Lately with the release of a handful of very flexible machines and some new modifications being made to some of the stalwarts of brewing consistently excellent espresso, there seems to be some renewed discussion regarding brew ratios, grind levels, preinfusion, brew pressure and pretty much every other brew variable under the sun. One of the recurring strands of conversation seems to be the dichotomy of exact replicable sub-gram dose and yield with precise shot timing against the counter-strategy of changing these same variables enough to achieve a noticeable change in the resulting beverage.
Far too often, we see the similar request for help worded one way or another:
Random Frustrated Home Barista wrote:HELP!!!
I keep doing the exact same thing with extreme accuracy and precision and my espresso isn't getting any better!
There have been a few useful guides for specific types of coffee with specific machines, which are helpful in specific cases, but don't help the overall strategy of how to get the results folks might be after with a slightly different coffee on a slightly different machine. I'm hoping to strike a conversation that expands on Espresso 101: How to Adjust Dose and Grind Setting by Taste, by including some of the nuances that are added to the process by the inherent capabilities of profiling machines.
I don't have too much to add at this moment regarding first insights, but there are a handful of good posts floating around right now that I will link to this topic and hopefully get some of our current batch of power users with profiling machines to chime in on the methodology used to arrive at a given brew ratio, shot time, grind level, preinfusion time, pressure, etc... for a given coffee based off of their early attempts at pulling shots. Obviously, consistency plays into this as making wild changes of every aspect of a shot leaves one confused and unsure of what changes made what impact to the shot...
Any interest in this topic?