Now that you’re familiar with some of the ways of brewing coffee, we can get a bit more technical about how to make the best of each brew! One simple way of dramatically increasing the taste of your coffee is to ensure you’re grinding the beans right for your brew method.
Wait, it’s not one grind size fits all?
But the good news is that once you know how to grind for your preferred coffee method, you’re going to be making insanely delicious coffee (well, as long as you have insanely delicious beans).
Why does grind size matter? Let's throw it back to high school math to learn more.
When you grind beans, you’re creating surface area. The more surface area you have exposed to water, the more flavor you’ll extract. On the other end of the equation, however, the smaller your grind size, the smaller the bean particle, the less time it will take before that bean particle is over-extracted.
Thankfully, coffee has been being brewed for years, so most of the hard work has been done for you in regards to what grind size works best for what brewing method, yay!
Here are the Fiddlehead recommendations for brewing your best cup yet.
Cold brew – very coarse. Because the beans will be exposed to water for a long period of time, you want the grounds to be fairly large so they don’t over-extract while at the same time maximizing surface area to release the most flavor. Plus, if you grind super fine, you’ll more than likely have to strain your brew many, many times to get all the grounds out. And there’s no time for that, especially if you’re waiting for coffee!
French press and percolators – coarse. Since there is no filter, water is able to better penetrate the entire bean if it’s coarsely ground.
Chemex - medium coarse.
Auto-brewers and flat bottomed pour overs (like a Kalita) - medium/coarse.
Cone pour overs (Melitta, Origami, V60) - medium/fine.
Moka pot - fine.
Espresso – very fine. Because the grounds are exposed to water for a short amount of time, you want them super fine so you get a lot of grounds in your filter. Plus, a finer grind means the water won’t be able to slip between the grounds as easily so you’re more likely to get an evenly extracted shot.
Turkish - incredibly fine.
Just this one small tweak will make your coffee drinking experience even more pleasant!