espresso extraction time!

coffeejoes

New member
Sep 6, 2007
74
0
I have a question concerning the extraction time. I was trained that a typical shot should fall into the 18-24 second range. I have always started timing at the first drip of espresso from the portafilter. Another opinion has recently surfaced indicating that timing begins when the button is pushed. Which is correct or is there another way?
 

Davec

New member
Oct 18, 2006
314
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Old England (UK)
18 is probably at the fast end of the scale and up to 35 seconds can be OK....but it depends on the coffee and it also depends on when it starts blonding (as you should kill the shot then). I don't mean just lightening slightly as there is a tendency (these days) for people to stop shots too early.

It normally timed from the point the button is pressed, lever is thrown etc. But vibe pumps have a much lower flow rate and pressure ramp up than the rotaries. You can clearly see this using a pressure measuring portafilter and this is likely to influence things a little.

So timings are a guide not a rule, stop the shot when it blondes, if thats happening under 20sec, grind a bit finer, if its happening over 30 sec, grind a bit coarser. In addition to all this you have to be mindful of coffee dose and shot volume. It's no good having a 24 second shot that's only 15ml! :roll:

P.S And we have not even touched on brew pressure, which will influence all of the above :shock:
 

roaster dave

New member
Aug 6, 2008
38
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Guelph, Ontario
Excellent answer Dave!

I'd agree that timing should begin with the flip of the lever, button, etc.....Once that happens, the pressure is pushing the water into the portafilter and thus the coffee is absorbing water and the shot is beginning.
 

Josh

New member
Sep 17, 2008
34
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I'm still on the quest for the perfect shot. but there are things I’ve learned and use when I am pulling shots.

Key things that should be considered controls.

Grams - 15-16 (14gram portafilter, this may vary on preference, whatever you do keep it consistent)
Tamp - even and 30lbs I suggest an auto tamper.
Water temp - 200 degrees give or take about 5
Water pressure - 9 bars
Amount of water - I set to two oz of liquid in the cup at end of shot (some recomend 1.5-2oz per doubleshot)
Extraction time - 25 seconds give or take a couple. (if your machine pre infuses some recommend a couple seconds more, some recommend less. I prefer 30seconds so far)

These are the Base controls. you have to start with this figure out where any problems lie.

If you have all of these things consistent, there are only two things left to mess with.

Grind - If the extraction time is to short or two long this must be adjusted finer or coarser.
Espresso Blend - If all variables are correct and you are pulling perfect 25 second shots that taste like total ass, then this is likely your issue.

I haven’t found that perfect blend yet, but if anyone has some suggestions on a all organic fair trade coffee roaster (preferably on the west coast) I am opening a shop in about 10 days and I sure would appreciate a PM!!

I hope this post helps anyone trying get their shot pulling method down!
 

ElPugDiablo

New member
Jul 16, 2004
991
0
Hartford and New Haven, CT
Josh said:
I haven’t found that perfect blend yet, but if anyone has some suggestions on a all organic fair trade coffee roaster (preferably on the west coast) I am opening a shop in about 10 days and I sure would appreciate a PM!!!
You are opening in 10 days and you don't have a roaster? I think going forward you need to plan better than that!

try sacred grounds organic coffee or taylor maid farms or doma coffee

http://www.taylormaidfarms.com/
http://www.sacred-grounds.com/info.html
http://www.domacoffee.com/
 

Josh

New member
Sep 17, 2008
34
0
ElPugDiablo said:
Josh said:
I haven’t found that perfect blend yet, but if anyone has some suggestions on a all organic fair trade coffee roaster (preferably on the west coast) I am opening a shop in about 10 days and I sure would appreciate a PM!!!
You are opening in 10 days and you don't have a roaster? I think going forward you need to plan better than that!

try sacred grounds organic coffee or taylor maid farms or doma coffee

http://www.taylormaidfarms.com/
http://www.sacred-grounds.com/info.html
http://www.domacoffee.com/

Ah, I do of course have a roaster. It's just that they are about 5-6 days shipping from my location. And unfortunately, I haven’t been able to sample a wide variety of fair trade organic espresso offerings.

Currently I am working with Higher Grounds Roasters
http://www.highergroundroasters.com/ I really like these guys but as far as the coffee goes, well I think it's great and they are willing to work with me on blends to get it how I like it but, I don't have any way of comparing it to others. That's why I asked for recommendations, since most of you guys in the community have more experience than myself.

I do appreciate the links, I am going to look into them right away.
 

ElPugDiablo

New member
Jul 16, 2004
991
0
Hartford and New Haven, CT
Gotcha. So, if your roaster will work with you to get a espresso blend you like, I wouldn't limit to just fair trade organic offering. I'd try as many different espresso blends as possible and have your roaster work out a fair trade organic duplicate.
 

ItalianBrewmeister

New member
Aug 18, 2009
1
0
Extraction time is not the defining issue, but rather it is a rough order of magnitude gauge to a proper shot.

More important is the brew presure of 9atm (-0.25/+0.5) and the correct amount of coffee of at approximately 16g/shot (+/- 0.5g). While 15g may work, typically 16g +/- 0.5 g seems to be the most successful for most machines. Assuming one can learn to tamp rather easily then it is tamp pressure that becomes the primary issue, not timing. Most say 30lbs while famous Illy says 40lbs. Varying the tamp pressure will help achieve the 9atm of brew pressure.

If one aspires to traditional Italian type espresso, and isn't that where espresso originated, and as one in Italy almost every year for 20 years, I can say that I don't remember many, or any shots in 22-25 seconds. Italian shots typically range 28-32 seconds, and usually closer to 32 than 28. Is it from when the handle is pulled or the coffee drips? Hit the 9atm, 16g coffee, consistant grind, and humidity, a brew temp of 94-95C and the timing will take care of itself at approx. 32 sec from the time the handle is pulled till you have 1 oz of 50%+ crema. Of course this will depend on your machine, and your machine, and your machine (hint), it's setup, humidity, altitude, and if the dog is barking at the full moon.
 
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