in pursuit of puckish spro waifers

March 10, 2007 – 1:13 am

random oddities swirl about the less-is-more, petite-is-sweet notion of severe downdosing. will that prevent this blog from speculating wildly on severely incomprehensive data? why, no!

* grinding “a lot finercan produce a shot with the same volume and extraction time from much less coffee — but not always. bean density (and cell structure) would seem to interfere. 14 grams of light-roasted panama organic los lajones held up nicely over 25 seconds. a light-roasted monkey blend, on the other hand, starts out oozing at a sub-ristretto dribble, then becomes a blond-as-brulee, fully extracted mess within 20 seconds. in this case, you sacrifice one or the other … volume or length of shot pull.

you’d think, in general, that a blend of various particle sizes and bean densities would hold up better that single origin under such duress, no?

* it seems true, anecdotally, that what normally passes for a brighter coffee gets appreciably sweeter when the dose dips to 14 grams or below. but what about not-so-bright coffees? semi-bright coffees that offer spice and molassess too? or mythical, fleshy-but-not-pulpy, spring-fed, wild-cherry-like brights? anecdotal evidence (both sips) suggests the downdose interferes!

* the least original thing this blog has said all hour: dose to yer coffee. that said, we’ve managed to discover with the mini-dose some mellifluity where there previously was none. and, (alert the miserly cypriot) it saves on beans!

* the 12-grizzam dose: still another reason to love the slightly tapered la marzocco ridgeless double portafilter basket.

UPDATE: * miniscule coffee pucks leave more water in the portafilter … which makes for sodden lumps of mud in the knockbox … which means, within a day or two, a putrifying mold and stench that vastly eclipses the waft from a dry puck receptacle! (still, we just can’t quite give it up…)