More on Coffee Brewing

I’ve been playing with cold brewing and changing the technique and recipe slightly with each batch. Here are some of the things you can control when brewing coffee:

  • Grind (Turkish – Coarse)
  • Grinding Method (Burr, Chop, Pound, Roller Grind)
  • Roast (Cinnamon – Spanish)
  • Species (Arabica vs. Robusta)
  • Bean Source and Freshness
  • Water Quality (Hardness, Purification Method, etc)
  • Method (Drip, Pressurized Percolation, Boiling, Steeping)
  • Pressure (Drip – Espresso)
  • Brew Temperature (Ice Cold – Boiling)
  • Water to Grind ratio
  • Equipment quality, cleanliness
  • Brewing Duration
  • Agitation During Brewing
  • Repetition (Brew, Filter, Replace Coffee, Repeat)
  • Filtering
  • Dilution
  • Preparation (Milk, Sugar, etc)

I’ve been changing one or two with each batch and recording the results. Some of these factors, especially Roast, Species, and Grind will make a big, noticeable change to your cup of coffee with any of the traditional hot brewing methods. What I’ve found with cold brewing is that almost none of them matter! I can’t tell the difference between the cheapest store brand crap and single-estate Kona once it’s been cold brewed. Duration is one of the few exceptions – if your goal is to brew coffee without extracting the bitter flavor I don’t recommend going past 12 hours.

Next I’ll be looking at Repetition, inspired by Black Blood of the Earth.

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