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The difference of extractions methods - #1 Espresso

It is commonly voiced that espresso is the more preferred extraction method, certainly the most expensive! What are the things to understand when choosing how to brew or extract your favourite coffee beverage?


The Espresso

This is generally 30 ml per single shot and takes between 20 - 30 seconds for its extraction. Note, that the coffee extraction generally does not dictate the caffeine content, however, with this technic the espresso machine provides high pulling power (first invented in Milan). The increase in pressure pulls a more 'rich' shot, this sometimes can feel more creamy than other methods - French Press, pour overs or syphons.


During the extraction of the espresso shot, the first part to form is called the creama or cream - notably lighter (as shown in the top of the shot glass). This is salty in taste. As the extraction continues, the next common flavour to extract is 'sourness', followed by sweetness. Coming close to the end of the extraction is 'bitterness'. This can often occur close to the 30 second mark but really depends on a number of different factors (water, your machine, your grind size, the beans you are using and the dryness or softness of the beans, i.e. the roast levels).


The grind size for espresso coffee is very small, sand like in size. The smaller the grind the longer it takes for the water to penetrate the coffee cake and extract the coffee. Remember that 30 percent of a coffee bean is soluble, and of that 30 percent the first 20 percent is seen as the more ideal for better extraction and taste.

Good beans are important and these generally are sought to be roasted to a darker degree (medium to dark). Traditionally, Italian and French roasts are super dark and as such have a more chocolatey, caramel and sometimes bitter note to them. The darker roasting styles work really well with milk, which is another important component of the espresso machine. The milk wand integrates steam into it. This makes the milk creamer and often slightly sweeter - velvety. Its important to have an espresso machine capable of giving you enough steam at a high pressure. Known as the Bentley of coffee machines - the Della Corte brand is one of the best and currently available from our shop! It is a 3rd generation Italian family company and our Studio version is prefect for aspiring coffee fanatics wanting to give espresso making a go but from the convivence of their own home.

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