Making a great coffee using the Lungo method requires a specific approach, especially when using an espresso machine or coffee maker that offers Lungo settings. A Lungo is essentially a “long espresso” with more water than a standard espresso, resulting in a milder and more diluted coffee.
Here’s how to make a great Lungo:
Equipment you’ll need:
Espresso machine or coffee maker with a Lungo setting
Fresh and high-quality coffee beans (medium to dark roast)
Tamper (if your machine requires it)
Lungo-sized cups or glasses
Fresh, clean, and filtered water
20-30 grams of fresh coffee beans (adjust depending on your taste)
Preparation: Ensure your espresso machine or coffee maker is clean and in proper working condition. Clean the drip tray, portafilter, and cups if necessary.
Grind the Coffee: Use a burr grinder to grind your coffee beans to a coarser consistency than you would for a regular espresso. The grind size for Lungo is closer to table salt than fine powder.
Preheat Your Machine: Turn on your espresso machine and select the Lungo setting if available. Allow the machine to reach the ideal brewing temperature, which is typically around 195°F to 205°F (90°C to 96°C).
Dosing and Tamping (if required): If your machine uses a portafilter, dose the ground coffee into the portafilter basket. The recommended amount is 20-30 grams, but you can adjust this to your taste preferences.
Tamp the coffee grounds if your machine requires it, applying even pressure to create a level and compact puck.
Brewing: Place the portafilter back into the group head or set up your coffee maker for a Lungo.
Start the Lungo extraction process. The goal is to brew a Lungo in about 45-60 seconds, which is longer than a standard espresso.
Monitor and Time the Extraction: Use a timer to keep track of the extraction time. You’ll notice a lighter-colored crema forming on top of the Lungo. This is normal for a Lungo due to the increased water volume.
Taste and Adjust: Taste your Lungo to ensure it has the desired strength. A Lungo should be milder and less intense than a standard espresso. If it’s too weak, you can adjust the grind size to make it finer or use more coffee grounds.
Serve: Pour your Lungo into a Lungo-sized cup or glass. Lungos are typically served in larger cups than espressos due to their diluted nature.
Enjoy: Sip and savor your Lungo. It should be a smoother, milder coffee with a well-balanced flavor.
Making a great Lungo involves finding the right balance between coffee quantity, grind size, and extraction time. Feel free to adjust these variables to suit your taste preferences. The result should be a satisfying, flavorful, and mild coffee experience.