Latte lover needs help... - Page 2

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks.

#11: Post by Bluenoser »

Get a cheap scale from amazon about 400 to 600g and .01g resolution. You can only be consistent weighing beans in and out. Turn the internal burr setting lower. You arent grinding fine enough. Its not a bean issue. Its just your beans might be older than others.

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#12: Post by dparrish »

Ssbsonya wrote:Thank you so much for your reply, I am now weighing the coffee and I'm getting a good 15 to 18 g in consistently but when I weighed out for it's 55 g which makes sense, because it's a double shot so it should weigh 55 g however all of these postings talk about getting twice as much out so why am I getting so much coffee out?

I've had the grind size all the way down to one and all the way up to 12 a higher grind makes the coffee more palatable but weak and a fine or grind it makes it-I don't know stronger? Richer? but also has that chemically taste.

when I taste the shot, it taste like what I might imagine paint thinner taste like. I just can't seem to get a good taste and I know I am consistently tamping And consistently getting 15 to 18 g in. The razor trim shows set my puck is spot on full, or a little over full.

And, even if it taste decent at first, as it stands -or if I dare to heat it up, that chemically taste gets worse and I end up having to dump it out.
The automatic double shot rarely goes over 15 seconds and I get 55 g out in 15 seconds! What does this mean?
As others have said, a couple of possibilities:
1.Your grind isn't fine enough. With dark roasts you should aim for between 1:1 and 1:2 ratio (18g in, between 18 and 36 g out), in 25-35 seconds.
2. Your coffee is old-if so, it may be hard to get grind fine enough and the taste won't be good regardless.
3. Combination of 1. and 2.
Weighing your coffee in/out will help tremendously. By time, here is the general sequence of flavors in coffee: sour/acid--sugars/sweet-bitter/cardboard. The longer the time, the more you veer into the next flavor profile. You want to aim by taste so that your shot goes long enough to dissolve the sugars, but before too many of the bitter compounds are released. This takes practice, and as a beginner, I recommend that you start with one coffee among those recommended/used by many here, from a reputable roaster (Caffe Lusso Gran Miscela Carmo, for instance), and stick with that bean until you master extracting it. Once you gain experience, you can venture out into other beans.

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#13: Post by Jeff »

Potentially including with one or more of the above
4. The beans are not good, period


#14: Post by Rustic39 »

Hello OP, I feel your pain! I was basically where you are now, about 6-7 months ago. You have been given very good and on point advice thus far, but there are so many variables in what you are facing that it's easy to loose sight of what needs to be addressed in these muddy waters for us newbies. Let me simply add what I took away from my recent experiences.

1. For me, I've found that the darker I go with a roast, the harder it is to dial in. I've found the roasts which are so dark as to appear wet, to need a coarser grind to not choke, paired with a larger dose firmly tamped in order to avoid over extraction and too fast flow. I generally still go just a bit coarser than what chokes my machine, and find a dose of that which gives me about 10 seconds preinfusion before I see the liquid beading out from bottom of puck.

Question: OP, are you able to grind fine enough to choke your machine? Not saying you should, but it's an indication your grinder is able to get into the ball park of what's needed.

2. As mentioned earlier, I would also suggest trying a city+ to full city roast. I think you would be able to get better/understandable results from your adjustments.

To help distinguish btwn too sour or bitter, try diluting the shot in question with a little fresh water. Once it's less intense you will be able to tell the difference for certain.

I suggest that you order a bag of Redbird standard espresso to experiment with. I found it very forgiving, good in milk drinks, and not overly pricey. Roasted and delivered timely, you can pour store the beans in small jelly jars put in freezer to prolong freshness, and only open one jar at a time.

Otherwise, I would encourage you to stick with a med-medium dark roast of whatever you choose,until you are confident with making a decent shot consistently. Changing beans often will introduce more confusion which you don't need right now.

Finally, try to verify that your brew temps are always in range for the coffee you are brewing.

Good luck. Keep reading all you can here learning the variables and how they effect taste, and just don't give up. Don't give up, if you hang in there, you're gonna learn and figure this out, and be glad you did.