When I do my cupping reviews of coffee I have an assortment of brewing methods I plan to use that will cover the majority of those home brewers. The brewers I have collected over the years include an autodrip, a french press, melitta pour over cone, aeropress, and a moka pot. These are what I plan to use for the time being. Most of you have one of these methods if not more. If you don't have these specific brewers you probably have something very similar. Chemex, Hario, Clever Dripper, these are all pretty close to the Melitta. I know some of you may say there are some major differences between all of these, and you would be right, but for the most part they are a similar enough process. Maybe that will be a future post, the difference between pour overs. At any rate I thought that I would just briefly explain the process for each of these methods that I will use so that we are all on the same page of how it is done.
Firstly, I tend to use the 17:1 water to coffee ratio and all my coffee is ground on a small electric conical grinder. I use bottled spring water heated between 200-205F.
Autodrip: This is just a regular old automatic drip coffee brewer that about 90% of households probably own. Pretty standard stuff. I grind the coffee for this at a very medium grind and measure 50g coffee to 850g water with a natural, unbleached paper filter, rinsed to get the paper taste out.
French Press: My french press is a small Bodum french press. I pour a small amount of hot water in to warm the glass and plunger before brewing. I then pour that out and add the dry coffee ground on the chunkiest grind setting on my grinder. I pour the water slowly over the grinds over about 20 seconds making sure to get all the grinds wet. I then place the plunger and press it to just barely submerge the grinds. After four minutes I press the plunger down over about 10 seconds so as to keep as many small particles on the bottom side of the plunger filter and out of the brew as possible. I then pour off all of the coffee so that there is not any left to over extract in the grinds left in the bottom.
Melitta Cone: I like to grind coffee for the Melitta just a little smaller than medium. I then put a rinsed, unbleached cone filter into the cone, pour the dry ground coffee in. I generally want it to be slightly higher in the middle. I then slowly pour the hot water over the coffee in a circular motion starting in the middle and working my way to the outer edges. I pour slowly enough that I have made about 4 circles by the time the cone is about a quarter of an inch from the top. I then wait for this to filter through and repeat the process. My cone filter usually takes two passes to fill my morning mug.
Aeropress: The aeropress is a fun little device that makes an excellent cup of coffee. It is fairly inexpensive and I would recommend you try one if you haven't. I start with a farily fine grind for the aeropress, about halfway between medium and fine but not so fine as espresso grind. I put the plunger in the end of the tube and pour in the grinds. I then pour in the water and gently stir the grinds until they are saturated, about 10 seconds or so. I then set the timer for two and a half minutes. While it is brewing I rinse the filter and screw it into the other end of the aeropress tube. When it is done brewing I turn the aeropress overe and over about 30 seconds slowly press the plunger down pushing the coffee through the filter into my cup.
From time to time I will have use of different methods to brew for these reviews. I really want to get a vacuum brewer and I probably should work on getting a Chemex and a Clever Dripper. But for now four methods will do.
So what is your favorite way to brew coffee?