Espresso Brew Guide

Espresso is a concentrated form of coffee brewed with high pressure, hot water and finely ground coffee.

Normally served in a small cup or glass.

Things you need:

Step 1: Plan the coffee

To brew a delicious espresso, there are four important factors: dose, yield, temperature, and contact time.

Image source: Photo by Adi Goldstein

In this brew, we are aiming:

Coffee Dose: 18 grams

Coffee to Water Ratio: 1:2.1

Water Temperature: 90 celsius

Yield: 38 grams

Total Brewing Time: 25 seconds ± 1 second

Note: This recipe is developed for Brodie, you can always try your own recipe and adjust accordingly. 

Step 2: Grind the coffee

The grind performance is crucial in making espresso. A conical/flat burr grinder works perfectly for making espresso. 

Set Grind Size

When pulling a shot, note the dose, extraction time and yield. 

Yield reached too quick or acidic result. -> Finer or more dose

Yield reached too slow or bitter result. -> Coarser or less dose

One thing people sometimes ignore is the importance of understanding their portafilter basket’s capacity before grinding coffee.

If the basket is recommended for 16-20 grams, exceeding this amount will result in a thicker coffee puck and over-extraction of your espresso, leading to annoying bitterness or an astringent aftertaste.

Choose the grinder

You can choose between a manual or electric grinder. However, ensure that your grinder can grind finely enough for espresso. Using the wrong grinder may result in an insufficiently fine grind, leading to imperfect extraction due to inadequate pressure.

For manual grinders, we recommend the 1ZPresso K-Series, Timemore Chestnut X, or C3.

As for electric grinders, there are flat burr and conical burr options. Typically, flat burr grinders offer more consistency but are noisier, while conical burr grinders are quieter and more affordable.

Brands we recommend for under $2000 include Eureka, Niche, Coffee Tech, and Varia.

Step 3: Tamp the coffee

You don’t need to rinse the bleached filter paper, because the extraction starts when coffee contacts water

Image source: Photo by & Bloss
Tamping Technique

Properly tamping the coffee in espresso, with consistent and firm pressure typically ranging from 9 to 15 kilograms, is vital for ensuring uniform extraction and optimal flavor in every shot.

Step 4: Tare the scale and ready to brew

A scale is an optional tool for controlling your brew, you can still monitor your flow rate and brew well without a scale

What to do after I tare my scale:

 Technically, the faster you finish the brew, the extraction of coffee ends sooner and your coffee tastes more acidic. On the other hand, a slower brew ends up with a more bitter coffee.

The yield we are looking for this recipe:

18 grams coffee in and 38 grams coffee out in a 24-26 seconds time (for Brodie Blend).

Step 5: Pull the espresso shot

How long should I wait for the shot? Follow your plan initially, then adjust the factors accordingly on your next shot.

Image source: Photo by Tim St. Martin

Extracting Techniques:

If the yield is reached too quickly, indicating a shorter extraction time, you might want to grind the coffee finer. Vice versa, if the yield takes too long to achieve, suggesting a longer extraction time, coarser grinding may be necessary.

Ideas to adjust your brew:

Too acidic, watery, or contact time too short. -> Grind finer

Too bitter, astringent, or contact time too long.-> Grind coarser

Remember what you do this time and you can adjust it later. 

Step 6: Enjoy your coffee

Look at the crema! The amazing texture and taste can make your day!

Image source: Photo by Kimiya Oveisi

Ending Techniques:

Keep an eye on the timer when the planning time is up, stop extracting when it reaches your scheduled time.

Before you taste your coffee, smell and feel the fragrance first. Drink your coffee and take a breath after you swallow, you’ll feel many flavours coming out from your nose and mouth.

Coffee can be Simple and Complicated

We handle the beans, You focus on brewing.

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