8 Coffee Brewing Mistakes That Keep You From Making a Perfect Cup

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Brewing a perfect cup of coffee doesn’t come easy. Despite making cup after cup every single day, most people are still struggling to make coffee that tastes as good as the ones they get in local coffee shops. If this is you, chances are you’re probably committing some coffee brewing mistakes, which can drastically alter the quality and taste of the finished pot.

Coffee brewing mistakes stand between you and a great cup of coffee. Listed below are 8 of the most common mistakes people make when brewing coffee. Avoid these mistakes, and we can assure you that you’ll be able to make the best coffee of your life right in your kitchen.

Coffee brewing mistakes

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Old or stale coffee beans

Freshness is critical to a quality cup of coffee. If you want to make the perfect cup of joe, we highly recommend that you use fresh coffee beans. Ideally, you want to use coffee beans that have been roasted within the last 3 weeks. If you can’t remember when you bought yours, chances are it’s no longer fresh.

Coffee beans will go stale over time. Although it’s safe to consume the beans six months after roasting, they won’t taste as good as they originally did. You will no longer pick out flavorful notes and appreciate a selection’s body and acidity.

When buying coffee beans, always check the roast date stamped on the package. This is to ensure that you’re not getting stale beans. Whenever possible, limit your purchase to as much as you can consume within 1 to 2 weeks.

Using pre-ground coffee

Some people buy pre-ground coffee beans because it’s more convenient, and it’s fine. But if you expect to make cafe-quality coffee, then you should buy whole ground coffee beans and do the grinding yourself.

Using good quality, freshly ground beans will result in a great-tasting cup. Grinding releases oils and gases that hold the very best flavor. Do yourself a favor and invest on a coffee grinder. It will significantly improve your coffee brewing experience.

Not getting the right coffee grind size

Different brewing methods require different grind size. Getting the right coffee grind size is essential for extracting the perfect amount of flavor from your coffee. The reason why we use different grind size is to avoid under or over extracting our coffee.

The range of grinds typically runs from extra fine to extra coarse. If you are an espresso drinker, then a fine grind is ideal. Make sure, though, that you don’t go too fine. Otherwise, water won’t go through at all. If you usually use an automatic drip coffee maker, a medium grind – somewhere between sea salt and table salt – is a good start. A coarse grind works well for a French Press.

Incorrect coffee to water ratio

Many of us are sleep-deprived. If you’re like me, you’re probably not in the mood to measure coffee properly in the morning. You haphazardly toss a few scoops of coffee into the filter and splash in some water. You’re hoping to make a spectacular cup of coffee, but you often get a pot of coffee that is barely drinkable.

In order to make the best coffee possible, you need to make sure that you get your coffee to water ratio right. Otherwise, you’ll end up with weak, water coffee or it may be too strong and bitter.

Dirty equipment

Millions of people from all over the world brew coffee as part of their daily routine. With daily use, calcium and other mineral deposits can build up in your coffee maker, which can affect the operation of your coffee machine.

Your coffee and espresso machine needs to be cleaned every now and then. Keeping your coffee machine clean and tidy will not only add years onto your much-loved machine, it will also deliver noticeably tastier results. Make sure that all parts and components of the coffee machine are clean and rinsed thoroughly.  

Using tap water

Coffee is made with only 2 ingredients – coffee and water. Conventional coffee wisdom tells that that good quality coffee beans almost always result in great tasting coffee. Unfortunately, most people fail to realize  

The water you use to make coffee has a great impact on the end product. While you may think that tap water is all you need to make coffee, it contains chemicals and minerals that isn’t good for your coffee. Chlorine and other minerals can alter the taste and aroma of your coffee, which can have a drastic effect on the finished product.  

To enjoy a quality cup of java, it is best to use clean water that is free of off-flavors and odors.

Using the wrong water temperature

Using the right water temperature is another important aspect of good coffee making. The optimal temperature for making the best tasting coffee is between 91 and 96 degrees.

The water temperature should be just right to extract the purest aromas and flavors from your coffee. Using water that is not hot enough will result in under extraction and bland coffee. If you use water that is too hot, your coffee will taste bitter.

Improper coffee storage

Light, heat, moisture, and air are your beans’ greatest enemies. You might be tempted to place them in clear canisters and have it on display in your kitchen shelves, but please resist the urge to do so. They may be nice to look at, but light will compromise the taste of your coffee. Also, avoid putting it near the oven or any area in your kitchen that gets too much sun.

To maximize the freshness and flavor of your coffee beans, we recommend that you place them in an opaque, airtight container at room temperature.

Final thoughts

Finer things in life don’t come that easily. If you wish to enjoy coffee at its best, then you need to do it with finesse and passion. If you do it hastily, then you’ll end up with low quality coffee.

With the right technique as well as fresh, good quality coffee beans, you’ll be able to treat yourself with the smoothest and most flavorful cup of joe ever. Avoid these common coffee brewing mistakes, and we can assure you that a bold and delicious cup of joe is attainable at home.

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