How To Tamp Coffee Grounds Correctly

3 min read

How To Tamp Coffee Grounds Correctly

Knowinghow to tamp coffee grounds correctlyis crucial to making a stellar mug of espresso. 

Making the best mugs of espresso requires packing the perfect puck. Properly tamped grounds are evenly compacted, creating just the right resistance such that the brewing water has to force its way through and, by doing so, extract all of that delicious flavor! This gives your cup of espresso that bold, rich taste and texture — which is exactly what you or every other customer wants.

However, loosely and unevenly compacted grounds will give the brewing water spaces to move through without extracting the flavor, leaving you with a watery, flavorless cup. A person tasting espresso for the first time will be convinced that espresso is horrible if he takes what’s produced from poorly tamped grounds. It won’t matter what side you’re on thebeans or grounds anddark roast VS light roast debates. 

To prevent this from happening, here are simple steps to follow for perfectly tamped coffee grounds.

Steps For Tamping Coffee Grounds Correctly

Level The Grounds

To start, fill the portafilter with the measured coffee grounds to use. Then use your fingers to remove excesses that may be pouring out of the filter. Coffee grounds have to be even and level before you can apply any pressure on them, else you'll be left with poor extraction and less flavor.

Assume Good Form

I’m sure no teacher taught you tamping posture, but there is. 

Turn your powerful side (left or right) towards the counter. Meet your wrists straight, and the elbows bent at an angle of 90° to remain in control when you start tamping. This will also ensure that the power to tamp is generated from your entire body and not just your risk, minimizing the risk for repetitive stress injury. 

Grab the tamper as if you’re holding a doorknob with the thumb and index finger. This ensures you are holding the tamper base through two points, which helps to maintain leveled coffee grounds. 

Apply 13-15 lbs. Of Pressure

Start the application of pressure, going at about 15 pounds. This will help to mold the ground coffee into a puck shape. To apply the appropriate pressure, stand on a weight scale and press down on the counter until your weight reduces by 15lbs. A calibrated tamper is much easier, though. 

Keep in mind that even-handed pressure is mandatory.

Proceed To Add 25 Extra Pounds Of Pressure Before Polishing

The puck must have formed now. If so, apply more pressure by pushing down harder to make a sturdy, compact puck. Professionals usually suggest 30 pounds here, while some insist 20 is perfect, so just settle for 25. Know, however, that adding too much pressure to your grounds will cause over-extraction and result in a bitter brew.

Conclusion Of How To Tamp Coffee Grounds Correctly

To conclude, check the puck to ensure no loose spots for water to escape through in and around the coffee. Wipe off grounds spilling around the edges. This will protect the gasket more and reduce the need for maintenance. There’s no argument here: knowinghow to tamp coffee grounds correctlyis compulsory for ana-m-a-z-i-n-gbrew. The process doesn’t differ much whether you’re using amanual or automatic espresso machine.