Help - Single Espresso vs Double Espresso

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks for making espresso.
leonelbego
Posts: 166
Joined: 5 years ago

#1: Post by leonelbego »

Hi All,

I would kindly appreciate if someone could help me with my issue right now! Ok, first of all is important to know that I am a beginner and only do coffees for me at home and when I have friends around. My equipment is: Profitec Pro 300 (dual boiler) and the Eureka Mignon Specialita grinder. I am very happy with the coffee machine and the grinder.

To keep my question simple and for the purpose of my question lets keep it with a Ratio of 2:1 when pulling out shots, this will make it easier for me to understand. I know there are lots of different ratio types and is all very subjective and personal taste, but for the debate on my question, I would like to keep it at 2:1.

- for a single espresso: 12 grams dose in a 7 grams single spout portafilter with 24 grams output in 26 seconds.
- for a double espresso: 18 grams dose in a 14 grams double spout portafilter with 36 grams output in 26 seconds.

My issue/question is the following: Because 95% of the time I make coffee only for me at home, I do use the single spout portafilter and I get the very nice result as mentioned above. all good for now, but when I sometimes want to make a double shot of espresso and I use the double spout portafilter I get the 36 grams output at around 18 seconds... waaaaaay faster than the single spout and this is killing me because it shouldn't be this way. Literally I would do right now a single shot with the single spout and coffee would come out perfectly, then the next shot I want a double shot and use the double spout I would get a much faster output... I simply don't get it!

I mean, do I have do dial-in the grinder every single time when I want to move from single spout to double spout? that would be insane!!!? so, if I want a single espresso and my girlfriend wants a double espresso, do I have to change the grinder setting and do the whole dialing in process for that double shot??? also, because I am a home barista and I do very little coffee I don't want to be wasting/using much more coffee than I need, for example: I don't want to do all the time double espressos when I only want one espresso, I don't want to waste every time a coffee cup when I know I will drink only one....

Just to be clear I am using the original portafilters and baskets from Profitec 300 and the machine is only 2 weeks old.. I maybe thought that it could be that the holes on the 14 grams basket are bigger than the 7 grams basket and therefore the output is a lot faster on the 14 grams basket compared to the 7 grams basket even though the coffee is grained exactly the same???? but I don't think so because as I said the machine is brand new and I would be surprised if the baskets would have different hole sizes.... if that is the case, is there a way that I wouldn't need to dial in and set-up everything again when I am changing to single portafilter to double portafilter?

Please help, I don't know what to do anymore, and obviously if I then grained finer to make the double shot perfect then the result is that when I use the single spout portafilter the output would be ultra slow :-/

Thank you very much,
Leo


User avatar
happycat
Posts: 1464
Joined: 11 years ago

#2: Post by happycat »

Why use different portafilters? You can use same and just change basket.

7g basket will have fewer holes than 14g. Will also be a different more conical shape probably.

You might be able to reduce grinding changes by adjusting dose sizes. You seem to be overloading your baskets already compared to their rated capacity.
LMWDP #603

leonelbego (original poster)
Posts: 166
Joined: 5 years ago

#3: Post by leonelbego (original poster) replying to happycat »

Hi, thank you so much for your reply :)

I see what you mean regarding using the same portafilter and just changing basket but I would get the same problem/results because as you said the 7 grams basket have fewer holes than the 14g. or am I misunderstanding what you are trying to say?

User avatar
JmanEspresso
Posts: 1462
Joined: 15 years ago

#4: Post by JmanEspresso »

Basically, yes. you need to dial in the coffee and grinder when you change the basket. You may be able to just crank up the dose on the double basket, but that changes more than just the flow. First off taste. Also if 18grams flies out the basket that fast, I doubt 20grams will hit the right ballpark, and you probably wont get more than 20grams into the double basket, if you even get that to fit.

You are definitely in the minority with the single espresso. Most home baristas, thought certainly not all, simply chuck the single basket into a drawer, and never really think about it. The double espresso has become the standard.

But that doesnt mean you cant enjoy your singles if you want too. You do you. I would probably suggest that if you dont want to adjust the grinder frequently, just pull two shots when you and your lady want coffee. Otherwise, yeah, you're going to need to dial in whenever you change the basket.

User avatar
happycat
Posts: 1464
Joined: 11 years ago

#5: Post by happycat »

leonelbego wrote:Hi, thank you so much for your reply :)

I see what you mean regarding using the same portafilter and just changing basket but I would get the same problem/results because as you said the 7 grams basket have fewer holes than the 14g. or am I misunderstanding what you are trying to say?
I guess what I am suggesting is this

Grind finer to give yourself room
Then adjust amount of coffee differently so the single pulls at similar time to double

Won't be same but might be similar enough for you
LMWDP #603

leonelbego (original poster)
Posts: 166
Joined: 5 years ago

#6: Post by leonelbego (original poster) »

JmanEspresso wrote:Basically, yes. you need to dial in the coffee and grinder when you change the basket. You may be able to just crank up the dose on the double basket, but that changes more than just the flow. First off taste. Also if 18grams flies out the basket that fast, I doubt 20grams will hit the right ballpark, and you probably wont get more than 20grams into the double basket, if you even get that to fit.

You are definitely in the minority with the single espresso. Most home baristas, thought certainly not all, simply chuck the single basket into a drawer, and never really think about it. The double espresso has become the standard.

But that doesnt mean you cant enjoy your singles if you want too. You do you. I would probably suggest that if you dont want to adjust the grinder frequently, just pull two shots when you and your lady want coffee. Otherwise, yeah, you're going to need to dial in whenever you change the basket.
thanks a lot!! and yes, I agree with you, I think then the easiest would be to work with the double basket and whenever I want a single shot I will have to throw that other half away. Which is such a waste, but makes life easier than having to dial in all the setting again!

thank you!

User avatar
Almico
Posts: 3612
Joined: 10 years ago

#7: Post by Almico »

True single shots are hard. Split doubles are easy.

7g baskets are designed for 7g of coffee, not 12. You can get 12 to work, but you have to grind much coarser.

My dose-of-the-day these days is 7.5g of coffee, single basket (La Marzocco), 21g output, 28 seconds.

Doubles: 15.5g, 15g IMS basket, 30g output, 28 seconds.

Different grind for both. Need to be dialed in separately.

User avatar
Peppersass
Supporter ❤
Posts: 3692
Joined: 15 years ago

#8: Post by Peppersass »

I think your problem is that you're overloading both baskets.

In the case of the single basket, this is likely slowing the flow, but there's plenty of headroom above the puck. In the case of the double basket, however, you may have reduced the headspace to the point where the puck is breaking up and channeling, which is why the flow is so much faster.

Here's what I would do:

1. Dial in a 14g dose using your 14g basket. Optionally you can try increasing the dose half a gram at a time (and grinding a little coarser to keep the flow the same), until you reach a dose that flows way too fast. That'll tell you how much headroom you have in the 14g basket. Another trick is to put a nickel on top of the puck and insert the PF into the group. Remove the PF and inspect. If the nickel has been pushed into the puck you don't have enough headspace.

2. Once you've dialed in the 14g basket with a dose that works, measure the ratio of hole space between the 7g basket and the 14g basket. You can do that by counting the holes or measuring the diameter of the hole area of each basket. For example, if the 7g basket has 100 holes and the 14g basket has 200 holes, the ratio is 1:2 or 50%. Now multiply the dose that worked for you in the 14g basket by the ratio percentage, and you'll have the dose for the 7g basket that should keep the flow rate the same as the 14g basket. If it runs a little too fast, increase the dose a little. If it runs too slow, decrease the dose a little.

If you can't get this to work, note that the two spouts on the double portafilter allow you "split" the shot into two singles. Just position two cups under the PF, each one under one of the spouts. This is a quick way to make two singles from one double.

User avatar
Peppersass
Supporter ❤
Posts: 3692
Joined: 15 years ago

#9: Post by Peppersass »

Almico wrote:My dose-of-the-day these days is 7.5g of coffee, single basket (La Marzocco), 21g output, 28 seconds.
1:3? That's really Lungo!

leonelbego (original poster)
Posts: 166
Joined: 5 years ago

#10: Post by leonelbego (original poster) »

Peppersass wrote:I think your problem is that you're overloading both baskets.

In the case of the single basket, this is likely slowing the flow, but there's plenty of headroom above the puck. In the case of the double basket, however, you may have reduced the headspace to the point where the puck is breaking up and channeling, which is why the flow is so much faster.

Here's what I would do:

1. Dial in a 14g dose using your 14g basket. Optionally you can try increasing the dose half a gram at a time (and grinding a little coarser to keep the flow the same), until you reach a dose that flows way too fast. That'll tell you how much headroom you have in the 14g basket.

2. Once you've dialed in the 14g basket with a dose that works, measure the ratio of hole space between the 7g basket and the 14g basket. You can do that by counting the holes or measuring the diameter of the hole area of each basket. For example, if the 7g basket has 100 holes and the 14g basket has 200 holes, the ratio is 1:2 or 50%. Now multiply the dose that worked for you in the 14g basket by the ratio percentage, and you'll have the dose for the 7g basket that should keep the flow rate the same as the 14g basket. If it runs a little too fast, increase the dose a little. If it runs too slow, decrease the dose a little.

If you can't get this to work, note that the two spouts on the double portafilter allow you "split" the shot into two singles. Just position two cups under the PF, each one under one of the spouts. This is a quick way to make two singles from one double.

Amazing thank you so much for taking your time! Would you please kindly tell me what basket size do you use? Here most people tend to use the 18 grams basket, seems to be standard! Therefore I think I will get one and try it. Let's forget for a moment the single shot, if I were to use a 18 grams basket on the doble spout portafilter, how much dose coffee would you put in and how much out? Should I do the 2:1 ration? 18 grams dose and 36 out? And I know is all down to personal taste, but I would like to know what the standard is :)

A million thanks :)