4 Steps to Better Drip Coffee
The drip coffee maker is the work horse of the coffee world. Its not flashy, it just makes sure you can have coffee with the push of a button before an early morning shift, after a Sunday brunch, or to fill your thermos before a fishing trip.
If you drink coffee more than likely you have a drip coffee maker, or have had one at some point. Now, let’s get something straight, not all drip coffee makers are created equal. There are some key things to look for if you are looking for a quality cup of coffee out of a drip coffee maker, and there are a few things you can do, to make sure you are getting the most out of the coffee maker you have.
Let’s look at what we can do to make the best coffee possible with the machine that you have.
1. Weigh your coffee! If you don’t have a food scales in your kitchen, get one. You don’t have to spend on a lot of money on a “coffee scales” with timers and fancy features. Get a simple food scales that reads in grams. The purpose of using a scales instead of a scoop is to create consistency. It’s hard to create consistency using a scoop. How the coffee is roasted, the type of coffee, and even how your feeling can impact how much coffee gets into your filter.
2. Use good water. If you live in a place with treated water, hard water, or water with highmineral content it would be get to get some sort of water filtration system for your coffee. That might be a an actual filtration system, UV treatment, or even a Brita filter or something similar.
3. Get high quality filters. Unbleached filters are brown and these have the benefit of a clearer more environmentally friendly manufacturing process. The down side is that you can get a papery taste in your coffee. This can often be mitigated if you rinse your filters before you add your coffee grounds. This washes are tiny paper fragments that may have built up during the manufacturing process and out and keeps them from flavouring your coffee. If you are going with a. Bleached filter, try to get an oxygen bleached filter, not a chlorine bleached filter because well, you don’t want chlorine in your coffee.
4. Grind your coffee fresh. Maybe this shouldn’t be in the write up about drip coffee makers but I feel like it’s worth mentioning. How and when your coffee is ground plays a HUGE role in the flavour of your coffee.
If you are in the market for a new drip coffee maker here are a few key things to look for.
Water temperature. Often drip coffee makers do not get up to a high enough heat to properly extract your coffee. You want a coffee make that holds its water temperature throughout the entire brewing process.
Water Flow. Get a coffee maker with a pre-infusion(or bloom) setting, and a showerhead style flow.Thismakes for more even distribution of water and ultimately a more even extraction.
Carafe vs. Warmer plate. This is going to be based largely on personal preference and on your coffee drinking habits. If you will tend to leave a pot of coffee on the warmer, any length of time after about half an hour the quality of your coffee goes downhill because the warmer “cooks” your coffee. The benefit, well, I’m searching for a benefit here and I’m hard pressed to find one. The beauty of a carafe is that your coffee stays hot and it doesn’t pick up those pesky burnt flavours if its sits for a little bit too long.
Look for those things and you will be on your way to GREAT coffee at home!