how to make pour over coffee
In the last three years Joshua and I have become somewhat of coffee aficionados. The specificity for our coffee has sparked comments from our family that we are annoyingly picky. Sometimes I long for the good old days when we weren't so particular--any decent cup of coffee from Peet's or Whole Foods would do. Nowadays, when we go on road trips, we lug along our various coffee accoutrements--we even have a portable hand grinder!
Although the pour over method is more time consuming than an automated coffee machine, the process has become almost spiritual and an important part of our morning ritual. The time and care that goes into our handmade coffee makes us truly appreciate it. Not to mention, the taste is incredible. Mmmmmm, just writing about it brings me back to the Kenyan Roast we sipped this morning.
The good thing is that specialty coffee is sprouting up in most big cities. When we were in Europe, there were specialty coffee joints everywhere. Here in Los Angeles, they're around, but just not as prevalent. Although, the coffee market is changing and there are a few places that offer a solid pour over, but it costs a pretty penny. The price can range from $5 to as high as $11 for some single origin brews! When our coffee bill starts to compete with our wine bill, enough is enough.
There are debates over the best ratio for grams of coffee to water. The margin is narrow--between 16 and 16.5 grams of water per gram of coffee. We normally use the 16.5 gram calculation, but it also depends on the type of beans you're brewing and how strong you prefer your coffee. If it's a stronger bean, we typically use the 16 gram calculation. If you have a brighter flavor profile, such as a Costa Rican or Kenyan roast, 16.5 grams (for us) is perfect.
Total: 5-7 minutes | Prep: 2 minutes | Makes 1-2 cups of coffee
kettle (I prefer an electric kettle with a goose-neck spout and a temperature gauge, this one is my favorite)
grinder, ideally a burr grinder such as this one
scale (I love this one, and use if for baking too! But there are definitely more economical options if you're just starting out.)
drip cup, such as this one
filters that fit your drip cup (I use a no. 2 drip cup & filters)
*coffee server if making two cups, such as this one) or a mug is making a single cup
mug(s) for serving
coffee beans (22 g for an individual cup; 44 g for two cups)
*optional desired fixings (ie. 1/2 & 1/2, milk alternative, etc.)
1. Boil filtered filtered water to about 205 degrees. Meanwhile, measure your beans. Place the vessel you are using to measure your beans. I usually just use the filter set inside the drip cup (see picture above) and place it on the scale. Set the scale to ZERO and measure out your beans. I use about 22 grams of beans per cup of coffee. If you're making two cups, measure 44 grams. Once you have measured your beans, set the grinder to a medium-fine grind and grind away!
3. While the water boils, put the filter inside the drip cup and place it on top of your coffee server (if you're making two cups) or mug (if you are making one individual cup).
4. Once the water has boiled, allow it to sit for about 30 seconds. Slowly wet the entire filter. This will get rid of the papery taste and set the filter to the drip cup. Remove the drip cup and discard the water. Or, if making two cups of coffee, pour the water into the mugs to keep them warm during this process (this will make your coffee hotter once served).
5. Place the grinds inside the moistened filter. Make sure the scale is set to ZERO. Slowly wet the grinds with about 40 grams of water to release their aromas. After about 30 seconds, begin pouring water slowly in circular motions. Pause when the water reaches about one inch from the top of the paper filter. Stop this process when the scale reads 363 g (for one cup or 22 g of beans) or 726 g (for two cups of coffee or 44 g of beans).
6. Remove the coffee grinds and discard. Enjoy!