The Joy of Home Brewing
Who doesn’t like the rich aroma of fresh ground coffee, wispy steam rising from your mug or cup followed by the first delicious sip. For coffee lovers, what could be a better start to the day than a cup of perfectly brewed coffee? So, what happened to the morning coffee brewing ritual, which used to occur in almost every household in America? Is it only the retired person with lots of time on their hands or on the weekend that we dodge the trip to the coffee shop and slow down and savor that first cup at home? The main argument against home brewing is pretty obvious. It’s that mad dash to get through our morning routines which doesn’t permit us time to brew at home. However, modern coffee brewers make it a “one-touch” process to kick off brewing 2 – 8 cups of café quality coffee – and at a much lower cost per cup.
Here’s our recommendation to ensure a great home brewing experience.
Start with whole beans.
When it comes to pre-ground coffee versus whole bean coffee, reach for the whole beans every time.
Here's why: using pre-ground coffee means you're losing some of the flavor from oils that would otherwise still be trapped inside of the bean.
Therefore, if you want to fully appreciate the full intended flavors of your favorite coffee bean, a fresh grind before brewing is paramount.
Store the beans away from light, heat and moisture.
The coffee beans to look for should come in sealed bags that have one-way valves near the top.
These valves allow gas to escape, but do not allow oxygen to enter the bag. Once you open the bag though, the clock starts ticking. For the freshest flavor, you'll want to use the coffee beans up within two weeks of opening.
As for storage, keep your beans away from light, heat, and moisture. Store your coffee beans in an airtight, dark, cool, and dry place. (don't store coffee in the fridge or freezer, otherwise you run the risk of humidity or outside odors permeating the coffee, which will throw off the taste and aroma).
Invest in a high-quality burr grinder and coffee maker.
As for how to grind coffee, burr grinders, like those from Baratza, can provide a more consistent grind. Many true coffee aficionados weigh their proportions of coffee to water (it’s said that Beethoven would count out his 60 beans every morning). We don't need to go that far. A good guideline is for every 6 ounces of water, you should use 2 tablespoons (or .38 ounces) of coffee. You can experiment with the amount of coffee to suit your taste.
A quality drip coffee brewer (we love the Bonavita Connoisseur) allows for one-touch brewing for just the right time and optimum temperature, 195-205 degrees Fahrenheit, for a barista quality cup.
Coffee is over 98% water.
And that water should be spring water, or at least very least filtered, for the best taste. Never use distilled water.
It’s easy from start to finish with a filter drip coffee maker:
- Buy specialty as whole beans, being sure to grind right before brewing
- Start using 2 tbls. of ground coffee per 6 ounces of water, putting freshly ground coffee into rinsed paper filter.
- If you use a drip coffee brewer, like the Bonavita Connoisseur, you can start the brewing with one touch.
- Voila! You just made the perfect cup of coffee at home!