The espresso, one of coffee’s most popular and prestigious preparations, is quick yet very particular, so how do we judge an authentic qualitative Italian espresso?
When we talk about espresso coffee we refer to that type of coffee prepared on demand utilizing a professional machine often served inside coffee shops, bars, restaurants, and also at home. The express preparation of coffee represents the best possible way to enjoy its most natural aromas limitations the dose of caffein within it.
In order to obtain a perfect espresso, the professional barman, also known as the barista, needs to pay very close attention to the speed at which the coffee flows from the machine. When a coffee is under-estracted, the coffee will flow more quickly and it will have a more watery consistency, full of air bubbles, and a weak aroma. A over-extracted espresso, which flows from the machine too slowly, will have a very strong body, a too bitter taste with a burnt aftertaste.
How do we chose the right coffee for a perfect espresso? Throughout the years of restoration, a few secret tips have born, which, although they don’t assure success, they help also the less experts to obtain a better espresso. First of all, it is always advised to grind the coffee and not buy pre-ground ones to ensure the quality of the coffee. The ideal situation would be to buy the coffee just ground by the trusted coffee roasting company. It is also very important to pick the right roasting method because the espresso is the result of blends and roasting of different origins which contribute to create its indistinguishable aroma.
Once the right grinding has been prepared, it is important to prepare the machine. Here are some of the key points to obtain the authentic Italian espresso:
- The perfect dose of espresso in a cup is 25 ml; this means that to obtain the perfect espresso without any stains, the coffee has to flow from the machine at a speed of 1ml/second for a total of 25 seconds.
- The quantity of ground coffee to insert in the porter filter is about 7 grams (14 for a double) which needs to be optimally pressed with a weight of 20kilos.
- The water for the preparation of the authentic Italian espresso needs to be brought at 89° Celsius, and never at a boiling temperature to ensure that the coffee doesn’t burn
- Last but not least, the coffee should be served at 67° Celsius, and the cup shouldn't be warmer than 45° Celsius
Once the authentic Italian espresso is ready, it is possible to enjoy it with a few additions: a bit of liquor to make it a corrected espresso, a bit of cold or warm milk to make it a macchiato, foamed milk to make it a cappuccino, ice to make it iced, or warm water to make it an Americano.