Ask Heather: Crema? Timing? Portafilter? Part 4

Heather Perry, 2X US Barista Champion and Klatch Coffee CEO, answers YOUR questions about espresso. Let's see what the "Queen of Espresso" has to say...

Q: "Can I use Espresso in my coffee machine?"

A:  "Yes, you can use any coffee in your coffee maker."


Q:  "What is crema and how can I be sure to get that?"

A:  "Crema is that beautiful golden layer at the top of your espresso.

How to make sure you have crema, these are good starting points:
  1. Make sure you use fresh coffee.
  2. Make sure you are fresh grinding
  3. Make sure you are using basic espresso parameters, 2:1 ratio, running for about 25-30 seconds, (it’s going to matter per set-up. Start the time when you hit the button.)"
Q:  "Is it true Espresso taste better if you drink in one sip?"
A:  "No, not at all. When I drink and serve espresso I stir to mix the crema and have it a a temp to drink. Typically espresso finishes at 200 degrees and you want to drink it at your mouth temperature of 100 degrees."
Q:  "If you are making an Americana is better to pour the shot in to the water or the water into the shot?"
A:  It really depends what you want in taste, if you pour the water on top of the shot the crema mixes throughout, if you pour the shot on top the crema lays on top. It looks like a big shot, this is how we serve it in the cafe.

Have an espresso question? Let us know by messaging us on social media or asking with the hashtag #AskHeatherand we'll get back to you!