Why not get yourself a pour-over coffee setup, right in your kitchen?
Now the the global Covid-19 epidemic, and the subsequent quarantine, getting the awesome coffee we’re used to, is much harder and potentially dangerous. But it doesn’t have to be like that—if your automatic coffee machine is bumming you out, and with espresso hard to prepare correctly and worse, the machines are spendy. Consider a pour-over coffee setup.
Getting a decent pour-over coffee brewing set-up from scratch can be spendy if you go with the top of the line brands like Hario, Kalita, Baratza, etc. But there are options to fit the frugal budget, that quite frankly, will produce an excellent cup of pour-over coffee. So check this article for a list and links to the gear you need for an affordable pour-over coffee setup.
202°F is the best boiling point of water for Pour-over Coffee brewing.
Depending on elevation (barometric pressure), water boils at different temperatures. The higher in elevation you are, the lower in temperature water boils; At one atmosphere (sea level) the boiling point of water is 212°F or 100°C. Often you’ll hear that the best water temperature for brewing pour-over coffee is “just off the boil”, but depending on elevation, that boiling point would be different, which is not really optimal for pour-over coffee extraction. Boiling point of water for Ppour-over coffee brewing should be 202°F, not 211°F-203°F.
According this TEDxCoeurdalene video of a talk by Scott Yost, of DOMA Coffee, 202° is the perfect temperature for pour-over coffee extraction. Since seeing that video a couple years ago, we’ve been setting our Bonavita Automatic Kettle at 202°, which seems to be producing the best extractions. After a recent trip we found ourselves at over 6,000 feet above sea level, the water was boiling at around 202° so we were technically using boiling water on the coffee. The water temperature, while boiling, was still 202°. The main thing is that the water shouldn’t be hotter than 202°.
Just off the boil is misleading if you really want the best extraction. Accurate temperature readings combined with a proper coffee grind will work the best for pour-over coffee. But you’ll need some way for accurate temperature gauging. A good kitchen thermometer or a kettle that you can set the temperature with, will provide the accuracy you’ll need for the best cup of pour-over coffee.
The Hario V60 vs Kalita Wave Coffee Dripper smackdown!
Hario V60 pour-over coffee dripper has been the Champion of pour-over coffee brewing among aficionados for decades. But now there is challenger in the ring going after the belt. We pit the Hario V60 vs Kalita Wave coffee dripper to find out which is better.
The Kalita Wave dripper, made in Japan, offers a different process of drip coffee brewing. Most noticable is the flat bottom basket, rather than cone-shaped like the Hario V60. The brewing process is a little more like a Vietnamese coffee in that the coffee steeps a little longer. The result is a longer extraction time than what you typically get with a Hario V60 coffee dripper, which has a large single hole, and lots of bam bam!
Coffee passes through the grounds faster in the Hario V60. The flat bottom and three tiny holes cause the water to pass through the Kalita Wave coffee dripper slower. Since the extraction is longer, more flavors and oils come out of the grounds.
Speed had Kalita Wave on the ropes at first, we were able to drink our cup sooner from the Hario V60. But Kalita came on strong in the later rounds and the fuller flavor won out.
Kalita Wave was a tough challenger against Hario V60, a solid defender, and after going head to head for over a year now, we give the edge to Kalita Wave for a richer, fuller flavor pour-over coffee. This is not to suggest that using the Hario V60 is bad, Hario threw it down and is still a great pour-over coffee dripper who is not ready to hang up the pour-over coffee gloves. We use the V60 frequently. In the final round the differences were subtle. And one brewer probably suits certain types of beans and roasts over the other. Keeping that in mind you’ll have be the judge.
The Kalita Wave comes in stainless steel, glass and ceramic. Since we’re prone to breaking drippers, we recommend the stainless. There a two sizes are available, #155 and the #185, the #155 is fairly small and can’t hold much more that 10-15 grams of coffee grounds. The #185 is similar to the Hario V60 in capacity and will perfect for normal everyday brewing.
To purchase the Kalita Wave #185 coffee dripper shop here
Check out our quick look at the Kalita Wave 185 Pour-over Coffee Dripper:
Always start with good fresh-roasted coffee and filtered water; successful pour-over coffee brewing comes down to ratios. For pour-over coffee brewing, the water to coffee ratio of 16 parts (grams) water to 1 part (grams) coffee is a good place to start.
Note: To measure and brew pour-over coffee properly, you need a good scale. While most digital kitchen scales will do the trick, a dedicated pour-over coffee brewing digital scale with a built-in timer is worth the investment. More information and purchasing choices on digital scales can be found in this article.
Experiment on the ratios to adjust for your taste; try 15:1 or 17:1 to find the ratio the best suits your taste. Enjoy!
How to brew pour-over coffee. Getting a great cup of coffee requires the right brewing equipment, fresh roasted coffee and a perfected pour-over coffee technique. This post covers the basic elements for success. Once mastered, pour-over coffee brewing is simple and easy to repeat. Having the right beans and equipment is key as well, but it starts with technique. A $40 100% Kona Peaberry can be ruined by too fine of a grind, so a good burr grinder set to the proper grind setting is important, as is using a goose-neck kettle, for better control of the pour, it makes a big difference.
Goose-neck drip kettle
Cone style coffee dripper
Digital kitchen scale
Burr coffee grinder
A cup or decanter
Heat the water
Bring the water to a boil then remove from the heating element. If you are using a temperature controlled electric kettle, just bring it up to a preset temp and hold. The optimal temperature is in the 198-201 degree range (depending on altitude, water will boil at a lower temperature).
Rinse the paper filter
Place the filter in the cone. Be sure to fold the seams over flat to make the filter sit better in the cone. Rinse your paper filter with the some of the heated water.
Grind and measure the coffee grounds
Weigh out the fresh beans to a 1:16 ratio, in grams, coffee to water. Experiment with ratios to suit taste. Grind to a medium-fine texture, the ground coffee grains should be about the size of sand. Note: A courser grind will cause the coffee to under-extract, resulting in a watery cup of coffee, too fine of a grind and the grounds will over-extract and taste bitter. Place your cup or decanter on the kitchen scale and zero (Tare) it. Add the coffee to the filter, level and slightly indent the center. Zero the scale.
Bloom the coffee
Pre-infuse the coffee first. Pour 40-60g of hot water into the center of the grounds and work your way out, in expanding circles, until you reach the edge of the grounds. Some people recommend that you stop short of the edge leaving a 1/8 inch or so of the coffee dry. It probably doesn’t make a difference.
Let sit for 45-70 seconds. Note: the fresher the beans the more the grounds will expand as they release gases, older roasted coffee may not bloom at all. Let the bloom deflate before adding more water.
Start the main pour
After blooming, start the main pour, beginning from the center, pour the remaining water into the cone. Some like the do this in stages, pour, rest, pour, rest, etc. This should take around 2-3 minutes. Try to keep the water level above the coffee grounds, keeping oxygen from coming into contact with the coffee before you finish the pour. Take your time
Enjoy your cup!
Practice makes perfect! With good fresh coffee, proper equipment and technique you’ll be a pour-over master in no time.
You know the situation; it’s a workday and you woke up late and now there’s not enough time to do a traditional pour over coffee, forget picking something up on the way to work, the lines are always too long! Wouldn’t it be nice to have an coffee brewer that made pour over coffee, and even better, automatically? Lo and behold! There are a few pour over coffee brewers available. They range in price from $180 to $570, and these brewers meet the SCAA Certified Home Brewer standards of the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA). So you know you’re not wasting your money.
Why bother with a brewer that specializes in the pour over coffee method? Besides being the best way to brew coffee, pour over coffee brewers offer a simple hassle-free way to brew pour over coffee. Since they are automatic, you just set it at night and wake up to a fresh cup of pour over coffee. What could beat that? Other than a personal valet who makes pour over coffee for you, nothing obviously.