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My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

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  • My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

    So my new stuff all arrived today. Everything is shiny and lovely to behold.

    My kitchen had a quick move around so I could store all my goodies in the drawer directly beneath the machines.

    I have been playing this afternoon with both the grinder and the Musica however am not having success yet.

    I have used two different sorts of beans - both from sponsors so am assuming their freshness will be spot on. I have ground using the finest setting as well as the second finest setting.

    I have purged the machine then let it sit for 45sec before extracting the shot. But it is horrible to say the least. I can smell as I bring the glass up to my face that it is not going to be good. Has that yukky smell and a combination of bitterness & sourness on the palate.

    Any hints or tips would be appreciated.





  • #2
    Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

    Here is the accessory drawer.

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    • #3
      Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

      It took me about 1/2 a dozen shots before I had mine right and I have been using the grinder for 2 years so I had a point to start. With a new grinder it may take a few more shots.

      How was the pour?
      How long to get a shot (Double or single)?

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      • #4
        Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

        Stan - some of the pours were way too quick. So I tinkered with the grind - then I was getting close to 30ml in 30sec (or really 60ml in 30sec).

        This was one of the more successful looking ones...

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        • #5
          Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

          How is the taste?

          I only use the double and I found it doesnt pay to overdose.

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          • #6
            Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

            Stan - gross!

            Can you tell me what reading your pressure gauge sits at when heated up fully? Mine is sitting at 1.3 and the coffee smells slightly burnt.

            Also what fineness do you use in the basket? I have been adjusting the fineness from a dirt / grit consistency down to a fine pepper consistency but no noticeable difference in taste, only in quickness of pour.

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            • #7
              Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

              Yay, Kyton, great choice!

              I definitely dont overdose on mine, either. My method with filling the basket is to grind enough to reach just the top of the basket, give it a good knock, fill up the basket again to just on overflowing, give it another thump on the surface, and then level it off with my finger so that it is slightly indented.

              Depending on the grind fineness, if its right, then it should tamp down fairly compactly until its about 4-5mm below the rim of the basket (this is just a guess, because I use a Pullman tamper, so I could tell you that the Pullman sits flat in it and just hits the top of the base).

              You should tamp fairly firmly - I say this because, being a woman only, we have to put a bit more muscle into it. Basically, I bend my elbow on 90 degree angle and lean into the tamper with a reasonable amount of pressure, but not lift myself off the floor with it, of course.

              There should be no pressure required to then lock the group handle into the group head at all. If there is, youve probably overdosed and, in time, this will cause problems.

              The is no real need to wait 45 seconds after flushing the group head prior to locking the group handle in - I just flush until the pre-infusion is over and turn it off again, lock the group in straight away and then start the pour. I dont really time from there, but I usually have enough time to get about 3/4 of the way through texturing the milk before turning the pour off and removing my glass/es, so Im guesstimating about 30 seconds or so for my 600ml pitcher, and then finish the milk off and put the two together.

              It should taste fairly sweet (I say this sort of tongue in cheek, because I like my coffee with sugar despite the guys on here thinking Im a heathen and trying to convert me for the past two years!)

              Dont forget that, depending on what youve been used to bean-wise - particularly if it was something supermarket bought like Lavazza - tastes worlds away from fresh beans so you may have to calibrate your senses to take that into account. It can taste very intense for a start compared to washed out shelf-stale beans. Ignore this paragraph if youve been using fresh beans for a while, though...

              Hope this helps - were getting to be a regular little group of Musica owners now - Its good to have some company and have someone to share ideas, tips and tricks with!

              Cheers
              Di

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              • #8
                Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

                Grinding to a shaved ice/salt sort of consistency is the best.  If you put a bit between your thump and pointer, you should still feel a bit of grit. Fine pepper is probably way too fine unless youre not planning on using a tamper at all and Im guessing this one was a reaaallllly slow pour if you tamped it.

                Also, work on only one variable at a time. Once you get your grind to about the above consistency, start playing around with the pressure you are tamping with only and see if that makes a difference to the taste.

                If I get a chance tomorrow morning once Im up and the machines back on, Ill try and take a shot of a pour from mine and you can see how it compares, if it would help?

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                • #9
                  Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

                  Thanks Di that helps a lot.

                  Will experiment again tomorrow.

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                  • #10
                    Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

                    Sounds good - probably not that conducive to having a good nights sleep making one right now!

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                    • #11
                      Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

                      YAY!! I finally did it.

                      Took lots of failed shots. Received my shim kit from Phil - thank you so much! Had to install 3 shims to get the right consistency of grind.

                      Had a break to clear my head and then tried pulling a shot first. 25ml in 30sec.

                      Then tried my second attempt at doing the milk. Sorry no artwork - but it did taste delicious.

                      No sugar needed - which to me is the way I tell if it is a good coffee or not. Was so delicious made another two straight away to retest. My darling husband pronounced it as one of the best coffees he has ever drunk :-*

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                      • #12
                        Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

                        Woo-hoo: Let coffee nirvana begin!

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                        • #13
                          Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

                          Thanks Di ;D

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                          • #14
                            Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

                            Sorry I was not on line to answer you but it appears you have been successful.  I use a similar technique to Di and havent looked back.

                            My Machine rarely gets past 1.3. I am normally in a hurry in the mornings so it rarely gets to 1.3 of a morning before I pour a cup usually as soon as it gets into the blue I and pouring. In the afternoon if gets to warm up fully before we use it and I havent noticed any difference, to be honest. 8-)

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                            • #15
                              Re: My new Musica and SmartGrinder setup (plus a few questions)

                              Thanks Stan. Still having success although yesterdays was so far the most outstandingly delicious.

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