How I make pour over

A little demo for how I make pour over coffee.

Step 1: Get a mug.

Get an appropriate mug

Step 2: Figure our your ratio.

This is the amount of coffee and water that you’re going to use. I use grams and ml for my measures because I’m civilized. And because 1 ml water weighs 1 g by definition…easy, right?.

Figure out your ratio. This is my cheat sheet, because who wants to do math before coffee...

I have this post-it in my cabinet with all of the standard pours that I do, because who wants to do math early in the morning? And before coffee? Bah. This morning I’m making two “small” cups (32 g beans to 550 g water).

Step 3: Measure your beans.

One scoop is roughly 17 grams or 0.6 ounces. I’m using my fancy kitchen scale here so that the numbers show up nicely.

Step 4: Weigh your water.

If you don’t want to use a scale while you’re brewing, you can weigh our your water at this stage and only heat what you’re going to use. I add in an extra 50 g of water over my target for loss and for rinsing the filter. For reference, this is just over 2.5 cups of water.

Measure your water (if you don't want to use a scale while brewing). Just over 2.5 cups of water. I add extra for rinsing the filter.

Step 5: Heat your water.

I generally target 195 degrees (Fahrenheit, and yes I’m aware that I’m mixing units compared to above…), but you should play with this to see what you like (and what your beans respond to). The different amounts of oil and roasty-ness in the beans can express themselves in different ways depending on the heat of the water. If you boil on the stovetop, just let the water cool off from a boil for a couple of minutes before you start.

Heat the water. I aim for 195 degrees. This may vary depending on the beans you've got.

Step 6: Prep your carafe and filter.

You need something to brew into and your need to prep your paper filter. I use a carafe, but you can brew directly into a mug if you like. Anything where the V60 easily fits on to will work just fine…just make sure that it holds as much coffee as you’re going to brew!

Prep the filter by folding along the seam. Put it into the V60, and then rinse with hot water to get rid of the slightly acidic, papery taste. The hot water you can use to warm your carafe or mug. Just don’t forget to dump it before you brew!

Step 8: Grind those beans!

I use a setting of 12 of 40 on my grinder. (1 == fine, 40 == coarse). Again, here’s where you get to play to figure out what you like. I’ll talk more about why you might need to adjust the grind below .


Step 9: Prep the beans.

Put the beans in the filter and make a little divot in the center. The coffee is going to bloom up a bit when you pour water into it and this allows you to have a nice, even surface to pour into afterwards.

Step 10: Tare your scale if you’re using one and start the timer (if you’re using one).

Step 11: Bloom those grounds!

“Young” coffee (which has been roasted in the last couple of weeks) has a lot of C02 that’s trapped in the beans. When you hit it with the hot coffee the C02 will outgas and you’ll get a nice bloom (kind of like a foam).  You’ll want to use roughly the same amount of water as you have coffee (so, 32 g of water for our 32 g of beans). The important thing is that the coffee looks “wet”, but you’re not really getting any coffee dripping down into your carafe/mug. Let this go for about 30 seconds, or until the bloom starts to wilt. This is obvious in young coffee, but if you have older coffee you may not get much of a bloom so you can just use 30 seconds as a rule of thumb.


Step 12: Pour #1

Slowly fill up the V60. Here I’m assuming that you’re using a Number 2 (Numbers 1 and 3 and smaller and larger, respectively). This should take you about 30-45 seconds to pour up to the top of the cone.

After 30 seconds of bloom, slowly pour more water until you've filled the cone. Try to take about 45 seconds to do this.

Step 13: Wait a bit.

Let the coffee drip down into your carafe/mug. Here’s where adjusting the grind is going to change the coffee. The longer the water is in contact with the ground, the more extraction of oils (and caffeine) you get. This is only good up to a point. The rule of thumb here is that for most pour over coffee the whole process (bloom to finish) should take about 3 to 4 minutes. If your grind is too coarse, then the water will run right through the grounds. If the grind is too fine, then you’ll get sludge and the water won’t run at all.

Let some of the coffee drain. This is where you know whether your grind is too fine / coarse. Too coarse == draining too fast, too fine = sludge.

Step 14: Finish the pour.

Keep topping up the cone until you hit your target water weight and/or run out of pre-measured water. You can do this in any way you like. Some people like to try to do a continuous pour, but this is easiest with a goose-neck kettle. You can let the water clear the top inch of the cone and then then add in more hot water to get back up to the top. The goal is to keep the level of the water roughly at the top of the level of your coffee grounds in the filter to give you a consistent extraction throughout the brew process.

Second pour. Top off until you reach your goal (550 g in this case) or you run out of water if you pre-measured it. This should roughly fill up the cone again, which should take about another minute to fully drain.

Step 15: You’re done!

Just wait for the coffee to finish dripping and then serve. If you want to be really fancy, re-heat some hot water and heat up the mugs first by pouring some hot water in, then dumping it after the mug has warmed up, This is done so that the coffee doesn’t spend any of its heat warming up your mug.

Enjoy your morning.
Enjoy your morning.


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