TGIFriday: How to make great filter coffee

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We were recently treated to a Masterclass at Homeground Coffee in Singapore, courtesy of Girard-Perregaux and The Hour Glass.

TGIFriday: How to make great filter coffee

The instructor for our brewing that afternoon was none other than Elysia Tan, co-owner of Homeground Coffee. Elysia is two time Singapore Brewers Cup Champion, and 2nd Runner-up at the 2022 Worlds Brewers Cup in Melbourne. Her is a clip of her presentation at the 2022 WBrC.

We begin as with the mise en place.

But before we started to brew, we were treated to a roasting demonstration. This was done with an Ikawa 50g sample roaster. Similar to the one used by our friend Brighty in our review at his home recently. For many this was their first encounter with green coffee beans, and to witness the chemical changes that take place during brewing. More details are found at our hand roasting article here. After a few minutes, the coffee was roasted. However, the beans need to rest to degass. And we used a coffee prepared earlier for our brewing.

We began by setting the hand grinder to 16 clicks anti-clockwise. We later also tried 20 clicks for a coarser grind. We then weighed out 12 grams of coffee beans and poured it into the hand grinder. Next step was the “elbow grease” to grind the coffee, by rotating the handle clockwise until no pressure was felt. The grounds collected in the bottom chamber of the hand grinder and were then put in a One-Touch Dripper, a convenient, one time use filter system which can be propped up on the pot.

The recipe calls for a 15:1 brew ratio. This means 15g of water to every gram of coffee. We had 12g of coffee grounds, so the target was to pour in 180g of hot water. To start, 60g of hot water was poured over the grounds. This first step is to throughly wet the grounds in a process called the bloom phase. Soaked with the hot water, the coffee grounds swell and expand.

Then the rest of the 120g of hot water was poured carefully over the grounds. The filter coffee collected in the pot, and measured just a bit less than 180g, as the wet grounds retained a little of the moisture. This was then poured out into cups to be enjoyed.

After this, all there was left to do is to enjoy the coffee. This specific Ethopian is a single origin Arabica had a very clean palate, with good notes of soft berries.