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Discussions > Espresso > General > How to improve...  
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frcn
Senior Member
frcn
Joined: 23 Dec 2001
Posts: 3,427
Location: Northern California
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Vibiemme Domobar Double
Grinder: Mazzer Kony, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Hario, 2 Cory pots, 1 Cory...
Drip: Behmor Brazen, Bunn A10 mod...
Roaster: computer controlled Hottop,...
Posted Wed Oct 9, 2013, 10:01pm
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

Ahhh.. Pasadena. Got married in Burbank. Have ridden bicycles up to Mt. Lowe from Alta Dena.. But I digress..

I did not read how long you have been at this, but espresso is not a destination, but a journey. As soon as you think you are there, either the next extraction will be a total failure, or you sample a shot somewhere that puts all your efforts to shame. I have been at it for thirteen years, nearly, and it is a never ending challenge.

When the new grinder arrives, stick with one coffee for a while. Play with grind and dose. get a scale that weighs to .1 grams and keep a constant dose while playing with grind. Adjust temperature once you find a grind that seems to work, and continue to fine tune. The 68mm K10 - is it the "fresh" or the WBC? Little matter as they are grinders both that can take you a long way, indeed. If i hadn't scored a deal on the Kony, the K10 conical was a grinder I had admired and regarded quite highly.  

So relax, settle in for the long haul, and enjoy the journey. You never know where it will take you. Who knows? Maybe we will see you in Seattle next year at the SCAA Exhibition?

 
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shnxx
Senior Member
shnxx
Joined: 3 Jul 2009
Posts: 128
Location: Pasadena
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Thu Oct 10, 2013, 10:49pm
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

I got the K10 Pro Barista (WBC?).

I just tried making some espresso today.
It was really fantastic.
Although the Bezzera BB003 was a good grinder, I now know that there was a LARGE room for improvement.
The quality of espresso from the K10 was far superior in every way (more crema, more interesting taste, more forgiving since I get lots of crema almost at any setting).

Now I feel like it is time to tinker with all of the parameters.

  1. Do you have any recommendation as far as how many grams to use?
    I have used 16-17grams and don't know how to precisely dose it since I don't know how to get all of the coffee out clean.
    So far I'm getting about 25 second extraction with ~16.5 grams at the grind setting but if I use 17+, it becomes over-extracted.
    But since there are two parameters (grind setting and the amount of coffee), I'm not sure which to change.

  2. I have an HX machine that allows me to temperature surf a little by either waiting more or less after flushing.
    What should I be looking for when playing with this?

  3. Should I care about the boiler pressure? Obviously it goes up and down depending on whether I'm using the machine or not... so far I've been switching the brew on around the same pressure reading, but I don't know if this matters at all.
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shnxx
Senior Member
shnxx
Joined: 3 Jul 2009
Posts: 128
Location: Pasadena
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Thu Oct 10, 2013, 11:27pm
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

frcn Said:

Ahhh.. Pasadena. Got married in Burbank. Have ridden bicycles up to Mt. Lowe from Alta Dena.. But I digress..

I did not read how long you have been at this, but espresso is not a destination, but a journey. As soon as you think you are there, either the next extraction will be a total failure, or you sample a shot somewhere that puts all your efforts to shame. I have been at it for thirteen years, nearly, and it is a never ending challenge.

When the new grinder arrives, stick with one coffee for a while. Play with grind and dose. get a scale that weighs to .1 grams and keep a constant dose while playing with grind. Adjust temperature once you find a grind that seems to work, and continue to fine tune. The 68mm K10 - is it the "fresh" or the WBC? Little matter as they are grinders both that can take you a long way, indeed. If i hadn't scored a deal on the Kony, the K10 conical was a grinder I had admired and regarded quite highly.  

So relax, settle in for the long haul, and enjoy the journey. You never know where it will take you. Who knows? Maybe we will see you in Seattle next year at the SCAA Exhibition?

Posted October 9, 2013 link

I've spent about 3-4 years now.

I doubt I will get much more serious other than buying a new espresso machine from here...

But what's the SCAA Exhibition?
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frcn
Senior Member
frcn
Joined: 23 Dec 2001
Posts: 3,427
Location: Northern California
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Vibiemme Domobar Double
Grinder: Mazzer Kony, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Hario, 2 Cory pots, 1 Cory...
Drip: Behmor Brazen, Bunn A10 mod...
Roaster: computer controlled Hottop,...
Posted Fri Oct 11, 2013, 8:33am
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

"Not get much more serious." Dangerous words, indeed. I have friends who thought I was crazy when I bought my Silvia and Rocky in late 2000. I am not sure that my wife wasn't part of that group. My current grinder sells for double what that cost me. I also now can claim a few coffee industry clients.

The Specialty Coffee Association of America has an annual exhibition. You can read my reviews of a few of the shows:
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee54.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee96.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee106.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee110.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee119.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee133.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee136.html

While admission can be costly, you can volunteer and receive benefits that way.
It's the ultimate toy exhibition for coffee geeks.

 
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shnxx
Senior Member
shnxx
Joined: 3 Jul 2009
Posts: 128
Location: Pasadena
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Fri Oct 11, 2013, 9:21am
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

frcn Said:

"Not get much more serious." Dangerous words, indeed. I have friends who thought I was crazy when I bought my Silvia and Rocky in late 2000. I am not sure that my wife wasn't part of that group. My current grinder sells for double what that cost me. I also now can claim a few coffee industry clients.

The Specialty Coffee Association of America has an annual exhibition. You can read my reviews of a few of the shows:
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee54.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee96.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee106.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee110.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee119.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee133.html
http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/Coffee136.html

While admission can be costly, you can volunteer and receive benefits that way.
It's the ultimate toy exhibition for coffee geeks.

Posted October 11, 2013 link

That is pretty awesome.
I will have to check it out sometime.
Thanks for the heads up.

And yes I agree. Most people think just making coffee at home with grinder is pretty involved I guess.
All of my friends think I am crazy with the current modest setup I have with only a mid or entry level HX machine.
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frcn
Senior Member
frcn
Joined: 23 Dec 2001
Posts: 3,427
Location: Northern California
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Vibiemme Domobar Double
Grinder: Mazzer Kony, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Hario, 2 Cory pots, 1 Cory...
Drip: Behmor Brazen, Bunn A10 mod...
Roaster: computer controlled Hottop,...
Posted Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:17pm
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

I think my geekiness about coffee overwhelms a lot of .. errr.. everyone I know. My wife tells me that they don't even want to mention coffee in front of me. Honestly, I don't know why. I really do love sharing it and educating. On the other hand, Their faces light up when I invite them over. It is interesting o see their eyes gloss over when I explain the large, framed color print of the E-61 group poster I created which hangs on the wall near my coffee center/cart. And then trying to explain how the dual boiler in the VBM works and what a "PID" is. I try not to even mention the Kony, but it slips out. Hmm.. maybe it IS me..  ?   ;-)

Life's too short to drink bad coffee.

 
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shnxx
Senior Member
shnxx
Joined: 3 Jul 2009
Posts: 128
Location: Pasadena
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:38pm
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

frcn Said:

I think my geekiness about coffee overwhelms a lot of .. errr.. everyone I know. My wife tells me that they don't even want to mention coffee in front of me. Honestly, I don't know why. I really do love sharing it and educating. On the other hand, Their faces light up when I invite them over. It is interesting o see their eyes gloss over when I explain the large, framed color print of the E-61 group poster I created which hangs on the wall near my coffee center/cart. And then trying to explain how the dual boiler in the VBM works and what a "PID" is. I try not to even mention the Kony, but it slips out. Hmm.. maybe it IS me..  ?   ;-)

Life's too short to drink bad coffee.

Posted October 11, 2013 link

kony is a massive grinder.
i wonder if those things are bigger than my grinder.


anyway how many grams of coffee do you put for a double shot?
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Coffeenoobie
Senior Member
Coffeenoobie
Joined: 11 Dec 2011
Posts: 3,036
Location: PNW
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: N S Oscar
Grinder: K30 & Vario W
Posted Sat Oct 12, 2013, 9:04am
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

Technically, a double is 14 grams as a single is considered 7 grams.  My doubles are 18.5 based on my beans and VST basket. Math says anything over 21 is considered a triple but I have bought beans that the roaster recommended 22 grams as a "normal" shot.  Mostly it is your tastes, machine/basket limits and what the beans need.  "Normal" is whatever you like.

 
Coffeenoobie

Buying advice: GRINDER GRINDER GRINDER. Don't cheap out on the grinder.

My coffee treasure map...
Click Here (maps.google.com)

Oscar trick out: http://s156.photobucket.com/user/GandBteam/story/14231
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Iluvdabean
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Iluvdabean
Joined: 7 Mar 2005
Posts: 1,277
Location: Kentucky
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Nuova Era Cuadra/Gaggia...
Grinder: Baratza Preciso/K-A Pro...
Drip: Bonavita BV 1800 TH
Roaster: Nesco 1010/Behmor 1600
Posted Sat Oct 12, 2013, 5:49pm
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

Klatch is awesome,so is Intelligentsia.Heres my all time favorite but tastes vary and are subjective.


http://espressovivace.com/
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shnxx
Senior Member
shnxx
Joined: 3 Jul 2009
Posts: 128
Location: Pasadena
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon Oct 14, 2013, 10:46pm
Subject: Re: How to improve my espresso
 

Today I spent about an hour dialing my grinder with a naked portafilter.

Finally got the perfect shot without channeling and all those flaws.
16-16.5 grams.
27 second extraction.
Some "tiger motting."
About 2 oz.

Taste was not bitter or sour. Really creamy texture and heavy taste.
I don't know if I'm getting the "fruity" or "chocolate" flavors but it was a richer taste than usual.

Excuse me for the messy espresso cup. I must have pulled at least 10 terrible shots before this one.

Also did some mods to my K10 grinder to allow for better single dosing (took off the protective cover obscuring the chute).

Quite happy with the results but I can't help but wonder what it would be like to have an espresso machine that has a precisely dialed in temperature.

shnxx: IMG_5237.jpg
(Click for larger image)
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