I have written in the past about the various espresso baskets that I have gotten over the past month or so. I was searching for something at the time that would give me something to experiment with and hopefully improve my quality of espresso. I have now had most of these baskets for 3-4 weeks and am coming to some conclusions, as well as some favorites in terms of baskets.
So I have largely been ignoring my Gaggia Classic basket as well as the 14 g Ridged Basket, I have just found that these two baskets seem to be largely the same. Other than the fact that the holes in the Ridged basket are more defined than the Gaggia Classic basket, the taste seems to be about the same. The difference between the basket filter is just like the one in the picture below. However, that seems to be it.
The two baskets that I seem to go back and forth with are the 15 grams ridged VST basket, and the 14 g Ridgeless Basket. As I have previously noted the VST basket requires a much finer grind than all of the other filters, this seems to extract some flavors from the coffee that you do not get from other baskets. The tastes are not what I would consider better, just different. The Ridgeless Basket allows for coarser grind and tends to give a more sweet shot, which did really well with Paradise Roaster's Nuevo.
What I have noticed and not sure if there is not something else going on or if it even matters, but the Ridgeless basket tends when knocking out the puck to leave a ring of coffee around the edge. The basket holes are mainly in just the center of the filter, and do not extend complete out. So I am not sure if the sides of the basket are getting evenly extracted, but since I am not getting bad tastes in the cup I am assuming it doesn't really matter.
So does anyone think the above matters?