Things I Learned in 2023: Coffee

  • Preheat the cup. I did a test this year with a thermometer and noticed that the water dropped 30° when I poured it into a room temperature cup. Unless I want the temperature of the coffee to drop, I realized I needed to preheat the cup with hot water from the kettle.
  • Preheat the French press. This is related to the previous insight. I was never happy brewing in my insulated French press. I realized that if the temperature drops 30°, then it is not brewing at the right temperature in my French press. Preheating the French press made a huge difference.
  • Press the French press slowly. I learned from James Hoffman--and someone else I don't remember--that the grit on a french press largely comes from stirring up the grounds by pressing quickly. By pressing slowly or not pressing at all and pouring it through the mesh, you get a much cleaner cup. It does make a big difference and you end up with a lot less of the solids in the bottom which can make the coffee become more bitter the longer you let the cup sit. I like it a lot better this way.


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