For every good coffee, there’s at least one or two nightmare experiences you’ll never recover from.
Whether it’s the horror of instant, burnt beans, a watery mess or overly bitter, sometimes it can feel like finding a good cup is like winning the lottery and what’s worse – sometimes it’s all your own fault.
To avoid disappointment on that first sip, make sure you’re not making these silly mistakes when creating your next brew.
You might think if in doubt add more beans, but stop, you’re ruining it. Coffee is both an art form and a science, which means estimating how much coffee you should actually use rarely ends well. Be precise when measuring out your coffee, invest in a scale and research exactly how much you should be using to get the right taste for you. It might take a bit of trial and error, but once you strike that magic quantity there’s no looking back.
Not many people drink their coffee black, with most adding something for flavor whether it’s a type of milk, sugar or even fruit. While it might be a treat to mix these flavors together, make sure you’re not overpowering the coffee – which, after all, is the point of the drink.
This is sometimes down to lack of coffee knowledge, but stale beans are one reason you could be producing a bad cup. Fresh Coffee grounds should be useable for around one to two weeks and perhaps longer depending on how you store them. Make sure you check with the producer before purchasing your beans, so you know when you buy a fresh bag.
It’s not just for cleanliness reasons, keeping your coffee making equipment clean is important to brewing a great cup as well. Coffee beans can leave a nasty residue, so make sure you’re cleaning your equipment thoroughly. Otherwise, the next time you brew up a cup it could be tainted by the taste of the last time you used it.
It’s a common misconception, but using boiling water for your coffee is a huge mistake that most of us are guilty of making. The optimal window for coffee brewing is between 92°C and 96°C but, if you don’t have a temperature gauge on hand wait for at least 30 seconds after boiling your kettle before pouring the water.
If you haven’t heard of the brewing ratio, then you are running the risk of ruining your coffee by adding too much water. The recommended ratio is one litre to 60g of fresh, ground coffee to produce the ideal brew. The water ratio stays the same whatever style of coffee you’re making so it’s a golden rule to remember.