Help with café crema

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks for making espresso.
Posts: 2
Joined: 2 years ago

#1: Post by Hbrohus »


I hope this is the right place for my question.

I have a Profitec pro 600 devil edition (with flow control) and a Minion specialita grinder with I'm very satisfied with for making espresso, americano and milk drinks. Normally I use 18g dark roast for a 36g shot in 28-30sec with is perfect for the espresso.
But I would like to be able to make a good cafe crema - and preferably with out adjusting the grinder since this will be a lot of work dialing it in every time I'm switching between making espresso and cafe crema.
The question is if this is possible with the help of using less beans in the basket and/or using the flow control to speed up the shot. I have tried using 11g of beans in the same basket and I get approx 70g out in 30sec with is ok as far as I know for crema ratio - but the taste is off probably because the beans is over extracted I guess?

Any good ideas or is just not possible to make good cafe crema without adjusting the grinder for coarser grind ?

User avatar
Team HB
Posts: 4238
Joined: 6 years ago

#2: Post by Jake_G »

Hbrohus wrote:...I would like to be able to make a good cafe crema - and preferably with out adjusting the grinder...
Hello Henrik, and welcome to HB!

Unfortunately, I don't think you are going to find the answer you are looking for. When you increase the ratio from 1:2 to 1:7, you will drastically increase extraction. The only way to balance this is by grinding coarser.

Your flow control cannot increase the flow rate to reduce contact time beyond what the puck will allow, so your only option is to adjust grind or drastically reduce your brew temperature to something like 80C or even less. I think it would be easier to coarsen the grind, but it may be worth trying, if your machine allows such a low brew temperature.


- Jake
LMWDP #704

User avatar
Team HB
Posts: 13806
Joined: 19 years ago

#3: Post by another_jim »

I was always under the impression that the Swiss shops made cafe crema with a separate grinder. So Jake's point about adjusting the grind is probably the proper answer.

Dropping the temperature down to 80C would likely be even more of a hassle than changing grind. So another improper answer is a a kind of blooming shot. Let the puck soak for about 15 to 20 seconds at 2 bar, until it is dripping rapidly, then briefly hit it up to 8-9 bar for some crema, then let the cup fill at 2 bar.
Jim Schulman

Hbrohus (original poster)
Posts: 2
Joined: 2 years ago

#4: Post by Hbrohus (original poster) »

Thx for both your replies
I guess I will just have to adjust the grinder each time I'm going to change between cafe crema and espresso shots. Or I can justify buying a second grinder for only cafe crema :) Maybe some buying advice for a good cheap grinder for the purpose ?

User avatar
Team HB
Posts: 6588
Joined: 19 years ago

#5: Post by Jeff »

If it is only an occasional one, then one of the good hand grinders out there would be a reasonably inexpensive and compact choice. There are probably a dozen now that would do a good job in the 100-200€ range. For motorized grinders, the Eureka Mignon Manuale is one of the least expensive of reasonable quality that is available to US buyers ("gray market" through an Italian vendor at around 200€).

Posts: 268
Joined: 4 years ago

#6: Post by zefkir »

Coarsen the grind a lot. On the very fine end of pourover grinds.

Then adjust both flow control and grind until you get something like 18:130 in about a 60-90s while never exceeding 2 bar.

Basically, a shorter, slightly higher pressure sprover brew.