While preference for coffee flavor is as
individual as the baristas themselves, freshly roasted coffee beans
certainly give the best flavor. Arabica coffee beans are
recommended and used mostly.
A very fine
grind is highly recommended to ensure quality taste, regardless of
the selection of coffee bean. The finer the grind the more coffee
flavor is extracted.
The proper dose for 1 shot of espresso
should be between 7 - 9 grams of coffee and double that dose for a
a 1 oz shot is considered the median and is most often
recommended although, there are those who prefer 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 ounce
Again, since personal preference
dictates the espresso brewing time varies from 24 to 30 seconds with
28 - 30 being considered excellent timing.
Proper tamping is done adding 30 - 40
pounds of pressure to the coffee grinds in the portafilter.
The grinds must be even and leveled out which can be ensured by keeping
your elbow at 90 degrees.
The water temperature should be
anywhere from 195 to 200 degrees F. although there are some baristas
that insist that the temperature be as high as 203 degrees F.
The preferred range of water pressure for
great espresso extraction is 8 - 10 bars which generates 140 pounds
per square inch. Some baristas set their machine to lower
levels to minimize the extraction of any unpleasant coffee oils.
Driving out the oils from the coffee
grounds is what actually creates a proper espresso shot.
Forcing out water at 140 pounds per square inch can only be done using
Espresso Machine. If the oils are not extracted properly, you
will succeed in simply brewing coffee.
Crema is the sign of a proper espresso.
Crema attaches to our taste buds and produces a long after-taste.
The espresso shot must come out of the machine like warm honey.
You will notice the crema pour at the top of an espresso shot.
In order to achieve the perfect espresso
shot each piece of equipment may require further alteration in the water
temperature or the dose of coffee. This all depends on the age,
model, level of maintenance, and wear and tear that the