Brewing Coffee: from Hand Filters to French Press

Brewing Coffee: from Hand Filters to French Press

There are many factors that determine the taste of the finished coffee. Among other things, it includes the type, the degree of grinding, the hardness of the water – and the brewing process. There are many ways to combine the coffee powder with the hot water: from hand filters to French presses and coffee machines. We’ll tell you the best tips & tricks here!

From shopping to storage

It starts with the purchase: whole coffee beans retain their aroma longer than coffee that has already been ground. Whoever buys in a roastery – at the local specialist dealer or on the Internet – pays more than in the supermarket, but usually gets better quality. Kept the coffee beans are cool and dry, closed most airtight. This is how they end up in the kitchen cupboard – not necessarily in the refrigerator, where they would attract other smells if not properly sealed. In addition, the temperature difference may lead to the formation of condensation, which deteriorates the taste. Flavors are also lost when the beans– even if stored correctly – are kept for too long. Once the packaging has been opened, it can be fully enjoyed for 10 to 14 days. A mini-consumer simply buys smaller amounts more often.

From the degree of grinding to the amount of powder

Every coffee gains in quality if the beans are freshly ground before preparation. A coffee grinder with a conical or disc grinder achieves the best results. The grind ranges from fine to coarse, depending on the quality of the mill, the gradations are differently close-meshed. You need particularly finely ground coffee powder, for example, to prepare mocha. For the filter coffee , on the other hand, a coarser grind is recommended . The correct amount of powder depends primarily on the type of coffee and the individual taste; the guideline value for a cup of espresso from the portafilter is around 8 grams.

Brew coffee with the hand filter

Coffee machines are not only often found in professional catering and at work, but also private households, where a lot of coffee is consumed every day, are increasingly relying on these devices. If the consumption is low, we recommend preparing the filter coffee “by hand”. The immediate sensual experience can even increase the anticipation of the black, hot luxury food.

Anyone who brews coffee using a hand filter ( e.g. from Hario) uses one and a half heaped tablespoons of powder per cup , which corresponds to about 10 grams. For 480 milliliters – just under half a liter of coffee – you need around 30 grams of powder. A little warm water is first poured through the filter bag inserted in the funnel. It removes its own taste from the paper filter, preheats the container and is then poured out. Only then does the coffee powder enter the filter – initially only with a small amount of water. The coffee begins to swell, it “blooms”, this name follows the English expression “bloom”. Only after 30 seconds does the additional water come into the filter, lively and poured in circles. Finally, a thin stream is poured into the middle to equalize the water level in the filter.

From the kettle to the filter bag

How well the coffee turns out also depends on the quality of the kitchen appliances and filters used. This applies to the stamp pot as well as to the espresso maker. For filter coffee, for example, there is a funnel and filter bags from the Japanese manufacturer Hario . Due to the fact that they are manufactured in the Netherlands, these filter bags have only short transport routes on the European market and thus have a good environmental balance.

The right water temperature

To brew good coffee, you just do without the boiling hot, still sparkling water. Rather, at such high temperatures, the bitter and tannins are increasingly released from the coffee, which has a negative effect on the taste. A water temperature of 90 to 95 degrees is ideal. In order to guarantee this, no special measuring procedures or a thermometer are necessary. However, the simple rule of thumb is sufficient: When the water surface has calmed down after a few seconds after boiling, the temperature has been reached. If the coffee is brewed with it, each variety shows its best side and the aromatic substances unfold their effect.

This is exactly why it is also said: brew coffee – do not boil it.

The water quality is another factor that in brewing the coffee plays an important role. Although tap water is generally suitable for preparation, the hardness is important . It is determined by the lime content: the more, the harder. Water with a high content of hardness binds the acids in coffee, which have a flavor-giving effect. It is possible to switch to mineral water, but this may have its own taste that interferes with coffee enjoyment.

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Brew coffee shortly

A simple tip: It is correct to “brew coffee” and not “boil it” because this natural product develops its best qualities at a water temperature of 90 to 95 degrees. In addition, factors such as the degree of grinding, the amount of powder and the hardness of the water play a decisive role in the preparation of your own favorite variety.