Ready to make the leap/ real coffee

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stlrman

Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« on: 19 Mar 2019, 11:12 pm »
Ok ... I am ready to start making a real cup of coffee!!!
I am using a Keurig right now . :duh:
I am looking at Chemex or another pour over device .
Or an Aeropress.
I am also looking to get an inexpensive hand burr grinder. I saw the thread .
I have some questions and concerns .
I only drink one cup a day. I always drink out of a contigo Togo cup. It keeps it warm , and I always bring it to work . I also use this on weekends , keeps it warm . It is metal in the inside. Does this effect the taste ? Seems that ceramic is the go to.
I usually do about a 10 ounce pour.  Cup and a third. Is what comes out of my machine.
I have done some research on You tube.
I use 2% milk instead of half and half creamer which is fattening. But half and half is sooooo yummy!!!
I also have been using Equal for sweetener. Should I move to sugar for more natural flavor?
Any thoughts / adviice is welcome !!
Thanks !!    Todd



avta

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #1 on: 19 Mar 2019, 11:40 pm »
You might want to try a French Press. I find that this style of coffee making gives excellent results. When I’m not using my espresso machine for cappuccinos I like French Press the best. I use a Bodum Press. If you want a relatively inexpensive electric grinder you might check out the Rancilio Rocky. As far as sweetener is concerned I prefer sugar. I use about 1/2 teaspoon per cup which is about 10 calories. I’m sure others will chime in.

randytsuch

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #2 on: 20 Mar 2019, 12:04 am »
IMHO, you can’t make good coffee without good beans, and the beans need to be fresh.

Fresh is no more than 4 weeks after their roast date, and 4 weeks is pushing it.  2-3 weeks post roast is really ideal.  Which means you need to get beans that were roasted very recently.
The better coffee roasters will print a roasted on date, not a use by date.  Use by dates are useless for beans, avoid coffee with use by dates.

I buy my coffee from Redbird in 5 lb packs to save money, then vacuum pack and freeze to keep the beans fresh.  Works well for me, but its more work.  For a beginner, try to find a local place that sells good beans with recent roast dates, or a local roaster that knows what they are doing.

Get a burr grinder, I actually started with vintage ebay hand grinders.  There are some really good German hand grinders made long ago that still work well.
Baratza makes good electric grinders.

You can experiment with different methods, clever coffee dripper, aeropress, pour over, etc.  Water needs to be right temperature, little under boiling.  I wait about 5 seconds after water stops boiling for pour over/aeropress.  I also preheat the coffee brewer, so there is less heat loss when you pour the hot water in it.

With good coffee, you should be able to cut down on additions, although I cheat and still use milk lol

stlrman

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #3 on: 20 Mar 2019, 01:22 am »
Fantastic information gentlemen!!!!!!!!! :thumb: thank you !!
I am actually leaning toward the French Press for ease of use and clean up , and a great cup of coffee from what I am gathering .
I am on the lookout for good roasters here in Pittsburgh.
Is there a great online roaster where I can get a pound or two delivery and freeze ??
Can the beans be out in glass sealed container for a week?
Is it ok to go from freezer to grinder ?
I am very excited to give this a shot !!

S Clark

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #4 on: 20 Mar 2019, 01:31 am »
Agree with Randy about getting a good hand grinder for the quantities you are talking about.  Avoid the high speed grinders, blade or burr. 
Beans can be in a glass container for weeks- but try to buy smaller quantities often from local roasters, keeping beans as fresh as possible (although  they are best a few days after roasting)  I'd keep your roasted beans at room temperature and plan to use them up within a couple of weeks.
Of course, you can join the ranks of the coffee crazy here at AC and get yourself a roaster.  I've been roasting for 7-8 years and would hate to go back to regular beans. 
You will want to experiment on water temperature and extraction duration.  Both make big differences in flavor profiles. 

WGH

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #5 on: 20 Mar 2019, 02:02 am »
A Kalita Wave 185 (the bigger one), a bag of filters, and a JavaPresse is all you need. Others will disagree but they are all just wacko over caffeinated coffee drinkers  :o
Filtered or unfiltered, a question for the ages.

johnto

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #6 on: 20 Mar 2019, 02:20 am »
Good beans ground daily also water temperature is very important, I use a food thermometer to insure its about 192 degrees for French press.

Doublej

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #7 on: 20 Mar 2019, 11:35 am »
A Kalita Wave 185 (the bigger one), a bag of filters, and a JavaPresse is all you need. Others will disagree but they are all just wacko over caffeinated coffee drinkers  :o
Filtered or unfiltered, a question for the ages.

They might be wacko because they don't realize that Robusta beans contain 80% more caffeine than Arabica beans. And if they are lightly roasted lookout, turbo caffeine.

No filter guy here.




stlrman

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #8 on: 20 Mar 2019, 04:09 pm »
ok... I'm on my way!! :thumb:
I bought a Veken 32 ounce French Press that even comes with a milk frother.
https://www.amazon.com/Veken-Stainless-Screens-Resistant-Borosilicate/dp/B07FCLBRTZ/ref=as_li_ss_tl?SubscriptionId=AKIAJO7E5OLQ67NVPFZA&ascsubtag=922303425-2-410843100.1553097568&tag=shopperz_origin3-20

And I bought a Java Presse manual burr grinder. :thumb:

I should be brewing fresh coffee on Friday. I just need to get me some beans. I prefer medium to bold coffee.

Thanks for the guidance !!

stlrman

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #9 on: 20 Mar 2019, 05:44 pm »
"We use 1.6–2 grams of coffee per fluid ounce of water."  This was for pour over

    Does this sound accurate for French Press as well?

stlrman

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #10 on: 20 Mar 2019, 06:07 pm »
I think I got the answer online . 20-25 grams for 12 ounces , or 3 rounded tablespoons.

DaveC113

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #11 on: 20 Mar 2019, 06:50 pm »
Good start... French press, Aeropress and pour-over are the 3 best inexpensive brewing methods imo... and are cheap enough to try them all.  :)

Good beans and grinders are prerequisites as has been mentioned.

You'll be spending big $ on an espresso setup soon, be careful. ;)

randytsuch

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #12 on: 20 Mar 2019, 07:30 pm »
I'd recommend not going too dark, try some good medium roasts.

I tend to like a good Ethiopian med roast, but as with anything, Ethiopians vary.
And good beans come from many different countries and climates.

On a side note, I remember reading that climate change is a major concern with coffee growers and producers.

EDIT:  One thing about French is it tends to be a "muddy" (not sure if that's the right term) cup, you're likely to see sediment at the bottom of the cup.
Not necessarily a bad thing, just a comment.

I have a fancy French press, but also many other coffee makers.
Pour over is another cheap way that can yield good results.  A very manual method, but then you have control over everything.

With fresh coffee, I will start by pouring in just a little water at first, don't drown it.  Let it bloom for a bit, and slowly add water at the start.  I'm sure there a videos around of this.

Randy

bummrush

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #13 on: 20 Mar 2019, 10:52 pm »
I'll stick with Handground for a grinder.

guf

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #14 on: 21 Mar 2019, 12:23 am »
i agree with a lot that has been said.  You should have a pour over set up and a aero press. in addition to your french press. Of the 3 the french press is the one I use the least. I mostly make a single cup. I'd get a nice mug and sit and enjoy the coffee. Others may disagree but I don't think its nearly as good after 10 or 15 minutes.  Don't get me wrong I'll drink the last sip hours later, but because I'm an addict not because its good.I don't even like togo paper cups. If you need coffee to travel with I'd suggest a cold brew. And that is also a good home inexpensive set up to get. There are so many great roasters that would love to sell and send you good fresh roasted beans. But looking on yelp for Pittsburg if I was there I'd try Bondadoso. I wouldn't recommend freezing its not necessary. I'm excited for you. Coffee is an amazing hobby. 

goskers

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #15 on: 21 Mar 2019, 12:55 am »
I went through a fair amount of options from aeropress to pour over. Kind of like my audio these days I don’t want to fiddle with many things but I do want consistent, amazing results.

I have landed on a Techivorm with Baratza Encore grinder. I weigh the beans, load the grinder and add appropriate water. Follow the cupping standards. Perfect every time with very little fuss.

All other methods, although intriguing, provided results inconsistent and labor intensive. During the week I don’t have the time to mess around with overly manual methods. The older I get the more I purchase quality items which will stand up over time. If you are one who likes to play and has the patience then coffee is yet another playground.

WGH

Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #16 on: 21 Mar 2019, 01:58 am »
I weigh the beans, load the grinder and add appropriate water.

Is there a big difference in weight vs. volume between bean types? I put two heaping tablespoons of beans in the grinder and call it done.
Since I do a pour over, the Kalita Wave sits perfectly on top of a 2 cup Pyrex measuring cup (pre-heated of course), when I get to10 oz. I stop adding water. The last drips get me to 12 oz.

DaveC113

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #17 on: 21 Mar 2019, 02:53 am »
I went through a fair amount of options from aeropress to pour over. Kind of like my audio these days I don’t want to fiddle with many things but I do want consistent, amazing results.

I have landed on a Techivorm with Baratza Encore grinder. I weigh the beans, load the grinder and add appropriate water. Follow the cupping standards. Perfect every time with very little fuss.

All other methods, although intriguing, provided results inconsistent and labor intensive. During the week I don’t have the time to mess around with overly manual methods. The older I get the more I purchase quality items which will stand up over time. If you are one who likes to play and has the patience then coffee is yet another playground.

That's what I got my parents, it's a good solution.

Quality espresso machines are very consistent and quick to use, it only takes a few minutes to make a drink once you get the process down. What did me in was trying a good espresso machine vs the other methods using the same exact beans. It's not cheap to get into but my only regret is not doing it sooner. ;)


DaveC113

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #18 on: 21 Mar 2019, 02:54 am »
Is there a big difference in weight vs. volume between bean types? I put two heaping tablespoons of beans in the grinder and call it done.
Since I do a pour over, the Kalita Wave sits perfectly on top of a 2 cup Pyrex measuring cup (pre-heated of course), when I get to10 oz. I stop adding water. The last drips get me to 12 oz.

Maybe 10% or so variation, it won't matter unless you're making espresso.

MttBsh

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Re: Ready to make the leap/ real coffee
« Reply #19 on: 21 Mar 2019, 03:13 am »
That's what I got my parents, it's a good solution.

Quality espresso machines are very consistent and quick to use, it only takes a few minutes to make a drink once you get the process down. What did me in was trying a good espresso machine vs the other methods using the same exact beans. It's not cheap to get into but my only regret is not doing it sooner. ;)

Dave, would you consider sharing with us which machine you chose? There certainly are many to pick from.