Talking about Special Coffees needs knowledge, an overview on coffee extraction methods is necessary because even a small change in the method can have a strong impact on the taste. In fact all the attention in the processes before the tasting phase of a Speciality Coffee (seeding, harvest, drying, artisan work, grinding) can be lost because of an incorrect or inaccurate extraction.
The main principle is that not everything that comes from coffee (also high-quality coffee) has good flavour. And a good extraction can intensify aroma and flavour.
Experts say that a good cup of coffee contains 18-22% of coffee weight used for extraction. And the coffee strenght is the percentage of coffee in the water: the higher the percentage is, the “stronger” the coffee is.
Brewing Systems and Special Coffee
Brewing Systems are brewing methods, little known and used in Italy. They intensify aroma and flavour of a Special Coffee, creating a timeless and fascinting atmosphere.
As brewing systems we recall:
- French press: underestimate method that uses a coffee maker with a glass inside, where you put a lid with a piston, with a retinal filter to obtain ground coffee, separating the liquid from the bottom.
- Pour-over coffee: it is called “pour-over” as it describes different brewing methods, alike in that the brewing happens with percolation, where water passes through the filter containing our particular coffee, giving off aroma and flavour.
- Electric coffee maker with filter: its value is repeatability, but you have to choose a good quality one to intensify coffee characteristics.
- Aeropress: it is a cheap, long-lasting and even portable method! It is a plastic pipe with a piston, perfect to quickly compress the contents.
- Moka: invented in 1933 by Alfonso Bialetti, it is the extraction method most used by Italians; the taste of the resulting coffee is intense and bitter and it recalls the one obtained by espresso method.
- Syphon: fascinating method that recalls an alchemist because of its glass ampule where water boils, it is characterised by two glass elements, overlapped but separated by a filter. It needs experience and dedication, important characteristics of a special coffee.
No Brewing System: Espresso also for Special Coffees
It’s the coffee extraction method more used in Italy, altough all over the world it is know as “the better way to drink coffee”. It is used also for Special Coffees with a roasting and grinding different from the brewing extraction method.
From the name you can easily understand the “fast” nature of this method: in about 25 seconds you can have an espresso.
It is different from the other methods because it needs a high water pressure and a temperature that doesn’t reach the boiling point.
The coffee is made for percolation and not for brewing.