When we make manual drip coffee, the small drops of water flow over the grounds and allow the coffee to drip, extracting oils from the beans as they pass. Gravity and the amount of coffee grounds control the contact time between coffee and water. With a finer grind the water requires more time to pass, thus increasing the intensity of the drink.
Drip preparation requires a careful balance of variables. The fineness of the grind, brewing time, and other factors must work together precisely to ensure that the hot water soaks through the coffee grounds for an exact amount of time. This doesn't mean that you can't make good drip coffee; it just requires a more thorough routine or formula changes.
- Fresh water, 6 ounces (180 ml) for every 2 tablespoons (10 g) of whole bean coffee. Alternatively 25 gr for 400 ml of a little more intensity.
- Digital scale.
- Fresh coffee. 2 tablespoons (10 g) of whole bean coffee per 6 ounces (180 ml) of water or 25 grams in 400 ml for added intensity.
- Grinder on a medium-fine level
- Paper or mesh filter.
- Drip equipment: Chemex, V60, Melita.
- Thermometer, optional
- The advantage of manual drip preparation is in the use of the hot water spout. You can literally direct the pouring of water to make sure the coffee grounds are completely submerged in the hot water. Foam on freshly soaked ground coffee is a sign of freshness (blooming).
Expert Notes on Manual Preparation
Here are some tips to prepare manually:
- Infusion time. Pay attention to when the beans get wet until the last drip of coffee enters the carafe. If the time exceeds seven minutes (including a one-minute break for initial foaming and settling), increase the grind size and repeat.
- Run the water through bleached filters (recommended) before placing it in the coffeemaker to remove any possible chemicals used for bleaching (usually hydrogen peroxide, not chlorine). This will prepare the filter for brewing and will avoid the slightest chance of it absorbing the first coffee extracts.
- Measure the temperature. If you use a thermometer, pour in water when it reads 200 ˚ F (90 ˚ C).
- Examine the filter after preparation. The top of the soil bed should look flat and moist, indicating that all grind was evenly removed.
- Stir the brewed coffee before serving the finished infusion. The first extracts are stronger than the last ones.
- Compost used coffee grounds and paper filters.
- Put the kettle on high heat to bring it to a boil.
- Weigh the whole grains and grind medium fine. Don't grind too well.
- Pre-moisten the paper filter, fold the filter in half and place it in the basket. Place the double fold (the thicker of the two sides) on the rail (the channel in the coffee maker).
- Add the coffee grounds to the filter. Shake the basket to settle the coffee, but never compress them.
- Remove the boiling water from the heat and let it steep for 1 minute or until the water stops bubbling.
- Slowly pour the water onto the ground in a circular motion (b). Fresh roaster / fresh ground coffee will likely foam (release carbon dioxide) and then settle again. For better flavor extraction, allow this to occur before pouring in more water.
- Repeat until all the coffee is prepared.
- Remove the filter and discard it.
- Stir the infusion to mix the stronger coffee, which arrives earlier, with the weaker coffee, which arrives at the end of the drip infusion.
- Serve the coffee.