What's in the pot? We explore four brewing devices to help you make the perfect cup al desko.
CAFETIERE (also known as the French press)
For a morning stand-up meeting that needs perking-up.
Difficulty: Quick and simple. There’s nothing more fool-proof than this trusty plunge brewer.
Tools: Cafetiere, 60 grams coffee (medium to coarse ground), 1000 grams of freshly boiled water (filtered or bottled water that’s just off the boil, ideally 196-201° F), a grinder, digital scales, a spoon and a timer.
Method: Grind the coffee to a medium to coarse grind size. Place cafetiere on scales, add coffee, reset the scales to zero and gently pour in water to achieve the right ratio (1 litre in this case). Leave to steep for three to four minutes, stirring the crust on the surface with a spoon half way through; this will make it fall back down. Scoop off the floating grounds (if necessary), put the lid on and plunge.
The golden ratio: 60 grams of coffee per 1000 grams of water or 1/17 ratio
The Los Angeles Coffee Festival recommends Bodum Chambord Coffee Press, $40
Top client to impress? Your new V60 skills will do the trick.
Difficulty: It’s all about practice; the grind, contact time and weight of coffee are key to success.
Tools: Hario V60 03, Hario filters, 40 grams coffee (coarse grind), 680 grams water (196-201° F), a grinder, scales, stirrer, timer and a pouring kettle.
Method: Add the filter to the V60, rinse with hot water and discard. Place on scales, add the fresh coffee and tare. Start the timer, add just enough water to cover the coffee (approximately 50 grams), and take a break while ‘the bloom’ happens.
After 30 seconds, carefully pour in the rest of the water in circular motion, avoiding direct contact with the filter. Give the V60 a gentle swirl and leave to drip until the coffee grounds look dry. The whole process should take less than 4 minutes, otherwise the grind is too fine.
Bin the filter, pour and enjoy.
The Los Angeles Coffee Festival recommends Hario V60 Coffee Dripper 03
For the noble coffee geek who doesn’t do sharing.
Difficulty: Doable with a degree of accuracy; it’s also great for travelling and easy to clean.
Tools: AeroPress coffee maker, AeroPress filters, 16 grams coffee (fine ground), 250 grams freshly boiled water (106-201° F), a grinder, scales, stirrer, timer and a pouring kettle (optional).
Method: Lock filter paper into the brewer and run hot water through to rinse and remove paper taste. Place mug on the scales, and sit the AeroPress on top, filter side first. Add the coffee and tare the scales.
Let the boiling water sit for 30 seconds after the kettle has boiled, start your timer, add the water and stir vigorously for a few seconds. Insert the plunger to create a vacuum. After around one minute, remove from the scales and slowly press down for thirty seconds.
Interesting fact: The AeroPress was invented by Alan Adler, the American inventor who also invented the Aerobie flying ring.
The Los Angeles Coffee Festival recommends AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker, $29.99
Oh boy, you want an espresso at work? If you’ve fallen out with your local café and need to DIY, La Marzocco will be at The Los Angeles Coffee Festival to help. Here are some tips to tide you over.
Tools: A good quality espresso machine (such as the La Marzocco Linea Mini), 18 grams of coffee (fine espresso grind), an espresso grinder, filtered or bottled water, a tamper, scales and milk or nut milk (optional).
Method: The best way to start is by asking your roaster for suggested measurements. It all starts with mastering the art of dialling in your espresso grinder, which requires a masterclass in itself.
Once clued-up, clean the espresso basket with a dry cloth. Place the handle on the scales to weigh the coffee as you add it, then tamp to make sure it’s even. Flush water from the machine and add the cups on top of small scales.
Lock the handle in brew for around 28 seconds. When dripping has finished, the espresso is ready.
The Los Angeles Coffee Festival recommends La Marzocco Linea Mini, $4,900