It’s a Monday morning. I get up and open the cupboard in the kitchen and there… It’s a nightmare! No coffee on a Monday – it couldn’t possibly get any worse. My brain is still not working, but I make an effort and enter the Coffeedesk, where I am shocked on seeing how many coffees I can choose from. My headache is getting worse and my frustration is peaking.
All this sounds nightmarish, doesn’t it? If you are wondering what coffee grounds should go into your grinder or coffee maker, and the choice is overwhelming, below you will find some suggestions which can actually make it a pleasant experience!
Automatic coffee machines
The first point on our agenda are automatic coffee machines. The Jura WE8 Chrome or The Nivona CafeRomatica 788 are machines that can please the majority of home baristas who wish to drink at home coffee resembling in quality brews from a coffee shop. However, in order to enjoy the best coffee possible, you need to choose it first! For such coffee machines, I recommend coffees with lower acidity and a slightly darker roast profile. Why? In comparison to coffee makers used at coffee shops, automatic coffee machines dose less coffee for a single cup and brew it for a shorter time. Despite the possibility of adjusting grind parameters and choosing a brew amount, in most cases there are not as many options compared to espresso machines with a portafilter and external burr grinder. Using coffees roasted too light can result in high, unpleasant acidity, which won’t let us enjoy the brew.
So what coffee to choose for an automatic coffee machine? To avoid the above-mentioned shortcomings, try coffee from our favourite Italian roastery, which is Arcaffe! Mokacrema and Roma will guarantee high sweetness, a creamy body and pleasant, yet very low acidity. Coffees from Audun Coffee, such as Cuba Blend, will stand for interesting, less classic flavours. Slightly higher acidity and a more velvety body; it is no longer an Italian coffee, but it still has a sufficiently dark roast profile for sweetness to compensate acidity.
Espresso machine with a portafilter
Automatic coffee machines and espresso machines with a portafilter only apparently need the same coffee to produce great brews. In practice, a semi-professional espresso machine such as the Rancilio Silvia combined with a good grinder will let us do much more than that. More possibilities of adjusting, including dosing (which is limited only by sieve capacity), and, in some coffee makers, pressure regulation and more even extraction allow us to use a whole panoply of coffees. Not only those roasted the ‘Italian’ way, but also those from independent roasteries in Scandinavia where coffee is roasted much lighter.
However, the biggest difference between those two types of coffee machines is a grinder. Those built in automatic coffee machines usually have a very limited number of grind settings which, on top of that, don’t start from where the burrs meet up, but from a relatively coarse grind, suitable for darker coffees, but unfit for light coffees. Grinders, such as the legendary Comandante Grinder, Baratza Sette 30 or Eureka Mignon let us grind coffee much finer than automatic grinders, so there are more options to choose from.
What coffee for espresso machine with a portafilter?
If you are an enthusiast of Italian coffees, low acidity and high bitterness, you will have as much choice as with automatic espresso machines, only that quality will be much higher and fun much greater! If, on the other hand, you like sweetness and acidity, don’t hesitate to try single-origin coffees from the best roasteries in Poland and abroad. Ethiopian, Kenyan, Rwandan and Burundi coffees will bring about a full panoply of ripe fruits in your cup. Brazilian, Columbian, Guatemalan and Peruvian coffees will give milk chocolate, nutty and less dominant, but distinguishable fruity flavours.
Pour-over coffee maker
A long black coffee is not always an Americano and it doesn’t always involve laborious brewing with alternative brewing methods. For those who are too busy, too lazy or brew dozens of black coffees every day, we recommend drip coffee brewers! The Moccamaster and a grinder such as the Baratza Encore make a team that will easily brew a huge amount of delicious coffee! Also the Melitta AromaFresh with a built-in grinder will bravely meet the challenge of brewing a large amount of coffee.
What coffee to use for a pour-over coffee maker? The good news is that almost every coffee which isn’t roasted too dark can taste good! If you are a fan of more intense and bitterer coffees – give single-origin coffees roasted for espresso a chance. But if you like acidity, feel free to throw into your basket coffees for alternative brewing methods. If you grind them properly, they will take on a sweet and fruity flavour with no bitter notes typical of darker roast profiles.
It’s a matter of taste!
In trainings, I always say that the best coffee is the one YOU like the most and which fits your lifestyle, regardless of whether it is an almost Italian roast or an extremely light coffee from La Cabra. The world of coffee growing, and, later on, processing and roasting gives us an unlimited scope for experimenting and this is exactly what you should do. It is worthwhile to experiment on yourself and people around you. Your coffee maker needs coffees which will bring you and your friends the greatest joy!