When did this espresso extraction go blond? [video quiz] - Page 3

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks for making espresso.

When did this espresso extraction go blond?

Total votes: 496


#21: Post by TRH »

I voted F , but agree that the color change was hard to discern.
Terry Hendricks


#22: Post by joellawry »

My pick was F, however sometimes when i am having a straight espresso i let it run a bit further (midway to the end of G) to add extra volume without much influencing the taste, but i have noticed that with some types of beans this ends up wrecking the shot.

I think that people should take more into account when deciding when to stop their shot - including blonding, but also including the beans, the destination of the shot (is it going to be drunk straight, as a long black, or a milk drink?) and also personal flavour preference. Experiment with leaving your shots longer, and/or cutting them off sooner and see what difference it makes to flavour. In my opinion there isn't really a "wrong" way to do it if you are still enjoying your espresso!

My 2c worth.



#23: Post by Theo »

Great idea for a questionnaire!

I have to admit I went with H. I just can't resist the extra volume. Maybe I should go back to triples but stop them earlier. But since I did a taste test of the first, middle and last thirds of a shot and tasted no bitterness in the last, it emboldened my longer pours.

The low lighting level in the clip made comparison to my pours difficult; in fact I couldn't distinguish any striping. I use a flashlight; not for making a movie of my shots -- just always.

TheCod Father

#24: Post by TheCod Father »

I also went with "E" but I tend to like a fuller flavor in my shots, especially if it is to be drunk straight.

Some mornings it's just not worth
chewing through the straps


#25: Post by DavidMLewis »

I'd just like to publicly thank Dan for this thread. I'd long felt vague about being able to tell when my shots were going blond and should be cut off. Looking for the translucency on the bottom of the basket about five seconds after cone collapse has been a fantastic clue.



#26: Post by Wescott »

Yes indeed. This is a valuable exercise.

It points up something I have always felt about the blythe advice to "cut off the shot at the first sign of blonding." That blonding is also a variable among beans and among preceivers of the mouse tail.

I'll have to admit that it has been hard--so hard I gave up--for me to determine earliest blonding. I use automatic dispensing and mess with the grind for the most part. If I were a better barista, I might have a keen perception of blonding in all its incarnations. For now, I'll have to forego that standard in favor of something more attainable.

The thread, however, is a great way to make something vague in words concrete with pictures. Thank you, Dan.

User avatar

#27: Post by Psyd »

Wescott wrote: If I were a better barista, I might have a keen perception of blonding in all its incarnations.
Blonding is an indication that the machine is starting to pull flavors that you find less appealing. The real way to find out when to stop the shot is to divide the shot into five or six parts, using some visual stimuli to keep track of what part is what (first drops, single cone forms, cone grows, flecks stop, striping gets pale, cone wanes, striping stops... whatever) and taste each part. If they taste good all the way to 'blonde' whatever you perceive that to be, keep them all as part of your daily cup. If you find that after 'x' they start to taste awful, this is your chance to describe to yourself when to stop in terms you're familiar with, and excise that taste from your routine.
Espresso Sniper
One Shot, One Kill

LMWDP #175


#28: Post by CoffeeOwl »

Psyd wrote:divide the shot into five or six parts
Here you can buy a set of six glasses for that purpose, supporting coffee farmers at the same time.
'a a ha sha sa ma!

LMWDP #199

User avatar

#29: Post by AndyS »

HB wrote:When would you cut off this espresso extraction?
Sorry to come into this thread so late, but the correct answer is B.

Once it was clear that the extraction was flowing too fast (and it was), you should have stopped, thrown the shot in the sink, tightened the grind, and started over. :twisted:
VST refractometer/filter basket beta tester, no financial interest in the company


#30: Post by micki replying to AndyS »

LOL ... but the question in the headline and start of the video was "When did this espresso extraction go blond", so technically you're wrong (yeah, I know the question above the video was phrased differently)