Most people enjoy a cup of hot coffee in the morning as a start to their day. Coffee lovers everywhere can learn how to make the perfect cup of coffee by employing a few simple methods.
1. Clean Equipment
Most people make their coffee in traditional coffee pots, or automatic coffee makers. However, some choose to brew coffee with a French, or European, press, while some still percolate their coffee. No matter what method is used, equipment should be thoroughly cleaned to prevent tarnishing the flavor of a pot of coffee. If there is oil residue or particles of coffee grounds remaining from yesterday’s pot, coffee may taste rancid or bitter. Clean coffee makers or presses with hot, soapy water and rinse thoroughly. Some also clean with vinegar, which also works well. Remember to rinse thoroughly to avoid a bitter taste.
2. Grind Fresh Beans
An excellent cup of coffee begins with the bean itself. Freshly ground coffee beans provide a superior taste to already ground. It is important to grind coffee beans as closely to the time of use as possible. Also, make sure the consistency of the grind is correct. Too finely ground and coffee can taste bitter. On the other hand, if coffee tastes flat, the grind may be too course for the specific method of brewing. If purchasing ground coffee, always store in an airtight container in a cool, dark, dry place. Never store ground coffee in the fridge or freezer, contrary to popular advice. Whole beans can be kept in the freezer for up to a month, don’t refreeze. Also, never re-use grounds.
3. Perfect Brewing Temperature
Ideally, coffee should be brewed at a temperature between 195-205 degrees Fahrenheit for correct extraction. A good coffee maker takes the guess work out of this step. However, if using other methods of brewing, a thermometer is recommended to ensure perfect temperature for extraction. Too cold, and coffee can taste flat. Too hot and coffee loses some integrity of flavor.
4. Enjoy Immediately
The best cup of coffee is one enjoyed immediately. As soon as coffee begins to cool, it loses some of its rich flavor. One or two cup coffee makers are ideal for this purpose, producing the perfect cup of coffee every time. Coffee should not be left on the burner for a long time, as the flavor begins to degrade and it can become scorched. Also, never reheat coffee.
No matter what it’s called: coffee, java or cup of Joe, coffee is the drink of choice for so many in the morning. Brewing the perfect cup of coffee using these steps doesn’t take a lot of time or effort, but yields an incredible cup!