Daily Coffee machine and grinder set up

For all the science of coffee making and barista skills you only have to get these simple steps correct below and you will stand out way above the competition.

What does a barista’s job look like?

Barista’s have many responsibilities throughout their workday. Below we’ve compiled everything you need to know as a barista, from making coffee to leaning at the end of the day. Not every café is exactly the same but here are the basics to get you started.
Beginning of Day/Opening shift espresso machine set-up
At the beginning of your day when setting up your machine, it is necessary to run shots through each portafilter. These shots are called “seasoning shots”. This is done to ensure that any debris cleaning detergent, etc. That may have settled overnight in your machine is flushed out prior to making your first customer’s drink. At this time you will also be able to see where your grind is and make adjustments accordingly.

How to steam milk for espresso drink building

There are two phases to steaming milk:
1 – “Stretching” – Air is introduced to texture the milk.
2 – “Steaming” – Milk is then heated up to bring out its caramelized sugars.
Properly textured and steamed milk will enhance the flavour, bringing out the sweetness in espresso, and will deliver an almost desert like quality.

Milk steaming tips

Always start with cold milk, keeping in mind that milk with a lower fat content is usually easier to texture.
Use the correct size pitcher for the amount of milk you’re steaming.
Learn to pour only the amount of milk needed for the drink you’re making in the most appropriately sized steaming pitcher.
Keep in mind when pouring your milk that the amount you pour can expand to as much as double the original volume with steaming.
Start introducing air up to 100 degrees. This is achieved by holding the steam tip just under the surface of the milk, “stretching” the milk while it is expanding.
Begin to “roll” the milk by plunging the steam wand entirely into the pitcher creating a rapid, swirling circulation. Bring the temperature up to 140 degrees or when the pitcher is too hot to touch.
Bang out any bubbles by hitting the pitcher on the counter, swirl the steamed milk to prevent separation from beginning to occur.

Things to avoid whilst steaming:

  • Bobbing the pitcher up and down
  • Moving pitcher in circular motion
  • Setting pitcher down while steaming

How to clean an espresso machine

Soak portafilters and baskets separately, in hot water with a commercial espresso machine detergent for several minutes. Make sure the handles are not exposed to the cleaner as the detergent will damage handles.
Rinse with hot water. Backflush using blind filter and cleaning solution. Turn water on for 10 seconds, stop then turn on for an additional 10 seconds. Continue this procedure until water becomes clear. Back flush again using same procedure, without using any detergent. Scrub inside of group head. Wash drain trays, portafilters, baskets, etc. Never use a scouring pad on any part of your machine, it can remove the metal plating and damage it.
Your espresso machine may have a built in cleaning program, if so, please follow those instructions.
A trained service technician should service your machine every 12 or so months.

Cleaning an espresso grinder

It is important to wash the hopper with hot soapy water to prevent espresso bean oils from building up and becoming rancid. Brush out all excess grounds from inside of doser and wipe inside and outside with a dry paper towel nightly.


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