There are so many ways to brew coffee, and no single method truly outclasses another.
Sure, aficionados will gush over the pour-over method or their French press – and rightfully so – but when friends and families are gathered at your home for the holidays, inevitably the auto drip coffee brewer is the quickest, most direct means of getting a hot cup of joe to Uncle Jack or Grandpa Gary.
Simplicity and speed may be the primary selling points of these units, but those traits shouldn’t be considered synonymous with a mediocre cup of coffee.
In fact, by following a few tried-and-true steps, you can provide your guests with a cup of the best drip coffee they’ve ever had.
- Storage is essential. A great cup of coffee starts with keeping whole coffee beans fresh. Your brewing method won’t make a difference if poor storage practices ruin your coffee beans before you even grind them. The National Coffee Association recommends storing beans in an opaque, airtight container at room temperature to protect them from air, moisture, heat, and light.
- Choose the right equipment. The old adage “you get what you paid for” has never been more apt than when it comes to brewing coffee. Bargain bin deals at the local Dollar Mart are not going to provide the level of sophistication – or even heated water, in many cases – required to brew a quality cup of coffee. That being said, there’s also no need to mortgage the house for a souped-up appliance that would put the latest iPhone to shame. You don’t need a gizmo that can control your television while measuring your heart rate and organizing your day planner. The goal is a great beverage. Period. Do some research online and select a well-reviewed machine that fits your style. A Coffee 10 Cup Programmable Thermal Coffee Maker, for example, is inexpensive and long-lasting and allows you to preprogram the brew with light, regular, or dark roast options.
- Maintain your equipment. We’ve all seen the milky, unsightly residue from calcium deposits that collects in the bottom of teapots and coffee machines. Not to mention other grime and grit that gathers over time. Not too appetizing. Keep things clean with 1-part vinegar and 2 parts water. Run this mixture through your auto drip maker at least twice, and then rinse with a pot of plain water. Do this monthly, if not more frequently, to ensure flawless functionality and a clean, crisp taste every time you brew a new pot.
- Use a quality product. The best drip coffee is only possible if you have a stellar brand of coffee, to begin with. Choose whole beans, medium roast, and grind them immediately before brewing to ensure a balanced, robust flavor. Our signature beans hail from some of the most amazing coffee producing regions in the world, before being custom-roasted at our Maryland headquarters using state-of-the-art equipment.
- Use quality water. Forget the tap and forego distilled and softened water entirely. For the best drip coffee, use filtered or bottled water only.
- Not too strong, not too weak – just right. While you don’t need to be laser-precise when it comes to measuring coffee for your drip machine, you also don’t want to wind up with a cup of murky water and/or tar. Orinoco recommends using two tablespoons per an 8 oz. cup, adjusting for personal taste.
- Hot coffee is good – burnt, not so much. Auto drip coffee makers are fast and efficient, which is why they’re so popular. But they also are regularly accused of churning out bitter, burnt coffee. That’s because, after brewing, the glass carafe is typically left in place on the burner where the coffee inside continues to boil. In order to provide the best drip coffee possible, remove the carafe from the heating element soon as the coffee has finished brewing. Or, better yet, purchase a thermal carafe, which will prevent burning, and keep your coffee warmer, longer.
By following these 7 simple steps you will be able to offer your guests the best drip coffee they’ve ever tasted and make a great impression this holiday season. Need to prep your kitchen? Stock up on Orinoco Coffee today.