6 second espresso


New member
Feb 8, 2005
South Africa
Ive been supplying a local coffee shoppe with ground espresso for a few months now, Ive tried to convince them to get their own grinder (for obvious reasons) but they argue that its too expensive, and they cant afford one now and they dont have space etc.
Regardless, Ive been sending ground espresso to them and when I went in to drop off a load last week, the manager asked me 'what setting do I put my grinder on?'
Confused, I asked him what he means by what setting?
He then told me that he had his machine serviced (about a 10 year old Brasilia) and the technician told him that the espresso hes using is not fine enough for the espresso and because of this the coffee takes too long to extract...I then asked him to explain what he reckons is too long....
The guy who serviced as well as the coffee shop manager both came to the conclusion that a espresso should not be extracted for longer than 6 seconds.
I told the manager that he MUST let someone else take a look at the machine, that the pressure is set too high and he's going to be stuck with really crap espresso because of the shot times.
Now, my grinder is a DITTING and those of you who know these grinders, know that its marked turkish, espresso, filter etc....and can be adjusted slightly to have it just a bit finer or courser. He then told the technician about my tantrum and he phoned me and said I must set my grinder on level 5....
LEVEL 5....what is level 5?
If there are any technicians here...please explain what level 5 is...and why there are people who insist on a 6 second espresso and why is it that Im the only one who have never heard of such a thing!!!!!!!


Active member
Aug 15, 2005
Central North Carolina
Obviously the shop manager or the technician know NOTHING. If they take coffee serious they'd have a grinder and wouldn't outsource it.

So they think it needs to be finer to extract faster? Exact opposite of what it should be. I agree on the improper brew pressure.....

I personally would hate to have a 6 second espresso because it'd be highly underextracted, meaning the water is gushing through. The resulting shot would taste like coffee flavored water.

Personally I'd take my grinder there, dial it in to match the machine they use and show the shop manager and technician (if possible) what a proper shot is. Then tell him either he likes it or finds somebody else to do what he expects. Later!


New member
Feb 8, 2005
South Africa
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Phew....at least i had time to cool down a bit...
I have contemplated dropping them as a customer...afterall, they are using my name when people ask what coffee it is...
and if they have morons making the coffee...chances of a good espresso is pretty slim.

I hope that im the only one who has ever experienced such a thing...its really not nice at all!!!!!!!

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