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Variables to a good Espresso

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  • Variables to a good Espresso

    Hi,

    Ive been bouncing this idea around in my head for a while, and I just whacked it out today. I drew this to help describe how many variables go into making an espresso (most people think of just 2 or 3) and how changing one can adversely affect 2 or 3 others.



    Im trying to keep the level of detail reasonable. Im not going into roasting variables (thats a whole new kettle of fish!) and Im assuming the "operator" affects just about every variable listed.

    It still needs work on all things such as grouping of boxes, lines, etc. but I thought Id throw it up for comment. Let me know what you think - be honest!

  • #2
    Re: Variables to a good Espresso

    Im sure there are quite a few here who would think you are over-analysing it and you should just sit back with a good cuppa and put it to the back of your mind.

    Theres a philosophical aspect as well. Its like gold - if everything around you was gold, then it would have no value for you. If all you ever pulled were god shots then their enjoyment would not be as great.

    But you over-looked
    (green) bean quality, age and storage,
    SO or blend
    distribution (well OK, you said dose technique twice),
    cleanliness of machine
    and, most importantly, user perception because what may be below average to us seasoned CSers may be the best coffee someone else has ever tried ie perfect in their eyes.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Variables to a good Espresso

      Grind size and grind setting are one and the same?

      Dose technique is in there twice. Perhaps replace with distribution (of grinds in basket)?

      Get rid of group temperature. I think its superfluous because extraction temperature is a function of it.

      Other than that good job

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Variables to a good Espresso

        we-ell, Im not over-analysing it for my own sake, but I wanted to be able to say to someone "see, when you dose more coffee, you affect blah blah blah. Since most people dont understand why an espresso isnt just "drop in any old grinds and press a button for as long as you feel like it".

        but thanks for the suggestions, I didnt think about cleanliness and perception

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Variables to a good Espresso

          Originally posted by 4466607B7C7660130 link=1288238468/2#2 date=1288240905
          Grind size and grind setting are one and the same?
          what I was trying to say is the grind setting of the grind affects the size of particles, but so do other factors, so "setting" relates to the grinder, "size" relates to the outcome.

          Dose technique is in there twice. Perhaps replace with distribution (of grinds in basket)?
          spotted the double just after I posted is the distribution the "dose"?

          Get rid of group temperature. I think its superfluous because extraction temperature is a function of it.
          Im trying to capture why you might pre-warm the group though. The extraction temp will drop a bit into a cold group, and the machine (boiler, block) also affects the temp.

          Other than that good job
          thanks

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Variables to a good Espresso

            Hhhmmm....A quick glance shows a glaring, to me, omission. Water composition/quality.


            Java "Soaking wet" phile
            Toys! I must have new toys!!!

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Variables to a good Espresso

              Originally posted by 515951565C5A380 link=1288238468/3#3 date=1288240918
              we-ell, Im not over-analysing it for my own sake, but I wanted to be able to say to someone "see, when you dose more coffee, you affect blah blah blah.  Since most people dont understand why an espresso isnt just "drop in any old grinds and press a button for as long as you feel like it".

              but thanks for the suggestions, I didnt think about cleanliness and perception
              Thats what I got out of it.
              Thanks for visualising your cognitions for us.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Variables to a good Espresso

                Originally posted by 373D283F3F302422510 link=1288238468/1#1 date=1288240105
                Im sure there are quite a few here who would think you are over-analysing it and you should just sit back with a good cuppa and put it to the back of your mind.
                Im one of em

                Originally posted by 3830383F3533510 link=1288238468/3#3 date=1288240918
                I wanted to be able to say to someone "see, when you dose more coffee, you affect blah blah blah.
                Heh Heh, just watch peoples eyes when you have em backed into a corner at a party, if, when your inflicting your vast coffee knowledge on some poor unsuspecting individual you notice their eyes slowly rolling back in their head, change the subject fast, oh, and I hope that person isnt me.
                Please dont take my reply too seriously Iain, just seemed an opportunity going to waste.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Variables to a good Espresso

                  Originally posted by 626A62656F690B0 link=1288238468/4#4 date=1288241186
                  spotted the double just after I posted Smileyis the distribution the "dose"?
                  Distribution of the coffee means how even in density is the puck. Redistribution or grooming a dose is moving the top layers of coffee around the basket and swiping off any excess (if there is any) - the purpose of this is to remove any voids and hopefully give you a nice even bed of coffee to tamp.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Variables to a good Espresso

                    Originally posted by 78444D5540210 link=1288238468/7#7 date=1288255386
                    Originally posted by 373D283F3F302422510 link=1288238468/1#1 date=1288240105
                    Im sure there are quite a few here who would think you are over-analysing it and you should just sit back with a good cuppa and put it to the back of your mind.
                    Im one of em
                    Nevertheless, this is what you guys all know intuitively, and yet "one" doesnt over-analyse when they apply this knowledge to a brew without thinking.

                    Originally posted by 78444D5540210 link=1288238468/7#7 date=1288255386
                    Heh Heh, just watch peoples eyes when you have em backed into a corner at a party, if, when your inflicting your vast coffee knowledge on some poor unsuspecting individual you notice their eyes slowly rolling back in their head, change the subject fast, oh, and I hope that person isnt me.
                    Please dont take my reply too seriously Iain, just seemed an opportunity going to waste.
                    actually it gave me a good laugh no I wont be backing people into corners armed with my laminated page of detail...

                    I was just trying to put on paper what is in so many peoples heads. Im an engineer so I see things very literally in terms of diagrams and symbols.

                    And I dont think I know it all either - it took me 5 minutes to put together and I know its got shortcomings. It was more out of interest than much else.

                    But thanks for the comments

                    Comment

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