We've been reading a number of blogs about the science of brewing coffee and last time we talked about buying good coffee beans, grinding right before brewing, proper storage, water to coffee ratio and technique. You’ll find them archived on our blog site and here are some more hints:
Use quality tools: You're going to get better results from high quality tools than you will with junk from the bargain bin. Yes, it's more of an upfront investment, but in the long run it's worth it. Good tools last longer and make the entire brewing process much easier.
The grind size of your coffee beans: Grind size affects the extraction rate because it affects surface area. Beans that are coarsely ground have less surface area than the same amount of finely ground beans, making it more difficult for the water to penetrate and extract the coffee solids. A uniform grind size means that the extraction rate of the oils and acids in the coffee will be consistent. You won't have large pieces that under-extract and small pieces that over-extract. It's for this reason that you'll often hear coffee experts exhorting people to invest in a good burr grinder. And guess what? They're right.
The temperature of your water: Temperature affects extraction rate because solids dissolve more quickly at higher temperatures. Temperature also affects flavor because it determines which solids get dissolved. Using water that's too hot will lead to sour coffee since it releases unpleasant acids from the coffee beans. For this reason, we recommend brewing with water between 195 and 202 degrees. And remember, measure the water actually in the coffee and not just what you're pouring. There's often a difference.
The amount you agitate your coffee grounds during brewing:You can further manipulate the brewing process by agitating the coffee grounds as the water passes through them. Agitation works because it accelerates the spread of dissolved coffee solids throughout the water, exposing the coffee grounds to fresher water more quickly. But agitation also has the effect of cooling the water, which we know can affect the process. In the end, it's just one of those things that you learn through trial and error.
The ratio of water to coffee: Strange how it keeps coming back to this, right? The key difference here is that when you're fine tuning, you aren't sticking strictly to the Golden Ratio. Instead, you're adjusting to taste. To make adjustments more easily, invest in a scale. You can be more precise by using weight—instead of volume—to measure your coffee and water.
Pretty scientific, huh?
The Kona Cowboy Coffee Company is proud to provide the finest coffee available for you to brew scientifically. You’ll get a great cup of Joe with PANIOLA 100% Kona Cowboy Coffee, grown on Hawaiian volcanoes and roasted in the Rocky Mountains … the one with no bitter aftertaste and no acidity. CAFÉ PINON de Nuevo Mexico is the Southwest’s favorite with pinion nuts and a perfect way to improve your coffee experience during the day. And our MOKA-JAVA is a medium dark roasted blend of Indonesian and Ethiopian coffees that just might be high octane! We also make COWBOY ACTION COFFEE, the Official Coffee of the Single Action Shooting Society! If you are a Chai drinker, you’ll love the Coconut Spiced Chai we bring in from Honolulu. The Kona Cowboy Coffee Company has updated our website with new prices, new products and more! Go to www.KonaCowboyCoffee.com and look at the coffees. Go to the “Chocolates” page and find our new Cowboy Coffee Choco-Drops, a coffee caramel smothered in milk chocolate and dusted in cocoa powder! We have new Mescalero Morning Cowboy Coffee Candles on our “Bath Products” page, too.
The purpose of this blog is to unite Kona coffee lovers and perhaps learn a little about coffee and all the benefits of coffee at the same time. Join up, become a member, comment and have fun! You can find the Kona Coffee Fiends group on Facebook and we’d appreciate it if Facebook users would “LIKE” the Kona Cowboy Coffee Company page at www.facebook.com/pages/Kona-Cowboy-Coffee-Company/222070817858553. Just copy and paste to your browser. You can also find us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/#!/jackshuster. And on the web at www.KonaCowboyCoffee.com to order your gourmet coffee and coffee products.
You know you’re a coffee fiend when you walk twenty miles on your treadmill before you realize it's not plugged in! So enjoy your coffee, make it Kona, and remember, Kona is the home of the Hawaiian cowboy…and we had cowboys in Kona before there were cowboys in Texas!