How important is tamping?

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks for making espresso.

Relative to other contributors to exceptional espresso, how important is tamping?

Not at all important
Somewhat important
Very important
Total votes: 148

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#1: Post by cafeIKE »

Here's two consecutive shots. One Tamped, One Not. Just grind, Shake Level, Lock and Pull.
Both 10g single ~8.75bar 30 seconds from first drop.

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cafeIKE (original poster)

#2: Post by cafeIKE (original poster) »

And the pux...

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#3: Post by uscfroadie »

I'll take shot #2, please.

Just curious, how big was the difference in the cup? Just from the looks alone I'd guess the second shot had more body, though I'm surpised the overall volume was the same given the 30 second timeframe...


#4: Post by darrensandford »

Did both shots stand for the same amount of time before you took the photo? The first shot looks as though it has sat for 20 seconds more than the last one. If they have both sat for the same time, the second shot definitely looks nicer.

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cafeIKE (original poster)

#5: Post by cafeIKE (original poster) »

± a few seconds... Could be 5 or 6 seconds difference between.
Pull Shot... Stop Pump... Pickup Camera.... Shoot

... I hope we get some opinions on the pux. Puckologists should have no trouble matching. :D


#6: Post by Joel_B »

Less difference in the pucks than I would have thought. Looks aside, did you taste them and what was the result?

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cafeIKE (original poster)

#7: Post by cafeIKE (original poster) »

Taste? Wassat :? We take pictures! We're supposed to drink this stuff :?:

Yes, I drank them both. One had a jot better mouthfeel and was a tad less bitter. The difference was no greater than normal shot to shot variation.

Without a rigorous protocol of identical calibrated shot & cup temperature, delay to consumption, palate cleansing, etc., taste estimations are specious.

Both shots were yummy.


#8: Post by Joel_B »

I have to say I'm pretty amazed. The 2nd photo shows the crema still dissipating, but looks like the overall crema would be about the same. You haven't said which shot was which (unless I missed it); which puck/shot goes to the tamped and untamped versions?

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#9: Post by WilsonHines »

Personally, another question came to mind for me to pose to you: "If a tree falls in the woods and nobody is there to hear it, does it make a sound?"

Hey, to your credit, I mistakenly put a non-tamped puck in once and actually realized I booboed. I then drank the shot. It sucked so hard I promised never to do anything like that again, even to say "Now I have done that!"

HORRID! :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:

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cafeIKE (original poster)

#10: Post by cafeIKE (original poster) »

Sound :
mechanical radiant energy that is transmitted by longitudinal pressure waves in a material medium (as air)

So the answer would be yes, unless of course the forest was growing a vacuum.
Not sure how the question is relevant. :?

Not looking for any credit. Just trying to stop rampant stupidity. I own 3 tampers and use them all.
Another coffee / grinder / machine combo may not act the same.
But I am certain that twirling, polishing, tapping is folderal.

Just for grins, I made the missus a latte with an untamped shot.
She has no idea how it was made as she's in the next office.
Her comment "This is the best all week!"
It was also a new bottle of milk. :P