Why Use Cold Water for Coffee
Cold water is preferred under the assumption that most people use tap water for coffee preparation. In such cases, cold water is fresher than hot tap water. This is because the tap water stays for long periods in water heaters as it awaits to be dispensed. This, in turn, makes it lose some of its freshness. In addition, cold water holds onto dissolved gases from the air, which adds to its fresh nature. Better and fresh water inevitably makes better and tastier coffee.
How do I keep coffee hot?
Optimally, brew a fresh batch whenever you want coffee. To keep coffee hot for shorter periods of time, or for travel, use a thermally insulated container; an enclosed container will reduce the loss of the aromatics that constitute an essential part of the overall flavor and experience. Insulated containers with glass internals, though somewhat delicate, have the least effect upon the coffee taste, followed by good quality stainless steel. Coffee with significant residual sediment, such as coffee brewed in a French press, fares less well when kept hot for extended periods; the sediment continues to extract, making the coffee bitter.
Should I use a Paper filter?
Paper filters are the most widely used filter. They do the most thorough job in removing particulates but will also absorb some of the essential oils and aromatics from the coffee. This will yield a brew with less aroma and perceived body. Filters are similar to copy paper in that their thicknesses can vary from brand to brand, as a result, their impact upon the brew's flavor will differ. Paper filters are disposable with easier cleanup.
Paper filters may also be divided into bleached and natural varieties. The natural filters can impart a taste described as wet cardboard, especially if a lower-quality brand is used. Though once bleached with chlorine, most bleached filters are now whitened with oxygen.
Avoid cheap filters; in addition to possibly effecting the coffee's taste, they may clog easily, either over-extracting or forcing you to use a coarser grind and thereby possibly under-extracting.
Paper filters are most often used with most types of drip coffee makers and with percolators.
Do I need a coffee grinder?
Grinding your own coffee is one of the best steps you can take towards a superior brew. Coffee stales quickly after it is ground; buying fresh coffee from a local roaster and having them grind it in the store largely negates the benefits of purchasing recently roasted coffee.
The most common found grinders look like miniature blenders. They operate by chopping up the beans with two or more sharp blades spinning at high speeds. Grinders can be purchased as electric models as well as manually operated, such as the hand-cranked models that are compared to flour mills.
How do I properly store my coffee?
This is a very commonly asked question. It creates a robust discussion over a great cup of Sunday Morning Coffee.
Coffee beans must be isolated from air and moisture. Probably the best storage containers are made from glass or glazed ceramic, which have the added benefit of being easily cleaned. If glass is used, the container should be kept in a dark location, the containers must be able to maintain an air- and moisture-proof seal. Alternately, mylar/plastic bags with one-way valves can also do a fine job so long as care is taken to ensuring an airtight seal.
Try not to purchase more whole-bean coffee than can be consumed in approximately a week to two weeks post-roast, regardless of the storage container. Coffee beans primarily stale because of the loss of aromatic and volatile compounds, which occurs continually with the outgassing of carbon dioxide.