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Thread: In search of the perfect cup of coffee

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    Default In search of the perfect cup of coffee

    I have tried every kind of coffee maker I can find. I had this nice single serve coffee maker but that didn't cut it either. I'm now going the low tech route with a French press and some coffee (organic and fair trade) recommended (and sold) by my favorite coffee shop. I love coffee but I'm really really picky, and my husband is tired of me spending so much money on coffee going to the aforementioned coffee shop.

    So, coffee lovers, give me your brewing tips!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    I have tried every kind of coffee maker I can find. I had this nice single serve coffee maker but that didn't cut it either. I'm now going the low tech route with a French press and some coffee (organic and fair trade) recommended (and sold) by my favorite coffee shop. I love coffee but I'm really really picky, and my husband is tired of me spending so much money on coffee going to the aforementioned coffee shop.

    So, coffee lovers, give me your brewing tips!
    FRENCH PRESS!!!!!!

    only way to brew coffee. i am really picky too, and it makes such a difference. you can actually taste the beans and it never gets that acidic taste.

    also, buy a coffee grinder and grind the beans right before you add them.
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    Though I don't know much about coffee outside a certain company, I can tell you that French Press is the BEST way to drink coffee, and the only other step is to find out what type of coffee you like. Okay, to let the cat out of the bag, I work for Starbucks (lame, I know), so I at least know how coffee tastes dependent on where it's grown, and finding out the flavor profile you prefer will help you narrow it down so you can find a favorite. I did this for all my family members, and now they rarely go outside the beans I bring them and can easily identify which they'd like from other companies.

    ETA: Looking at Ritella's post, I should ask, do you knwo what type of grind you need and water/coffee proportions?

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    According to the directions and my favorite barrista, I need a coarse grind and three tablespoons of coffee, and then i fill the thing up (not quite to the top) with boiling water. No idea how much it takes to fill it. It isn't acidic - but it's a bit stron. But a lovely flavor. I just got it yesterday so I'm still experimenting. Maybe less coffee next time?

    I have a coffee grinder but I use it for spices. I had it ground at the coffee shop. The bag says it is a French roast, and from South and Central America.
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    Quote Originally Posted by look.to.the.sky View Post

    ETA: Looking at Ritella's post, I should ask, do you knwo what type of grind you need and water/coffee proportions?
    yeah. If you get it ground at the store, you have to ask for "French Press"- it's the coarsest grind. If you do it at home (in a grinder), you don't have to worry.
    Most coffee places will say to do 2 tablespoons coffee/ 6 oz of water, which is a little over 5 tablespoons of coffee for 2 cups. But, most people don't like their coffee THAT strong, so 4 heaping tablespoons is usually good.
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    It makes just over one mug of coffee.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    I have a coffee grinder but I use it for spices. I had it ground at the coffee shop. The bag says it is a French roast, and from South and Central America.
    French roast is smelly! Well, if you like French roast, and the boldness, you're also like Italian roast and Espresso, and I also believe Gold Coast is extra bold. Those are mostly multi-regional blends, so if you like the mix of tastes, Verona is a favorite as well. I wish I had a french press in front of me to give you more precise directions, but your barista was telling you how we do french presses whenever we have to, and we actually measure out the weight of the coffee before using it, which obvious not everyone can do. The measurements Ritella cited are pretty sound and are what I would have said. If you need more than that, it'll have to wait until the next time I go to work

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    You need to use this kind of stuff to make coffee at home:



    the French Press is absolutely horrible. Even the best brand will taste like dirty water.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    You need to use this kind of stuff to make coffee at home:



    the French Press is absolutely horrible. Even the best brand will taste like dirty water.
    My sister-in-law in Australia made me coffee with one of those once. It was fabulous.
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    Quote Originally Posted by look.to.the.sky View Post
    French roast is smelly! Well, if you like French roast, and the boldness, you're also like Italian roast and Espresso, and I also believe Gold Coast is extra bold. Those are mostly multi-regional blends, so if you like the mix of tastes, Verona is a favorite as well. I wish I had a french press in front of me to give you more precise directions, but your barista was telling you how we do french presses whenever we have to, and we actually measure out the weight of the coffee before using it, which obvious not everyone can do. The measurements Ritella cited are pretty sound and are what I would have said. If you need more than that, it'll have to wait until the next time I go to work
    Actually I think it doesn't smell very good, although I do like the flavor. I would like to try something less bold.
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    I don't know how you're using your french press, but it's actually rather good and the best way to get the flavor out of the coffee rather than producing large quantities of it quickly. I can't say I've tried too much else as I see coffee tasting as a more culinary thing for me rather than needing it, but I can't say many people have told me they don't like french presses, which is why a lot of small and portable ones are sold.

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    Hey, guys. I read in this forum years ago that drinking coffee is quadra related. Feedback?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    Actually I think it doesn't smell very good, although I do like the flavor. I would like to try something less bold.
    Yep, I can't stand grinding French Roast because it smells like fish to me If you want to try something less bold, try the African beans they have from Kenya and Ethiopia. Kenya is popular, and Verona is less bold as well and is rather popular. Does your husband drink coffee?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1981slater View Post
    Hey, guys. I read in this forum years ago that drinking coffee is quadra related. Feedback?
    In case this is serious... Of course it isn't type related? SM and I are the same type and she drinks coffee and I don't. Happy?

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    Quote Originally Posted by look.to.the.sky View Post
    Yep, I can't stand grinding French Roast because it smells like fish to me If you want to try something less bold, try the African beans they have from Kenya and Ethiopia. Kenya is popular, and Verona is less bold as well and is rather popular. Does your husband drink coffee?
    No he doesn't or I'd be able to get him to make it. I have no doubt if he drank it he would have figured out how to make marvelous coffee.
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    Quote Originally Posted by look.to.the.sky View Post
    In case this is serious... Of course it isn't type related? SM and I are the same type and she drinks coffee and I don't. Happy?
    I'm serious . There was a thread about drugs...and members agreed that gammas are prone to take drugs that enhance their productivity (amphetamines, coffee...) whereas deltas prefer to relax (smoking hash...) or sth like that
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    What FDG posted is a caffettiera for making Espresso. If you're making American coffee, you can't use one of those. BUT, if you do like espresso then you should just get an espresso machine as well!

    SlackerMom, I'm guessing your mug holds 2 cups (am i right?) and that you're using a "4 cup" French Press, which looks shorter and stouter than most models.
    I would try 4 tablespoons of coffee for the next batch. And 2 things: make sure to stir it really well when you add the water to the coffee, this way it creates a bit of a foam head. and, make sure to plunge after 4 minutes. also, i find that drinking the coffee once it cools down a little makes it taste better.
    As for beans, I can't really say because that's a personal preference. Did you have a favorite coffee blend at that coffee shop that you went to? If so, you should get that one.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    No he doesn't or I'd be able to get him to make it. I have no doubt if he drank it he would have figured out how to make marvelous coffee.
    I asked because the ISTp I'm seeing right now just likes straight up coffee doesn't really care about the whole different flavors and stuff, just wants the coffee, but once we started hanging around cafes he's been asking me to choose the coffee for him, and he seems to appreciate it. So I was going to say your husband probably dislikes the whole process (and seemingly impractical way of going about it) of finding the right flavor, but once it's found, then it's valuable information

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    My dad says McDonald's makes the best coffee.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    My sister-in-law in Australia made me coffee with one of those once. It was fabulous.
    You cannot find that in the US? I'm sure that at least an online shop should have them!

    @Ritella: even then, she can obtain something similar (but much better tasting than the French Press) to american coffee by simply putting 1/3 of espresso made with caffettiera and 2/3 of water.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    You cannot find that in the US? I'm sure that at least an online shop should have them!
    I imagine they have them, but the might be hard to find in my sad provincial little town. Maybe near the university, though.
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    Amazon.com: Bialetti Moka Express 3-Cup Stovetop Percolator: Home & Garden



    I didn't even have to type in the real name. Just "Italian Coffee Maker." hahaha 'Cause apparently nobody else knows exactly what they're called either.
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    Quickly scanning through that, it uses the opposite process of French Presses and makes drinks using espresso. Which is close to turkish coffee considering grind. I can't say I've tried it this way, I think you have to want different things, I believe your coffee overall will have larger amounts of caffeine, which covers the practical bit, but have less of the undertone flavor. I'm not completely sure, I'll have to try it myself some day to compare

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    Quote Originally Posted by look.to.the.sky View Post
    Quickly scanning through that, it uses the opposite process of French Presses and makes drinks using espresso. Which is close to turkish coffee considering grind. I can't say I've tried it this way, I think you have to want different things, I believe your coffee overall will have larger amounts of caffeine, which covers the practical bit, but have less of the undertone flavor. I'm not completely sure, I'll have to try it myself some day to compare
    Well, my experience is that the French Press coffee tastes like dirty water (if I wash my espresso machine, and try to taste the water I'm washing it with - that's more or less the taste); while the espresso machine tastes like...coffee.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Well, my experience is that the French Press coffee tastes like dirty water (if I wash my espresso machine, and try to taste the water I'm washing it with - that's more or less the taste); while the espresso machine tastes like...coffee.
    You see, that's why I question if the french press was used properly, because I've never had that feeling with french presses. Maybe you just like the extra bold coffee and didn't have a bold one in your french press? Could be many variables. But comparatively you might be accurate, my mind just finds them apples and oranges at the moment until I can run into the opportunity to find out for myself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Well, my experience is that the French Press coffee tastes like dirty water (if I wash my espresso machine, and try to taste the water I'm washing it with - that's more or less the taste); while the espresso machine tastes like...coffee.
    That's because you're Italian, and when you think of coffee, you think of what we know as "espresso." And when you think of American coffee, you think of a "cafe americano," which is really just espresso mixed with water.

    The brewing process is different, and therefore so is the flavor: espresso requires water to be forced through tightly packed coffee, which makes it more efficient for rapidly extracting every tiny bit from a small amount of coffee. It extracts the maximum out of each bit of coffee, getting the oils that require more pressure to extract from the coffee.

    American or French coffee brewing processes involve letting the coffee and water sit together for a longer period of time; since there isn't as much force applied in the process, you can't "squeeze" as much out of each ground, as with espresso. You also get a more uniform flavor because you are using more coffee and aren't extracting the different oils that you get from wringing the coffee ground out completely; it's like skimming the cream off the top of milk.

    The short and long of it is, some people prefer the more uniform taste of brewed coffee, while others like the more complex flavor of espresso, often simply depending on what they are used to.

    As for turkish coffee, I'm fairly clueless (we don't serve it at my shop ), but I know it involves a smaller grind and boiling everything together.
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    Yeah when my SIL made me coffee with one of those she made a latte. I can't drink espresso straight.
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    I might be no expert in this but I have been searching ways to make the best coffee I have ever drink as well. I did want to make a thread like this. Right now i keep it simple, Starbuck coffee beans(gulartmela favor recommended by Glam) a simple grinder, add syrup hazelnut/French vanilla, Half and Half and sweet and low sugar.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly View Post
    That's because you're Italian, and when you think of coffee, you think of what we know as "espresso." And when you think of American coffee, you think of a "cafe americano," which is really just espresso mixed with water.

    The brewing process is different, and therefore so is the flavor: espresso requires water to be forced through tightly packed coffee, which makes it more efficient for rapidly extracting every tiny bit from a small amount of coffee. It extracts the maximum out of each bit of coffee, getting the oils that require more pressure to extract from the coffee.

    American or French coffee brewing processes involve letting the coffee and water sit together for a longer period of time; since there isn't as much force applied in the process, you can't "squeeze" as much out of each ground, as with espresso. You also get a more uniform flavor because you are using more coffee and aren't extracting the different oils that you get from wringing the coffee ground out completely; it's like skimming the cream off the top of milk.

    The short and long of it is, some people prefer the more uniform taste of brewed coffee, while others like the more complex flavor of espresso, often simply depending on what they are used to.

    As for turkish coffee, I'm fairly clueless (we don't serve it at my shop ), but I know it involves a smaller grind and boiling everything together.
    Yeah, but Espresso is just better, you know. It's just one of the things where I have trouble letting personal taste have a say
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    Well it depends mostly on the quality of the coffee. However with espresso it's easier to hide the quality, because for one its so much stronger that the different flavors aren't as easy to distinguish, and for two because roasts used for espresso tend to be darker, and therefore not as true to the actual flavor of the bean.
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    This is pretty much all I could think of when I saw this thread

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    Personally I prefer high-quality French press coffee, something like a Kona or a nice blend (our shop sells an excellent blend of sumatra, guatamala, and columbian supremo) to Americano or straight espresso, but if I had to choose, I'd say cappuccino with a dab of french vanilla is the best way to drink coffee.

    But tea is better than coffee anyways, so it doesn't really matter ^_^ Yorkshire Gold ftw.
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    Yeah, I'm more of a tea person, typically for taste as I'm not looking for caffeine content. I find they are lot more distinct from one another and I can find one for every mood I'm in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly View Post
    But tea is better than coffee anyways, so it doesn't really matter ^_^ Yorkshire Gold ftw.
    +1 (:

    I drink two to three cups of tea a day - never coffee.
    Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.
    John Muir

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