The 7 step Espresso is produced using a Barista Coffee machine. These machines were first used in Italy and can produce individual cups of coffee in a matter of seconds.
The method involves passing water through fine grains of coffee under pressure. This extracts intense flavour and aromas from the coffee. Served black, the coffee is known as the Espresso. If milk is required it can be steamed using the high pressure steam wand to produce a textured froth when infused with the espresso creates the Cappuccino.
The picture below is of a La Bella, barista machine. Use your mouse over the different areas to identify the individual parts.
Download a labeled picture of the Barista Coffee Machine and the tools required to use it here
The 7 Steps
There are 7 important steps to making any espresso drink. They are as follows:
Choose the correct portafilter for the drink. Single basket for one shot of coffee (usually in Espresso, Latté and Mocha – at the college we split a double to 2 singles). Double basket for two shots of coffee (usually in Americano and Cappuccino).
Ground coffee will start to go stale after about 20 minutes. To avoid this, try as much as possible to grind as you go.
Place the portafilter on the holder on the grinder and pull the lever to allow the coffee to fall from the grinder into the portafilter. The correct amount is determined by eye.
Hold portafilter up to the grounds chamber and using finger (or lid of chamber) level off the heaped coffee. Scoop down into the coffee and leave a nice hollow.
This is a very important step and must be done correctly. Hold portafilter in one hand and tamper in other. With your elbow pointed towards the ceiling and wrist straight, pack the coffee using 18kg /3 stone of pressure (press hard). Then using the side of the Tamper, tap the side of the portafilter sharply to knock the grounds from the side of the tamper into the middle. Then tamp once more to polish off and also push off any grounds that may be in the portafilter wings. Your coffee is now ready to go.
Use the manual button on the machine, rinse out the group head for a couple of seconds before inserting your portafilter. This is called flushing and it washes out any old grounds that may be stuck in the group head and would add a sharp state to your coffee.
Insert portafilter and then choose appropriate button and start immediately. Do not leave coffee up in the group head without brewing, as it will start to burn.
Its also important to clean out the portafilter after making every drink.
7 Steps to the perfect Espresso