined: 27 Jun 2012
Posts: 658
Location: Seattle Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: ECM Technika IV Profi WT-WC
Grinder: Baratza Forte AP, HG One
Vac Pot: Bunn Trifecta MB
Drip: Moka, Aeropress, Hario V60
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Fri Feb 22, 2013, 4:42pm
Subject: Re: Looks Great, Tastes Great, Runs too Fast?

Guess I just gotta grind finer! :)

Incidentally, when I mentioned Home Barista, I wasn't talking about the forum, but rather the home/hobbyist baristas that make up the majority of the forum, ie not cafe baristas. I do know there is a criteria for a true espresso, which is something like 16-18g of coffee in 50-60ml in 27-32 seconds. Isn't that about right?
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Senior Member

Joined: 3 Nov 2012
Posts: 21
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Quickmill Vetrano
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Fri Feb 22, 2013, 8:29pm
Subject: Re: Looks Great, Tastes Great, Runs too Fast?

frcn Said:

rhetorically speaking, if you like espresso that takes 15 seconds from "pump on" then fine, BUT, how will you know if that is the best espresso you can make unless you experiment with other doses, grinds, and extraction times?

Posted February 22, 2013 link

Don't get me wrong.  I spent the first month with my machine varing everything one variable at a time to get drinkable espresso.  The next two months were spent only making 25-30 second espressos which were drinkable.  I tried a range of doses from 14g - 18g.  I was finding that the coffee would expand into the screen with the higher doses and eventually settled at 15g (for now).

The 20-22 second espresso came about as an accident.  I always try every shot to try to learn and improve and found this shorter duration had a lot less bitterness.

It usually takes about 6-8 seconds from pump start to the first drips (using a spouted portafilter).

I am almost at the end of the current bag of beans, but next bag I'll try my current parameters and then calblacksmith's suggestion to updose at the same grind or grind finer and downdose.
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Senior Member
Joined: 28 Dec 2005
Posts: 682
Location: Dana Point, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1 (Had Expo)
Grinder: Macap M4 & Gaggia MDF
Vac Pot: Not yet...
Drip: Capresso MT-500 & Melitta...
Roaster: Hottop Digital
Posted Fri Feb 22, 2013, 8:56pm
Subject: Re: Looks Great, Tastes Great, Runs too Fast?

First post in a few years..... nice to see things look relatively the same. Regarding this thread that caught my eye......... Over the years, and I'm sure like many others, I've applied and tested so many variables and permutations in my espresso brewing. Since the beginning, when I discovered a blend that I have since considered "my absolute favorite" for milk drinks, I've taken that blend and tweaked roast, grind and brew in probably thousands of combinations. I've found my sweet spot. So with my "main line blend", I know from experience what I'll get when I make a change, either on purpose or by accident. With various beans I bring back from trips to our home in Brasil, I start out by hitting all of those "recommended guideline numbers." And it usually works. From there, I know where I may want to go. Point being, for those who have a favorite blend or single origin, I would say, do your due diligence at the outset, and after you find your "sweet spot", do yourself a favor and just enjoy. If you understand the science behind coffee, you should know when you're significantly under or over common sense roasting, bean prep and brewing values. In roasting, I find that stopping within 10 to 20 seconds of entering second crack is a good starting point when I don't know much about a bean. And I've got marks on my grinder for my "special blend", and a starting point for unknown single origins and blends. For brewing time, I expect my extractions to start at about 6-10 seconds from hitting the button. I then expect at least 18-22 seconds of dark to medium tiger tail extraction before I see significant blonding. Even with the volumetric metering of my machine, I have always used a digital timer and my eye on the portafilter to gauge my extractions. But only with time and numerous hours behind the boilers have I developed my own personal confidence. It's understandable to question these guidelines. I'm sharing only to say that your confidence will grow as you invest more and more time playing with the variables. But above all, pick a realistic baseline to start, and "go off the reservation" with the knowledge of where your home is....... my humble contribution.

Member No.12047 - SCAA
Warning: Close cover before striking
"Space Available Here for Something Really Prolific"
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