Espresso Tamping – The Fine Art of Making Espresso

To master the art of espresso making, there are a number of factors that you must consider.  You must first know that your espresso must first be freshly roasted, properly dosed and distributed, it must be properly tamped, it should be freshly grounded, and it must be closely monitored during extraction.

You should know that coffee is at its best when it is freshly grounded because the oils are released after the coffee has been grounded and the longer it is left, the staler it will become.  Therefore, it is crucial that you tamp the espresso and have it extracted as quickly as you can.

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What exactly is espresso tamping and how does it work?

Espresso tamping is the way coffee is compacted in the porta-filter before you brew espresso.  The way that espresso is tamped has a major effect on how it comes out in the end.  In this article, you will learn how to improve the art of making espresso with espresso tamping.

The first thing that you should know when it comes to espresso tamping is that you need to tamp the coffee, ensuring that your espresso is formed into a tight pallet after you have properly dosed the coffee.  The pellets need to be tightly tamped because when the water in the machine comes under pressure, it will try to find a very easy way to get out.  You need to remember that if the espresso is loose, jostled, or unevenly tamped then your espresso will also be extracted unevenly.

In espresso mastery, tamping is one of the easiest methods to master and once it is done properly, it will greatly improve the quality of your espresso.

The key to properly tamping an espresso is to ensure that the coffee is not uneven as it will be after it is dosed in the porta-filter; therefore, to prevent it from being uneven, you need to use your hand to evenly distribute the coffee grounds without pressing into it or leaving any space for the water to pass through.

After the grounds have been evenly distributed, you are ready to tamp your espresso.

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So how do you use an espresso tamper?

You must hold the base of the espresso tamper so that the base of the handle fits in the palm of your hand.  You should ensure that your hand is straight, thus holding the espresso tamper straight up.  After your hand position is straight press lightly on the grounds with five pounds always keeping the coffee in the tight pallet that was formed.

Then you can finally apply the final tamp by applying lightly presses to the pallet with 30 pounds of pressure and then you will have perfectly tamped espresso.