Coffee. The allure is never-ending, and so is the quest for a perfect brew. In the morning rush, we often plug in the coffee contraption with pre-ground beans and hope our travel mug of the brew, while it may not taste fantastic, as least has the required amount of caffeine to get us out the door. Coffee brewed with the pour-through method is inexpensive, easy, and relaxing. It takes up much less space on the counter. Not to mention the technique produces a superior cup of coffee.
Brewing coffee can be a relaxing ritual, and it needn’t take more than ten minutes of your morning routine. The richness of a properly brewed cup of coffee attracts all of the senses: it is a dark chocolate hue, is at the ideal drinking temperature, and smells divine. When properly brewed, coffee is alive with all of those flavors they describe on the bag (caramel, chocolate, vanilla, berry) and none of the acidity. Let’s take a look at the process:
You’ll need a plastic, ceramic, metal, or glass dripper, such as those made by Hario or Melitta. You will also need the corresponding size paper filters for your dripper, usually #2 or #4 cone paper filters available in the coffee aisle of most major grocery stores. If you’d like to get fancy, a digital scale and thermometer are helpful but not necessary
Freshly ground is best, but grinding what you need and storing it in an airtight container for a few days will also work nicely. A coffee scoop is also handy to measure properly. Use approximately 2-3 teaspoons per 4 ounces of water. In general, to adjust the strength of your coffee use more or less coffee rather than adjusting the brew time or amount of water.
Water and Kettle
Make sure to use filtered water for the best taste. A kettle with a thin spout will be ideal, but whatever you have will work. Heat your water to boiling (212 degrees).The act of pouring and dripping will cool the water to the perfect drinking temperature as your coffee brews.
A pour-through dripper sits atop most standard mugs, so you’ll want to test that beforehand just to make sure.
While making drip-through coffee is easy once you get the hang of it, there is a bit of technique to get down.
Step 1: Fill your kettle with fresh water and get it boiling. Meanwhile, fold the bottom ridged line of the paper filter up so the filter sits nice and flat against the bottom of the filter, and open it and place it in the dripper.
Step 2: Quickly saturate the paper with a bit of hot water and swirl it so the paper soaks it up. Do this over the sink or empty the water out of your mug (bonus: heated mug!). This catches all of the paper particles, ensuring your coffee doesn’t taste like paper. It also ‘sticks’ the filter to the dripper.
Step 3: Place your coffee according to the measurements above in the filter.
Step 4: Pour just enough water to saturate all of the grounds and let “bloom” for 20-30 seconds. This “opens up” the grounds and will allow the proper extraction (which is what will get you all of those wonderful flavors in your cuppa).
Step 5: Fill the cone with water, preferably moving the kettle in a swirling motion while pouring to get the grounds in the center. Stir. Let this drip through. Fill again in a swirling motion if necessary. Be sure to watch how full your mug is!