STEPS TO EXCELLENT BREWED COFFEE
1. COFFEE Start with top quality coffees from a source whose standards you trust. Evaluate the origin of the bean, the roast, the blend and the coffee's freshness to make a selection most suitable for your taste and the occasion.
2. FRESHNESS Always use fresh coffee, preferably whole bean. Store it in a cool dry place inside an airtight container.
3. WATER The better the water, the better the brewed coffee. Cold water, either purified or bottled is best.
4. FORMULA Be sure to use the proper ratio: Approximately 1 Tablespoon for every 4 to 5 oz water (varies somewhat depending on your personal taste). Increase as needed for stronger tasting coffee.
5. TEMPERATURE Heat fresh, cold water to 200 degrees for best results. Hold brewed coffee at 185 F., preferably in an insulated server or airpot.
6. GRIND Grind just prior to brewing since whole bean coffee will stay fresh for several weeks, but ground coffee will lose it's freshness in a few days. Use the grind designed for your type of coffee maker and a "burr" type grinder is recommended over a "blade" type for consistency of grind and longevity. There is generally a universal grinder setting for automatic drip coffee makers. Matching the grind to the brewing system and brewing time will result in better coffee. If you are using the correct ratio of water and coffee and the coffee is too strong, the grind may be too fine. In general, the finer the grind, the stronger the coffee. A finer grind is used for coffees like Espresso and Italian Roast.
7. BREWING EQUIPMENT The cleaner the equipment, the better the taste. Faster brewing times will generally yield a better quality product, so it's good to keep this in mind when selecting a brewer. Ideal brew time & temperature with an automatic drip coffee maker is between 3.5 - 4.5 minutes at approximately 200 degrees. Less time will result in under extracted coffee, lacking in flavor & body. More time may result in over extraction, rendering the coffee bitter.
COFFEE BREWING DO's & DON'Ts
Use top quality Arabica beans.
Use inferior coffees of Robusta origin.
Use fresh coffee stored in cool dry place.
Store coffee in hot humid areas or store in the refrigerator or freezer.
Use fresh cold pure water.
Use stale or reheated water - warm water makes bad coffee.
Use 4 - 5 oz. of water for every TBS of coffee.
Guess at the amount of coffee to be used.
Temperature - heat fresh cold water to 200 F.
Brew coffee w/boiling water
or water under 190 degrees F.
Grind the amount of coffee needed just prior to brewing & use proper grind for your equipment & brew time.
Too coarse will result in weak coffee, and too fine a grind will
result bitter taste.
Equipment must be kept clean at all times.
Allow coffee oils or scaling to accumulate inside containers, gauge glass or faucets.
Use pure white coffee filters.
Use bleached filters or bleached towels to wipe down equipment.
Brew coffee into empty and rinsed out containers.
Brew new coffee into old coffee or inter-mix.
Remove coffee grounds immediately as soon as water has dripped through.
Allow spent coffee grounds to remain in the brew basket and on top of the brewed coffee.
Spread fresh ground coffee evenly on filter.
Load coffee into filter creating a side mound or uneven level.
Keep brewing parts clean with the proper cleaner.
Allow sediment, coffee grounds and oils, or hard water deposits to buildup.
Use urn-cleaning solution to clean all coffee equipment and parts.
Use bleach or abrasives to wipe down equipment.