Baristas have known for a long time that you don’t drink the first cups from the machine each day.
If you watch an experienced barista prepare for a day of coffee making you will see them ‘waste’ numerous espresso shots.
Why do they do this?
Well, it’s all about priming the machine.
By running water through your machine you clear coffee grains left from previous sessions but most importantly you heat all the pipes and valves.
This even heating is crucial to making a good coffee and it shouldn’t stop with your machine.
Here are three important steps that will help your homemade espresso taste as good as if not better than one from a cafe.
- Turn on your machine, let it heat thoroughly, and then run some water through it as if making an espresso – you don’t need to waste coffee, just running water through is fine.
- Use some of that water to fill the cup(s) you will be using. Warmed cups are vital for nuruturing your espresso shot so that it doesn’t get cold shock when it hits your cup, which will rob it of its flavour.
- If you use a manual espresso machine, run some of this heated water over your portafilter and filter basket, dry with a clean cloth, and then dose it with coffee, tamp, and extract.
These three simple steps are some of the most important steps for making good coffee. Of course there are many other tips and steps (feel free to share them in the comments) but these are all related by the heating and priming process.
Yours in the spirit of espresso