Tamp and Dose Techniques Digest - Page 2

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks.
quar

#11: Post by quar »

You're reinvented the "demi-pod". Go to Google Groups and search alt.coffee for more detail.

Many of us at alt.coffee investigated the no tamp technique as well, a couple of years ago. I've recently returned to only tamping enough to level and have no visible defects in the shot while using my naked PF. Good enough for Italy, good enough for me.

Mike

User avatar
Gatewood

#12: Post by Gatewood »

Just want to say "thanks" for this thread. The videos cleared up a lot of confusion for me. Thank you, Cannonfodder!
Gatewood

LMWDP #58

La Marzocco · Home: customized for espresso aficionados
Sponsored by La Marzocco · Home
User avatar
cannonfodder (original poster)
Team HB

#13: Post by cannonfodder (original poster) »

Glad the videos were helpful. One other note, I addition to overdosing on purpose for effect, I am also holding the portafilter angling away from me so the camera gets a good view. I was working sideways, not my normal approach so if I look a little awkward that is why.

I was recently reading a thread on alt.coffee about the origins of tamping. I thought it was very interesting that most Italians do not tamp. To each his own, as long as you like what ends up in the cup.

Gate, glad to see you got the brass peacock working again. Maybe the next video I do will be a lever shot.

--Barry tamps so I do too.
Dave Stephens

User avatar
Gatewood

#14: Post by Gatewood »

cannonfodder wrote:Gate, glad to see you got the brass peacock working again. Maybe the next video I do will be a lever shot.
Now, I'd love that! Please do it!
Gatewood

LMWDP #58

quar

#15: Post by quar »

cannonfodder wrote:I was recently reading a thread on alt.coffee about the origins of tamping. I thought it was very interesting that most Italians do not tamp. To each his own, as long as you like what ends up in the cup.

--Barry tamps so I do too.
Have you tried not tamping? I'd given it a try years ago and eventually got back into the habit of tamping. However, I just started doing it again and am having results rivalling the WDT.

--Mike "If Barry jumped off a bridge..." G.

:D

User avatar
cannonfodder (original poster)
Team HB

#16: Post by cannonfodder (original poster) »

I can't say I have tried going tampless. Maybe one day when I have nothing else to do and an abundance of coffee to grind through playing I will give it a try. Tamping works for me so that is what I do, I also like the 'fancy hammers'.

--I tamp therefore I am
Dave Stephens

quar

#17: Post by quar »

cannonfodder wrote:Tamping works for me so that is what I do, I also like the 'fancy hammers'.
Yeah, I do like the feel of a good tamper in the hand. I don't think that I'm going to be trading my ergo-packer in for a plastic "tamper" any time soon. However, it *is* amazing just how well grinding a little bit finer and just using the tamper to lightly level the surface works.

Mike

CafelatStore: home of Cafelat products online
Sponsored by CafelatStore
User avatar
RapidCoffee
Team HB

#18: Post by RapidCoffee »

There has been some interest recently in the nutating tamp style. I've been wondering about this technique since reading about it in Jim Schulman's classic Espresso Guide:
Stronger baristas may use heavier tamps, while some use a nutating motion (rolling the tamper in a motion like a flipped coin settling) to accentuate the pressure towards the edges of the basket. An alternative to the nutating motion is using a convexly curved tamper, which accomplishes the same thing.
Nutation adds more pressure to the edges of the puck, not the center - right? If so, the nutating tamp mimics a concave tamper, not a convex one. The only concave tamper I'm aware of is the rather poorly-regarded Gourmet Espresso Tamper.

It's not surprising to me that the nutating style works. As Chris Tacy has stated, the goal of tamping is to preserve the distribution. With good grind/dose/distribution, any reasonable tamp style should be effective. Still, there's something about the nutating technique that bothers me. If it's really a good tamp style, why aren't we all using concave tampers?

P.S. - Kudos to Dave on a great thread!
________
John

User avatar
cannonfodder (original poster)
Team HB

#19: Post by cannonfodder (original poster) »

I was not even aware it was an established technique. It was one of those, I wonder what would happen if... moments. Later I found out it was already established, for a moment I thought I had an original idea. Getting Jim's book is on my short list of thing to do.

I only use this on one machine, my Faema. I was having some pretty consistent extraction issues with that machine so I started playing with distribution and tamp combinations in an attempt to remedy the problem. I tried the NSEW tamper rock, then thought why not try a circular compression. The problem went away.

On my lever machine and Isomac, I use a straight NSEW distribution sweep, tamp, tap, tamp. I also use a convex tamper on the nutating motion. I would surmise that it compresses the sides while heaving the center. Then when I tamp to pressure, the center lump is pressed down and out creating an even firmer seal around the basket. Whatever the reason, it worked for me on that machine, so that is what I do.

I think I will try another video or two this weekend for frothing. Everything I see is latte art with a commercial machine, no small boiler machines. Have you ever seen someone whip up perfect (IMHO) microfoam in a McDonalds 12oz Styrofoam coffee cup? 8)
Dave Stephens

User avatar
jesawdy

#20: Post by jesawdy »

RapidCoffee wrote:Nutation adds more pressure to the edges of the puck, not the center - right? If so, the nutating tamp mimics a concave tamper, not a convex one. The only concave tamper I'm aware of is the rather poorly-regarded Gourmet Espresso Tamper.
Perhaps the nutating motion can actually help the distribution. The coffee is still loose, and leveled, nutating lightly may help distribute the grinds just a touch better to the outer edges of the basket. Maybe not. Then, as Dave alluded to, when you do the finish tamp to the now slightly heaped coffee grounds (from the nutating), we are now compacting firmly the center and maybe some down and out forces contribute further still to edge sealing. If that is the case, in a way, it is more like a convex tamper than a concave one, because we took slightly heaped grounds and compacted them. A concave tamper would not do that final firmer tamp to the center that this method does, it would just finish with a heaped puck, not a flat or concave puck (which would be dependent on the tamper you use)... Does any of this make any sense?

-Jeff