For traditional, semi-automatic pump-driven espresso
Note: The following does not fully apply to
superautomatic, hand lever, or steam power-generated espresso machines
that may operate under different principles and guidelines for proper
Part I: The "Fundamental
All of your favorite specialty coffee Beverages (such as
cappuccino, latte, cafe mocha, etc.) require "espresso"
as the main ingredient. The basis for all these beverages
is to understand the espresso extraction process. For the espresso
enthusiast, this process can become a ritual whereby the aromatic
coffee fragrance arouses the desire for the enjoyment of the beverage.
For others, the process can be troublesome to overcome and tedious
to clean up. We certainly hope to make it the former, and, not the
"Espresso Nirvana" is a result of two identities: visual
cue and flavor profile. The visual cue is crema, the
golden marbelized "cream" speckled with tints of brown
on the surface of the espresso at the end of an extraction. The
flavor profile, which is usually an acquired one, results in a bittersweet
taste. The crema, coupled with a bittersweet taste, is the epitome
of "Espresso Nirvana".
To many home baristas and new coffee shoppe owners, there is a
mystique in learning to extract the perfect espresso. With the appropriate
knowledge learned here, you can overcome this mystique and extract
high quality espresso in a very, very short time. couple this knowledge
with some persistent practice and patience on one of our electric
pump espresso machines, you will reach "Espresso Nirvana"
very quickly as many of our customers have!
In the beginning, extracting espresso should be considered a
science . The science is applying learned knowledge to
specific variables attributable to extracting "Espresso Nirvana"
from your espresso machine. These variables are
- The Fresh Roast of The Coffee Bean
- The Fineness of The Coffee Grind
- The Dosage
- The Tamp Pressure
- The Brewing Temperature
- The Brewing Pressure
Your "Arte" is the experience culminating
from learning the "Science" on your specific machine. In other words, you will move up the learning curve to "naturally
extract" the best espresso without any scientific measurements
or aids. In essence, you will only rely on visual clues to achieve
To start on your journey, one needs the "Science" to progress to the "Arte." We
shall start with the fundamental rule for proper espresso extraction:
Single Espresso Shot = 1 to 1.5 Fluid Ounces
in 23 to 27 Seconds
Double Espresso Shot = 2 to 2.5 Fluid Ounces in 23 to 27 Seconds
We recommend that you learn to extract espresso by always measuring
the extraction. We advise that you always utilize the double filter
basket that is included with your machine since the double filter
baskets tend to work better for beginners. this means that a double
shot of espresso should equal 2 to 2.5 fluid ounces and take approximately
23 to 27 seconds to extract from the moment you start the pump (turn
on the coffee switch) until you reach the appropriate liquid volume.
The timing is the same between a single shot and double shot because
the 2 cp basket usually has twice the number of holes on the bottom
of the basket. In addition, our volumes our guidelines which we
find to produce the best tasting espresso, and other companies may
have different guidelines.
Now, you may say, that I own a machine which makes four (4) cups
of espresso at one time. Now, this may be true. You do "make"
four cups, but this is not your typical espresso extraction. In
fact, it probably is just strong coffee that does not taste good.
remember, "Espresso Nirvana" can only be reached when
you extract as indicated above.
Finally, you may read other rules, but we have developed and trained
many coffee shop baristas to success in extracting the perfect shot!
And, we want you to be on your way to do the same!!!
Please proceed to The
"Science", which will be followed by The