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Thread: Help fix a poor shot?

  1. #1
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    Help fix a poor shot?

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I recently purchased a silvia/rocky combo, right now I am trying to improve the quality of the coffee produced (arent we all?)

    Symptoms:
    Crema is fairly monotone and blond
    Shot tastes bitter
    Shot is somewhat lacking in body
    Puck is dry with no obvious channeling (to my untrained eye)
    Extraction time for approx 60ml is around 20-25sec
    Using the standard portafilter, usually one spout has more total volume coming through than the other (crooked tamping issue?)
    Beans come from my local barista, same source as he is using to make good coffee

    Any tips would be most appreciated, especially in how to approach a bitter shot with a rather blond crema.

  2. #2
    TC
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    Re: Help fix a poor shot?

    Quote Originally Posted by 794F4743464645442A0 link=1233871659/0#0 date=1233871659
    I recently purchased a silvia/rocky combo, right now I am trying to improve the quality of the coffee produced (arent we all?)

    Symptoms:
    Crema is fairly monotone and blond
    Shot tastes bitter
    Shot is somewhat lacking in body
    Puck is dry with no obvious channeling (to my untrained eye)
    Extraction time for approx 60ml is around 20-25sec
    Using the standard portafilter, usually one spout has more total volume coming through than the other (crooked tamping issue?)
    Beans come from my local barista, same source as he is using to make good coffee

    Any tips would be most appreciated, especially in how to approach a bitter shot with a rather blond crema.
    Hi Semillion,

    The Silvia is a great machine but can be a cranky taskmaster.

    Get some deep baskets and some training. Its not all about 25-30 ml in 25 sec. You need to educate your palate and develop gut feeling about what you see and expect to taste.

    These days, I rarely ever train with a stopwatch. In fact, for us at home, I wonder if they dont do more harm than good.

    Hope that helps ;)

    Chris

  3. #3
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    Re: Help fix a poor shot?

    Appreciate the reply.

    I have ordered a deep double basket, I can see how that may improve the quality of the coffee somewhat, however I find it hard to believe that the equipment supplied as standard with the Silvia are not sufficient to produce at least a "good" espresso.

    If anyone has some practical suggestions on how to approach a bitter shot lacking in colour/body I would be keen to hear them.

  4. #4
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    Re: Help fix a poor shot?

    My order of beans from our host arrived, so after using up the last of my cafe bought beans I opened up my rocky grinder to give it a decent clean, found the true zero point then made a flat white.

    Fresh/quality beans make all the difference, the espresso was oozing out like warm honey and despite a little side channeling due to a clumsy bump of the portafilter, I have a nice cup of coffee in my hand right now :)

  5. #5
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    Re: Help fix a poor shot?

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    My experience with Silvia was that the standard double basket could produce great shots, with some training from Chris as Talk Coffee, but really does need relatively fine grind.
    The larger capacity basket is slightly less temperamental and usually wont need as fine a grind.
    Forget about the time it takes, as long as you are somewhere between 20-45 secs you can get great shots, I have even had good ones go nearer 60 secs.
    Continue learning to see when blonding is beginning to occur and stop the pour at that point,
    and of course as you found out, fresh beans make significant difference.
    Bullitt.



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