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Thread: Brewing on a Rancilio Lucy

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005

    Brewing on a Rancilio Lucy

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I have had Lucy for almost a month now and have enjoyed coming to grips with all the nuances brewing good espresso entails (thanks Coffee Snobs!) I have now obtained a darker roast bean and Im getting what I think is far too much coffee for my brew time. I know I need a coarser grind for darker roasts but I figure if I set the grinder coarser, Ill just get more liquid volume in my brew. Im using the 25-30 seconds to 40ml rule. I get 40-50ml in about 15-20 seconds. Coffee is great - good crema that lasts, the Guinness effect and not bitter (although most of the time I add milk so maybe the coffee isnt as good as it could be - but hey, I like it).

    Now Lucy is (I think) just a Rocky/Silvia combo-all-in-one. The only differences I have found are are built-in water softener and no thermostat on-off indications (the light on the power switch always stays on).

    Id appreciate any guidance you can provide.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    Re: Brewing on a Rancilio Lucy

    Hey DavidM,

    There is really nothing wrong with what you are doing if as you say:

    There is lots of crema and the taste is great. I do a similar thing which I call a cafe crema (A phrase coined by Alan Frew I think). It is a cross between a long black and an espresso and basically the coffee is ground so that(with an absolutely full portafilter) a double shot will yield 100-120 ml of coffee in ~ 25 seconds. The crema should also be a good hazelnut/chestnut brown and not a pale cream underextracted colour. I must say I prefer to make a coffee this way than add it to water(as for long black).

    If you want to make a true espresso as defined by the professionals you need to adjust your grind and volume so that you get about 30 mls in 25-30 seconds for a single or double that in the same time for a "doppio".

    This is the beauty of making your own. You can vary the shot to suit your taste at the time.



  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005

    Re: Brewing on a Rancilio Lucy

    Thanks for the feedback Papalui. I guess I need to experiment more with the grind. It seems coarse enough for the brew that I get. Ill vary it a bit and see what results I get.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2005

    Re: Brewing on a Rancilio Lucy

    Hi David

    I am by no means an expert but I believe that the most important thing is to get the proper extraction . And while the 30mls in approx 30secs is maybe a bit of a guideline it is not everything . Check out this article it is quite interesting .

    After reading this article Ive been trying to judge the colour and texture of the extraction to work out the best timing for the shot.
    I was wondering if anyone else used this method and had any more insights into how to best judge the extraction of the shot .


  5. #5
    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005

    Re: Brewing on a Rancilio Lucy

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    That blonding is a sure tell-tale sign that something is amiss if the colour change happens very early into the extraction.

    Grind coarsely, or under-load the portafilter, and a gushing off-white brew in 10 seconds is the outcome. Cold water will also produce the same off-colour result.

    I keep one eye on the clock and the 60 ml mark on the cup (for a double), and another eye on the colour. If the clock says 10 seconds to go, and there are also several mls left to fill--- but the colour has already blonded, stop. No use brewing further.

    You will notice that over-filling the portafilter produces a very dark though slow extraction.

    Sometimes, the grind may be too fine, or too tightly packed. Then, 30 seconds ticks by....40 seconds...but nowhere near 60 mls is in the cup. Watching for the colour change here is a good clue as to when to stop, even though correct time has elapsed.

    Unfortunately, there are so many variables. Different beans grind best at different settings at different times of day and at different levels of freshness.

    If you are happy with one or two varieties, and become familiar with their characteristics (grind setting, how they fill the portafilter), then stick to them for more consistency in results.

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