When it comes to outfitting your cafe for espresso, don't forget the portafilter, you simply can't make espresso without it! The job of the portafilter is to hold the coffee grounds in place on the group head while the espresso is being extracted. Each espresso machine company has its own line of proprietary portafilters and portafilter components. It is very important to get the right size portafilter for your machine, or you will not be able to attach it to your machine for brewing. While in use, the portafilter forms a seal against the gasket of the grouphead, this directs hot pressurized water directly into the coffee grounds. Portafilters are made up of several components, the basket, handle and spouts and you can find both fully assembled filters and portafilter components right here.
Bottomless portafilters or “naked portafilters” are basically just a regular portafilter handle and basket without a spout on the bottom of it. Brewing through a bottomless portafilter supposedly has some benefits over using the full set up. First of all, it looks cool because it’s like a water fall of gorgeous crema, also using a naked portafilter will help you time your shot because it is possible to see exactly when the water flows through the grounds, finally using a naked portafilter minimizes the time the espresso has in contact with the metal, it results in a purer tasting shot.