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What is the best brewing method for coffee?

Asked by David C.

Topics: brewing
It doesn't matter how you cut it. Brewing coffee is simply pouring hot water over coffee grounds. However, with the amount brewing methods and techniques available you would think a special degree or certification is required. Here's a quick rundown of popular brewing methods and why you might prefer one over the other.

French Press
The most common brewing method for 'better coffee'. With the French Press, the coffee grounds steep and then are compressed with a plunger. The result is a rich and full bodied cup.

(+) Rich, full bodied cup
(+) Great for travel
(+) Great for sharing
(-) Sediment from the grounds tend to find their way to your cup
(-) Easy to over extract leading to a bitter taste (avoid by serving immediately after brewing)

A pour over brewing method which funnels brewed coffee down into a beautiful glass carafe for serving. Reminiscent of high end wine decanters. The Chemex is about presentation and a clean cup.

(+) Clean taste, no sediment
(+) Presents beautifully
(+) Great for sharing (brews 4-8 cups depending on size)
(-) Coffee cools quickly

Brews a bold and rich cup without the sediment of a French Press. Very portable for travel and brews a single cup.

(+) Strong and full flavor without sediment
(+) Great for personal use
(+) Portable for travel
(-) Single serving only

Dripper - v60, Clever
Classic single cup pour over brewing method. Simple with style points.

(+) Strong and full flavor without sediment
(+) Great for personal use
(+) Control of pour speed
(+) Portable for travel
(-) Single serving only

Automatic Brewers
Hands off with a full pot. Stays hotter for longer. The results very by automatic brewer. My personal favorite is the Breville Grind Control with a built in burr grinder. 

(+) Set it and forget it. 
(+) Stays hotter longer
(+) Full pot
(-) Less control
(-) Less romance, aroma

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