The time has come to share with you the brew guide for the super yummy April 2021 coffee subscription box that just left the warehouse today. Boy, what a treat this one is!
Featuring exquisite coffees from Father’s Coffee, Belleville and Prolog, this box will take you on a journey to Ethiopia, Honduras and Mexico. I just came back from Mexico a few days ago and cannot tell you how much I love being there.
In case you didn’t know, my mum is Mexican and I was born in Mexico City but sadly, I never really lived there. That is why I treasure every minute that I get to spend there, especially when Michal comes along and I can explore this rich and beautiful country with him while eating tacos at every opportunity, of course.
For this brew guide, I brought out my good old syphon, a brew method that I personally love but that isn’t everyone’s favourite. It is a bit fiddly and not very practical to take with you but if you have one at home, it’s worth putting it to use every now and again.
What I love the most about it is that it’s so theatrical. If you have friends over for coffee and cake, this brew method is a real eye catcher and will definitely wow your friends.
And, as has become tradition, I am also including a custom playlist for you that includes a bunch of songs from my student years. I kind of felt like a bit of indie rock this time 😉
So, without further ado, let’s dive into this month’s brew guide including recipes from the three roasters.
As in any good kitchen or bar, you want to be sure to have a few key items at your disposal that will aid you in preparing a delicious cup of coffee.
- Scales (with or without a timer – you can use your phone or your watch)
- A good quality burr grinder such as the Comandante Grinder
- The Kruve Sifter (not required but handy to filter out fines)
- Your favourite brew method (Origami, Kalita Wave, V60, AeroPress etc)
- A clean vessel for brewing and decanting
- Water for brewing. I use the brilliant Peak Water filtration system
- A pouring kettle but a regular kettle will also do, however, it requires more precision
It’s very important to always freshly grind your coffee just before preparation because coffee is very volatile and quickly loses its full aroma in a matter of minutes.
You can also vacuum pack your coffee in portions, name and number each batch and then keep it in a dry cool place. More information about freshness and how to rest your coffees can be found in this article.
For espresso, I use my home espresso machine, a Lelit MaraX along with a separate grinder for espresso. I use the same water I use for brewing.
My recipe for Father’s Coffee, Ethiopia Bombe:
Syphon: First things first. Take 20g of coffee and grind relatively coarse. I set my Comandante Grinder to 30 clicks. Due to the longer extraction time, you want a coarser grind to bring out those lovely flavours.
Then heat your water in a kettle and make sure you correctly secure the small hook at the end of the chain to the glass pipe of the top chamber. Once your water is boiled, add 300g of water to the bottom chamber and then properly secure the top chamber in place. I use a small camping stove rather than the lamp as a heat source as I can better regulate the temperature this way.
Once the water has risen into the top chamber and you see bubbles rising in pulses, lower your temperature somewhat but make sure it’s not too low otherwise your drawdown will begin prematurely. Add your coffee and then use a cupping spoon to just gently push it down.
As this is a full immersion brew method, your coffee grinds will rise to the top. After 1 minute, gently push them down again with your spoon. Keep your moist cloth at hand. At 1:30 minutes, remove the heat source and wrap the bottom chamber with your moist cloth. This will speed up the drawdown process. Once all of the coffee has passed down to the bottom chamber, give it a good swirl and serve.
If you are using the cloth filter, make sure you throw it in some boiling water after every brew to properly wash it. Just holding it under running water won’t do the trick. Enjoy!
Belleville’s recipe for filter:
Kalita Wave: 30g/500ml. 30 second bloom with 60ml water (~94°C). Pour in small increments maintaining the water level one cm below top of the filter until the entire 500ml has been poured. Coffee should finish dripping through in approximately 3 minutes.
Belleville’s recipe for espresso:
Grind 20g coffee fine. Yield: 52 ml. Extraction time: 26-30 seconds.
Father’s Coffee’s recipe for filter:
V60: We would use 16g of coffee for 250g of water, ideally around 100ppm or little less. Corse grind setting and pour 50g of water each 30s, in circle, fast and aggressive pouring so the coffee get properly mixed each time. Total time should be 2:50 – 3:00 minutes. If the coffee get stuck at the end then take the V60 off the vessel and pour in little bit of extra water in rather the letingt it drip for longer.
Father’s Coffee’s recipe for filter:
Use 18g of coffee in 17g basket (15g in 14g basket) the ratio should be 1:2,2 in around 30 seconds. But don’t hesitate to experiment with this. We have had feedback saying 1:2 ratios and also 1:3 are working very well. It very much depends on your water and equipment. If you are using automatic espresso machines then please use the very fine grind setting and prolong the ratio to avoid any unpleasant sour notes.
Prolog’s recipe for filter:
We brew filter using any of three methods in Prolog Coffee Bar; Fetco batch brewer, Hario V60 and using the ‘Gabi Master A Brewer’.
Usually the ratio remains fairly constant; 60g/L water. We are lucky to have an RO filtration system at the coffee bar, so we have tuned it to approximately 40ppm for our filter coffee.
If you don’t have access to filtered water, your local tap water probably brews delicious coffee, too 🙂 Using a V60 (as this is the most common brewing device among our customers): 15g of medium ground coffee; think coarse table salt!
250g water freshly boiled Rinse your V60 filter; this helps to preheat the cone & wash away any undesirable papery taste. Start your timer & bloom the coffee with 50g freshly boiled water, stirring or swirling the brewer to ensure all grounds are evenly saturated.
At the 30 second mark, start pouring 100g slowly in circles from the centre until you hit 150g (50g bloom + 100g pour) At the 1 minute mark, pour the remaining 100g slowly in circles from the centre until you hit 250g (50g bloom + 100g pour + 100g pour)
As the coffee draws down through the slurry, give it a gentle swirl & a quick tap to dislodge any grounds stuck higher up on the filter. We aim for a brew time of between 2:00-3:00 with a final TDS of 1.35 & extraction of 20.5%-21.5% Finally, give your coffee a good swirl in the jug before enjoying some Prolog goodness!
Prolog’s recipe for espresso:
We recommend a 1:2.2-2.4 brew ratio for espresso. In the coffee bar in Copenhagen we brew espresso under approximately 7 bar pressure using water 70-90ppm at 93ºc.
We use 20g VST baskets and dose anywhere between 18.5-20g. Typically, we brew our espresso relatively quickly; 20 seconds is the typical time. We enjoy juicy vibrant espresso where the fruit flavours really stand out, but if you are adding milk or prefer a richer more intense shot, you can grind slightly finer & run a similar brew ratio in approx 27 seconds.
We try to steer away from giving exact recommendations or a very specific recipe, as we know every person has a different palate, not to mention our access to equipment and water varies greatly! Brew coffee you enjoy drinking!
What did you think of these recipes and the coffees from the April 2021 Coffeevine box? Let me know in the comments down below and make sure you subscribe in time for the upcoming May 2021 coffee subscription box.