Many people think that coffee is just a way to get energized, and it’s no coincidence that they call it “fuel for the body”, but we believe that at its core it’s a really complex and interesting drink to experiment with. So many wonderful and distinctive flavors!
The interesting thing about filter coffee is that the quality can range from bland and stale, to award winning, rich in flavor and with perfect texture. It all depends on the brewing technique, the right appliances and the coffee beans.
Preparing filter coffee consists of a few simple steps (pouring hot water over the coffee, through a filter, into a pot). There is also the widely known drip coffee, which usually involves an electric machine with a timer that automatically starts the coffee brewing and keeps the pot warm on a hot plate so that people can come back for more hot coffee during the day. Such is most likely to be found in airplanes, hotels and other public places.
Today, however, we’re going to focus on the “pour-over” method, which is a manual way of making filter coffee. It allows much better control over the amount of coffee and the overall result. We will also introduce you to three different devices that we prefer to use for filter coffee: the Chemex, the Hario and the Asobu. With each appliance, the preparation technique is very similar, but the taste is absolutely individual.
What is Chemex?
The Chemex is a wonderful glass flask for pouring coffee, invented in the 1940s by Peter Schlumbom, an enterprising chemist in the USA. It is recognisable by its wooden neck collar with hanging leather tie. It’s a beautiful piece on display at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and was nominated by the New York Times as one of the hundred greatest inventions of the twentieth century. The Chemex filters are also the work of Dr. Schlumbom, a special thick filter paper that prevents oils from the sediment from passing into the pitcher and encourages the “blooming” – more on that in a moment.
This little beauty is a simple device that can filter coffee directly into a ready-to-drink cup, rather than a pot (although variations are available if you’re brewing for two). It’s great for experimenting with coffee making as it allows different flavors to be revealed, depending on the method being used. The V60 was invented by the distinguished Japanese manufacturer Hario, who originally produced glassware for scientific laboratories. Plastic, ceramic and metal varieties are available with special protrusions in the funnel that allow air to pass through for smoother extraction.
We have prepared for you the perfect Hario sets, which contain everything you need to make the perfect V-60 coffee at home. You have to choose which suits best your needs:
The advantage of the Asobu device is that with it, there is no need for a paper filter to make the coffee. The sleek glass dripper with stainless steel mesh filter brews clean and refreshing coffee, and the vacuum insulated coffee brewer keeps coffee hot for up to 8 hours. Portable, the steel coffee brewer includes a lid to easily enjoy coffee on the go. The Asobu Pour Over Coffee Maker makes the perfect cup of coffee over and over again.
Fold the paper filter into the shape of a cone and insert it into the neck of your appliance. Moistening the filter ensures that it will stay in place as it was originally placed, and removes the taste of paper. Remember to discard the water after rinsing!
STEP 2 – CHOOSE YOUR COFFEE
The origin and blend are, of course, your choice. In terms of grind – filter coffee works best with a medium grind, although for Asobu or Hario we recommend grinding a little finer than for Chemex.
Measure 65 grams of coffee for every liter of water. Using this formula, if you use only 250 ml of water, you need 16 g of coffee. Freshly ground coffee is always best, so if possible, grind it just before brewing. Add the coffee to the filter that is already fitted, making sure it is evenly distributed. If desired, you can make a small indentation in the middle to help moisten the coffee.
STEP 3 – HEAT THE WATER
The best option is to use filtered water to prevent minerals from contaminating the flavor, but if you have the option to use tap water only, that’s not a problem either. To be precise, aim for 90-95°C or a kettle that has been left to boil and then cooled for 20-30 seconds. Don’t pour boiling water over the coffee to avoid burning it.
STEP 4 – POUR SOME MORE
Initially, pour in some water, wetting the entire coffee grounds, and leave for 30 seconds in pre-infusion (blooming = the part of the filter coffee brewing process where the coffee gasses are released when the water meets the freshly ground coffee), then you can continue, pouring continuously in small circles around the chute, keeping the water level steady. Bring in as much water as possible – this means a higher brewing temperature and a much more intense flavor extraction. Stir a little to make sure the coffee hasn’t stayed dry.
STEP 5 – REMOVE THE FILTER AND COFFEE BREWER AND POUR INTO YOUR CUP
Once the cup or pot is almost full, you’re done. It’s that easy!
We always drink it black, but of course, the choice of how you enjoy it is completely yours.