Millions prepare their coffee at home each morning, but very few people actually know the essentials of perfecting the process. Are you left unsatisfied with your brew? Don't worry you are not alone. Below are eight mistakes most people end up committing when brewing coffee at home:
1. Not using fresh quality beans
A well-made, aromatic, legendary cup of coffee is one that gives us a relentless drive to own the day. It is that one cup that could raise the dead from their graves. Use low quality, cheap beans and you will end up disappointing yourself, among other things, including ending up with an unsatisfactory drink.
Tip: Make sure you start your day off with quality, buy speciality coffee from your local roastery. You can generally find quality beans by asking your barista at a local speciality shop.
2. Not using scales
People rely on second guessing how much coffee they need to brew their perfect cup of coffee. We asked around and most people don't know how much coffee should be going into their cup. How do you think your favourite coffee shop always delivers that perfect cup of coffee every day? They use scales.
Tip: Use a scale. I’m sure you didn’t see that coming, did you? Without it, you won’t know how to achieve that balance you sorely deserve and the end product will fall short in terms of quality.
3. Using the wrong water
By “wrong water” we mean “regular tap water” something that 99% of the people use when preparing their cup. Your cup of filter coffee, once brewed, consists of 98.5% water. The problem is tap water contains a lot of minerals that will eventually alter the taste of the end product.
Tip: Use filtered water whenever brewing it. The whole cup will be a lot different in terms of taste and aroma.
4. Using the wrong water temperature
Too hot and you will burn the grounds, too cold and it will be under extracted. The right water temperature could make a big difference in obtaining that delicious drink you are looking for.
Tip: Buy a thermometer and control the water temperature throughout the brewing process. Another easy, yet effective trick is to boil the water, then allow it to cool for 50 seconds or so. You are looking for an ideal temperature of about 93-96 C.
5. Using the wrong water-coffee ratio
Too much is different than too little. I think we can all agree about that. We can also agree that neither of these situations is desirable. Instead, we are looking for the perfect water-coffee ratio, which will help us achieve that consistent taste and aroma each time.
Tip: Remember the scale we mentioned earlier? The scale is your best friend from now on. Go for 12.5 grams of high-quality coffee for every 212 grams of water (with slight exceptions if you want it lighter or stronger). Play around with this ratio until you find the perfect taste for you. Alternatively, refer to a recipe for your specific brewing method.
6. Brewing for the wrong time
Tired of the bitter and dry coffee after taste you're experiencing? Timing is what is most likely causing this issue. Some do it for too long, some for too little, with the same effect – spoiling the flavour. Stop spoiling your coffee, use a timer and refer to a brewing recipe to get the correct time.
Tip: Check out some professional recipes to find out the perfect brewing time. Heck, we've even created a free guide that could help you a great deal in this regard. You can get it at the end of this post.
7. Not cleaning the equipment properly
Perfection is in the details. Two of the things that generally spoil your coffee's purity is laziness and carelessness, leading to not cleaning the coffee maker good enough or often enough.
Tip: Try cleaning it after each preparation process. This way you will preserve the drink’s genuine flavour, without any old residues to ruin it. The best for quick and easy cleaning is the Aeropress.
8. Not storing coffee correctly
Do you always experience that stale after taste? Do you store your beans in the fridge? Most people don't really know how to store their fresh quality beans correctly. This is a sure way of degrading your cup quality.
Tip: Grab your coffee, pour it into an air sealed jar and pop it in a dark cupboard. Maintain it that way. The goal here is to avoid humidity and air getting in so that the aroma will not lose its potency.
I know these all sound pretty easy. I mean, all you have to do is to follow these steps and all should be nice and dandy. As you may have guessed it already, it is easier said than done.
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See you next week for our latest blog post!
William Tunna, Founder at Bunaberry