How to make cafe cremas - Page 2

Coffee preparation techniques besides espresso like pourover.
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#11: Post by HB »

Mark08859 wrote:At its simplest, a Cafe Crema is simply running 6 - 8 ounces of water through the puck in your espresso machine.
I've never made them (and rarely make Americanos). What is the desired pressure for the extraction, i.e., is it less than an espresso?
Dan Kehn


#12: Post by budley »

Hi All,

This is my virginal post so please, treat me gently ! I'm a barista in Sydney OZ, and I was wondering about the history of this drink, Cafe Crema. I remember back in the 80's most places would make a long black using this technique, continuing the extraction through the puck until it filled an 8 ounce cup, then the style changed and cafe's starting making long blacks Americano style. I guess baristi saw the Cafe Crema approach as being an enormously over extracted espresso. Can anyone explain the reasoning behind the resurgence of this extraction style, and what favourable qualities that it adds to the cup. As far as I know, the Cafe Crema is not served in Australia at all, the Americano is still the way we approach our long black coffee.
BTW I only recently stumbled across this site and I must say hat's off to all of you, very informative and user friendly.

Drink good coffee - leave the rest as rainforest

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#13: Post by malachi »

My memory is that the Cafe Crema is most common in the areas of Switzerland and Austria that border Italy and in the Italian section along that border.

I don't think there truly is a resurgence of this drink - some people just like it.

While it's personally not to my taste, in experimentation we determined that it was really, really important to change grind and dose (as opposed to just running a ton of water through your normal espresso grind/dose). If you don't make this change the results will likely be very, very harsh (sharp and heavily alkaloid).
What's in the cup is what matters.


#14: Post by mrosco »

In the "Resource" section under "Getting Started" is a link called the "Espresso Guide". It gives a brief history of espresso and how the term was coined and what the drink is today.

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#15: Post by malachi »

Oh... and given the original question (as opposed to the topic title) I'd tend to suggest just making Americanos.
What's in the cup is what matters.

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#16: Post by jrtatl »

When I make them (rarely) I shoot for 6 oz in 30 sec. This, of course, means that the grind must be coarser than for a normal shot. If you use the same grind as for a normal shot, you will just end up with 6 oz of overextracted swill. To get it right will likely require a lot of time and coffee dialing in the grinder.

When done properly, a cafe crema is a superb drink; one that I sometimes prefer to an americano. Problem is: I can't make them well. So I don't. I just make americanos.



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Fr. John

#17: Post by Fr. John »

...merged with thread on similar topic by moderator...

I started a thread over at CG in the regular coffee forum. Basically it is plea for help with a regular cup of coffee as opposed to an espresso. I get thirsty for regular coffee with cream. Though an Americano fills the bill it's not quite what I'm looking for, i.e. a full bodied full flavored cup of rich coffee that can take cream well. My suspicion is that it's my fault and not necessarily the Americano (beans, brew, personal foibles). I suspect that I'm asking too much from my dark roasted espresso beans.

That aside (unless someone wants to point out possible problems), someone ever there mentioned cafe crema. After looking at the short blurb on 1st Lines site about this (pretty cursory), I'm interested to know more and if anyone here has practiced this?
Fr. John

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#18: Post by jesawdy »

For my tastes, I find an Americano in the 4-6 oz total volume range with a douple espresso is quite yummy, and with a tad of cream too. When you order out an Americano, they tend to be more dilute than that.

I am typically at a 1:1 ratio or 3:2 ratio of water to espresso.
Jeff Sawdy


#19: Post by Dogshot »

Inspired largely by this thread, and Karl's customary eloquence, I decided to try making a cafe crema instead of an Americano this afternoon. It was a delicious experience, and not very difficult.

With the way I grind, I find that a half-turn on the Macap M4 produces roughly .3oz more espresso, so I opened the grinder a full 4 turns past my usual setting for espresso, in the hope of getting somewhere around 5oz (I'm sure it is not linear when making large changes to grind). What I found is that while 17gm of my blend fits nicely in the basket for espresso, when ground more coarsely for cafe crema, it was way too much. I tapped once to updose, and then swept off probably close to 2gm of coffee, so 15gm is probably a better starting point.

The shot took about 20, maybe 22 seconds to brew before blonding, which happened very quickly. As with espresso, I cut the shot once blonding began, and ended with something around 3.5oz, which is about the volume I make for an Americano. The resulting cafe crema was really good, and very different from both espresso and Americano. Before reading this thread, I assumed that a cafe crema would taste like a very poorly brewed espresso, like what you might get from a pbtc, but there was nothing harsh, bitter, or over-extracted about the result. I noticed that brew pressure after preinfusion was just over 8 bar, and fell slightly during the shot.

Next time I will try grinding a bit coarser and using a little less coffee to extend the shot out to 4.5oz, but I doubt I would want to get a beverage much larger than that. What I would really like to know is if the slightly lower (and decreasing) brew pressure is appropriate, or if I should be trying to achieve espresso-level brew pressures.

Any more tips on making a great cafe crema would be appreciated



#20: Post by lparsons21 »

I love Cafe Cremas, it is my 'go to' drink!

The way I do mine is coarsen the grind and tamp just a tad less than for espresso. I look for a 25 second, 6 oz cup from it.

On my Super Jolly, I coarsen about 3/4 of the distance between numbers on the dial. Usually I have to twiddle that a bit to get exactly what I want, but I've found as long as the pour is not over 30 seconds, I still have a cup that I like.