Invest in a good grinder and grind your coffee beans just before using for the richest flavor. Keep coffee makers clean—the oily residue in the pot affects the flavor of the next brewing. Use two tablespoons (30mL) of coffee per six ounces (170mL) of water. There are numerous ways to prepare coffee, but the three most common are filtered, French press, and espresso.
Filtered coffee is made by pouring hot, but not boiling, water through freshly ground or recently purchased ground coffee. The water should pass through the grounds only once.
French press coffee uses a special cylindrical glass container with a filter plate on a plunger. The coffee grounds and hot water steep together for three to four minutes, then pushing down the plunger separates the grounds from the brewed coffee.
Espresso is a high-pressure extraction of the volatile oils of the bean. The espresso machine uses steam and water for a deeper, more intense flavor, with less caffeine and bitterness. Beans selected and roasted specifically for espresso are available. One “shot” of espresso is about 1 ounce (28mL). Some espresso drinks, including cappuccino and lattes, are made by steaming milk and adding it in varying proportion to the brewed espresso. Other espresso drinks, such as an Americano, combine espresso with hot water (or cold water for an iced Americano).