The term café-espresso has been in use since the 1880s, well before espresso machines existed. It means coffee made to order, expressly for the person ordering it.
People have always been in a hurry, so inventors looked for faster ways to make coffee. Instead of using water to brew coffee, steam was used instead around 1884. Unfortunately steam brewed coffee didn't taste that good. The steam could not be set at the needed temperature between 90-96 degrees. Seventeen years later Luigi Bezzera came up with improvements to solve this problem. Desiderio Pavoni, who became the first seller of espresso machines, later bought his patented work. If you have any interest, these can be acquired here.
Just like its name, espresso is made pretty fast with less water and is dark, rich and thick. It’s also very strong if you hadn’t noticed. Espresso is concentrated coffee made by forcing a small amount of nearly boiling water under high pressure through finely ground coffee beans. In other words, the weight of a human is being forced through 18 grams of coffee. The result you get is an explosion of vibrant texture, flavour, and colour. To truly understanding espresso is very essential for baristas as the espresso is the most complex method of brewing coffee. So much has to go right in such a short period, every step has to go flawless. The espresso is essential because the espresso is the basis of many various coffee drinks such as the macchiato, cappuccino, flat white, latte and other coffee arts.
There are many variables in the process of making a shot of espresso. The temperature of the water, the pressure of the water, the fineness of the ground coffee and how tightly the coffee is packed are just a few of necessary variable criteria. Proper espresso extraction occurs at 8 to 10 bars. The higher pressures in this range intensify the flavours.
By tweaking the temperature the barista could decide what flavours to accentuate. Lower temperatures accentuate acidic original flavours while higher temperatures accentuate bitter roast flavours. The espresso is special because it is very concentrated and strong, yet has a lot of fine flavours inside a small cup. The espresso can be customised to your personal preference, tell the barista what flavours you prefer in you espresso.
Check the video below to see what a barista does to serve you a heavenly shot of espresso.