Husband and I have a fairly small freezer in our kitchen, and way too much of it, at any given time, is totally full of coffee. Sometimes it is packs of green beans from Sweet Maria’s, which Husband then roasts to a delicious toastiness on our back porch. Other times, it is a bag of socially-conscious Javesca Coffee, from a company that combines fair wages to their growers with a commitment to provide meals to impoverished people from the proceeds of every sale. Sometimes… it’s too many bags of too much coffee, usually purchased as a souvenir from a recent trip somewhere, and it takes us a while to drink it back down to a manageable amount of space in the freezer.
Part of the reason that we take so long to drink our coffee is how long it takes us to brew our coffee. We are not a K-cup household; I love doing things quickly, but the habits we’ve developed are anything but fast. We start with whole beans from the freezer that go into one of two grinders: we keep a daily blend in an automatic burr grinder, which grinds the right amount with the touch of a button, but we also have a hand grinder in our kitchen, which we use when making a specific amount of a special coffee.
After grinding, we heat water on the stove or in an electric kettle, and prepare a French press, a pourover, or an Aeropress. They all make great coffee, so the decision usually comes down to who wants how much coffee and which filters do we have handy for the process. I like a dark, pressurized and almost espresso-like drink from the Aeropress, but the pourover is easier to do and quickly get on to business like making breakfast.
In each case, the coffee that results is awesome, at or above the level you’d get in a coffee shop, and much cheaper if you don’t count the minutes of work it takes to make the stuff. It’s worth it to us because we have long commutes that are made infinitely better by having a really amazing cup of joe by our side, and because we bonded originally over coffee, and because it is a fairly inexpensive hobby to keep up and can come with us camping or on trips with only a few things carried along and a hot water source.
What characterizes your favorite hot drink? How do you make a pleasant ritual of it, even if it means taking a bit longer or costing a bit more?