It should be said that many coffee shops out there make terrific coffee. They provide a lovely place to gather, a nice spot to grab a pastry, and an amazing aroma all around. That being said, if you can’t afford it easily, you can get great coffee at home.
Boiling water is 212 degrees Fahrenheit. The ideal water temperature for French press coffee is 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Bring the kettle to a whistle, take it off the heat and let it stand for 60 seconds, then gently pour half the still very hot water over the coarse grounds in your French press; you want to fully wet the grounds as you pour in the water.
To fully finish your pot of French press, let it stand for 60 seconds before stirring the grounds just a bit. Add the rest of the hot water and put the plunger over the container but do not plunge. After 3 to 4 minutes, you can slowly plunge the top. The longer you let the water and the grounds hang out together, the stronger your coffee will be. Pour or transfer to a thermos or carafe and serve.
French press coffee has to be made with coarse ground coffee. If you try to make this with the regular ground or espresso ground coffee, you will not be plunging coffee; you will be plunging something akin to gritty motor oil.
Too fine a grind for your coffee maker will create an oily, scummy cup of mud. Too coarse a grind in a pour-over will make a “limp handshake” cup of coffee. if you’re not sure you’ll like French press and don’t want to buy a press until you’re certain, by all means, hit a coffee shop and try a cup. However, if you already have gear, being your own barista can actually be quite a bit of fun.
Coffee beans are a bit odd. The darker the roast you buy, the more flavor you will enjoy. However, dark roast beans are actually lower in caffeine than milder roasts. If you like the jolt of caffeine, consider a medium, cinnamon, or mild roast. If you love the jolt of dark coffee, get a dark espresso and order an extra shot.
Dark roast coffee beans are slightly shiny. The oil in coffee beans will act like any other fat in your refrigerator or cupboard. It will soak up all the flavors around it. Date your roasted coffee beans and store them in a dark, cool place. Be nice to your beans. They need a nap before they can get you moving each day. Don’t freeze or refrigerate beans!
If you can’t quite get the flavor you’re used to with at-home coffee, try a cold brew. The flavor will be much milder and you can easily whip it up in a jar with a tight lid.
Your roast choices can make a huge impact on the flavor. For example, many find pour-over coffee to be a bit bland. However, when you’re working out how to make pour-over coffee, know that the roast and the grind can both have a huge impact on the flavor.
Cinnamon roast coffee has a mild, nutty flavor and a serious caffeine boost. A medium grind of a cinnamon level of roast can be an ideal combination for delicious pour-over coffee. If you use a paper filter, make sure you pre-wet it and consider warming and wetting your vessel if it is glass. Many pour-over vessels are quite striking, but you will wind up handling hot glass. If you’re not sure about getting something as beautiful as a Chemex, it may be a good idea to just get a pour-over filter and brew your coffee right into a carafe or thermos. Make sure your pour-over filter is not bigger than the mouth of your collection vessel.
Coffee shop coffee can be a terrific “some time” treat, like cookies, fries, or chips. If you have to have a drizzle of syrup each time you make coffee, you may be starting your day off with a lot of sugar. Go ahead and treat yourself to the syrups you love, but try not to add them to each cup of coffee.