[Homeroast] Espresso advice

raymanowen at gmail.com raymanowen at gmail.com
Fri Jan 15 23:24:02 CST 2010


Astern, I agree with your thermoblock evaluation

"What I do with my thermoblock machine is:

1) turn on the machine.
2) preheat the PF with 190+ degree water from the BUNN machine in the
kitchen down the hall from my office
3) leave the PF loosely seated to keep it hot.
4) when ready to pull a shot, pull out the PF, wipe off condensation with a
bit of paper towel, grind/dose/tamp
5) turn on the steam, collecting the steam/water/condensate in the target
demitasse. Run it for about 15-30 seconds or so. The thermoblock machine
uses the same heater/block for making steam (through a different channel
which runs closer to the heating coil), *BUT* in order to make steam, it has
to run the temperature up, so it turns the heater on while steaming. This
heats up the block which will increase the shot temperature. It also
preheats the demitasse.
6) Dump the water from the demitasse into a waiting mug, then pull the

   - Since there is practically no unheated thermal mass between the
   thermoblock and the coffee grounds in the filter basket, I just run a blast
   of water from the steam wand into the demi for 4 seconds to heat the demi
   and burn the h311 out of my thumb when the demi runneth over (Then the Aloe
   gel out of the Fridge... )
   - Make small 0.0127" pieces (0.0005" larger than the original 0.0122"
   espresso starting point) out of big beans,

   - Vibro-compact*, tamp, top the puck with fine mesh filter screen (keeps
   grounds from floating up water column, depositing on group passages)
   - Brew baby, Brew [Just did it again!]

One more thing- the PF handle had a plastic maze in the floor. Didn't really
offer any back pressure at the low flow rate, and consists of three rough
disc- shaped pieces stacked like checkers and held together with a screw.

The four hidden surfaces couldn't be cleaned, even though I soak it and
swish it in my Witches Brew every shot. People actually pay to have their
porta-filter handle bottoms machined out. Easy on the Capresso, with a #10
Torx bit.

I really compacted and tamped this last shot. 2 sec pre-infusion. Got a
stream of pure crema streaming out the bottom of the filter basket. Some of
you guys get that all the time. Later, I'll grind finer and see what happens
at 0.0125"

Gotta quit- we got friends in the quake -ro

More information about the Homeroast mailing list