WBC-style dose and tamp?

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks.
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Stuggi

#1: Post by Stuggi »

I watched both Jim Hoffman (WBC 2007) and Stephen Morrissey (WBC 2008) dose and tamp, and neither use any leveling techniques, just lever thwack out of the doser, neat little pile in the portafilter, light tamp to even things out and firm tamp, and off they go to to machine...

Why and how? ^^
Sebastian "Stuggi" Storholm
LMWDP #136

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shadowfax

#2: Post by shadowfax »

This is probably 99% because they have a better grinder than most home-baristas. Their grinders don't have issues with clumping, and maybe even distribute acceptably right from the doser/dispenser. I know you could get away with this on a doser Mazzer, especially a Super Jolly or better, but you have to move the portafilter around as you thwack the handle to make sure that it doses into the lowest spot in your basket each time.

That's definitely what you pay for with a bigger, more expensive grinder--shot preparation is much simpler, because the rain-dance style moves that home-baristas do (stirring grinds, dosing into dishes, etc.) don't improve the shot at all on such grinders.
Nicholas Lundgaard

Canuck

#3: Post by Canuck »

That's the interesting thing, for me, about upgrading grinders vs espresso machines.

Because I don't mind doing a 'dance' to distribute, remove clumps, etc., (I have the time, and make only one double at a time) I wonder if my next ugrade $ is better spent going to a better espresso machine. For those of us with a silvia-class machine, we can arguably get many more features, some of which may improve quality, if we upgrade to an e61, or HX, or DB, etc (dependent on our use, preferences...).

Just thinking out loud...

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Stuggi

#4: Post by Stuggi »

I've been thinking about a doser-ed Macap M4, is this high-end enough or does one need to go further? It's just that I like the zen-way about how they do their pre-pull procedure, just like I would like to do it... ^^
Sebastian "Stuggi" Storholm
LMWDP #136

King Seven

#5: Post by King Seven »

Hello - hopefully Stephen doesn't mind me talking on his behalf, but I am going to anyway!

Recently we've been using modified Anfim Super Caimanos.

Touching the coffee for us has two purposes: dosing and distribution.

Once modified with a digital timer the Anfim delivered a consistent dose, and the doser drops nice and unclumpy coffee right into the middle of the basket.

We were both very suspicious of the no-touch distribution but when it comes down to taste tests we can't tell the difference so why mess with the coffee if there are no advantages. The macho barista side of you that loves to touch the coffee and show off technique eventually has to just let go in favour the side of you that just wants to serve great drinks over and over.

I still manually dose and distribute with other grinders - in the WBC video from 2007 I have to give the coffee a good massage as there was some clumping from the K30s I was using, especially in the ludicrous Tokyo humidity!

The Anfim is not the perfect grinder, but it does certain things extremely well and for the volumes we are putting through them are superb value all around. I am planning on modding one a little bit more this week, just with silly little extras. However the cup from a Robur isn't so much better that it justifies the difference in price that we would be paying.

One day people will make grinders that do what we want.... One day.....

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Psyd

#6: Post by Psyd »

Just out of curiosity, have you had the chance to play with the Versalab M3 yet? It sounds like the problems are all solved (delivery time, QC, and longevity notwithstanding) in the basic design, but I haven't had a chance to play with one either.
Difference being, I suppose, that some manufacturers might be more willing to offer a WBC the opportunity to play with their toys gratis than some cat in the desert. If you haven't played with one, is there any curiosity there?
Espresso Sniper
One Shot, One Kill

LMWDP #175

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shadowfax

#7: Post by shadowfax »

Stuggi wrote:I've been thinking about a doser-ed Macap M4, is this high-end enough or does one need to go further? It's just that I like the zen-way about how they do their pre-pull procedure, just like I would like to do it... ^^
I don't think that an M4 will give you an acceptable "touch free" dose. Certainly the one I have used is pretty finicky about clumping and distribution, and tends to produce channeling if you don't baby it by stirring/stockfleth's move. The Super Jolly (or other 64+ mm burr grinder) is usually a good sport, although I still wouldn't recommend it: even if you get great distribution out of the grinder, you still have the problem of dosing. As James says, having a timer on the grinder really helps get a consistent dose without having to level off the grinds. If you don't have an alternate way of dosing (a way other than leveling), I don't think you'll be able to achieve consistent, touch free dosing with any grinder.
Nicholas Lundgaard

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Stuggi

#8: Post by Stuggi »

I just tried something quite interesting on the La Pavoni I have. I always weigh the grinds since leveling of the basket would produce an quite huge updose, and normally I grind until it looks right, then I weigh (which nearly always agrees with me, too much/too little/spot on), and then I tap the PF and level it with something like an index finger stockfleth. Today I did a second shot where just ground into a nice little pile in the middle, weighed it, tapped the PF a little and then tamped it straight down, and the shot was a bit better, mostly due to dialing in the grind, but not mucking about with the grinds didn't disturb anything either. I'm not sure how the shot looked per say, since I don't have a naked PF, but at least with my sub-par skills and equipment (remember that I have the clump-monster deluxe, the Ascaso i-Mini, but hey, sub 200 € for a conical, why not??) didn't mind that I skipped the distribution part. This I think is partly down to the fact that the La Pav. PF does not have a spring, so as I grind I rotate the basket with my thumb, which evens out the grinds by itself...
Sebastian "Stuggi" Storholm
LMWDP #136

King Seven

#9: Post by King Seven »

Psyd wrote:Just out of curiosity, have you had the chance to play with the Versalab M3 yet? It sounds like the problems are all solved (delivery time, QC, and longevity notwithstanding) in the basic design, but I haven't had a chance to play with one either.
Difference being, I suppose, that some manufacturers might be more willing to offer a WBC the opportunity to play with their toys gratis than some cat in the desert. If you haven't played with one, is there any curiosity there?
I would love to try a Versalab. I suspect that a freebie, however, is mighty unlikely no matter what competition we won!

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dsc

#10: Post by dsc »

Hi everyone,

for the last few days I've been using Stephen's technique (well at least some parts of it), so no needles, no Stockfleth's, no chop-chops. I simply dose from the Major straight into the PF, making sure the coffee is distributed around the basket in an even fashion (although a small mound on top is still created) and than I tamp with my convex Torr, moving the coffee to the sides a bit. The results are very similar to what I get when dancing around the basket, so as Jim has stated, why bother?

I have also tried tamping huge clumps in the basket and uneven distribution and it doesn't really make a big difference. Now is it because I'm using an Elektra, the preinfusion system or something else I have absolutely no idea.

Regards,
dsc.