Brew Tips, Tricks, and How To’s

You’re used to the bulk coffee that’s found at the fire station, police station, or the coffee that’s been sitting in a drawer in the nursing brake room for 6 months. You know what its like when you take a sip of some damn good coffee but you don’t know why its better than the coffee you drink every other day. The cooperate coffee company with soy late whatever the fuck is right around the corner but they charge you as if they are upset that they even have to make a drink. Then they look at you like you are a commoner when you ask for a large black coffee… Its time you up your home brewing game and you want to try this whole new world of grinding and brewing your own specialty coffee.. This page is going to dive deep into the nuances of coffee care and brewing techniques for that perfect cup of coffee every time! Theres a lot to consider but if we figured it out, you most certainly can too!! Let’s break it down!

The most common question. How much coffee do we use?!? The golden cup standard set forth by the Specialty Coffee Association is 55g/1liter

Different styles of brew methods require different coffee to water ratios.  Using the right ratio in different brew methods is important in getting your coffee tasting just how you like it.  

Weighing your coffee is recommended over using scoops, different roasts can actually take up different volumes of space. This isn’t to say though that once you get things figured out with your favorite roast that you can’t use scoops to make your life easier in the mornings. Just know that there can be inconsistencies with using scoops. 

Starting Guide:

Pour Over/Drip Coffee 1:17 Ratio (1L water to 58grams coffee)

French Press 1:17 Ratio (1L water to 58grams coffee)

Cold Brew 1:8 Ratio (1L water to 125grams coffee)

Check out our coffee to water ratio calculator here:

Coffee Ratio Calculator

Coffee Brewing Ratios Explained

Water can have a large impact on how your coffee tastes and could be the difference in getting your homebrew to taste like the coffee at your favorite coffee shop. Some coffee shops will even make their own water by taking filtered water and adding different minerals to it. So what water and at what temperature should you be using?

Water Temperature

At Jumpline Coffee, We like our coffee brewed at 200 degrees + or – 5 degrees! The hotter the coffee, the faster the extraction. Too hot and you could over extract and make bitter coffee. Bitterness can help with your morning bathroom routine if you know what I mean. There are various methods of obtaining the perfect temp with the most obvious being a thermometer. Others include automatic coffee kettles that you can set your temperature to within 1 degree. An easy and cheap way of guesstimating temperature is visualizing the water begin to boil. This changes based on altitude so its not exactly accurate but it will get you close. 185-200 water begins to develop small bubbles. 205 water is at a light boil, moving, and noticeably larger bubbles. 212 and the water is at a rolling boil with vigorous bubbling. We suggest to heat the water until medium size bubbles are just beginning to break the surface of the water then remove from heat and let sit for 1 minute. 

Water sources

Finding the right water can be as simple as, if the water tastes good, then brew with it. It doesn’t have to be any more complicated for most people to enjoy their favorite coffee. However, if you don’t like the way your coffee is coming out or want to try dialing things in a little more, then you may need to switch up your water. 

Tap vs Filtered.

Tap water is going to vary based on your location, for brewing it should be clean, odor-free, clear with no chlorine in it. Like mentioned above, if it tastes good then go ahead and try it. 

You may need to filter your water. Using something like a Brita is an inexpensive way to remove impurities and chlorine. While there is nothing wrong with this method, it can still leave you with water that’s lacking what it needs to make a really great cup of coffee. 

Soft vs Hard water

Many people think that hard water will make a better cup of coffee. It is often rich in minerals such as magnesium and calcium that can bring out more flavors in the coffee. Keep in mind though that hard water can damage equipment over time with scaling, mainly espresso machines. 

Soft water will replace many of these minerals with sodium and as such can produce a more flat cup of coffee. But again, if that’s what you have, then give it a try and see if you like how the brew turns out. 

Reverse Osmosis

This method removes all minerals from your water. Similar to soft water, it can leave you with a flat cup of coffee. Blending Reverse Osmossis systems are good though in that they will mix minerals back into the water. 

Bottled

Using Bottled water is also an option if needed. Just know that bottled waters can vary widely in mineral content and some are not good for making coffee. Try to use bottles that are labeled for drinking or spring water. 

Making your own

You can even make your own water! Adding minerals to distilled water can make sure you are using the best possible water for brewing coffee. 

Watch this video for a simple way to make your own: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=iHI7jC0sQZo&feature=emb_logo

The Best Water for Coffee – An Introduction

Burr Grinders vs Blade Grinders

It is heavily recommended to use Burr Grinders over blade grinder for a number of reasons.

Blade Grinders are made of a double blade that spins to chop up the beans. They are cheaper but have a number of drawbacks, they:

  1. Are very inconsistent, some of your beans will wind up being ground far to finley while other coffee beans will hardly get hit at all.  
  2. Are difficult to get the correct size grind for the various types of brew methods. 
  3. can actually heat up your beans and inturn affect their flavor.

Burr Grinders are the recommended way of grinding your coffee. While they can be a little more expensive, they are usually worth the investment. Most Burr grinders will also have adjustable setting from Extra Coarse to Extra fine to help take the guesswork out of grinding your beans. Some benefits are that they:

  1. Generate little heat. 
  2. Are Much more consistent
  3. Adjustable for different grind sizes. 
  4. Usually made of better quality and are longer lasting. 

Grind size guide: 

Extra Coarse

-Cold Brew

Coarse

-French Press Pot

-Cupping

Medium-Coarse Grind

-Cafe Solo Brewer

-Chemex Brewer

Medium Grind

-Drip Pots (Your standard at home coffee maker)

Medium Fine Grind

-Pourover Cones

-Vacuum Pots

-Siphon Brewers

Fine Grind

-Espresso

-Stovetop Espresso/Moka Pot

Extra Fine 

-Turkish Coffee

Grind Size by Coffee Brewing Method

First off, cold brew and iced coffee are NOT the same thing.

Cold brew is a method of brewing, not just a style of coffee. 

Factors such as contact time, temperature, roast level, grind size, pressure, or steeping method may all influence the final brew composition and flavor profile. 

The ratio of coffee to water can vary widely when it comes to cold brew. Food 52 suggests that a good place to start is to grind 3/4 cup beans for 4 cups of cold water. Double as needed to get to the desired amount. 

How to make cold brew at home:

  1. You will need a coarse ground coffee
  2. Container large enough to hold however much you want to make
  3. A filter (unless you are using a french press)
  4. And cold water

Steps

  1. Add the coarse ground coffee to the bowl
  2. Slowly pour in your water and gently mix 
  3. Let sit overnight for 12 hours at room temperature 
  4. Filter it; pour through a coffee filter or if using a french press then just plunge it. 
  5. Now enjoy it! Pour it over ice, mix the concentrate with water until you get the desired taste, then add any milk or sweeteners that you want. 

How To: Make Cold Brew at Home (French Press)

More methods and brew tips to come.