Will's Brewing Tips for Coffee Pods, Beans & Grounds
on Nov 09, 2022
Here at Will & Co, we love the craft of coffee brewing. There are so many ways to make a good coffee, and as good as that first sip tastes, we get a lot of our enjoyment out of the process itself.
Whether you’re looking to try your hand at home-brewing for the first time, take up a new method or fine-tune your technique, we’ve got a couple of tips to help you get the most of your morning, or afternoon, coffee ritual.
Now, let’s get down to brewing.
Brewing with Nespresso Compatible Coffee Pods
Tip 1: One pod does not equal one shot
This may be a bit surprising but stick with us. A shot of espresso generally uses between 10 - 12 grams of coffee to make, but pods only hold 5.2 grams. That means you need two pods to equal the same amount of espresso used in café-made drinks with one shot. Pro tip – stop each shot a little bit short to make it stronger or try using less milk.
Tip 2: Clean your machine at least once a month
Say goodbye to bacteria and mildew and hello to better coffee. Not only can this build up make your coffee taste a bit strange, it can also be damaging to your health. There are enough health risks in the world – don’t let your coffee machine be one of them.
Tip 3: Descale your machine every six months
In addition to giving it a good clean, it’s also important to descale your machine. Descaling is basically a deep clean and removes built up minerals that can negatively impact the taste and quality of your coffee. No thank you.
Tip 4: Before you brew, run a cycle with just water
This basically pre-heats your machine and its components so your coffee comes out top notch.
Brewing with Coffee Beans & Grounds
Tip 1: Always store your beans or ground coffee in an airtight container after opening
This will help your coffee stay fresher for longer so you can continue to enjoy it, day after day. It’s also important to keep that container in a cool, dark cupboard, and no matter what anyone says, do not put your coffee in the fridge. Keen to learn more about storage? See How to store coffee beans to maximise freshness, taste and strength.
Tip 2: If using beans, only grind what you need
Coffee grounds have more surface area than beans, which means they absorb oxygen, and in turn go stale, more quickly. By only grinding what you need, you can keep your coffee fresher for longer. Learn more about the shelf life of coffee beans here.
Tip 3: Speaking of grinding, grind your coffee to suit your brew method
Each brewing technique has a different recommended grind size in order to get the right extraction. Below is a general rule of thumb for each method.
- Espresso: Fine, like sugar
- AeroPress, Stovetop and V60: Medium-fine, similar to table salt
- French Press / Plunger, Chemex and Cold Brew: Medium-coarse, like sand or breadcrumbs
Coffee Brewing Techniques
First things first. If you haven’t yet, we recommend you check out our brewtorial videos. We still have a few in the works to complete the full suite, but these will get you started. You might also find our post on making a delicious cold brew coffee at home interesting. Now that we’ve shared that, onto more tips.
Tip 1: Follow the recipe
Each blend and brewing technique has its own recipe to help you get the most out of your coffee. We release a new recipe for each single origin drop, but if you’re an espresso drinker just check out the extraction details on each bean page for that blend’s recipe.
Tip 2: Get exact with a scale and timer
Measuring cups can get you pretty close, but one way to get a better brew is to weigh your coffee with a scale. Better yet, don’t rely on remembering to watch the clock – pull out your phone and time your brew.
Tip 3: Pre-heat your brewing vessel
When brewing with an AeroPress, French Press/Plunger, V60 or Chemex, make sure to pre-heat it by rinsing with hot water before you get started. For those methods that use a filter (AeroPress, V60 and Chemex), we also recommend rinsing the filter to remove the paper taste.
Tip 4: Pre-heat your cup
If you want your coffee to stay hotter for longer, you can also preheat your cup, again, by rinsing it with hot water.
Tip 5: Let it bloom
When using an alternative brew method, let your coffee bloom for about 30 seconds, then give it a gentle stir before adding the rest of the water. Blooming your coffee allows any remaining CO2 to escape so the water can really soak up the flavour of the grounds.
How do you bloom? We’re glad you asked. Simply pour a small amount of water over the grounds (just enough to cover all the grounds on top) – you’ll see the coffee raise and bubble a bit, then form a crust. It’s important to give it a gentle stir before adding the rest of the water to make sure all the grounds are saturated.
That’s all for now! Have a question about brewing coffee we haven’t answered? Shoot us a note at email@example.com and we’ll get back to you.