What Is the Best Way to Brew Coffee?

How you brew coffee can have an even more dramatic effect on the end result than the beans you use.

The ideal conditions for extraction — a technical name for how brewing pulls out certain flavors from coffee grounds — are always the same. The “perfect” cup of coffee is about one part coffee to 20 parts hot water at 195° F – 200 °F for a few minutes at a steady rate.

Yet, there are many ways to achieve this outcome that can result in a unique flavor profile. There is therefore no 100% “right” way to brew coffee, but there are some methods that we personally recommend over others.

Disclaimer: Ditch the Pod and Use Fresh Grounds

Your first order of business is to never use pod-based, single-portion coffee makers if you want to expect a quality result. The pre-ground blends are inevitably low-quality and create disturbing amounts of waste. Even when grinding your own beans, most single-portion machines fail to heat up the water or pour it over in the needed ratio to create a well-crafted result.

Another important designator is to buy an adjustable burr grinder and stick to whole bean coffees. Always store your beans in an airtight container and grind just a few minutes before brewing for maximum freshness.

With that out of the way, here are our top-recommended ways to brew your own coffee:

1. Pour Over

Since you will want precise control on the temperature of the water, the rate that it is poured and other perfection factors, the most calculated way to prepare a cup of coffee is with a pour-over system.

Using a cone filter attached to a carafe, you can slowly pour water over your fresh grounds to control the exact character of your coffee cup. Practice makes perfect, but this method is the only way to control all of the needed conditions.

Among pour-over systems, any filter-shaped funnel that can sit securely on a carafe will work. You can also try fancier systems like the beautiful all-glass-and-wood Chemex, but don’t expect the results to improve just because you spent more money.

2. French Press

Even with the amount of control you have during a pour-over, French press coffee still has its merits. It will tend to be low-acid while having a nut-oil flavor and a full body. Nevertheless, some may find the results weaker than they are used to.

When using a French press, make sure you have a burr grinder that can produce the coarse grounds ideal for the system.

3. Drip Coffee Maker

Surprisingly, your average drip coffee maker can do a satisfactory imitation of a pour-over as long as it can reach a high enough temperature. Look for a maker that can set its temperature. Alternatively, you can pre-brew water and place it back in the tank to ensure it gets hot enough.

Just make sure to clean your coffee maker every few uses!

4. Aeropress

The Aeropress combines French press and pour-over methods to obtain a unique, flavorful result. This method won out on Thrillist’s blind coffee taste test among all types of coffee drinkers, and it costs less than most drip makers do.

Best Way to Brew Coffee? With Good Beans

While these methods help brew coffee the way it is supposed to be brewed, starting with a delicious raw ingredient should be a top priority. For that reason, we suggest our gourmet coffees, which include estate coffees, rich espressos and delicious blends.

Place your order and select your personal roast preference to obtain a truly miraculous cup of coffee no matter how you choose to brew.