Bellman CX25P Extraction

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

#1: Post by martinro3rd »

I'm relatively new to the science of coffee extraction, but I'm reading as much as I can about brew ratios, grind size, pressure, temp, time...and all the ways these factors are interrelated. Fascinating stuff, and while I've been drinking coffee for a very long time, I'm not yet able to appreciate many of the nuances I read/hear folks express regarding flavor profile and the like. So, I can't even honestly say I know what I'm seeking in this regard. I've traditionally leaned toward full-bodied medium and dark roasts, but I'm interested in exploring to experience what I'm likely missing.

I recently purchased a Bellman CX25P as a cheap and convenient entry point to making espresso, and I think I've found just about every video on this little device. Although I understand it isn't a true espresso maker, I'm still trying to apply these concepts as part of learning and trying to get the most out of it. Despite having configurable brew-basket sizes, along with 3-6-9-cup sizing in the boiler, it seems the prevailing recommendation is to go with the full-size basket and the boiler filled to the minimum "3" mark. At this water level, I'm able to produce ~150ml of finished coffee. Every demo I've seen, shows brewing to the point that no more water is able to be drawn up into the brewing chamber. So, regarding brew ratio for example, it seems the Bellman user is practically limited to a 1:3 ratio on the "short" end. Right? Or, would I simply stop the pour sooner (before running out of water) to achieve a smaller ratio? Would it be reasonable to use the basket reducer for properly accommodating less ground coffee and stop the pour even sooner to achieve a shorter ratio and, say, pour only a single shot? I haven't found any examples of doing this, and I'm trying to understand all the limitations of the product while learning and applying as much as I can about making espresso with the limited resources I currently have. If I can convince myself that I'm able to make good espresso and properly steamed milk, then I might justify purchase of a real espresso machine.

Any thoughts on this are greatly appreciated!