We just started doing puck out (well, making it mandatory) because of this thread. I guess I wasn't paying enough attention to this little detail. I don't think our pucks ever sit in there for more than 15 or so, but still, why not get 'em out ya know... I told the baristas that we would be starting "A buck a puck" in two weeks so they had better get used to getting the puck out.
Oh, and after I rinse (bottomless, and I think we need to specify if we are talking bottomless or with spouts to clarify) I spin the portafilter and then... how to describe this... fling? launch? shake? spike like a football without letting go of the portafilter? all of the excess water out of the sides. This seems to work just fine for getting all the water out.
You're gonna wipe-dry your basket when you go to pull your next set of shots.You forgot to dry your basket, now I see why you have cicumnavigated the competitions. Tech judges would have a heyday with you picking you nose up there and all.
Puck in! I think you lose more than you gain in taking the puck out and cleaning the PF after every shot. Obviously puck in contributes to temp stability, but the trick is to know how long a window you have before solidification of the grounds happens. My staff are trained to updose threee times with a courser grind, and consequently we have a longer window for solidification. In most cafes it probably takes on average a good couple of minutes for solidification to happen, so if you're in a cafe and coffee's are walking out the door, it sure seems to be delaying the coffee prep time considerably. Not good!
With puck out and washing PF after every shot seems to me like double handling, because even after cleaning the PF basket and locking it back in, the next shot will still have coffee grounds and condensation on the side of the filter basket in need of being wiped again.
Also, who wants a dripping PF while they are grinding and distributing fresh grounds. It makes a mess.
Annnnd there is also the arguement for puck in of how last shot oils help reduce channelling down the sides of the basket in the next shot. It seems much more pratical to leave puck in PF till next shot (keepin in mind our solidification window), knock it out for next shot with a swift dry wipe of the basket.
Obviously when the PF starts getting an excess of oil it needs to be washed. But just flushing the PF basket doesn't do the job we need, because there is oil build up below the basket that the average flush doesn't remove, sadly people often overlook this part of cleaning. It really needs a good scrub with some scotchbrite to get rid of the oil build up. Its for this reason I'm really tempted by the idea of just using naked portafilters.
I have a friend who follows the scotchbrite cleaning idea every 30minutes in a cafe that knocks out 1000+ coffees a day. So you can be quick and clean.
I guess what I'm trying to to say is... MiKe McKoffee can I have a job in your cafe??
and JavaJ can I be a modern Barista??
Immediately after every shot knock puck out and then flush group simultaneously rinsing PF. Then return rinsed PF to group. Oils and grinds bake on in well less than an hour, more like minutes. I use and teach the same whether only one shot or dozens to make in a row. Always rinse group and PF after every shot. Before next build wipe basket dry of course. Dirty groups or PFs pull dirty shots.
Some don't agree with rinsing the basket saying it'll cause channeling. Sure, if you don't wipe it dry! Since ALL our shots pulled nekkid, if channeling was an issue from rinsing and wiping between builds would be quite obvious, and it's not an issue period.
Any barista that doesn't adhere to this procedure will be gone at my cafe. No excuses.