When it comes to the ideal espresso shot, a good espresso maker is a must. Be it the Tecnora Cremiere TCM 106A or the 107M, or indeed whatever coffee machine you use, start off with one that works for you. Then you can start understanding what goes into making an ideal shot.
A single shot will take 7-8 grams of coffee powder (roughly one tablespoon). You can add depending on the strength of the coffee you’re after. A double shot or an espresso doppio, will take twice that, and twice the water, but both will have the same extraction time, i.e., 25-30 seconds. If it’s taking longer than this, you need to adjust the grind to make your powder finer.
Extraction is something you need to get just right. Over or under-extraction can radially affect the taste of your espresso. Extraction isn’t so much about the amount of water you use, but more about the length of time the water interacts with the coffee. Over-extract and you’ll end up with bitter-tasting coffee; under-extract and your espresso will taste sour.
Temperature is also important but how hot is hot enough? Machines like Tecnora’s Cremiere TCM 106A espresso coffee maker or Tecnora New Classico 107M coffee makers take care of all this for you. These machines heat the water to between 195°F (91°C) and 205°F (96°C). This is the ideal range. Note that boiling water (212°F/100°C) should NEVER be used to make coffee.
And, then there’s the beans. If you like your coffee to conjure up tastes of fruit and berries, if you’re fonder of sweet than bitter, then Arabica beans are probably your best bet. Arabica beans have twice the sugar content as Robusta beans, which probably has a lot to do with their popularity.
But Robusta beans are especially good for espressos as they have a very deep flavour and excellent crema. And it’s the crema result that guarantees Robusta beans a place in most Italian coffee blends.
And when you have the beans, you need to choose a roast. The most common are Vienna, French, and Italian.
It’s all a matter of taste.