Dosing: 14g, 18g, 19g, 20g, 21g, 22g? What do you use, and why (taste)

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks for making espresso.
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#1: Post by kris772 »

I have only had this Livia for a couple weeks now and it seems like I have thrown out a lot of beans, 2 from Market Basket that I should have known better, one counter culture and one hair bender, mostly from a stale factor - just too old - thought I could make them work but in the end they were good only for compost. And I don't have a garden. Got a caffe vita from amazon that was roasted 12/20 - 6 mos ago? can you believe it? Got my money back, at least. GAAAAA. Skank much? Buy only direct from roasters!!!

Picked up a Terazzu from a local roaster yesterday and it seems bright and okay. But it will be uneventful... And got a bag of redbird espresso to work through, or at least at. Yeah, soon others will be on way... But not so much interested in other folks' fav beans as that is well covered in the Coffees forum - lots of great ideas there - but looking, here, at dose.

I have played mostly with 18g, though I spent some time on 20 and 21 though it seemed like I was just beating them (the beans) to death - better more open flavor with 18. Tried 19 but, again back to 18 - better, more open. For me! Seems an easy place for me. I wonder why some folks seem to settle on 20. or some other dose...
(I grind, thunk, level, light/medium tamp, and go. The Livia is more of a short-warming-flush than a long-cooling-flush though that varies with how long its been on. It seems easy to surf. Pulls are pre-infuse 3sec on, 6sec off, then pull and it's very slow out of the gate. time from first drip. Varies between 1:1.5 to 1:2 in no more than 30 sec from first drip. I stop at blonding else unnecessarily bitter.)

And then there's that idea that "Europeans are using 14g". Haven't tried it and wonder if I would get an even extraction. I will have to try it soon enough to see how the flavor varies for a given bean.

Let's see where this goes! Thanks all!
Life is too short for bad espresso! - Thunk-ed, NOT stirred!

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#2: Post by Jeff »

There is no "answer" to this unless you're talking about a specific bean, roast batch, water, grinder, grind, basket, machine, profile, extraction ratio, ... , personal taste and objectives. Even the same dose dialed in using two different "18 g" baskets can taste very different.

Looking for pretty shots? Read How to make a beautiful "naked" triple espresso

Looking for taste? Do remember that changing dose will change other output parameters. It is hard to isolate dose without dialing in again. Espresso 101: How to Adjust Dose and Grind Setting by Taste is a good introduction.


#3: Post by BaristaBob »

I might suggest you visit James Hoffmann's YouTube video series on, "How I Dial in Espresso". It's very informative.
Bob "hello darkness my old friend..I've come to drink you once again"

vecchi della seattle
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#4: Post by vecchi della seattle »

Sounds like you're pretty close to roasting your own beans. My current fav basket is a 14g ridgeless that I get from Espresso Parts in Lacy, WA. I put in 18-18.5 g depending on the coffee. ... asket-14gr

kris772 (original poster)
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#5: Post by kris772 (original poster) »

Thanks John! I have been using the one on the left. Guess I'll try the one on the right from parts drawer. (next order I'll add it.) as it is (edit) wider bottom, sorta. What benefits would I be looking for? edit seems like it would extract differently, less evenly... edit edit might need/want a convex tamper for that... bah! or maybe a concave... double bah! BTDT

As to roasting, I got into that long ago, mostly Costa Rican, much fun, but am far too lazy now, and don't have a way to easily vent the smoke (gotta deal with smoke and chaff when you roast!!!)(bigtime!). (unless you use smokeless/chaffless beans... ;) )

edit actually I realized I supposedly have a 21g (edit) full wide bottom on the way with a bottomless holder.
Life is too short for bad espresso! - Thunk-ed, NOT stirred!

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#6: Post by cafeIKE »

Assuming you are single dose grinding and have minimal stales or purge the grinder, IMO, your increments are too coarse.

Use ¼g steps and when close 0.1g measured on a 0.01g scale. The finest increment on the Niche is about ¼ 'step' which is adequate and about equivalent to the adjustments previously used on stepless micro adjust grinders.

And a grind/dose does not always persist. Coffee is organic and the weather is changeable.
And sometimes the change necessary is counter intuitive.

Current coffee went up a whole step on the Niche and a full gram in dose in the same basket. It's been really wet here, the 2nd wettest Apr - Jun since 1895.


#7: Post by gobucks »

I seem to be in the minority but I tend to go as low as possible without channeling. With a dense coffee I can sometimes go down to 14g, my current coffee (dragonfly crema dolce) needs at least 15g or it channels badly. I prefer to grind finer for better extraction, and more practically speaking, at 14-15g i can drink more coffees before I get the jitters.

I mostly do straight espresso or short milk drinks like cortados or machiattos though; If I drank lattes I'd probably want a bigger dose.

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#8: Post by Peppersass »

You left out 7g singles. Those are my favorite. However, they're tough to prepare and work best with light roasts.

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#9: Post by MNate »

It's a fair poll. I bet most do 18g.

I do 15g.

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#10: Post by cafeIKE »

MNate wrote:I do 15g.

For any and all coffees, year round :shock: