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The Best Way to Brew Coffee: A Guide To 8 Popular Methods

the best way to brew coffee

the best way to brew coffee

What's the best way to brew coffee? That’s like asking who your favorite child is. It’s an impossible question to answer without knowing what all of them have done when you aren’t looking.

Just kidding… But the truth is, there are many coffee brewing options available that vary in the time they require, gadgets they involve, and flavor profiles they produce. The best coffee brewing method for you depends on your personal preferences.

So whether you like your morning coffee routine to be mindless or more intricate, here’s a guide to some of the most popular brewing methods out there.


1. Drip Coffee Machine

Auto-drip coffee machines are one of the most common household brewing methods due to their ease of use, convenience, and ability to make large amounts of coffee at once. If you have counter space to spare, a drip machine is definitely one of the most convenient methods money can buy.

  • Brew Method: Drip
  • Time: 5-10 minutes
  • Grind: Medium
  • Filter Method: Paper
  • Coffee / Water Ratio: 60g / 34 oz. (may vary based on machine model)
  • Water Temp: 195-205 F

You’ll Like This Method If: You want a consistent taste, you have multiple coffee-lovers in your household, you ain’t got time to mess around in the morning and need that caffeine mainlined into your bloodstream ASAP.

2. Cold Brew

Cold brew coffee is not to be confused with iced coffee (gasp!), as it uses an entirely different brewing method than just adding ice. Making cold brew coffee involves steeping coffee grounds in water for long periods of time, and results in a strong coffee concentrate that's typically less acidic and more smooth than hot-brewed coffee.

  • Brew Method: Drip
  • Time: 12-24 hours
  • Grind: Medium-coarse
  • Filter Method: Paper (usually)
  • Coffee / Water Ratio: 256g / 64 oz. or 2 cups / 8 cups (Cold brew ratios are typically 1:4)
  • Water Temp: Room temperature (~70 F)

You’ll Like This Method If: You want a less acidic and smoother taste, you live in a warm climate and a hot cup of coffee is as appealing as ripping a band-aid off a hairy leg.

3. Pour Over

While there are many different pour over devices available, the principle method is standard: Pour hot water over a cylindrical filter containing coffee grounds. However, don’t let the simplicity fool you. Pour over allows you to have a lot of control over the flavor profile of coffee, which is appealing to many coffee connoisseurs.

  • Brew Method: Drip
  • Time: 2-3 minutes
  • Grind: Medium-Coarse
  • Filter Method: Paper, metal, or cloth
  • Coffee / Water Ratio: 30g / 17 oz.
  • Water Temp: 195-205 F

You’ll Like This Method If: Consistency is not your number one priority, you like tinkering with flavor and aroma profiles, you seek higher states of consciousness via the incredibly meditative practice of pouring hot water over coffee grounds.

4. French Press

A French Press is a simple manual brewing method that involves steeping and filtering coffee, similarly to a cup of tea. Because of the steeping, this method takes a bit longer than other manual brewing processes, but produces an incredibly flavorful cuppa.

  • Brew Method: Steep
  • Time: 5-10 minutes
  • Grind: Coarse
  • Filter Method: Metal
  • Coffee / Water Amounts: 50g / 28 oz.
  • Water Temp: 195-205 F

You’ll Like This Method If: You want a simple manual brewing method, you enjoy a full-bodied taste, you like anything that makes you feel French (errr, actually, turns out the French Press was invented by Italians. You’ll thank us at Trivia Night).

5. AeroPress

The AeroPress is a relatively new brewing method that originated in California. It’s a single-serve piston-like brewer that forces coffee through a filter, creating a clean espresso-like concentrate.

  • Brew Method: Pressure
  • Time: 2-3 minutes
  • Grind: Fine
  • Filter Method: Paper or metal
  • Coffee / Water Amounts: 15g / 8 oz.
  • Water Temp: 195-205 F

You’ll Like This Method If: You like the bold taste of espresso, you don’t mind making a single serving at a time, you travel frequently and want to feel like a coffee snob while you’re camping.

6. Moka Pot

The Moka Pot is a classic European stove-top device that brews a strong coffee concentrate using steam and pressure. It’s fairly easy to use, and the device itself is just so darn adorable you’ll want to cry.

  • Brew Method: Pressure
  • Time: 2 minutes
  • Grind: Fine
  • Filter Method: Metal
  • Coffee / Water Ratio: 20g / 11 oz.
  • Water Temp: 195-205 F

You’ll Like This Method If: You want a taste similar to espresso, you like simplicity, you want to feel like you’re at a tiny tea party with the Queen.

7. Siphon

A siphon is a true coffee nerd’s dream. It brews coffee using a live flame, two glass “balloons”, and vacuum pressure, leading to a full-bodied, clear cup of coffee. Science!

  • Brew Method: Pressure
  • Time: 3-5 minutes
  • Grind: Medium-Fine
  • Filter Method: Glass, paper, metal, or cloth
  • Coffee / Water Ratio: 35g / 20 oz.
  • Water Temp: 195-205 F

You’ll Like This Method If: You don’t mind intricate brewing methods, you like full body and clarity, you want to feel like a mad scientist while you’re making coffee.

8. Espresso Machine

An espresso machine is an automatic brewing method that involves a pump and boiler to force pressurized steam through ground coffee. The result is a consistent shot of creamy espresso.

  • Brew Method: Pressure
  • Time: < 1 minute
  • Grind: Fine
  • Filter Method: Metal
  • Coffee / Water Ratio: For a double shot, ~20g / 1.5 oz. (Espresso ratios are typically 1:2)
  • Water Temp: 195-205 F

You’ll Like This Method If: You’re a die-hard espresso lover, you want the consistency and convenience of non-manual brewing, good coffee is worth its weight in gold and you don’t mind dropping some dough $$$.


Summary

Coffee brewing methods are like soulmates: There’s one out there for everyone.

But no matter which brewing method you choose, the perfect cup always comes down to the quality of your coffee. When you brew with a coffee that’s crafted for health, roasted for maximum flavor, and packaged to maintain freshness, you really can’t go wrong. 

So before you grab another bag of that cheap grocery store stuff, try out Kion Coffee. Certified Organic, rich in antioxidants, free of contaminants, and arriving to your door tasting as fresh as the day it was roasted… Kion Coffee is a coffee in a class of its own, and is truly worth every penny.

For more awesome tips to make your coffee taste amazing, check out these articles:

12 thoughts on “The Best Way to Brew Coffee: A Guide To 8 Popular Methods

  1. Tom, The Cuisinart cbm-18n one for $78 has been very reliable and consistant. Bit loud but at half the price of comparable ones, is a deal. These things have static electricity (on the coffee bin-coffee flies around a bit) it’s normal.

    https://smile.amazon.com/Cuisinart-CBM-18N-Programmable-Conical-Burr/dp/B001NGO28Q/ref=mp_s_a_1_42?keywords=burr+grinders+for+coffee+beans&qid=1566509916&s=gateway&sprefix=Burr+grinder&sr=8-42#

  2. Sorry guys, but you missed another method, which might not be very popular in North America but brews the most delicious coffee in the world: Turkish coffee (in Greece it’s called Greek coffee, but it’s pretty much the same). That method is #1 in popularity in Middle East and south-eastern Europe 🙂

    1. Hey Tom – check out the JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder! It’s great for single servings, and you get a nice arm workout too! 😉

    2. Tom, The Cuisinart cbm-18n one for $78 has been very reliable and consistant. Bit loud but at half the price of comparable ones, is a deal. These things have static electricity (on the coffee bin-coffee flies around a bit) it’s normal.

      https://smile.amazon.com/Cuisinart-CBM-18N-Programmable-Conical-Burr/dp/B001NGO28Q/ref=mp_s_a_1_42?keywords=burr+grinders+for+coffee+beans&qid=1566509916&s=gateway&sprefix=Burr+grinder&sr=8-42#

  3. Yes!! I make my cold brew in a French Press.

    – Grind beans
    -Steep in room temp water
    – Put the plunge in the press, but don’t press for 12-24 hours.

    Enjoy over ice and prepare the cold brew for the next day — best way to have fresh cold brew every morning pre-work out 😉

    1. Hey Sean. We aren’t aware of any ways to slow down peristalsis from coffee, but most people view this as a benefit! 😉 If your reaction is troublesome or severe, you might want to check with your doc about potential intestinal issues, as coffee/caffeine can sometimes flare those up. Best of luck!

  4. Hilarious descriptions 😂 wasn’t expecting a good laugh while reading this, yet it helped me learn a few things and smile (though, reading about Kion coffee usually makes me smile anyways) cheers!

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