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Best Tips For Making Perfect Espresso at Home: Espresso Guide 101

Best Tips For Making Perfect Espresso at Home: Espresso Guide 101

Espresso is the most popular brewing technique because it is commonly used as a base for a variety of marvellous coffee drinks. As coffee enthusiasts, who consistently drink espresso, they know how crucial it is to sip a great cup of coffee. Apart from that, the technique is quite challenging for inexperienced baristas.

 

However, here are five best tips that are important to master your espresso drinks, starting from choosing the right coffee beans, the coffee grind size, the coffee measurement, the steaming and milk frothing, and lastly, the portafilter. If following the right guidelines, brewing espresso will become a piece of cake for you.

    I.        Choosing The Right Coffee Beans

There is no excuse to mention selecting the most suitable coffee beans is a critical step that makes exceptional espresso shots. Basically, coffee comes in unroasted green beans. These green beans are firm and have no flavor and fragrance. Therefore, If you look deeper into coffee beans selection, there are several more ways to pick up the right coffee beans as follows:

1.    Freshly-Roasted Bean Are Highly Appreciated  

Roasting is a way of extracting every ounce of coffee attributes and aroma from the solid unroasted beans. Additionally, as coffee comes in several roasting levels, such as light roast, medium roast, dark roast, and extra dark roast, each produces a distinctive coffee body, aroma, and taste.

 

Although roasting makes the coffee beans smell and taste great, these qualities will be slowly diminished over time through a process called oxidation. When coffee beans are left in contact with oxygen, it will absorb all coffee attributes out of the coffee body. As a result, the coffee will lose its scent and flavor.

 

For this reason, freshly roasted coffee beans are highly recommended for baristas to kick off the espresso process. Moreover, it does not seem practical to have a coffee roaster at home or even at a restaurant as it is for large industry purposes. Hence, you can easily look for high quality roasted coffee beans that are fresh and packed nicely on the market nearby or online.

2.   Consider Higher Quality of Coffee Bean Types

 

Typically, coffee beans are categorized into four types: Arabica, Robusta, Liberica, and Excelsa. Each type has different characteristics and growth. The higher altitude coffee is grown, the higher quality it carries. Arabica and Robusta are mostly known to be the high-end coffee beans in the world due to their sweet taste and cherry fragrance, along with less acidity. They are popularly grown and harvested at altitudes between 3000 feet to nearly 5000 feet above sea level. On the other hand, Arabica stands out as the number one coffee bean because it is grown at higher altitudes. Under extreme environmental conditions, this coffee bean type carries a more delicate taste and aromatic flavors with hints of cherries.

 

Despite ranking number two, Robusta is acknowledged as the most prolific coffee bean as it is easier to grow and is not difficult to monitor against pests. In addition, this coffee bean type is known to carry higher caffeine content and a robust flavor profile than others. For this reason, Robusta is popularly used as a dark roast blend that produces fragrant and robust flavors with hints of chocolate.

II. Finely Ground Coffee Works Best With Brewing Espresso

 

If you have never brewed any espresso yet, you surely do not know how important the grind size is. There are a variety of grind sizes ranging from extra coarse to super fine. Each grind size is served for different brewing methods, including espresso, AeroPress, cold brew, French press, and so forth. If you are using the incorrect grind size for a specific brewing method, you might end up having over-extracted or under-extracted coffee. For this matter, the coffee will taste either sour or bitter. Therefore, the correct grind size to brew perfect espresso is to have finely ground coffee beans. In addition, this grind size is easy to recognize because it looks identical to normal sugar (white sugar).

III. Measure Your Finely Ground Coffee Beans At The Right Amount

 

Simply speaking, you can neither put too much nor too little of your finely ground coffee beans into a portafilter. Thus, it is critical to precisely measure the right amount of ground coffee beans before brewing. Fundamentally, great espresso brewing requires between 20 to 30 grams of finely ground coffee beans. With the right grind size and measurement, the coffee beans will be dissolved well in the boiling water, pulling out every ounce of coffee

characteristics. As a result, the espresso’s flavor will carry robust and fragrant flavor profiles. Moreover, if you use espresso as a base for other drinks, you should fill the finely ground coffee at a maximum of 30 grams per brewing. Meanwhile, if you drink espresso straight away, you can use the minimum dose due the coffee is already robust.  

IV. Picking Up The Right Milk for Steaming and Frothing

 

Perfect espresso cannot go without milk frothing and steaming. For this reason, many baristas worldwide try to create many notable coffee drinks with milk and espresso in the base. Except for the plain espresso drink, milk steaming or frothing is the best espresso combination. Since milk produces a sweet taste and creamy texture, it adds a rich flavor to the coffee profile. Other than that, you can start by using two percent milk to produce a creamy texture that is rich in flavor. On the other hand, low-fat milk carries a fair taste, so you can instead use whole milk to make the most foam. If you are on a diet, you can try other dairy-free milk, such as almond milk, coconut milk, soy milk, or oat milk.

 

After picking up the right milk, you can start pouring the cold milk into a jar or cup. Using a high-quality espresso machine has a frothing feature. You can easily hold the jar and put the steam wand into the milk with that feature. Then, start to froth the milk by pressing a button. The milk frothing will finish after 20 seconds. However, if you do not have any machines, you can start with a saucepan as a major tool for milk frothing. You can kick off by heating the pan to 65 degrees Celsius (150°F). Then, pour the milk in the saucepan and vigorously whisk it for 1 minute or more until the milk produces foams and bubbles.

V. Concentrate on Portafilter To Pull A Good Shot

 

You may use portafilters to intensify the quality of your coffee profile. Here are some important guidelines to be conscious when using the portafilter:

●      Ensure That Portafilter is Finely Cleaned Every Using Time

 

Your portafilter is required to be clean prior to adding coffee. If it is not properly cleaned, the existence of dampness or residual ground coffee may cause an acerbic and bitter taste in your espresso.

●      Evenly Distribute The Grounds

 

There is a probable chance that your grinder could dispense the grounds into a portafilter basket, and it can form in the shape of a mountain or pyramid. This indicates that you've got an uneven distribution of grounds. Certain parts of the basket might have more coffee than other parts if they're not well-distributed before tapping. You may face the coffee channeling issue if your ground coffees are not properly scaled and not evenly leveled off.

 

The utilization of the distribution tool will make the channeling problem less challenging. In addition, it will leave a very limited gap for water to enter and escalate the consistency taste through your espresso’s extraction process as well.

●      Tamping Process Should Be Consistent

 

The reason for tapping is to remove any air pockets in the coffee puck and smooth it completely. Additionally, it is recommended to utilize the tamper to compress ground coffee to the point that the puck gets squeezed and does not sink any further. Be sure that the puck is level horizontally to ensure that you don't channel or extract unevenly. It is common to see an indication within the basket, which shows how deep you should press the grinds.

 

●      Wipe The Group Head

 

To eradicate any leftover or aged coffee, clean the group head before inserting the portafilter. Furthermore, staying cleaned is the most effortless way to keep the espresso coffee machine hygienic. It is possible to get more coffee extracted from it when the group head has been correctly heated.    

 

●      Place The Portafilter in Machine and Continue Your Brewing

 

After cleaning your espresso maker, insert the portafilter into the group head and immediately begin brewing. If you hold off for too long, the heat of your group head can "burn" the coffee. This will cause an unpleasant taste in your cup.

 

●      Carefully Consider Brewing Time

 

Now you are in the process of making your espresso. When using a volumetric device, please keep track of its time to produce your espresso. It is feasible to prepare another espresso if you find the presence of an over-extraction or under-extraction.

 

Moreover, You may also examine the dimensions of your grind and the amount of coffee you're making. Also, be aware of the coffee volume you can extract from your manual espresso maker. When your coffee is flowing way too rapidly, it may be diluting your coffee (causing it to be milder) or excessively extracting.

 

Conclusion

The process of making the perfect espresso needs more techniques to master. Here, we will simplify the knowledge of espresso by highlighting the principal factors that determine its final flavor. You can now learn how to prepare the perfect espresso by following these five simple steps. After learning these techniques, you will make it at home anytime in your convenient ways.