With a “good” cup of coffee costing almost as much as a good sandwich these days, more and more people are taking to making their coffee at home from an “old fashioned” drip coffee machine. With the influence of Starbucks and the others out there, people are demanding a better cup of coffee all of the time. This article should help you make the best cup of drip coffee possible.
Coffee from a can just doesn’t work for the general public anymore. You know what I’m talking about and it sounds as lousy to you as it does to me. The good news is that great coffee beans can be obtained at pretty much any grocery store. If you use coupons (and if you don’t, shame on you), you should do quite well if you aren’t too worried about the brand name. My tip for you – worry about quality more than anything else. The big stores like Sams Club and Costco offer big bags of coffee beans at some very good prices. Your author’s favorite, in case you’re interested, is Kirkland brand (two pound) of Espresso Roast (Starbucks) that you can find at Costco.
Be willing to experiment with different bean types to find the kind of coffee you like best. For what it is worth, more times than not, I’ve found that a good espresso roast makes a great cup of drip coffee as well. Do experiment though, you just might be surprised at what you find.
Good beans deserve a good grind. You’d be surprised at the difference between a good grind and a bad one. If you don’t have a good grinder at home, consider grinding the beans at the store where they were purchased as the grinders there often do a great job. Burr grinders are the best, and the most expensive.
It is probably obvious but good water makes a difference as well. The more things you take out of the water, the better your coffee will taste.
A good drip machine is also a must. More than anything else, the warming element is what you need to worry about. If you find that your coffee often has that scalded burned taste, the warmer might be too hot. And, of course, there is seldom a way to change that so, … you’ll need a new machine.
Consider the French Press alternative. French presses are dirt cheap, make an incredible cup of coffee, and never leave you worrying about overactive warmers, water tube build-up and the like. Remember that the grind for French Press is different than normal drip coffee so grind accordingly.
What about people stuck in a bad coffee situation in the office or somewhere else? Here’s a trick that can help with some issues: Bring in a cinnamon shaker and dash a little on the grinds before starting the machine. This will give the coffee a bit more taste, hide some of the bad taste and help with the aroma. Grab the coffee as soon as is brewed and, most of all, lobby for better coffee.
You’re worth it.
Chiacchia Del is the webmaster of Yo! Coffee, the Internet's hot spot for all things coffee. You can read more of her work at http://www.yocoffee.com.