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How to taste & assess the different parts of an espresso extraction.

In this video Luke is teaching you how to break down an espresso extraction into distinct parts so you can learn to identify the flavor characteristics of each. You'll be looking at the changing colours of an extraction and how you can capture each part to taste them individually. You'll learn which part tastes sweet, which is mellow and which is bitter.

Luke also explores two different ways that you can enjoy an espresso; that being stirred and un-stirred. He'll tell you which is his preferred method and why.


Video Transcript 

So today we're focusing in on the espresso shot. And what I want to do is teach you how to identify the different types of color that's actually being extracted. And what they taste like so that you can understand what part you love about espresso. When to stop your extraction visually and at the end to work out whether you should stir or not to stir your espresso.

So let's get into it straight away.

So I've got the Linea Mini here today with an Anfim Best on Demand. We are using our dosing pots. An OCD and a standard tamper, we're going to stick with our standard recipe, which is 22 and a half grams of fine ground coffee. We're using our champion blend at the moment.

And we're going to base this all around our double ristretto, um or two to one extractions as well. So we're going to weigh that out. We need a little bit more their to get to 22 and a half grams. Great. You've got your clean, dry, hot handle ready to go. We're going to use our OCD just to distribute that and tamping pressure.

We did do a video recently. If you're not too sure, how to use your tamper or how to do this properly, check that video out.

So in our training, there's four distinct colors that you're going to see when you extract coffee. And I want to show those to you. We're going to break them down, give them a taste and give you an idea of what you're going to get from your espresso. Now, it doesn't matter whether it's a light roast, dark roast or whatever espresso you're using, you're still going to get these distinct flavors.

But they will differ depending on the roast or the origin So this machine does have pre-infusion. It runs on for a second. And what I'm going to do is I'm going to catch the first, say, three to four drips and they'll be nice and thick and drippy and syrupy. And this is basically the sugars that are going to come out first.

There we go. So I'm just going to catch those. And you can see the viscosity there. Now we're looking to see the next color change that comes through. So when it just starts to go a little bit more pale. They're going to keep running and look for the blonding point. You probably have heard about this before.

I'm going to keep running. Here we go. So if we have a look at these three parts of the espresso. We like to call this our sweetness, our body. We basically refer to this as the caffeine. And you can see down here that little bit of paleness just starting. That is the bitterness that's coming through. Now, I've run this shot nice and long and you can definitely see what that looks like in the crema.

There are distinct four different colors that you're going to notice when you're extracting your coffee. If we give this first one a taste, it's thick, molassesy, really sweet and just super intense. So this is a full two to one extraction. We've ended up at this point being 45 grams of our end liquid. As we go past that, we are over extracting the coffee. So what I want you to do is do this at home and have a play and see if you really like that intense sweetness.

Then give your your body which we like to call this part of it a bit of a taste and just see what's coming through in there. It's definitely a little bit more tart. The acid is starting to come through as well. And I just refer to this part as the caffeine. It's just the last part. And if you give that a taste, you'll start to see it's quite mellow.

It is definitely thin in it's viscosity and it has a much more even taste profile out of the whole part of the coffee. It's not polarizing. All of those three joined together, will make a beautiful espresso. But if you go past that, you basically get something that smells like old filter coffee that's been boiling away all day and I don't even want to taste this.

It just stinks. So if your coffee is starting to smell or taste like this, you're probably over extracting your coffee. So you can see it's definitely pale and you want to stop your espresso before that. So I'm going to go back now and make one more coffee, and I'll show you what that looks like when you're combining all of these three parts of the espresso together.

Again, same roughly recipes. 22 and a half grams of coffee Give that a check if you like.

Point one of a gram. What's that between friends? All right. So again, levelling out our espresso, use our distributor, and a nice even tamp and a flush between your shots to always make sure you don't have any of that excess coffee grind in there. If you're focusing on espresso, you want it to be the best. So make sure you do do all these little parts to make sure you get the most out of it.

So we're going to catch all of these parts together. And I'm going to show you what it looks like in one shot. So pre-infusion's been activated on this machine. Okay, here come those really nice, dark molassesy kind of drops. It's usually the first five to ten drops. Then we're going to what we call the body. And you can see that different color coming through now.

The caffeine stage we're going to start to see coming through right now. And I'm going to run this down the side of the cup and you'll see it start to corkscrew and wobble and it's going to go pale Here we go.

So we turn it off when you see a little corkscrew up here and when you have a look tight in on this espresso here, this is the drops that were coming into the middle of the actual coffee. The other one was running down the side. You can distinctly see that pale little line, which is those little drops coming through.

They're a lot thinner and they're actually starting to splash through that crema. So there are some tiny little bubbles that are forming. So if you don't have any of the ability to weigh shots and you just need to know when to stop, that's what you've got to look for. The white dots, the small bubbles and you know that you're going to that over extracted point in your coffee I hope that's going to help you guys understand what you start to like about coffee.

If you're really like this sweetness. Well, in an espresso, you might want to cut it off a little bit shorter and have that ristretto. If you think it's too much for you, you may want to go for your full two to one as your espresso, which gives you a bit more balance throughout the whole cup. But the last thing I want to show you is we're going to make two espressos.

I'm going to split those and I'm going to give you my tip on how I enjoy espresso. We're all different, and there's definitely a couple of takes on what you should do here.

Same recipe. Beautiful. All right. So in a two different espresso as we are going to split these. Here we go that real thick, nice sugars. The molassesy kind of look. We're starting to change color. I'll let those keep running down the sides of the cup.

Looking for the paleness just to start. Here we go just started to wobble. If we have a close up look there. You'll see the little pale dots and the little air bubbles right in the middle. So that is the same extraction point right up to this point. It's the same as we've done here. We've just split it into two espressos.

Now, to stir or not to stir your espresso. Look, everyone's out there, has their different opinions Some people love to stir it because they want to get that sweetness and that body and get that stirred all the way through the cup. And look, that's fine if you're that kind of person. It's going to be a more balanced espresso.

It's going to give you a whole, I guess, drinking experience all the way through, and that's fine. This is not what I do. So I'll give that a taste.

It's great. It's got a good sweetness, good body. It's very balanced. And overall, it tastes like a really enjoyable coffee. But what's happening now is that's sort of starting to dissipate a little bit in my mouth. And I know it's not going to hang with me for a while. What I love to do, especially if I get the opportunity to enjoy a coffee a couple of times. Just pop out that little bubble there is I drink an espresso in three sips, so I'm going to try and drink this top layer, the middle and the bottom, and I'll show you why.

Right, so I've really got a thinner viscosity that's come through. It's a little bit more mellow and there's a little bit of the florals that are coming through on the second sip, I'm definitely getting a lot more sweetness. It's definitely getting thicker in the mouthfeel and there's a lot more depth of flavors that's starting to come through. So I'm going on a bit of a journey. I've kind of started where that coffee would be at at least at its least intense.

Then I'm going into its medium intensity and I'm going to finish with it the most intense. So I've really got just this amount of sweetness left and a little bit of this. And that for me has just got this huge big bomb of sweetness and coffee. It's sitting my mouth, it's coated my whole mouth. It feels like I'm going to have that there for the next couple of hours.

And look, I've shared that with a lot of people, and they've absolutely loved that technique. So I'd love to hear from you guys. Are you a stirrer of your espresso? Do you want to give this a go? Is this your new way to enjoy the coffee when you have it as a straight black? I'd love to hear in the comments below.

Guys, thanks so much for watching. I hope this has helped you to extract better espresso and also understand the kind of flavors that you're going to get in these different parts of the coffee and whether you like that or not. Thanks, guys. Hey, leave a comment below. Make sure you do like and subscribe. We really appreciate the support, guys. Thanks very much for watching.

Cheers have a good one.


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