Coffee is a drink globally enjoyed, and it comes in different forms and variations. It is prepared in several ways, each presenting a distinct taste and experience. In more ways than one, coffee brewing methods can be likened to relationships—some are fast and easy, and some need more time. The amount of time you invest in brewing coffee can change the experience entirely.
The Key To Influencing Coffee Flavor
There are many ways to influence the coffee's flavor, from where and how it is grown down to how the water interacts with the grounds. This means every step of the coffee experience is a variable that changes the coffee flavor. So how do we get the flavor we want? There are only certain factors we can control, and one of them is choosing a brewing method. This is because of the vital process called extraction.
Extraction: Immersion vs. Pour Over
Extraction is how water pulls the flavors and compounds from coffee grounds, which is the key activity in brewing. And for every brewing method, extraction differs, altering the coffee flavor.
There are generally two categories for brewing coffee, with the exception of the espresso method which is a specific way of producing this strong drink.
- Immersion (Percolation) – True to the name, immersion coffee requires coffee grounds to be fully immersed in water, which is within your control. Water and coffee grounds interact with each other until it is pressed onto a filter or poured out. Cold-brew, French press, and AeroPress are common examples of immersion type brewing. It is regarded as a simple brewing method thoroughly enjoyed by everyone.
- Pour-over (Drip) – As the term implies, you pour water over the coffee, and it drips from a filter to the cup. Immersion coffee waits for your signal, but pour-over or drip coffee allows water to flow independently. The water has to be poured evenly, so it isn't sour and under-extracted or bitter and over-extracted. Because water reacts differently in pour-over coffee, your grounds have to be consistent in size to ensure consistency of flavor. Some examples include coffee drip machines and conical pour-over coffee makers.
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The Verdict: Which One Is The Best?
We know you're waiting for a verdict, but there is no best coffee brewing method. All these methods bring out different flavors from coffee, which is worth trying and enjoying. If you're a beginner, the immersion method is more forgiving to the process, and if you want to try your luck learning the coffee process, drip and pour-over methods are worth experiencing. And just like relationships, some coffee brewing methods won't work out, but as you experiment with them, you'll find one that's just right for you.