Better Brewing on a Budget

If you do a deep dive on specialty coffee you will find endless volumes of articles discussing the benefits of using one brew method versus another. The question that is important that you answer is: how do you like your coffee? Espresso, French Press, Pour Over, Cold Brew, Venti Vanilla Mocha Frappa-latte? The sad truth is that your coffee addiction can add up and take a hit on your bank account. If anyone understands how important quality is, it’s us. You don’t have to sacrifice your green gold to the gods of Starbucks if you want high-quality, specialty coffee brewed at home. 
Before we go on, we feel like we should mention that we offer Better Brewing at Home workshops once per month at our cafe. You can request a specific workshop or schedule a one on one lesson with one of our skilled baristas to help you better understand the extraction processes of your preferred brew type. 
Keep an eye on our Events Page for upcoming Better Brewing at Home Workshops.
 
Alright, so let’s look at what you’re going to need...and let us tell you; it isn’t much. 
First, and what better brewing at home starts with, is high-quality beans. Head back to our coffee page and take a look at one of our freshly roasted, single-origin or blends and see what piques your interest. Ever since we brought our new Loring Smart Roaster into the Black River Roasters fold, we have been consistently roasting our coffee lighter meaning more complexity and higher caffeine content. For different brew types, we would use different beans so read further to see our recommendations. 

Pour Over

Pourover workshop
Executing a successful pour requires three crucial items (besides coffee): a kettle, paper filters and a pour-over glass system. The difference between a pour-over and a classic drip coffee maker is your ability to exercise more control over the pour, creating a more balanced and tastier final cup of coffee. The brew time is quicker than a drip coffee machine and you don’t have to dump a pot of coffee down the drain afterward, as you can make a custom amount of coffee.
Recommended low-budget equipment: Bodum Pour Over - $14.45
Recommended coffee: Rwanda Single Origin - $18.00

Espresso

Espresso Workshop
Remember, espresso is a method of brewing, not a type of coffee bean. You don’t need a fancy home espresso machine to make great espresso (although that is the dream!). A new addition to the world of high-end coffee, that has its own mythology surrounding it, is the AeroPress. Using finely ground coffee and a small amount of water, the AeroPress can make a quick shot of espresso that is so good, it has its own competition. The AeroPress comes with its own stirrer, filters, funnel for water, and everything else you need. This is perfect for travel/camping as well!
Recommended low-budget equipment: AeroPress - $30
Recommended coffee: Espresso Blend - $14.00

French Press

French Press Workshop
Not exactly a full-fledged love affair with the specialty coffee world, the french press still holds a special place in the hearts of many people as having old world charm and making good tasting coffee. Even though we don’t like the uncontrolled extraction process of the french press, we still added it to our list for those FP lovers out there. The method, not using paper filters, helps the coffee to retain it’s oils and flavor in the brewing process; creating a strong cup of coffee. The consistently of the coffee is more akin to a traditional drip coffee maker, just with a little more punch. 
Recommended low-budget equipment: OXO French Press- $39.99
Recommended coffee: Ethiopia Single Origin - $19.00

Cold Brew

Cold Brew Workshop
Cold Brew. Yum. Smooth, stripped of acidity during the cold water brewing process, and delicious. This method of brewing is especially good for those who like coffee but can’t hand stomach the high acid content of hot coffee. Cold-brewed coffee isn’t necessarily stronger but can be made so depending on the water to coffee ratio. We offer recipe cards in our cafe will walk you through the exact process of creating the perfect cold brew at home. Our recommended brew time is 36 hours so keep this in mind before you wake up in the morning expecting to make CB on the spot! 
Recommended low-budget equipment: Bodum Bean Set- $10
Recommended coffee: Nicaragua Single Origin - $16 

Miscellaneous Items

Just a reminder - we offer Better Brewing at Home workshops once per month, in our cafe. You can request a specific workshop or schedule a one on one lesson with one of our skilled baristas to help you better understand the extraction processes of your preferred brew type. 
Keep an eye on our Events Page for upcoming Better Brewing at Home Workshops.
 
-Patrick McGurran