Demystifying the V60 coffee pour-over technique
Follow these guidelines and soon you will be a star home pour-over Barista!
Let's brew some pour-over. Timers and Scales and
Swirling pours Oh, My!
1-liter/+ gooseneck kettle,
Coffee grinder, I highly recommend using a conical or flat burr grinder.
Favorite coffee mug, cup, or small pitcher. (All are referred to here as a vessel)
Filtered non-softened water.
Timer, you can use a wall clock with a minute hand or a kitchen timer.
Freshly roasted Trail Magic Coffee.
I have a very nice conical burr grinder, V60 dripper and filters available on my Gear page.
How I Brew My Morning Cup: First thing I start heating the water in my gooseneck kettle to 205 degrees F. Then weigh 20 grams of whole freshly roasted Trail Magic Coffee and grind to a medium coarse or sea salt consistency.
20 grams makes a 12-ounce cup of coffee, your vessel volume should be 14 ounces.
Before placing the cone filter in the V60 dripper there is a perforated seam that needs to be folded flat so the filter sits evenly in the dripper.
I preheat everything by pouring 170 grams of 205-degree F water through the filter paper in the V60 dripper that's sitting atop my vessel. Let the hot water drain into the vessel then discard the water down the drain.
Add your freshly ground coffee to the prewetted filter in the dripper set on top of your vessel and zero the scale. Lift up the dripper and give it a gentle shake to even out the grounds and a light couple of taps on your palm to seat the grounds in the filter. Set it back atop your vessel.
Start your timer right after the end of your first pour. Pour over your first 40 grams of the heated brewing water and let the coffee bloom for 30 seconds. This blooming period releases excess CO2 trapped within the freshly ground coffee and pre-wets the coffee for even extraction. Your goal is a steady stream of hot water in a circular pattern starting from the center and moving outward.
After 30 seconds I slowly make my second pour of hot water till the scale reads 220 grams, lightly shake, gently stir with a spoon, or carefully swirl the dripper (your preference) to settle the coffee grounds evenly in the cone. Let drain, and repeat. Adding your third pour-over till the scale reads 400 grams.
During the last fill, towards the end, you may lift the dripper and watch the scale till it reads 240 grams giving 12 ounces of coffee in your vessel. Remember this accounts for the weight of the dripper, filter, and saturated 20 grams of coffee grounds. Don't worry if there's still a small amount of water in the cone, you have extracted the best of the coffee already. If you overshoot your fill by 10ths of a gram/ounce it's not the end of the world and you will still have a great cup of coffee.
Overall, with practice, you want to consistently achieve the correct amount of hot water so you always end with the perfect cup of coffee and end with a nice even bed of extracted coffee in the filter.
Your goal is 3-4 minutes. If it goes longer you can adjust your grind, if the flavor is just right to your liking, and you went over 4 minutes, you're fine. If you so desire you may adjust the water additions into 4 increments and even use a higher dose of coffee too. Use my guidelines or adjust to your tastes. Before you know it you will be making a great-tasting cup of pour-over coffee just like a professional Barista!
Coffee Grinder: When I’m making 12-18 oz of coffee I use a conical burr hand crank coffee grinder just like the one I sell on my website's Gear page. It's very efficient, easy to use, and offers several different grind settings. Once you set it to your desired grind it will always reproduce that grind.
NOTE: The best practice is to always precisely weigh your whole-bean coffee, then fresh grind the exact amount of coffee you plan on brewing within 15 minutes of grinding.
V60 Dripper: I sell a very high-quality V60 dripper on my website's Gear page. It's made of durable
food-grade plastic and will last for many years. I suggest hand washing only. It will make 1-3, 6-ounce cups of coffee leaving enough room for any mixing.
V60 Filters: I offer these on my website's Gear page. 100 white paper cone-shaped filters.
It's best to pre-rinse any pour-over type paper filter to rinse away any residual paper flavors that may affect the final taste of your coffee.
NOTE: The Best practice is to preheat your V60 dripper with the filter on top of the vessel your coffee is brewed into. Simply pour about 170 grams/6 ounces of 205-degree F water through the filter paper in the dripper and let it drain into the vessel below then empty the contents down the drain then brew your coffee in your preheated system.
Scale: Weigh your coffee using a gram scale. Purchase a gram scale that is large enough to hold the vessel you're brewing into.
NOTE: If you only have an ounce scale you can make the gram-to-ounce conversion using a free
gram-to-ounce calculator available online or on your smartphone. Just round up or down as needed to the nearest whole measurement.
Gooseneck Kettle: I use a gooseneck kettle at home and there are several different models available at varying price points. I would highly recommend spending the extra money and buying a gooseneck kettle that automatically heats your water to the temperature setting you desire.
NOTE: Water temperatures between 195-205 degrees F are optimal for pour-over coffee extraction. In general higher temperatures work well for lighter roasts and lower for darker roasts. As always experiment with what suits your tastes.
The Time it Takes to Brew: You want to target 3-4 minutes to brew a 6-12 oz cup of pour-over coffee. Brew times of up to 5 minutes are acceptable for higher doses of coffee.
Timers: Using the minute hand on your wall clock works well. But using a kitchen timer that you can set next to your scale while brewing your coffee is easier and more precise.
Water: The upper Midwest has very hard water and certain steps will need to be taken if you desire to achieve your best-tasting cup of coffee using fresh roasted specialty coffee beans like those from
The minimal best practice for home coffee brewing is to use carbon-filtered water using a carbon filter water pitcher or a whole house system. These only remove chlorine and other bad tastes and offer the lowest cost.
The next Best practice is to use 100% natural Spring Water as you can buy from your local grocer. For the best price buy the 2.5-gallon containers
The Pro’s Choice is a reverse osmosis filtration system connected to your home or business. These systems remove hard water ions from your water source and then you can reintroduce the correct amount of water ions that are best for brewing coffee. The two most important water ions for coffee brewing water are Calcium and Magnesium.