Coffee Break : V60
If you've got three minutes of time, you can brew some seriously good coffee with a V60. Serious coffee drinkers agree that this brewing method and device really allow you to detect subtle notes in coffee flavor that other types of brewing seem to mask or eliminate entirely. When using a V60, the pour is of utmost importance. It is the key to extracting the most flavor out of your favored beans. If you've never used a V60 before, don't be intimidated. They're incredibly easy to use, and the cleaning process is entirely painless. If you're curious as to what exactly a V60 is, and how to use it, read on and let Sippy introduce you to a whole new world of flavor.
So, What is A V60?
The company Hario is particularly known for their V60 Coffee Dripper aka the V60 Coffee Maker. Its name alludes to the shape of the apparatus. The device features a “V” shaped portion that almost resembles a ridged teacup. The angles of its walls measure 60 degrees. Thus, the name V60. The ridges aren't just for visual appeal, they actually assist with air flow during the brewing. V60s come in a variety of materials and designs. Though you can certainly find them at just about every possible price point, copper is generally considered the best when it comes to extraction. This is because it retains heat better during the brewing process than other materials like glass or plastic.
Good Things Come in Small Packages
It's important to keep in mind that the average V60 will brew only a single cup of coffee. Some larger ones will brew 2 cups, or even up to 7. However, with only small tweaks to things such as the temperature or flow of the water, and the size of your grounds, you can actually coax different flavors from the same coffee. It's an excellent brewing method to experiment with and see what notes you enjoy pulling most from the beans.
What Types of Coffees Work Best with a V60?
Specialty coffees are perfect for using a V60. Since a V60 is all about highlighting those subtle nuances of a coffee, you'll want to try blends that offer more than a single note of flavor. Medium and light roast coffees tend to work best. While you can certainly use any kind of coffee you wish, it is also recommended that you grind the beans yourself when using a V60. Do so just before brewing to make sure none of that flavor is lost. V60's are also excellent for landing your coffee in the ideal sweet spot of the extraction process. The result is a sweet, complex, and multi-finished cup of coffee that is smooth and delicious. Too short an extraction can leave your coffee tasting sour, salty, and with little to no sweetness.
Extract for too long, and your coffee will taste bitter, dry, flat, and astringent.
Some Important Tips For the Perfect V60 Cup of Coffee
Because the V60 is all about the flavor, nothing should interfere with taste. That means you don't want notes of paper in your drink. For this reason, it is a given that you will want to rinse your filter paper before using it. Simply pour hot water through it prior to the actual brewing. Some V60 devotees will even recommend doing this twice.
Using a bleached filter can also serve to remove that possible papery taste. But, if you are more eco-friendly minded, and can't detect any papery notes, unbleached filters will do just fine. This simple “prewash” of your filter will also help heat up both your cup, and the dripper.
Doing so can create a more ideal environment for the brewing process. As mentioned earlier, the V60 is all about the pour. Make sure to add water slowly for ultimate extraction and a deliciously full-bodied cup of coffee. A gooseneck kettle is the best for precision pouring.
Ready to Try Your V60 Out?
So, you've got your V60 and you're anxious to see just how many different flavors you can detect in your favorite coffee. Here's what you'll want to do:
Step 1: Boil your water. Roll or fold your paper filter into a cone and set it inside your V60 dripper. This will eliminate residue on your filter and make sure it doesn't interfere with your coffee's flavor. Discard the water from your mug.
Step 2: Grind your coffee. You're looking for your grounds to be about the size of sea salt granules. Add the coffee to your filter inside the brewer. For the ratios, you are looking for 15:1. So, for every 15 grams of coffee, you will want 225 grams of water.
Step 3: Bring your water to a boil once more. Take it off the heat, and let it sit for about 30 seconds. You want your water to be between 88 and 92 degrees Celsius. Use a bit to warm up your favorite mug and discard. Then, begin to pour in a thin stream, just enough to cover your grounds. You want your coffee to have a chance to bloom. You might see some light bubbling, or the coffee may even appear to lift slightly. Let stand for 15 seconds.
Step 4: Now comes that all-important pour. You want to pour your water evenly and slowly. Move in a spiral or circular pattern. Add water every 10-15 seconds to ensure that you are extracting evenly. In all, the pour should take you about 45 seconds. If you use a scale, it should read 360 grams when your pour is finished. You will want to pour the water over the dark spots while steering clear of the light ones. Also, avoid the edges of the filter and try to pour as close to the center as possible. A steady stream is the name of the game.
Step 5: The drip typically takes anywhere from 30 seconds to a full minute. Remove the brewer, discard the grounds, and enjoy. All told, from start to finish, you should have an absolutely delightful and flavorful cup of coffee in 3 to 4 minutes.
Have a great V60 experience!