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  • Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

    I am getting good pours at the right rate, about 50-60mL in 25-30 seconds from 14-15g of coffee. Problem is its blonding at around the 15-18 second mark. At this point, Ive only poured about 30-35 mL. I wonder what the problem is?

    It still tastes good (and I cut off the shot at this point), but Im wondering why the beans are running out of the good stuff after only about 30mL. Im wondering if the tapered basket is meaning the water is channeling through the middle and the coffee to the edges isnt getting as much extraction. Ive ordered some other baskets that are only slightly tapered. A lot of the 14g baskets are similarly shaped to mine though.

    Other thoughts might be the coffee beans or the water temperature being perhaps too hot. The grind is affecting the flow rate, which seems to be spot on, just blonding a bit early.

    I could probably just live with it. I read a page which recommended the ideal as being a "double ristretto" of about 40-45mL which I am pretty close to (my crema is thick and golden and just after the pour - a silly question but are you counting the height of the shot including crema foam or how many mL you have after it settles?).

    Happy to try any suggestions.

  • #2
    Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

    Gday "Darkfalz"....

    To make it easier for us to help you out, could you list the make and model of your Espresso Machine, Grinder, Tamper, etc and also the coffee youre using; Roasted Date, Type (if known), etc....

    That will save everyone from having to ask these questions of you...

    Cheers,
    Mal.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

      Im pretty sure its channelling. Waiting on the new filter baskets.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

        Others have mentioned here that there is apparently an authoritative resource noting a tapered basket improves the puck extraction - so why do you think its the shape of the basket?
        If you think its channelling, what is your tamping and distribution technique?

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

          I dunno. I am definitely getting a ristretto-strength extraction. I tried 50ml of it (after pulling 2 shots) and it was too strong for my mug sized flat white.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

            Originally posted by 757A6273626762030 link=1292070360/3#3 date=1292117557
            Im wondering if the tapered basket is meaning the water is channeling through the middle and the coffee to the edges isnt getting as much extraction.
            As alluded to by "vyapada", if channelling is indeed causing the early blonding effect youre noticing, then this is more likely related to your dosing, distribution and tamping technique more than anything else.

            Even with a crappy old dual-walled basket, it is still possible to derive a decent pour that continues for the usual 25-30 seconds, if everything else is good; i.e. Freshly Roasted High Quality Beans, ground using a decent quality Grinder immediately before dosing the basket/filter, good technique and a half decent Espresso Machine.

            Might be to your benefit to attend one of the many Home Barista Courses on offer from a number of our Site Sponsors or a reputable Specialist Coffee Retailer in your neck of the woods. Would be money very well spent.... 8-)

            Mal.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

              Doubt its the basket.

              Its probably because youre trying to extract 60ml (that is a LOT, two full shots) from only 14g of coffee, and if its not excellent quality coffee recently roasted then yes it would blonde way before you reach 60ml.  

              I think youll find youll get much nicer shots from 14g of coffee if you just aim for 25 - 30ml in 30 seconds.

              Also could be a temperature thing... what machine do you have and what temp are your shots running at if you have a pid?

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

                this subject came up once before and it turned out that the person asking the question had misunderstood blonding and what they thought was early blonding was actually normal.

                not saying thats the case here but is something else to check

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

                  Originally posted by 4F63637C697E3A355F0C0 link=1292070360/7#7 date=1292161387
                  this subject came up once before and it turned out that the person asking the question had misunderstood blonding and what they thought was early blonding was actually normal.

                  As someone who has been watching this thread from the sidelines, I thought I might pop my head out and ask, what is blonding and what could be confused for blonding but is normal.

                  My reading/research indicates when the pour goes from the dark rich liquid to the paler colour thats blonding and youre now pulling bitterness out. Seeking some further enlightenment here.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

                    Originally posted by 5B575A5A5F535B5551360 link=1292070360/8#8 date=1292195036
                    Originally posted by 4F63637C697E3A355F0C0 link=1292070360/7#7 date=1292161387
                    this subject came up once before and it turned out that the person asking the question had misunderstood blonding and what they thought was early blonding was actually normal.

                    As someone who has been watching this thread from the sidelines, I thought I might pop my head out and ask, what is blonding and what could be confused for blonding but is normal.

                    My reading/research indicates when the pour goes from the dark rich liquid to the paler colour thats blonding and youre now pulling bitterness out. Seeking some further enlightenment here.
                    Use the search function..

                    http://www.home-barista.com/espresso-guide-skills.html

                    as posted by MAL in this post.

                    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1154656251

                    Remember - Blond is a term and does not cover all the aspects.. To me it also implies watery ! Lacking in good Oils and consistency = Blonding.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

                      Theres a colour change before it goes watery. I cut it off after the change but before it becomes watery. I dont cut if off the moment it becomes streaky though. The taste from the extracted 20-25mL even in a full mug is fine, wouldnt describe it as weak in flavour, but maybe a bit milky. In a 300mL cup (rather than the 360mL mugs) would probably be perfect. Im coming from a Bar Italia (3.5 bar steam powered) and pre-ground stuff where Id need to extract about 60mL for the same amount of flavour, so its just a big change to get that much flavour from what looks like such a tiny amount in the cup.

                      Got my untapered unpressurised baskets (which look like theyll probably hold 18g of coffee) so well see if I can get a bit more from the double basket. I make coffee in the morning, usually one for me and one for my girlfriend, am hoping to get both of them from the one pour - should at least be fine for 220mL latte glasses but we generally go a bit bigger.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

                        Hey all,

                        I have the same equipment: EM5900, EM0450 grinder, Breville BSWF100 unpressurized baskets. I alternate between the silly Breville and the even sillier Sunbeam "tamp"/spoon. I have increased the espresso temperature to the maximum (which, according to the manual, is 6 degrees, or 3 lots of 2 degrees above what the machine "is calibrated to the precise temperature of 92 degrees"). I did this cause the coffee seemed a little cool, and lots of CSs with the 5900 or 6910 seemed to have similar experience.

                        I think im getting the same issue as you (when you started this thread), my shots done from the double basket... pour starts at about 6-8 seconds, pour goes from chocolatey colour to medium to light tan at about 12-15 seconds with a very small amount of brown stripes, to light tan and more clear at about 20-23 seconds. If I stop the pour at 20 seconds, I have about 40-45mL. I am using Pablo and Rustys house blend (roasted by AIR), roast date 3rd of May (10 days ago).

                        I am grinding on level 13 on my EM0450. My method is as per this Scottie Callaghan video http://www.espressocompany.com.au/gr...sing-video.htm. Fill 3/4, collapse twice, fill to a mound over the top of the basket, collapse twice, fill to a mound over the top of the basket, collapse twice, sweep with my finger to make sure grounds go uniformly to the edges with a slight mound on top, tamp with medium force (scales tell me about 10-13 kg), tap PF, tamp again. When i do the 5 cent test, it comes out with a very slight circular indentation in the puck.
                        After extraction (which seems to start blonding at about 10-13 seconds) the puck is a bit moist, and doesnt really come out uniformly unless I leave it to sit for about 5-10 mins.

                        In an attempt to correct this, I tried grinding on 12 with the same method, and the machine choked. I then tried grinding on 12, and tamping lighter (roughly 5kg), and the machine choked less but still choked. I tried tamping even lighter (roughly 1-2kg) and the machine chokes a little less, but still splatters and comes out too slowly, and the puck seems to have some channelling (assumption based on a small crater or 2 in the puck, and by the fact that with the little plastic insert in the PF handle out, the pour will go to one side or the other, which seems to me to indicate an uneven pour, and is the best I can do without a naked PF).

                        I havent tried reducing the temperature back to default, but I will tonight after reading here that too high a temp could be a factor.

                        Darfalz, have you corrected your issue and can give me some pointers?

                        Anyone else give some pointers? Thanks!

                        NB. Granted, Ive never had a barista watch my machine and tell me exactly when blonding is occurring, so its an educated guess. Can anyone point me in the direction of a good youtube or other video of an extraction that points out when blonding is occuring?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

                          Originally posted by 5772617875727F69130 link=1292070360/0#0 date=1292070360
                          I am getting good pours at the right rate, about 50-60mL in 25-30 seconds from 14-15g of coffee.
                          Hi Darkfalz,

                          With the info given, I would have to agree with rival81 on this one. Thats a very fast pour rate, and a long extraction volume from a minimal amount of ground coffee. Try to work with a slower pour rate, and maybe a larger basket size if you can. Should produce more flavour. Watch the age also, if it is too fresh, or too old, the blonding will occur earlier than approx 30 ml. Grinding on demand, correct and consistent dose and tamp etc ( the usual suspects) will help.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Good crema and pour rate, but blonding early

                            Originally posted by 495651525B4D56514A5F5251485B3E0 link=1292070360/12#12 date=1305266802
                            Try to work with a slower pour rate, and maybe a larger basket size if you can. Should produce more flavour. Watch the age also, if it is too fresh, or too old, the blonding will occur earlier than approx 30 ml.

                            Interesting, Im facing a similar problem but hadnt considered the age of the roast. When I happen to get grind, tamp and dose just right (as far as I can tell) I do get a nice, oily, red-brown extraction but after about 10-15 it goes blonde and starts gushing. After that the glass is over two thirds crema which collapses to some 5mm shortly after.

                            After roasting I let the beans rest for a week and go through the batch within a week, so they would be between 1 and 2 weeks old.

                            Im going to waste plenty more great beans before I get to the bottom of this…

                            Cheers
                            Steffen.

                            Comment

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