Pour Over Coffee made Simple

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Pour Over coffee has emerged in the specialty category over the past few years. With Pour Over, you can control the speed that the water flows over the coffee and the time that is allowed to let the full flavor be extracted from the grounds.

There is not a “perfect brewing method” when it comes to Pour Over coffee. You just need to make sure your beans are fresh, you find the right grind size that suits your taste, and make adjustments as you go. The beautiful thing about us all being different is that we all like different things and that’s ok.

I’m just here to explain what Pour Over coffee is, why it’s my favorite, and show you a simple method to get started brewing it.

What is Pour Over Coffee

It’s one of the most basic ways to make coffee. It’s just you, your cup, a filter, and a funnel. But, if done right, it can give you a full-flavored cup of joe. I have to say that of all the methods I have ever tried, Pour Over is my favorite. I can drink my favorite coffee black, without adding anything to it.

Basically, all you are doing is pouring hot water over coffee grounds into a cup. (However, you can mess it up.)

Pour Over Maker

In order to make Pour Over you are going to need some equipment.

First, you will need to invest in a dripper like the Hario V60. I like this one because it is ceramic and durable. It helps retain the heat to ensure a constant temperature while brewing. The cone shape with the grooves helps accentuate the coffee flavors.

V60 pour over coffee maker with filter and coffee grounds

Pour Over Filter

The filters that I use are the V60 paper filters. I use these filters since I use the v60 but you might need to find out which filters work best for which ever type of Pour Over maker you choose.

Pour Over Kettle

I love this pour over gooseneck kettle with the thermometer. The slender gooseneck gives you great control over the pour without letting it pour too fast. The thermometer allows you to see the temperature to make sure you stay within the proper range (195-205°F).

gooseneck kettle with thermometer
gooseneck kettle thermometer

Pour Over Ratio

You will need to figure out what ratio suits your taste buds but you can start with 1:17. This is 1 gram of coffee to 17 ml of water. Some suggest 1:15 but as I said before, you will need to try a few and see what you like best.

For a pot, use 500 ml of water to 32 grams of coffee grounds. (a little over 2 cups water to 6 tbsp of coffee)

Be sure that you use filtered water. Using water that is contaminated or has minerals in it can mess up the flavor of the coffee beans. We have well water and I like the taste but if your water isn’t appealing to you, it can alter your coffee flavor.

Also, put a little extra water in so you can rinse the filter and heat your cup prior to brewing.

Pour Over Grind Size

I recommend a medium grind but some say if you use a finer grind it will increase the aroma and body of the beans. For a medium grind, it will need to look like rough sea salt.

If your coffee is too watery or sour, try a finer grind. If you find it to be bitter, try a courser grind. This is where you are going to have to try different ways until you find what you like. There is no one size fits all when it comes to coffee flavor and how it tastes to each individual will differ.

3 photos of coffee grinds and can of coffee

How to Pour

Let’s start simple. That’s the point behind this entire post is to show you how to start doing it the easiest way I know how and tweak it from there to suit your liking. When you are a beginner you will want to use (and know about) what is called the “bloom” method.

pour over coffee with air roasted invader coffee beans
Must try Air Roasted Coffee from Invader Coffee –http://bit.ly/invadermama

The bloom method is pouring twice the amount of water into the grinds so that the gases (CO2) escape the coffee. If you don’t do this, and the gases get trapped it can mess up the flavor of the coffee. (When it “blooms”, it will rise and look like a bloom.)

v60 with filter, water and grounds demonstrating bloom effect
  1. Start by pouring your water in a circle from the outer rim to the inner circle of the cup. (this is when it blooms) Stop pouring when the scale says 60 grams. Wait 30-45 seconds. (note- you don’t have to use a scale, just use your best judgment)
  2. Pour again starting in the center and spiraling outwards. Stop when the scale says 150 grams. Let it extract for 45-60 seconds.
  3. Use the same pattern and spiral the water until the scale says 250 grams. Wait for the water to extract.
  4. Last pour- spiral until it says 350 grams and wait 20-30 seconds.

There you have it! Your coffee is finished. Now…you can taste…be sure its ok and then enjoy.

coffee cup full of coffee on counter top with lid beside

Possible Pour Over Problems

  1. Your water is too hot.
    1. If your water is too hot, you are just burning your coffee which will give it a bad taste. Try to have your water temperature between 195 and 205 degrees fahrenheit.
  2. You didn’t rinse the filter first.
    1. If you don’t rinse your filter with hot water before you add the beans, you might notice a paper flavor. Do this over your cup so that it heats it all up prior to the pour.
  3. Your grinds were the wrong size.
    1. Depending on the taste you are after, your grind size will need to be adjusted or you could have a bitter taste or a sour coffee.
  4. You brewed into a cold container.
    1. If you rinse the filter prior to the pour, your container will be warm. It will help the coffee stay hotter longer.
  5. You ground your beans too far in advance.
    1. Grinding the beans too far in advance will start the oxidation process too early. It is recommended to always grind the right before you are ready to brew.
coffee cup design drawn with finger into spilled coffee grounds

I hope this has helped you to figure out where to start with Pour Over coffee. Like I have mentioned before, you are going to have to play around with it until you figure out what you like.

You should also remember that the quality of the beans plays a huge role in taste. AND- using pre-ground beans will affect the taste.

As I have said time and time again, once you grind fresh, you will never go back no matter what brew method you choose. Fresh beans that are ground right before brewing will give you the best results.

Please comment below if you have tried this and what you did. I love to hear all the different variations out there.

You can also check out my Pinterest page for more coffee info.

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