How do you open shop and dial in?

What’s your usual routine of a morning?

Pls include juicy details like water purging, grinder warm up, etc.

Nitty grittys are important as someone else might pick up a solid tip!


I always start with a full water purge of the machine and any boilers (it makes a huge difference).

Matt, could you detail the process of water purging and what it accomplishes?


My routine consist in grinding a handful of coffee beans in each grinder, to be sure to take out any stale coffee that could still reside in between the burrs or inside the grinder chute.
The other reason I do this is because I love to smell the coffee grounds early in the morning. Being the one that arrives first to open the coffee shop, I have this peaceful silence that helps me to fully inmerse myself in appreciating the coffee I have for that day.
More than a routine, is a ritual before the start of a very busy day :relaxed:


Purge of cartridge filter, 5-8l, to remove build up of minerals overnight. But we use the water for mopping, so it’s not wasted.

Then purge brew boilers, about 300ml each, just to freshen the water.

Grinders have been left on overnight (mythos) so it’s waste one, make one to check if the shot is on recipe and tastes good. If not, rinse and repeat until it’s good.

Same for brewed coffee although we don’t need to waste shots, obvs.

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Hi Matt, I used to purge all boilers in a cafe I worked at a couple of months ago, using a LM Linea Classic. I’ve been trying to do this on a new LM Linea PB but haven’t found an easy way to do so. Do you have any recommendations? thanks!

Run all the group heads to check the temperature as its same as in screen or not, run the first ahot espresso to all the group head to clean up the chemical, then taste the espresso from check the grind size,weight the coffee ground in portafilter as the standart , make the espresso shot for tasting then repeat the same step to taste to milk based beverage like latte / cappucino, but before steam the milk i do purge the nozzle for 1 or 2 minute to release the air from closing incase you forgot and check the nozzle are run properly. Thats my routine correct or advise whats the right way :

I start off by running the water through the portafilters to heat them up to temperature and purge the water until it stops itself ( 246 seconds).

I usually start dialling in the filter coffee while that’s happening.

Then I run some shots of the house blend, just to make sure the machine is seasoned and the grinder is purged. I usually weigh these just to check where my starting point is, but I just throw them away.

I start by using my baskets specified dose (18g vst) using a 1:2 ratio as a starting point, pull the shot, check tds, taste and then make any required adjustments and repeat until I decide on a recipe for the day.

I then repeat this on any other single origins we are offering.

Finish dialling in the filters on offer and then carry out any other cafe related jobs that need to be done before opening.

Lastly, just before I open I retaste all coffees to make sure it is up to the highest standard for the very first customer ( and me of course :smirk: )

Any tips or improvements from anyone would be gladly appreciated.


Sounds like you have had a lot of coffee before even opening Conor! I admire the dedication but not sure I could handle that much coffee in such a short space of time.

I purge water through my group heads before dealing in. On my San Marco it’s actually to get my group heads DOWN to temperature. Purge a few shots through the Robour to get rid of any coffee from the previous day and to get the grinder temperature a little more stable. I start based on yesterday’s recipie and dial in from there.

How do others find their palate at that time in the AM? Personally I find that hour difficult. I need a milky coffee first I find to calibrate my palate and get rid of any toothpaste which kills my ability to taste espresso.

There’s sometimes a weird, amorphous, metallic taste that only appears with stale water. Purging a boiler’s worth of water gets rid of it immediately.

I have no doubt a lot of people’s problems with their coffee stem from this.

Simple - run the group head or boiler tap until you’ve purged the same volume as the boiler itself!


I do the old slice of bread from the kitchen - gets rid of toothpaste mouth (the WORST!) and also wakes up the taste buds without overwhelming.

A filter coffee first also helps.

Espresso at 6:00am after brushing one’s teeth is, truly, awful.


I like that mop game!

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Yea it is a lot of coffee … But it’s usually around 6.00 - 7.00 am so it’s needed haha

Tbh usually I’m drinking a bottle of sparkling water. I use a spittoon and rinse my mouth to clear the caffeine as before that I found my pours getting very shaky by my 3rd or fourth coffee that day :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

I’m intrigued by your idea of the milky coffee … I’m going to try that in the morning because I actually really struggled with that very problem this morning, I think my new mouthwash was overpowering my taste buds.

I’ll be dialling in a new Kenyan in the morning for all the extra visitors in Dublin this week so hopefully your tip will come in handy … Thank you :smile:

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Especially Kenyan espresso, found out this morning ( yuck)

I must try the bread technique :+1:t2:

You mop in the morning? Or do you save the water in pitchers for closers? I like the idea but I think I’d constantly have staff knocking over the pitchers if they are sitting around in the back. RIP

Keen to try purging the boilers. Do you find it takes long for temp to get back up and stabilize? or a non issue?

Does anybody know how much the boiler holds.We have a La marzocco fb80.

When I purge the two groups they automatically stop at 246 seconds … Is that when the boiler is completely purged or does it need to be flushed more ?

Mop in the morning, don’t want to waste the water.

I run all the groups in the Classe 11 for a little while to purge any stagnant water in the boilers, and run the tea water tap and the wands. This gets the main boiler to “wake up” and start getting fresh water in.
Put in the beans to the hoppers of the Mythos ClimaPros and grind a a dose or two.
Brew those doses. This will “season” the groups and make extra sure what comes out after has zero residual cleaning chemical or mineral taste.
Carefully dose and weigh coffee and yield. Redial the grinders and dosing time to improve extraction. Continue until triangulation is complete and the coffee tastes the way it should!
I will continue to weigh dose and yield for a quite a while in mornings to insure consistency and that my tamping doesn’t get crazy as the caffeine gets into my system.

My palate is great first thing in the morning! I prefer espresso to be the first thing I taste because I feel much more sensitive to it and more discerning.

In the past few years, I switched to a natural toothpaste (like Tom’s) and found that it has much less effect on the palate. Maybe that’s just me.