Resource Category: Coffee
A Coffee Primer
After seeing a whole lot of nonsense about coffee over the years, I put together a coffee primer for new coffee drinkers a few years ago. A few people have asked that I post it here, so here you go:
A coffee primer
I started drinking coffee about 10 years ago as an alternative to the Red Bull/Ritalin/stimulants my LDS coworkers were using to stay awake on the night shift. Since this was a health-oriented decision as much as anything, it only made sense to drink coffee without all of the calorie-laden additives, so I put a lot of effort into figuring out how to make tasty black coffee (also, I’m kind of an obsessive geek). To save you the effort, I’ve condensed 10 years of geeky research into the following primer.
A quick note: if you’re planning on adding a bunch of cream and/or sugar, disregard this. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s silly to spend much money, time, or energy on coffee type/roast/brewing technique when the taste of the creamer is going to dominate anyway. Someone needs to write a primer on great creamers and you should read that.
With that said, my best coffee tips (in order of importance):
Buy good coffee – I’ve tried and tried to avoid this, but it really is the most important factor. Notice, I said “good” not great. You don’t have to spend $45 a pound on single origin coffee. You may get into that some day, but it’s expensive, and remember that single origin coffee is hobby coffee–it’s fun, but a good blend tends to be more drinkable. Spend $15-20/pound (pay attention here–many roasters sell in 12 oz packages), buy from a local roaster (publik, blue copper, la barba, salt lake roasting company are my favorites in slc), and something that was roasted in the last 2-4 weeks (if it doesn’t say this on the package, it’s not a good roaster). You may find cheaper, but I have never found drinkable coffee under $10/pound (and I’ve tried). Before you go into too much sticker shock, realize you’re going to get 25 cups out of that pound, coming to