Many of us are brewing coffee at home more than ever before. In fact, according to research conducted by Square, Inc. and the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA), coffee subscription sales alone have increased 109%. So with that in mind, we thought that we'd provide a few simple things you can do to get the absolute most out of your coffee. It's true that brewing coffee is a relatively straightforward task. Coffee grounds go onto a filter, which is then immersed in hot water. While the process is simple, achieving a consistently good cup of coffee can be a challenge. So if you're looking to improve your home brewing, without spending a fortune on new equipment, take a look at the following five recommendations.
1. PURCHASE FRESH COFFEE BEANS
Achieving a good cup of coffee, to no one's surprise, starts with fresh coffee beans. Unlike a good cab, your coffee beans don't get better with age. In fact, the peak flavor of most coffee beans is anywhere from 4-14 days after roasting. Immediately after roasting the aroma of your coffee beans starts to change gradually as oxygen alters the chemical structure of the coffee bean. This is why we're set on roasting our coffees each week.
2. STORE YOUR COFFEE BEANS PROPERLY
On top of purchasing fresh coffee, you can also improve the life of your coffee by storing it properly in an airtight container. As we mentioned above, oxidation significantly degrades the flavor of your coffee and that coffee bag with a one-way valve still may leave a small amount of oxygen.
3. GRIND YOUR BEANS BEFORE YOU BREW
While pre-ground coffee is so much more convenient in the morning, grinding your coffee before each brew unlocks the true potential of your coffee. Pre-ground coffee is much more vulnerable to moisture and oxygen, both of which can result in your coffee tasting stale.
Another reason to grind before you brew is your grind size will change based on your brew method. So storing coffee in its original form gives you more flexibility to alter your brew method daily.
4. INVEST IN A SCALE
Good coffee is all about ratios, so a simple kitchen scale can dramatically increase the consistency of your coffee. While you could measure your coffee in volume (i.e. tablespoons), keep in mind that your roast may affect the density of your coffee. So a dark roast may actually result in more volume than a light roast since more of its water content is burned off during the roasting process.
For a good starting point we recommend one part coffee to 18 parters water, but feel free to experiment to determine your preferred ratio. If you're looking for a solid scale, check out the Hario V60 Drip Scale. This scale incorporates a built-in timer, which is greater for manual brew methods and measures your coffee to the gram.
5. USE FILTERED WATER
Your cup of coffee is about 98% water. So regardless of the quality and freshness of your beans, it won't matter much if your water source is subpar. If your tap water has any sort of odors this will transfer to your cup of coffee.
We hope you've found this list of recommendations informative. If we can be of any help please feel free to reach out to us via social media or leave a comment below. Happy brewing!