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Thread: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

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    What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi,

    As a newbie, I normally follows the instruction of pulling 30ml over 25-30sec for a good ESPRESSO.

    Now, for RISTRETTO, from some definition: 25ml in 30-35 sec, Finer grind to slow down the flow 25-30 sec to get 20-25ml......

    RISTRETTO = over extracted espresso :-?

    What is the best pratice to get delicious Ristretto?

    Thanks,
    C.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    There are two schools of thought, one as you have described above and the second is to pull the shot short ie 20mls in around 20-25 sec. I follow the second method as I pull my espresso shots tighter than normal and I find that the 20ml in 20 sec is to my tastes.

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    Senior Member GregWormald's Avatar
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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 676C6568617669676C656D70040 link=1280566011/0#0 date=1280566011
    RISTRETTO = over extracted espresso *
    WRONG.
    Ristretto = restricted (usually either in time to get less quantity, or just referring to quantity, implying a finer grind)

    Try both, see what you like.

    Greg

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Should be titled how misused is the term "Ristretto"

    A Ristretto in the classical meaning is A LOT different to what has become known as a "Ristretto" as to what tastes the best by playing with dose, grind tamp and shot time etc that is the bit to play with but call it something else.

    Have a read of this recent thread and the Wiki link too
    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1271734890
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ristretto

    As to what I do for a short shot sink the first few seconds of the extraction and the last bit as the shot tails off on the lever machines. So the middle bit for me of a "normal" shot for me and my gear is the bit I like best but it is not a Ristretto..

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    Senior Member GregWormald's Avatar
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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Hi bf,

    I note that the Wiki entry on ristretto is currently under discussion, both about the actual definition and the origin.

    Have you any authoritative sources, or are they all buried in time?

    I also read a lot about restricting the shot by increasing the tamp pressure, but this seems to do almost nothing on my machine.

    Greg

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Thanks for all advices,

    In my sense, if pump pressure is fixed (like modern pumped machine), then Ristretto of 20ml in 25-30 sec seems like overextracted espresso.

    However, if brew pressure can be varied (using lever machine), with finer grind and lower pressure to take longer time to brew 20ml than normal espresso, then this makes more sense to me ie. Ristretto is NOT overextracted espresso BUT to allow more contact time between water and coffee grind during brewing process. :)

    Do I understand correctly? :D

    C.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    I was taught it simply meant you grind and tamp as per normal but stop the shot short so as to get the sweeter first portion of the shot...?

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 68697C696F65680C0 link=1280566011/6#6 date=1280614952
    I was taught it simply meant you grind and tamp as per normal but stop the shot short so as to get the sweeter first portion of the shot...?
    Thats what I thought it was too :-?

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    I always thought that the true ristretto shot was prepared in a true lever machine, the rest of us are just imitations, will the real slim shady please stand up, please stand up.......

    The way i, prepare "MY" version is to do what BF said, grab the middle of the normal shot, the middle 7-10 seconds, get some great choc/caramels out of it!

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 7C495E5C6C5449565A575F3B0 link=1280566011/4#4 date=1280579598
    they all buried in time?
    Yep sort of :D

    Espresso is straightforward and well defined even to the point of a specification for what is is worth http://www.espressoitaliano.org/doc/...g%20-%20LQ.pdf

    From there is gets muddied when you start talking about Ristretto (short or restricted shot) or Lungo (long or high volume shot). The classic Ristretto is actually a full shot volume from the lever but the time is shortened or restricted and not the volume such as the modern version which has become restricted volume and as such is really not a Ristretto at all.

    To muddy it further the modern version has several methods of preparation along with some commercial realities if you ask for one at a cafe that doesnt make all shots that way.

    Commercially very few if any shops will adjust a grinder to make one "Ristretto" drink then wind it back again so what you will get is just a short timed shot from a standard grind in most cases or maybe a heavily tamped puck with a time closer to the 25-30 second mark. As I mentioned above I choose the middle pour method for this from a full shot volume rather than fuss around with grind and tamp. Apart from being guided by my tastes this chart below lays it out fairly well as to what results are likely.



    Back to making modern Ristrettos for home users and Coffeesnobs ;)

    One modern Ristretto method is where the operator has made a finer grind that results in a slower extraction or a lower resulting volume but still in the 25-30 second range is the more common. To my taste this can tend to accentuate the high notes but it has less body than I like.

    So for me the middle pour will do as it is what I like :)

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 292E2A252D273222252C4B0 link=1280566011/9#9 date=1280638337
    The classic Ristretto is actually a full shot volume from the lever but the time is shortened
    Sounds like an under extraction or gusher to me???

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 4F545D4B48453C0 link=1280566011/10#10 date=1280649602
    Sounds like an under extraction or gusher to me???
    Sorry but Wrong it was made on a Lever machine with no 3 way valve so the pressure is controlled by the user so if anything it will be a shot run at a consistently higher pressure than a normal spring lever shot which starts high then tapers over the course of the shot.

    My understanding of the traditional Ristretto version is that the Barista helps the shot run quicker by pushing on the lever with the spring which will keep the pressure higher on the puck and for a given grind and tamp the shot will run faster hence restricted time or Ristretto. Volume is a constant and fixed by the Piston size. My supposition is that what was happening is that the pressure profile was flatter and more like a pump machine instead of like a spring lever?

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 5156525D555F4A5A5D54330 link=1280566011/11#11 date=1280651041
    Volume is a constant and fixed by the Piston size
    So there is no way of making a restricted shot volume on a lever machine?

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    A_M
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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 564D4452515C250 link=1280566011/12#12 date=1280698959
    Quote Originally Posted by 5156525D555F4A5A5D54330 link=1280566011/11#11 date=1280651041
    Volume is a constant and fixed by the Piston size
    So there is no way of making a restricted shot volume on a lever machine?
    YES... There is...

    A: Remove teh cup at the point you wish, and

    B: Keep the action going and the rest just gets dumped...

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 0F20292B3C032F202F292B232B203A4E0 link=1280566011/13#13 date=1280706999
    Quote Originally Posted by 564D4452515C250 link=1280566011/12#12 date=1280698959
    Quote Originally Posted by 5156525D555F4A5A5D54330 link=1280566011/11#11 date=1280651041
    Volume is a constant and fixed by the Piston size
    So there is no way of making a restricted shot volume on a lever machine?
    YES... There is...

    A: *Remove teh cup at the point you wish, and

    B: *Keep the action going and the rest just gets dumped...
    Yeah, I thought of that.
    Im just not sold on the idea of a restricted shot meaning the time is restricted not the volume.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    I didnt say it was the best method, thats why I make my short shots short volume by taking the cup in and out and not short time ;D

    Next time I have the Izzo out I will have a proper play with the short time against the standard pull and see what the difference is.

    Shot volume can be varied you just do a partial pull but you need to hold the lever against the spring for pre infusion as the lever is not in the over centre cam position. Non Spring machines are easier as you can stop the shot wherever you like abd you are the spring so the fast or slow is tricky but easier to change.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Really good article on the subject.

    http://coffeegeek.com/opinions/aarondelazzer/02-24-2002

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 3B262B2B232A3D7D4F0 link=1280566011/16#16 date=1304554097
    Really good article on the subject.

    http://coffeegeek.com/opinions/aarondelazzer/02-24-2002
    Thats a great article, interesting and entertainingly truthful in some aspects.

    I usually create a ristretto by cutting my espresso shot short, around 15-20ml in volume, prefering to isolate the most intense and complex flavours extracted at the beginning of the shot.

    I have come across some Barista that alter their tamping pressure and/or grind size to achieve a ristretto. This can yield some good results, though it is always a fine line on how fine to grind, with the aim of extracting attractive flavours. Grinding too fine will run the risk of extracting negative flavour attributes of the coffee.

    In context of working in an espresso bar, implimenting grind/tamp changes to produce a ristretto during peak/high volume periods can slow down production, so from a time economy point of view a short shot may be more achievable. Can you impliment these changes during quiet periods? Sure, though this may produce issues with inconsistency in results of what your ristretto represents.

    A common thought process is that if you have your extraction rate correct, you shouldnt have to alter grind/tamp, as the correct (espresso) rate of flow will yield good results......so many variables.....so little time.


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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 78796C797F75781C0 link=1280566011/6#6 date=1280614952
    I was taught it simply meant you grind and tamp as per normal but stop the shot short so as to get the sweeter first portion of the shot...?
    I simple dose and tamp the same, but use the single dose on the machine. This gives me two 15ml ristretto shots. Sweeter taste, less caffeine. My favorite, mmmm coffee!! :D

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    "A ristretto shot of espresso is very freak. It is very geek. It is very Coffeegeek. If youíre communing with the inner circle of Coffeegeeks, sure fly the freak flag high, but the rest of the time please keep your card carrying ristretto membership in your pocket. Stop the insanity. Youíre only hurting yourself. I canít bear to watch."

    http://coffeegeek.com/opinions/aarondelazzer/02-24-2002[/QUOTE]

    So, Im a freak, a geek, i get that... but i LOVE a good ristretto. And yes, i can tell the difference...
    :o

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 0106020D050F1A0A0D04630 link=1280566011/9#9 date=1280638337
    From there is gets muddied when you start talking about Ristretto (short or restricted shot) or Lungo (long or high volume shot). The classic Ristretto is actually a full shot volume from the lever but the time is shortened or restricted and not the volume such as the modern version which has become restricted volume and as such is really not a Ristretto at all.
    in all my experience, for what its worth, i have always taught that a restricted espresso (ristretto) should come from adjusting the grind and as such restrict the flow of the shot.

    a classic example would be to pull a normal espresso shot, followed by a ristretto to compare.
    ristretto should have the following differences:
    [list bull-redball][*]thicker - greater viscosity
    [list bull-redball][*]fuller flavour - this doesnt mean it should taste burnt, just amplified, with a longer lasting back end
    [list bull-redball][*]shorter - by default, the same time to press water with the same pressure through a greater solid should equal less coffee.

    just my opinion of what makes the difference between the two. As for lever machine, i havent had enough experience to really comment here, but i think @beanflying may have some further insight.

    thanks,
    ;)


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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    I overdose and tamp harder than usual to extract 15-20ml of delicious viscous brew that is sweet and full of complex flavours in the mouth aka orgasm-in-the-mouth ^^
    I find this method more consistent than adjusting the grind to find the sweet spot.
    Sometimes I cheat and pull a single shot through a double basket, regular tamp. A short double espresso, its great but falls short (excuse the pun) when compared to he first method.

    E

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 262A36282C262329302323450 link=1280566011/21#21 date=1311832628
    I find this method more consistent than adjusting the grind to find the sweet spot.
    I understand what youre saying, its still good... but any great coffee takes time and effort.* for me its about the journey - the disappointment of those not so good ones that makes the perfect one that much better.
    i think thats whythis is so true...* *

    Quote Originally Posted by 2F2A20291A2824372E3036450 link=1280566011/19#19 date=1311820097
    "A ristretto shot of espresso is very freak.* It is very geek.* It is very Coffeegeek.* If youíre communing with the inner circle of Coffeegeeks, sure fly the freak flag high, but the rest of the time please keep your card carrying ristretto membership in your pocket.* Stop the insanity.* Youíre only hurting yourself.* * I canít bear to watch."

    http://coffeegeek.com/opinions/aarondelazzer/02-24-2002
    [/QUOTE]


    :D

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 7478647A7E74717B627171170 link=1280566011/21#21 date=1311832628
    aka orgasm-in-the-mouth
    what the ??......ristrettos can be used to wash your mouth out too.....oh well there goes another minute of my life reading garbage.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    If you run the same volume through a ristretto do you get the same amount of caffeine out?

    I presume if you cut out the start and end of the shots and leave the middle to get a restricted volume shot you get less caffeine?

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 505448424A4D484F46210 link=1280566011/24#24 date=1312164893
    If you run the same volume through a ristretto do you get the same amount of caffeine out?
    it probably depends @quickling if you are following the more ground coffee packed tighter version of a ristretto. in this case, i would potentially say yes, as it is my understanding that the caffiene is tied up in the oils that come through with the water. if you are exposing the water to more ground coffee, you are theoretically extracting more oils, and therefore more coffee...

    does that make sense?

    anyone else have a theory on this one?

    :D

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    mtm
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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    I thought caffeine was quite a soluble component of coffee and therefore would come out relatively independent of oils?

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Cafeine is a soluable which means that the level of caffeine in any shot is directly related to the contact it has with water. The longer this contact,the more of the cafeine dissolves into the shot. Therefore, based on a 25-30 second shot, the only difference in the amount of cafeine will be the amount of coffee in the portafilter. If you pack it very tight and use less actual coffee (ie. The will be a bit of room between puck and showerhead), your cafeine content wil be lower than if you pack less tight using more coffee (ie. Like when baristas pack softly and let the shower head do the actual compacting of the puck when inserting it into the grouphead).

    All in all the difference will be small though, as the limited amount of time that the water is in contact with the grounds, and as such the cafeine, means that the cafeine has very little time to actually dissolve.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    I was once pretty sure that most of the caffeine will be out of a coffee shot by the 10mL mark of extraction, given that a double shot will vary between 60 and 180mg of caffeine (dependant on origin etc).

    From ( http://www.pharmainfo.net/reviews/extraction-caffeine-tea-leaves ) Now although this is talking about tea leaves, it reads as if the solubility is of caffeine - the source material is not so important.
    The solubility of caffeine in water is 22 mg/ml at 25∑C, 180 mg/ml at 80∑C, and 670 mg/ml at 100∑C.

    Given most shots would be pulled around the 93∑C mark that would put the caffeine disolving into the shot somewhere between 180 and 670mg/mL which to my maths means pretty much as soon as the water hits it, it goes into solution.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Quote Originally Posted by 282429292C20282622450 link=1280566011/28#28 date=1317773162
    Now although this is talking about tea leaves, it reads as if the solubility is of caffeine - the source material is not so important.
    The solubility of caffeine in water is 22 mg/ml at 25∑C, 180 mg/ml at 80∑C, and 670 mg/ml at 100∑C.

    Given most shots would be pulled around the 93∑C mark that would put the caffeine disolving into the shot somewhere between 180 and 670mg/mL which to my maths means pretty much as soon as the water hits it, it goes into solution.
    Where your reasoning falls over, is the fact that you assume the story for tea is the same as for coffee. This only works if you compare similar brewing methods.

    The solubility of caffeine is one thing, but what needs to be taken into consideration is the exposure time.

    Since tea is extracted by sitting the tea leaves in hot water for a prolonged period, the full amount of caffeine has time to dissolve into the solution. This would be similar to Plunger coffee or Turkish coffee etc. However, when pulling a shot in an espresso machine, the water gets very little time to be in contact with the caffeine and as such, very little caffeine dissolves.

    A very simple way to illustrate/prove this point is to look at when you put sugar in a cup of hot water. It doesnt dissolve instantly, but rather, it dissolves slowly.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    I think a ristretto is a normal shot but you have to stop the pour before the crema goes blond

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    I understand what a ristretto is ( about 25ml from the first 20-25 seconds), but is it just a drink itself or can it be used to base other coffees? Eg-will the barista burst out in laughter if I ask for a ristretto based cappuccino or latte? And no, I probably cant taste the difference between the two but ask me again in 6 months and I probably will :)

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    You would probably ask for a double ristretto as a base for a cappuccino or a latte if thats what you wanted to do.

    I use that as my base for a coffee at home if im using a bigger cup.


    It shouldnt really phase a barista who knows what theyre doing behind the machine but you might get a funny look from a button pusher.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Thanks. In other words, dont ask anyone at Charbucks or Maccas, theyll just think your stoned. ;D

    The guys I go to are the best in Port Douglas and they did well with my piccolo latte yesterday morning so I trust theyll know their stuff with a ristretto.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    In fact they use ristrettos all the time unless asked otherwise. Asked for a double ristretto latte and they told me thats what they use :-[, that probably explains why their coffees are so bold in taste.

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    Re: What is RISTRETTO? (in general practice)

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    Youll find that a lot speciality cafes use a double ristretto as their base for drinks as standard. Theyll only use a double espresso if theres say, two caps lines up in which case theyll split a double. or if theres a "Mug" on order ;D



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