If every morning you start your day by brewing and drinking a cup of coffee, it’s worth your while to do it right. Millions of people start their day by drinking a cup of coffee, but how many put love and care into this ritual?
My home-coffee drinking experiences range from Nescafe, drip coffee machine, hand-drip coffee, capsule-style coffee, French press, Italian-style stove top moka pot, and high-end espresso machine coffee. And which is the best and which is the worst? In this article, I will talk about pour over coffee.
If you’re drinking instant coffee, I would probably recommend switching to real coffee right away. Also, as convenient as those capsules/pods are, I would also suggest switching to buying coffee beans (ground or whole). Keurig and Nespresso are top brands that focus on producing capsule/pod style coffee for the home consumer. while they are convenient and also allow little room for error in the brewing process, I still wouldn’t recommend them. First of all, The amount of plastic waste that is produced by using one (or more) capsule(s) everyday can really increase your ecological footprint. Also healthwise, brewing coffee in plastic with hot water, is not such a wise idea. Ecological and health matters aside, you can brew much better coffee using your own beans and a hand dripper by controlling some different variables such as dose (the amount of coffee), water temperature, grind size and brew time.
Pour Over Coffee
Some arguments I hear against using a drip coffee machine at home are, “I am only brewing coffee for myself, and I can’t drink a whole pot of coffee by myself.” Well, I have some good news for you. In recent years, pour over coffee has become popular at home and also in trendy coffee shops, and this is for good reason. You can brew a great cup of coffee in a short amount of time, with only a little knowledge and technique. Most pour over coffee drippers will do the trick, but I would recommend Hario or Kalita. These are two of the best, in my opinion.
Pour over coffee involves pouring hot water over ground coffee in a coffee filter, in a dripper. By pouring slowly you can increase the the brew time and also the extraction. But be careful, if you pour too slowly you can risk over-extraction, leaving a bitter taste in your coffee. This rule also applies to pouring too fast. If the hot water goes through the coffee too quickly, it will be under-extracted and will have a sour, acidic taste. Understanding this rule, you can then understand why grind size is also important. If the coffee is ground too fine, it will take a longer time for the water to go through the coffee grounds, also resulting in an over-extracted, bitter-tasting brew. If the coffee is too course, the hot water will pass through the coffee grounds too quickly, resulting in a sour, acidic tasting coffee. This is also why I would recommend buying a coffee grinder and grinding the whole beans yourself to play around with the grind size.
Some people argue that the kettle is very important in hand drip coffee brewing, although, I have had good results with a regular kettle, as long as you can control the pouring speed with some accuracy.
To wrap it up, I believe that a good substitute for the pod/capsule style coffee is pour over coffee, and that it is a good step in the right direction for discovering your home-brewing potential! Not to mention the money you could save, and the reduction of personal plastic waste. I hope you will consider making the switch to pour over coffee, and trying out for yourself this wonderful coffee brewing tool.