Have you ever had coffee that tasted burnt or watered down? If you have, it’s likely you were a victim of a badly brewed batch of beans (say that five times fast). As an everyday coffee drinker getting the brew right every time takes knowledge and practice. I am always testing different brews and keeping note of what style of brewing works best with all the different types of coffee out there.
Sometimes the various brewing methods can be confusing. I'd like to clear some things up for you. First thing is first. What is your favorite roast level?
· Light Roast
AKA: Light City, Half City, New England, Blonde
· Medium Roast
AKA: City, American, Breakfast
· Medium Dark Roast
AKA: Full City
· Dark Roast
AKA: High, Continental, New Orleans, European, Espresso Viennese, Italian, French
Once you determine the roast levels you enjoy, you can then determine which brew method is going to give you the best overall flavor of your coffee. Although there are hundreds of ways to brew coffee, there are a few general rules that are used to get your brew perfect every time.
We already went over roast level but there are still a few considerations for getting that cup of coffee just right. Grind amounts are vital for the right flavor profile and caffeine content. Here are the different grind levels, each linked to their preferred brew method.
· Extra Coarse (cold brew)
· Coarse (french press)
· Medium-Coarse (french press, drip brew)
· Medium (drip brew)
· Medium-Fine (pour over)
· Fine (espresso)
· Extra Fine (Turkish Coffee)
Before you can really pull the flavor out, you first have to understand what happens to coffee during the roasting process. Coffee beans start non-porous and while they’re being roasted, the coffee beans cook and become more porous. The darker the roast, the more porous coffee becomes. The lighter the roast, the less porous it is which means using a slow brew method like a pour over is the best option when trying to extract the right flavor profile and caffeine content from a light roast. If you use a quicker brewing method on a light roasted coffee you risk having watered down coffee. Dark roasted beans should get a faster pour, like espresso. If you pour too slow over a darker roast it will turn out bitter or burnt tasting. Once you determine what combinations work best for you, it’s time to start brewing.
Here is what many people don’t realize about brewing the perfect cup. None of what I wrote matters if you enjoy what you’re drinking now. That's because you already found the right combo. Once you brew a good cup of coffee, you’ll probably just keep brewing it that way. Ta Da, now you know the secret. Practice brewing until you find the way you like it. If you want to branch out and try something new it’s good to know some of the combinations I listed earlier. Nerding out over coffee is something I love to do but I know that at the end of the day, its just a cup of coffee. So enjoy the process!
There are so many brands now with all this marketing that applies to people with a sweet tooth and only represents wanna be coffee drinkers. I represent the everyday coffee drinker with my roasts. Love it or leave it. If you paid for a $6 cup of sugar, milk and a drip of espresso, you probably like dessert more than you like real coffee.