Saturday, August 4, 2012

How Do You Make Your Coffee?

I consider my morning coffee one of life’s little pleasures. It’s the first thing I think about when I wake up. When I was going to my job, the coffee pot timer was set so the coffee would be ready as soon as I got out of bed. Now that I no longer set an alarm clock, and am not sure what time I’ll wake up, I just start my coffee after I wake up. It’s the longest 4-5 minutes of the day – waiting for that first cup!

I started drinking small amounts of coffee as a teenager, although my preferred breakfast drink back then was soda (Ugh!). My mother’s coffee was made in a percolator, and it wasn’t until (about) 1978 that I bought my first drip coffee maker, a Melitta, the nonelectric type which consisted of a plastic cone contraption that sat atop the glass carafe.

Using this method, water is boiled and poured over the coffee, which is placed in a paper filter and fitted into the cone and dripped into the carafe below. This is, of course, the basic idea behind all electric pots today. Some purists (including my father-in-law) still prefer the nonelectric drip method. 

Discovering drip coffee opened up an entirely new coffee drinking experience for me, and I’ve been hooked ever since. Over the years I’ve collected coffee pots and tried many types of brewing. In addition to many electric drip models of varying cup sizes, I have at one time made coffee in:

An espresso coffee maker

A cappuccino machine. Way too complicated!

Electric drip machine with insulated thermal carafe. It came and it went.

Stove top glass vacuum. Too fragile! (Although I still have this model packed away in the basement)

But the absolute best coffee, in my opinion, is that made with a French Press Coffee Maker.

French Press Coffee Maker

It produces a rich, robust, full-bodied flavor, unequalled by any other coffee-making method. You want a coarser grind for the French Press than for the drip method. I use a burr grinder. (I might add that my first coffee of the morning is in a drip electric model; my mid-morning cup, or afternoon cup if I have one, is made with the French Press.

The technique:

Boil the water; let it settle down about 30 seconds; pour a small amount into the pot to pre-heat the press and allow to stand while you grind the coffee. Empty the warming water, place coffee in pot and pour in a small amount of water to allow the coffee to bloom for a few seconds, stir and then pour the remaining water. Place plunger on top but don’t plunge yet. After about 4 minutes, press plunger slowly to bottom. Pour a cup and enjoy the best coffee ever!

It's best to empty the pot; it's not as good after it hangs around for awhile. For this reason, I have a very small 8 oz. pot I use when brewing only for myself. 

I drink my coffee black, no sugar and no milk or cream. I want the real coffee taste!

So there's my experience with coffee pots. Everyone has a different opinion on what method of coffee brewing is best.

What method to you use to make your coffee?


  1. For someone who lived in Seattle as long as I did, it's unusual that I never developed a taste for coffee. But I do use the French Press for my tea. Using the same method you do for coffee produces a great cup of tea. But unlike coffee, I can make lots at once, pour it into a china teapot, cover with a tea cozy, and have perfect tea all morning long.
    I remember the Melitta. (I always thought the name sounded like the coffee dripping down into the pot. Onamonapia, perhaps.) I still have the wood collar, with the leather cord and wood bead from my husband's first Melitta. They were almost like art. Then they started making those parts from plastic, so I was glad I didn't throw them away when that first pot broke.

    1. I never thought of making tea with the French Press. Great idea; I'll try that sometime? I still have my Chemex glass carafe with the wood collar with the leather string. You're right; it is a work of art!

  2. Same as you,Bodum's cafetiere (UK) coffee maker,have bought many other makes but I prefer simple & quick,have never heard the 'bloom' part but otherwise make the same way.
    Always use an electric grinder for fresh beans.I enjoy trying a varity of beans out....when I went a quick coffee I use the Carte Noire jar one of the best coffee's in a jar almost like the fresh.
    Tea for breakfast,coffee lunch,and coffee before bed.

    Friends tend to have coffee makers with all the bells /whistles they do make great cappucinos.

    Happy Sunday. Ida

    1. My HB buys coffee beans from Starbucks; very fresh. We like the full-bodied Comumbian, but I really enjoy a hazelnut flavored coffee for a treat sometimes. I have tv on and hope I can stay awake for the Curiosity landing on Mars! Hope you and your HB are having sucess with the NASA web address for viewing!

    2. Sanda,HB says thank you for the NASA link,he put the alarm on to catch the 6-30am landing!

      Congraulations to your great team.USA Ida

  3. We have practically always made coffee the Melitta way.
    First boiled the water in a Dualit water boiler, and then poured the hot water over the Melitta, into an Alfi thermos coffee pot ( a must ). Alfi has it´s own Melitta top, which sits firmly on the pot.
    One of the reasons for this system is, that I don´t like the looks of any other coffee- makers.
    I have had coffee since age 5, as there were no other options.
    Finns are perhaps the most eager coffee drinkers in the world!

    1. I am not familiar with the Alfi thermos; will check it out. Now they tell us coffee is good for us as long as we drink it black. A good thing and I really enjoy my coffee. My, you started drinking coffee at a very young age. Yes, I've heard Finns and Sweedes are among the biggest coffee drinkers in the world.

  4. standard Turkish coffee for me :-) boiled the old fashioned way in a dzezva coffee pot
    nothing beats the smell of fresh coffee in the morning!

  5. Now that's a cup of real coffee, isn't it? No wonder you call yourself the "coffeeaddict." I have a general idea of a dzezva coffee pot, but will go look it up to make sure. And I certainly agree that nothing beats the smell of fresh coffee, any time of the day, but especially in the morning!!


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