Brewing coffee at home is a joy.
You get to develop a routine, get specific with your preferences, and create an intimate ritual for that delightful cup that often starts your day.
BUT, it can also be anxiety-inducing. We get it. There seems to be a million factors to consider, endless variation of techniques or recipes, and no limit to how scientific your brew process can be. For some (my former self included) this can be overwhelming. You can rest easy, we’re here to help you get the absolute best out of your coffee beans.
Today, we’re gonna start by talking about one of our favorite brew methods: pour over.
On the surface, pour over might seem daunting, but once you’ve dialed in the steps, it can be one of the most enjoyable brew methods AND create one of the most enjoyable cups. It’s probably my favorite, and totally worth the learning curve.
We recommend using a scale with a timer for easy accuracy. As a starting point, aim for:
Water temperature: 195-205°F
Grind size: medium-fine (if the brew time takes longer than 3-4 minutes, use a more course grind next time)
Water-to-coffee ratio: 16:1 (16 parts water for every 1 part coffee) For this example, we’re gonna use 20 grams of coffee, so we’ll end up pouring 320 grams of water.
First, put the filter in your brewer and run hot water through it, no coffee yet. This will rinse away any papery taste, and also heat up the brewer. Then, add your grounds and create a small indentation in the middle, like a little bird’s nest.
When the water is hot enough, start your timer and pour in enough to saturate all the grounds, about triple the weight of the coffee (60g). Stir the slurry to make sure all the grounds get wet, then wait until the it stops bubbling. At this crucial stage, your coffee is releasing CO2. This is called the “bloom” and allows for optimal extraction.
After the bloom, pour water in a slow, gentle, circular motion without letting the slurry get too high. Shoot for 4 – 5 pours in this manner.
As the water drains, give it one final gentle swirl (maybe even stir with a spoon) and wait. You should hope to see a flat bet of grounds at the end.
The “swirl” (see video).
Can we put it simpler? Yes: rinse the filter, add grounds, pour a little water, wait, pour most of the water, wait, pour the rest of the water, done.
That’s it! If you find the results of this recipe unsatisfactory, don’t adjust ratios, temperature, or timing. Instead, start by adjusting the grind size. If the flavor is hollow and a little acidic, go a little finer. Keep going finer and finer until you find your coffee too harsh or bitter, then tone it back a little.
At the end of the day, coffee preference is just that—preference. It’s personal, so experiment and find what tastes best to you. If you’re reading this, you most likely care enough to buy really good coffee, so it should taste really good after you brew it!