Coffee is, without a doubt, the most popular legal drug in the world. It’s healthy for you, it gets you up and running even when all you feel like doing is sleeping in for another week, and it makes every social event that much more interesting and enjoyable. Without coffee in his life, what would the modern gentleman do?
Following up on our Gent’s Guides such as the one where we talk about everything whiskey, there is a need to educate the modern gentleman on how to craft the perfect steaming cup of java. After all, is there a better way to dazzle and bewilder your overnight guest than to bring a perfect cup of coffee to bed in the morning? Here’s how a gentleman makes his brew.
Know the measurements
Before you choose your beans and equip yourself with the latest of the coffee-making machinery, you need to know just what makes the coffee taste smooth, bitter, zesty, strong, or downright bland. Apart from the beans and their origins, the perfect cup of java will depend on the coffee to water ratio, how coarse you grind it, the brewing temperature, and the brewing process itself.
Firstly, understand that coarse-ground coffee will produce a smoother brew, while finely-ground beans will make the coffee taste more bitter. To each his own, but oftentimes smooth coffee tastes better. Next, for an ideal cup of java, you will need 25 grams of whole beans to go into 350 grams of hot water.
Why hot and not cold water? Because the process of heating up the water can affect the taste of the coffee. See, it’s these kinds of subtle nuances that differentiate a man from a gentleman. Lastly, you want to brew your coffee at a temperature between 195° and 205°F for the right mix of opulence and strength.
Choose the right equipment
For every coffee aficionado, equipment will be essential. Every type of brew requires a different type of brewer. You can use a moka pot if you’re a real coffee-brewing gentleman, or you can use an espresso machine to do the work for you, it’s your call – but if you’re doing it by hand, make sure you do it right.
Firstly, you’ll need a burr grinder to grind the whole beans. A burr grinder is not only a sexy tool to hold in your hand while you’re making casual conversation, but it also serves a distinct purpose of crushing the beans evenly, resulting in a more opulent brew.
Next, have a small kitchen scale at the ready in order to be precise about your measurements. It might seem like much at first glance, but knowing exactly how much coffee goes in the filter will be essential for a perfect cup of steaming java.
Buy the right coffee beans
Now for the most important part – the beans themselves. Whole coffee beans come in a variety of pure and mix blends, hailing from all corners of the world, so choosing your perfect type might seem like a daunting task. Generally, you want to go for the strongest coffee bean out there in order to ensure you’ll get the right kick without missing out on the flavour and the aroma.
Because coffee flavour depends on the amount of oxygen available to the plant during growth, certain types of coffee will have a zestier taste than others. For instance, coffee beans that have been grown in high altitudes tend to be more bitter, while those originating from low plains tend to be sweeter and lighter on the tongue. Keep in mind, though, that stronger doesn’t mean more bitter.
Using the right filters and fresh water matters
Contrary to popular belief, tap water is completely fine for brewing coffee, and distilled water can actually negatively affect the flavour. That said, you can use bottled water if the taste and smell of chlorine is overly present in your tap water.
As far as filters go, only choose between oxygen-bleached, dioxin-free and gold-plated, as these will produce the richness in the coffee you’re looking for. When combined with the right temperature, this is a formidable combination that will help you make a killer cup of java.
Store your beans properly
Lastly, keep in mind that the way you store coffee will have a big impact on every subsequent brew you make. Coffee beans cannot be allowed to simply lie around in your kitchen cabinet with the bag open – which should actually be a criminal offence. No, coffee needs to be tightly sealed in a paper bag, or better yet, a glass jar. This way, the beans will remain fresh for long periods of time, and the flavour will not lose its strength.
Making coffee is one of the most gentlemanly things you can do, for yourself and your partner. It’s sexy, it’s manly, and there is just something inexplicably attractive about a man who knows his brew. With that in mind, let this guide make you a king among other coffee-brewers.
Features Writer; Peter Minkoff
Peter is a a men's grooming & fashion writer at The Beard Mag & High Street Gent magazines from UK. Beside writing he worked as a menswear fashion stylist for many fashion events around UK & Europe! His future plans are in creating a personal blog for men's grooming!
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