Last month I bought an espresso machine from [DELETED]. It looks good but the problem is I don't know how to use it in the proper way. I got a catalog along with it and tried so many times . But still I'm not satisfied with any of the espressos prepared my me. First I thought the problem is with the machine. But my friend also has bought the same last year and her espresso is just superb..!!!
Can someone help me to prepare the best espresso ? I too want to be a professional espresso maker ;)
First, I deleted the source and link to the espresso machine. Apologies, but it is not needed for this discussion. Anyway...
In my opinion, you can be going down a very deep rabbit hole here. Personally, in my opinion, a good espresso can be obtained by the use of a good cafe that has a good barista ...
But, if you must do it yourself ... people has spent lots and lots of money and time to get the perfect brew. On the coffee side, it can highly depend on the bean, the roast, and the grind. And on the brewing side, it can highly depend on the water source, temperature, and time of brew.
I guess, if you want to improve, some possibilities are (which my brother explained to me years ago)...
1. Don't skimp on the quality of the coffee bean. And especially, don't use old coffee beans.
2. Get you own grinder, as you may want to try out different coarseness of grinds.
3. Use a good water source, or good filtration system.
4. Use a good machine that can maintain a consistent (and possibly controllable) temperature.
5. As for brew time, I guess you need to constantly test it. Different coffee beans and grinds actually affect the brew time, so not only do you need to find the optimum time, but you may also need to check it now and then, when you get a new batch of beans (or grind it differently).
If you want to get the very best in espresso, you should add a few extras to that list.
First, don't just grind your own beans, roast them as well. Green coffee beans can be purchased from a variety of sources and they'll keep for up to 5 years. But once you roast them, you'll start losing flavors within 12 hours. When you grind them, the clock starts running faster still, since there's now more surface area for the goodness to leak from. Note that "espresso roast" doesn't mean turn the beans into charcoal - that's Starbucks. Espresso roasting tends to the Dark Side, but it's also a fine grind. Not quite as fine as Turkish, but about 1 level down. Burr-type grinders are recommended, as high-speed units can "cook" essential flavor oils out even as they're chopping up the beans. Grinding stuff up inevitably involves generating a certain amount of heat, but you want to keep it to a minimum.
Also, there are 2 types of "espresso machine". There's the "real" espresso machine and then there are "espresso makers". One of the most common "espresso makers" is the iconic stovetop Biali pot. It's a good unit, but what it produces isn't literally espresso. Neither is what comes out of my little countertop unit. A true espresso machine is a pressure device. Ordinary steam pressure isn't high enough, so there will typically be some sort of pump to raise the pressure even higher. You can tell when the pressure is high enough, because a layer of "crema" forms on top of the coffee. It's nothing but foam, but without that extra pressure, the foam, if it forms at all, swiftly evaporates. For true espresso, it lingers long enough to be savored in its own right.
Sometimes the only way things ever got fixed is because people became uncomfortable.
That's actually a very good point. She is your friend. You both have the same machine. Her espresso is better. Ask her how she does it ... ... heck, if she is a good friend, just invite her over, and offer her an espresso.