There’s a myriad of possibilities to brew our coffee. Our roasting style, making the coffee as silky and sweet as we can, allows for any kind of brewing, be it espresso or filter. We have personal preferences regarding these methods, which we will share here for everyone to use. These are also the recipes that we use for our quality control after cupping, so even though there may be differences due to grinders and water, these recipes should always work. Since we adhere to our specific roasting style with all of our coffees, these recipes tend to work for all of them as well.

Brewing methods

A V60 filter can make your brews a bit lighter, silkier and sweeter.  It is our personal favourite filter coffee brewing method.

Brew ratio: 60g/L
Dose: 18 grams
Water: 300 grams
Temperature: 96 degrees Celsius
Brew time: around 3 minutes
Grind size: base on flavour; roughly 24 clicks on a Comandante or 9.0 on an aligned and calibrated EK43 with SSP burrs.
Dose and water can be increased accordingly to desired brew size, as long as the brew ratio is followed. The recipe below will contain the 18 – 300 recipe as an example.

  • Start your brew with a 40 second bloom, using 2.5x your coffee dose in water (45 grams).
  • At 0:40, slowly pour in circular motions until you reach 50% (150 grams) of the total water quantity. Pouring this should take around 30 seconds with the 18 – 300 recipe and a few seconds longer for larger brews.
  • After pouring, give the dripper a careful swirl to bring grounds down, flattening the coffee bed and fixing channels.
  • At 1:15 (a few seconds later for larger brews), very slowly pour in circular motions until you reach 75% (225 grams) of the total water quantity. This should take around 15 seconds again. Carefully swirl the dripper once.
  • At 1:45 (a few seconds later for larger brews), very slowly pour in circular motions until you reach 100% (300 grams) of the total water quantity. This should take around 15 seconds again. Carefully swirl the dripper once.
  • Just let all the water run through. The coffee bed should be flat and dry around 3:00.

A french press will make your coffee taste a bit more muddled, but still clear enough to taste all the flavours.

Brew ratio: 60g/L
Dose: 12 grams
Water: 200 grams
Temperature: 96 degrees Celsius
Brew time: 4 minutes
Grind size: a bit finer than V60.

  • A french press is easiest to brew and somewhat similar to cupping.
  • Simply add all the water to your coffee grounds at once and put the cap on your french press, but do not push the plunger down. This is just meant for better temperature retention.
  • After 4 minutes, use a spoon to break the top coffee crust.
  • Use one or two spoons to scoop as much of the residual brown foam off the coffee.
  • Pour all the coffee from the french press in a service vessel, but once again without pushing the plunger down.

An Aeropress is very versatile and can intensify any flavour of your coffee. In general, it will increase the body and creaminess of the coffee and it will taste a little less bright than a V60.

Non-inverted
Brew ratio: 65g/L
Dose: 13 grams
Water: 200 grams
Temperature: 96 degrees Celsius
Brew time: 2 minutes
Grind size: base on flavour, same as the V60 15 – 250 recipe.

  • Start by adding all the water to the coffee at once, immediately followed by putting the plunger on top without pressing down. This will prevent most of the water from dripping through the coffee.
  • At 1:10, take the plunger off and use a spoon to break the top coffee crust with about 4 swirls.
  • At 1:15, immediately after breaking the crust, use the plunger to very slowly press all the water down. This should take 45 seconds, so at 2:00 your brew should be done.

An espresso recipe has so many variables and technical aspects that it actually deserves its own journal entry. Here, we will summarize our recipe without going into too many details.

Brew ratio: 1 : 2.3
Dose: 20 grams (based on basket size; we use 20g VST baskets)
Yield: 46 grams
Temperature: 93 degrees Celsius (based on espresso machine)
Pump pressure: around 9 bars for maximum flow rate (based on espresso machine)
Brew time: around 27 seconds
Grind size: base on flavour, usually finer than other roasters’ coffees.

We based our recipe on two things. Firstly, we wanted to taste all the flavour descriptors that we mention on our packaging in an espresso as well as in a filter brew. This means there should be no negative influence of the roast perceived, like roasty or other bitter flavours. Secondly, we wanted the brews to taste pleasant. As simply as that may seem, it is usually not the case with espressos as the acidity or bitters may be too intense, or the drink is just too strong. We personally enjoy espressos to be a bit lighter in texture, so we use a higher brew ratio than some others. We adjusted our roasting style to meet this 2.3 brew ratio demand.

All this together will make all our espressos transparent, sweet and silky; just the way we like it.

Espresso grind size

Dialling in a coffee for espresso can be tricky, especially because even a small mistake can ruin your coffee. In order to minimize waste, we have tried to give some indication of the desired grind size. Since everyone has a different setup, we cannot give one clear answer. However, because of our consistency, we can give grind size indications for our coffees relative to each other.

For our espresso quality control in the roastery, we use the Niche Zero coffee grinder. Below, you will find a table with the grind sizes that we use with the espresso recipe mentioned above. These are regularly checked and calibrated. Lower numbers indicate a finer grind setting; higher numbers indicate a coarser grind. Please do not see this as indications for one single coffee. This table is meant to help you find the correct grind size of one coffee after having dialled in another.

For example, let’s say you have been brewing the Argote Natural at grind size 11, but now you have run out and open a bag of El Sopapo. This coffee will have to be grind 2 steps finer on the Niche Zero. Even though 2 steps on the Niche Zero may be one step on a different grinder, or perhaps 4 steps, at least you know it will have to be ground a little finer. On the other hand, the Intango Natural requires just about the same grind size as the Argote Natural, regardless of the grinder you use. Once you get used to this, you may be able to convert our Niche Zero settings to the corresponding settings on your own grinder!

Limmu Kossa: 13
Ngula: 10
Keramo Washed: 15
Keramo Natural: 16

Intango: 8
Intango Natural: 11
Aranga PB: 10
Laboyano: 9
Hopong Bant Sauk: 8

Ana Restrepo: 9
Argote Kenyan Wash: 10
Argote Natural: 11
Argote Cherry Ferment: 10
Argote: 11

El Bueyerito: 9
El Sopapo: 9
El Carmen decaf: 8
Churupampa: 11

Signature beverages

Brewing very long espressos tends to lead to a lot of channeling due to puck erosion. Whereas pressure profiling may sometimes help, flow control is actually a great tool for these long shots. This option is not available on many espresso machines, but since the Decent Espresso Machine and the Sanremo Opera started including it, it has gotten a lot more attention.

  • Dose: 20 grams
  • Yield: 80 grams
  • Temperature: 92.5 degrees Celsius
  • Pressure: 9 bars flat
  • Flow control: min &  max flow 4
  • Brew time: 29 seconds

An espresso tonic can be a delicious drink on a hot summer day, but it’s also quite easy to mess it up. With a wide variety of tonic flavours available, it’s interesting to play with different ones. This recipe was made by Yort Haaring at Coffee Works.

This can hardly be called a beverage, but it is something truly unique and controversial. Katsu Tanaka became famous making this melted chocolate out of coffee.

  • Naked portafilter necessary
  • Dose: 20 grams
  • Yield: 5 droplets
  • Time: 25 seconds (so you need a very fine grind)
  • Temperature: 92.5 degrees Celsius
  • Pressure: 9 bars
  • Repeat this process three times to have 15 droplets, which should be one or two tiny sips.