Bob's Blog #2 - Let's Talk About Making Coffee

Bob's Blog #2 - Let's Talk About Making Coffee

I know what you’re thinking other than different methods “any trained monkey can do it”... well, grab a few of bananas, a couple cups of joe, and we can do a general review together. 

So many of you rock the drip pot or single cup server which do most of this thinking for you rather than say a French press, pour over, percolate, al fresco, espresso, or Turkish method.  Though there is certainly no problem doing that, it is absolutely quicker.  I, however, whole heartedly encourage you to branch out and try other methods of brewing as it’s only going to broaden your palate.  You can take the exact same roasted bag of beans, ground different ways for the various methods of brewing, and you can experience a myriad of takes on the flavor notes from one method to the next. 

No matter what method you use, all suffer from the same rules of the brew.  The water used, how long the coffee is in contact with the water, the grind used on the coffee, and the amount of coffee used. 

Water: The type of water used is important.  Those of us (yes, I am guilty of this) who are silly enough to spend $3.00 on a bottle of water to drink, believe this.  That chemically-treated water softener or purified water can make your coffee bitter.  Slightly harder (let’s not get nuts here I said slightly harder) water has the salt and natural minerals that help bring out the taste of the coffee in your grind.  Your water temperature is another factor.  Always start with a cool or cold water and then use it as soon as it boils.  Hot water works through and steeps the grounds more effectively.  The amount of water used is also an issue as More Water = Weaker Coffee. 
How Long:  How long your grinds sit in that water does a lot to the flavor and palate of the coffee.  If your favorite cup of coffee is overly strong, this could be because the grounds were in contact with the water for too long.  This also can make for a bitter cup of coffee.  Even though I don’t personally get the point of it, this may be what you’re aiming for.  Hey, different strokes for different folks. 
Coffee Grind Guide
Amount of Coffee and Grind:  I put these two together simply because I feel they both have the same issues when it comes to your brew.  How strong you drink your coffee is a matter of personal preference.  I know some that like the coffee to have the ability to support standing a horseshoe up in it and others who like it as transparent as a cup of tea.  I am a somewhere between the two-coffee drinker.  To strong is a bit too bitter and too weak means you should probably just come out of the closet as a tea drinker (in my opinion). 
If your grind is too dense for the brewing method, your hot water will have a difficult time working itself through the coffee.  This can make the coffee bitter and the body akin to motor oil.  On the other hand, if your grind is too porous your coffee may end up weak and bitter.  There is certainly a sweet spot when it comes to the grind and it is truly dependent on the method you use and how strong you drink your brew.  As far as the amount of coffee added (again differs on the method used).  I usually advise to use more instead of less.  You can always dilute and make your coffee weaker, but you cannot make it stronger after the fact.  I’ll add in here from my personal experience in a previous career, do not reuse your grounds no matter what.  It does not help you achieve what you are looking for unless your goal is a truly nasty cup of coffee. 

Other than that, some basic rules of thumb are: don’t keep your coffee longer than an hour without drinking it unless in an insulated bottle or mug (we sell these FYI), don’t boil your coffee unless you’re doing Turkish or the like as it just burns the coffee, and life is way too short to drink crap coffee so invest in quality, you’ll thank yourself for it. 

May your life be as rich as the coffee you drink, 

Bob "Coffee"

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