coffee knowledge

My espresso tastes sour!

A well-known problem that most of you have experienced at least once.
Depending on the variety and roast, there are beans that bring strong fruit acids which can be desired and emphasized with the right technique. However, most espressos are in the medium to dark roast range. Even in this case, a slight acidity can be very pleasant. But, if the espresso shot does only taste sour, there are several approaches to influence the whole result.

A cup of espresso consists of over 95% water. That is why it is our most important starting product. It is a good idea to check the pH value. The appropriate test strips for this are available in every pharmacy. A value of 7 is called pH neutral and is ideal for your espresso – anything below that is acidic. This makes it clear that when preparing your favorite beverage under these circumstances, the acidity of the beans can become very noticeable in the finished drink.

PH value fits – espresso still sour?
In this case, your espresso is under-extracted. The coffee can sometimes even taste a little salty. Now it’s time to adjust the individual parameters, such as coffee quantity, grind …

The easiest way is to use the amount of coffee as our fixed parameter.
Let’s say it’s 17g with a brew ratio of 1:2, which means you have 34g of finished drink in the cup. The whole thing in 22 seconds. First of all, I recommend increasing the ratio of water to ground coffee. For example, to 1:2.5. Now 42.5g of espresso will end up in the cup. Let’s say the whole thing has now taken 26 seconds. If you taste the coffee now, you will notice that the unpleasant acidity has almost completely disappeared and the taste has improved considerably. Are you satisfied with the result? Great, then leave the settings as they are now.

If you want to extract a little more now, just adjust the grind ratio a little finer. Increasing the Brew Ratio further now would only cause your coffee to become watered down. If you brew an espresso again, you may notice that it takes a little longer again, e.g. 31 seconds, and has a pleasant light fruit acidity, full-bodied and sweet taste.

UnderextractedGoodPerfect Espresso
17g of Coffee in17g of Coffee in17g of Coffee in (ground a bit finer)
34g of Espresso out42,5g of Espresso out42,5g of Espresso out
22 Seconds26 Seconds31 Seconds
This chart serves to illustrate the above example

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