Any coffee lover wants to drink a better cup of Coffee every day. One more similar to that great Coffee they drink at that fancy coffee shop. Sometimes we may think we need to be a barista or coffee expert to brew a perfect coffee. Still, the truth is that just a few adjustments in your daily coffee routine will make the difference between a flavorless coffee and a stimulating and aromatic beverage. Also, following this coffee advice will allow you to replicate an excellent daily performance. Ready to become a home barista?
Improve your coffee selection the first and essential breaking point. You cannot get a great cup of Coffee using low-quality Coffee. We recommend choosing a single-origin coffee with clear traceability information (name of the farm, process, as a minimum). Micro-roasters and specialty coffee shops are the key sources for your Coffee. Did you see our Costa Rican coffee selection yet? Give it a try here!
Another aspect of improving your coffee selection is the roast level. We always recommend medium roast; this will give you all the tasting range and aromas of a great coffee. On the other side, the dark roast will hide and destroy all these attributes to replace them with burnt notes.
I prefer fresh roast and whole beans. We talked about micro-roasters of specialty coffee; they usually work with small batches to offer fresh roasts every time. Another fact that distinguishes commercial Coffee from specialty coffee is the roast date. Sometimes is printed on the bag; sometimes, you can ask for it from the roaster or coffee dealer.
Why is this so important? Because Coffee is a changing product. It starts to lose its aromas and flavor with time, so if you want a crisp and intense cup of coffee instead of a plain one, you must watch for the fresh roast.
Also, try switching to the whole beans option. Although you need to invest money to buy a coffee grinder, it's worth the investment. The advantages of real bean coffee at home are many. First, you can preserve the coffee aromas longer (we will discuss it below). Second, you can regulate your coffee grinding according to your brew method or your desired coffee intensity. For example, if you want the best results, you will need coarse grinding for a French press but finer grinding to prepare a Moka pot.
Watch the temperature and type of water. Another secret from baristas that you may not see is in the water. Water is the central part of your coffee cup. So, if you want to level up your Coffee, use filtered water.
Also, something to consider regarding water is the brewing temperature. Suppose you have a classic electric drip coffee maker. You may not control temperature (unless you get a certified or high-performance machine). But suppose you brew your Coffee in a manual method like a French press, Moka pot, or pour-over method. In that case, you do have control over water temperature.
Recommendation: avoid boiling the water. Baristas suggest from 92 to 95 ºC (198-203º F) temperature. Why? Boiling water will extract the flavors of Coffee too fast, damaging the process of a correct brew.
Few people have a cooking thermometer at home, but here is the tip: you can stop heating the water when the first bubbles appear.
Find your recipe. Probably, this is the most fascinating and great thing about bringing coffee culture home. It requires attention and patience, but it helps us appreciate Coffee better. Let us give you some standard coordinates but remember that you can adjust them to your coffee preferences.
A coffee recipe is based on the amount of Coffee and water. This proportion or ratio will give you a full or lighter coffee cup.
Measuring the ingredients is essential to find and replicate the recipe every time. The best option is to use a scale; a cooking scale would be perfect. Measure your water and Coffee in the same unit (baristas prefer grams).
The classic brewing proportion applied in coffee shops is 1:16, which means 1 cup of Coffee for 16 pieces of water. So, for example, a traditional coffee recipe is 12,5 grams of Coffee and 200 grams of water (the size of a tall coffee cup).
If you want a more concentrated coffee, you could reduce water (use a 1:15 or 1:12, for example) or add more water and more Coffee (a 1:17 ratio could suit you).
It may sound not easy initially, but you will find that perfect recipe and consistency every time with practice.
Store it correctly. As you can see, freshness is the key to a great coffee cup. To continue the good practices of buying freshly roasted Coffee, we must store our Coffee in the right way.
Coffee freshness has its enemies: heat, oxidation, humidity, and solar light. Those elements deteriorate coffee flavor sometimes fast, sometimes slowly.
To preserve our Coffee from these factors, we must close our coffee bags very well (specialty coffee bags come with a functional zip lock and an air valve designed to keep oxidation out as possible). Also, you can use airlock recipients made especially for coffee storage.
Keep your Coffee in the dark and dry spot in your pantry or cabinet. You can create a great coffee spot at home to take care of your precious Coffee under all these conditions. By the way, forget fridge storage! Unless you have 100% vacuum packaging and a professional freezer, your Coffee will receive humidity from your home fridge and lose its flavors.
Interesting right? So, get your specialty coffee, some implements, and this knowledge. We are sure you will re-discover and enjoy your homemade Coffee.