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Difference between "Pre-infusion" and "Infusion" and a proposed definition
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AlanRicky
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Posted Tue Apr 24, 2007, 3:10am
Subject: Difference between "Pre-infusion" and "Infusion" and a proposed definition
 

I get the impression that most people who use the word "pre-infusion" in the epresso world mean "infusion".  The New Oxford Dictionary defines infusion as "process of preparing a drink ... by soaking the leaves of a plant or herbs in a liquid".

Being logical, if you use the prefix "pre-" then you are saying that "pre-infusion" is something that is done before infusion.  However everytime I see the word "pre-infusion used in the epsresso world, people seem to be referring to soaking or wetting ground coffee prior to the extraction phase.  In the espresso world we should just say "infusion" for this.

Now, in the filter coffee world, it would be correct to describe the wetting of the coffee for some seconds as "pre-infusion", because what comes afterward is "infusion".

I propose the following definitions:

  1. wetting of ground coffee for a short period of time in filter coffee processes: "pre-infusion"

  2. wetting of ground coffee for a short period of time in espresso coffee processes: "infusion".

I would love to have your opinions on the above.
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pstam
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pstam
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Posted Mon Jun 18, 2007, 10:39am
Subject: Re: Difference between "Pre-infusion" and "Infusion" and a proposed definition
 

AlanRicky Said:

I get the impression that most people who use the word "pre-infusion" in the epresso world mean "infusion".  The New Oxford Dictionary defines infusion as "process of preparing a drink ... by soaking the leaves of a plant or herbs in a liquid".

Being logical, if you use the prefix "pre-" then you are saying that "pre-infusion" is something that is done before infusion.  However everytime I see the word "pre-infusion used in the epsresso world, people seem to be referring to soaking or wetting ground coffee prior to the extraction phase.  In the espresso world we should just say "infusion" for this.

Now, in the filter coffee world, it would be correct to describe the wetting of the coffee for some seconds as "pre-infusion", because what comes afterward is "infusion".

I propose the following definitions:

wetting of ground coffee for a short period of time in filter coffee processes: "pre-infusion"

wetting of ground coffee for a short period of time in espresso coffee processes: "infusion".

I would love to have your opinions on the above.

Posted April 24, 2007 link


No, it is not right for the espresso section.

As described in the article, there is some water first to wet the coffee ground w/o pressure, and pause for a second and then start again the normal infusion or extraction procedure.  then, espresso comes out.

 
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mrgnomer
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Posted Wed Jun 20, 2007, 7:37pm
Subject: Re: Difference between "Pre-infusion" and "Infusion" and a proposed definition
 

Pre infusion with respect to espresso extraction to my understanding is a valid term.  From what I've read and experienced it's the period of time water is introduced to packed grinds under low pressure to saturate the grinds before full pump pressure is applied.  It's a feature of the e61 designed group which has a chamber that fills up when the pump is activated.  During the preinfusion time fresh grinds have the chance to expand or bloom which helps pack them tighter into the basket and seal them in.  It's been attributed to the forgiveness factor of e61 extractions since this initial period of blooming reduces the possiblity of premature channelling under full pump pressure which could spoil the extraction.
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pstam
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pstam
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Posted Sun Jun 24, 2007, 3:36am
Subject: Re: Difference between "Pre-infusion" and "Infusion" and a proposed definition
 

mrgnomer Said:

Pre infusion with respect to espresso extraction to my understanding is a valid term.  From what I've read and experienced it's the period of time water is introduced to packed grinds under low pressure to saturate the grinds before full pump pressure is applied.  It's a feature of the e61 designed group which has a chamber that fills up when the pump is activated.  During the preinfusion time fresh grinds have the chance to expand or bloom which helps pack them tighter into the basket and seal them in.  It's been attributed to the forgiveness factor of e61 extractions since this initial period of blooming reduces the possiblity of premature channelling under full pump pressure which could spoil the extraction.

Posted June 20, 2007 link


Yes, it is fully correct.  But it is not only about e61 group, but any group head can be done in different ways.

 
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fifthgen
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Posted Sun Jun 24, 2007, 5:50am
Subject: Re: Difference between "Pre-infusion" and "Infusion" and a proposed definition
 

 I get the impression that most people who use the word "pre-infusion" in the espresso world mean "infusion".  The New Oxford Dictionary defines infusion as "process of preparing a drink ... by soaking the leaves of a plant or herbs in a liquid".

The writers of the New Oxford dictionary have no idea of high-espresso making or what an E-61 group really is, (in terms of function and effect on taste).  In our discussions of our specialized vocabulary they have no authority. The do not set the standard among espresso afficionados.  Communities do.

I believe that,  in espresso making, pre-infusion is wetting the grounds at minimal pressure, and infusion is exposing the grounds to the full pressure of the brewing process usually 9 ATM. This can be accomplished through a variety of methods (e.g manual (lever on the e-61 or mechanically (Nuova Simonelli).

Radical redefinition is usually best left to those who have a prominent influence on the state of the art.

 
Good coffee to you and your guests
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mrgnomer
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Posted Sun Jun 24, 2007, 9:20am
Subject: Re: Difference between "Pre-infusion" and "Infusion" and a proposed definition
 

quote303813]

AlanRicky Said:

 I get the impression that most people who use the word "pre-infusion" in the espresso world mean "infusion".  The New Oxford Dictionary defines infusion as "process of preparing a drink ... by soaking the leaves of a plant or herbs in a liquid".

Posted April 24, 2007 link

Could be just trying to shorten preinfusion to 'infusion.  With respect to espresso, extraction could be more applicable than infusion by definition.

Yes, pre-infusion with respect to wetting the puck before full pressure is applied can be done in different ways.  With a lever just holding the piston in a position that opens the water inlet introduces water at boiler pressure for as long as you want to.  I think some even mod their pumps to have direct control of pump output and can control not only time but the pressure of preinfusion.  With a semi automatic lever activated pump machine pulling the lever just 1/2 way opens the water inlet but doesn't activate the pump, from what I've read, so that's another way to fool around with pre infusion if you want.
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