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Portafilter-Pressurized vs Non-pressurized
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shellyB
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shellyB
Joined: 15 Nov 2006
Posts: 9
Location: nyc
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sat Nov 18, 2006, 5:20pm
Subject: Portafilter-Pressurized vs Non-pressurized
 

I made an effort to look for this info on the site but couldn't find it.  So...
Would you folks be so kind as to tell me the benifits and drawbacks to using a machine with a pressurized as opposed to a non-pressurized portafilter
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
Joined: 4 Dec 2004
Posts: 1,931
Location: Rapid City, SD
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1
Grinder: Mazzer Robur
Vac Pot: Yama
Drip: misc
Posted Sun Nov 19, 2006, 9:18am
Subject: Re: Portafilter-Pressurized vs Non-pressurized
 

shellyB Said:

I made an effort to look for this info on the site but couldn't find it.  So...
Would you folks be so kind as to tell me the benifits and drawbacks to using a machine with a pressurized as opposed to a non-pressurized portafilter

Posted November 18, 2006 link

Hi Shelly, and welcome to CG. The pressurized portafilter/filter basket forces espresso to exit through a pinhole in a piece of plastic. This generates a pale yellowish rapidly-subsiding foam which gives the illusion of crema, even with stale preground supermarket coffee. A better name would be "krema" or perhaps coffee froth. Because pressure builds up due to the pinhole rather than the coffee puck, you cannot grind fine enough for a true espresso extraction without choking the pour.

Many entry-level pump machines feature these devices (my first machine, a Briel, had one). IMHO, you cannot produce anything approaching the flavor and mouthfeel of true espresso from a pressurized portafilter. Certainly nothing like this:

RapidCoffee: Crema.jpg
(Click for larger image)
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shellyB
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shellyB
Joined: 15 Nov 2006
Posts: 9
Location: nyc
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun Nov 19, 2006, 10:04am
Subject: Re: Portafilter-Pressurized vs Non-pressurized
 

Thanks
So the reason the crema from a Bodum Granos disapates somewhat like the foam on a warm soda is that is is pressurized. I always wondered why it only had one hole while an X5 had them throughout.
This would be an inherent problem with all pressurized machines.
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