So you’ve made up your mind – it’s time to get into making great coffee. You might be feeling overwhelmed by all the terminology, options, brewing methods, gear, etc. but don’t worry!
When you boil it all down, there are just three big steps to get from zero to hero when it comes to making great coffee at home. Follow these, and you’ll be drinking café-quality coffee from the comfort of your own home!
STEP ONE – BUY GOOD COFFEE
This might seem a little obvious, but it really is important to start by sourcing quality coffee. Much like cooking, where it takes quality ingredients to make really good food, brewing great coffee requires great beans.
A few ways to know that you’ve found high-quality coffee can be found on the bag itself! Look for:
-“Roasted on” rather than “use by” date: Quality coffee is fresh, and instead of using it before expiration, you want to use it when it’s still fresh from the roaster.
-Origin: if a bag of beans states where it came from – typically a country or a couple of countries if you’re buying a blend- you know there’s some intentionality behind sourcing and showcasing an awesome coffee.
-Flavor notes: this means a team of people from the roaster got together and analyzed the way this coffee tastes. That process takes time and expertise, which tells you that this coffee has a lot of passion behind it.
Once you get a bag of great coffee, it’s time to do it justice. The next step?
STEP TWO – A GREAT COFFEE GRINDER
The most important tool for great coffee at home is a solid burr grinder. A burr grinder, as opposed to a blade grinder, utilizes precision cutters called burrs which mill coffee down into a uniform particle size. A blade grinder just whirls away and chops beans up. The key difference here is that a burr grinder cuts coffee down until it reaches your desired size, whereas a blade grinder keeps cutting the same coffee over and over again, requiring the user to check progress periodically.
Blade grinders tend to produce much less uniform coffee, and are less consistent when it comes to repeatable performance.
A burr grinder, like the Virtuoso+, will give you exactly the same grind at each setting, every time. It’s a great tool for precision grind adjustments as well. All of our grinders have multiple grind settings which allow you to control precisely what size of ground coffee you get. It’s this grind uniformity, repeatability, and control that makes your coffee at home as good as coffee from a café when you grind with a quality burr grinder.
Buying great coffee and a great grinder are the biggest hurdle, and now you’ve cleared them both! Next up is one more stage in your journey.
STEP THREE – MASTER YOUR METHOD
There are a million ways to make coffee, and each has its pros and cons. We’ve discussed a lot of popular methods in detail before, and there are tons of other resources for folks looking to try new ways of brewing!
ABOVE ALL – KEEP LEARNING
As you drink more and more awesome coffee, you’ll notice you’ve fallen down the rabbit hole: there’s always more to learn about how to make coffee better. With great coffee and a great grinder in your arsenal, the options are almost limitless for you to keep learning and trying new things.
As you get more advanced, you might explore more advanced grinders as well. Exciting features like grind-by-weight, or espresso grinding directly into a portafilter are available on several of our models.
From new gear to advanced techniques to specialized water – you can always dive deeper. Our blog has lots of helpful knowledge for learning how best to use your grinder to get there.
As you embark on your coffee journey, remember these three big steps towards making awesome coffee at home: buy great coffee, use an advanced grinder, and keep learning.