Manual brewing methods

When coffee lovers choose manual brewing methods, they are not just looking out for single-origin coffees or coffee blends but they are also looking forward to getting the freshest and cleanest cup of coffee. The manual brewing methods have specific ratios and water types that are to be used. 

Other factors like grind sizes, rate of speed, contact time, and water temperature are important in manual brewing methods.  The key to brewing a great cup of coffee from manual brewing methods or any other brewing method is consistency. You should note that. Ensure that you are consistent in your brew methods. 

In this post, we’ll explain the manual brewing methods to experiment with till you pick your favorite and the factors you need to consider when using any of these methods. 

Let's start with Water Temperature, Grind size, and the Rate of water required for Manual brewing methods.

The type of water you use is a serious factor you need to consider. Water makes up about 92-98% of your cup of joe. The water type and water temperature have a direct impact on the extraction process ( the components that will be extracted). The water extracts compounds like acetic, chlorogenic, and malic acids, it also extracts oils and caffeine. 

The extraction of these compounds happens at different times. For example, caffeine is extracted at the beginning of the brewing method, While fruity acids start to be extracted, followed by sweetness. The bitter taste comes out last. 


All the manual brewing methods we will mention use 90 to 96 C out of the kettle. It's a good idea to preheat your kettle and other brewing equipment, as it will stabilize the temperature. This is the same reason why pour-over lovers pour some water from the kettle into the filter first. 

For the grind size, this method gives you some form of control in the brewing process. It allows you to improve the taste of your coffee and experiment with different recipes. Note that your grind size affects the rate of your extraction. This is because pour over is an infusion method, meaning that the coffee and water will be in contact for a short period. So you’ll have to make sure the coffee has enough surface area that will be extracted by water. Check the kind of coffee you want to extract and choose the grind size you prefer. 

We will give you the general grind size but you can tweak it when required. If you brew and it's too watery or soars, use a finer grind. If it comes out too bitter, without sweet notes, use a coarser grind.  You might be thinking about what constitutes the ideal grind size. Well, first of all, it depends on your preferences. The next thing that affects the grind size is the brewing method, it's pretty obvious that different grind sizes are suited for different brewing methods. For instance, an immersion method like the French press is paired with a coarse grind size while the pour overuses medium grinds. For espresso or Turkish coffee, you have to use a fine or even extra fine grind to get good results. 

Other brewers like Aeropress use different grind sizes. Did we mention that you should consider the age of your coffee? Yes, it's important. After the beans have been roasted, the flavors begin to fade (consume within 1-3 weeks). You need to use freshly roasted coffee beans for all types of brewing methods if at all you want to get a great cup. Buy freshly roasted coffee beans from Coffee hero that you can brew and comfortably sit on your cushion to enjoy. We sell single-origin beans and coffee blends. What are you waiting for to try some? 

Freshly roasted coffee beans in SydneyFreshly roasted coffee beans in Sydney

Another thing we need to discuss is the rate of speed. It affects the result of the final cup. Kettles that are specially made for pour-overs, keep the brewing water at a stable temperature. This will help you get a consistent extraction. Use a gooseneck kettle, it is designed to control the water flow. The water gushes out of the kettle in short sprouts. Consistency is important in brewing specialty coffee. There are two types of pouring: 

CONTINOUS POURING: Here, you pour the water at a constant flow rate without stopping. This technique aims to keep the flow and saturate the coffee very well. 

PULSE POURING: This means using multiple pours of specific quantities of water on the coffee. You don't need to be a barista to know any of these pour-over techniques. You can experiment with the number of pours and volumes of water. This technique will prevent the rising of grounds up to the side of the paper filter. It will also disrupt the grounds from moving about and make the coffee have more contact with the water. 


Coffee bloom is that quick bubbles you see when you make the first pour. It happens when carbon dioxide leaves the coffee. This process is called degassing. It's only freshly roasted coffee beans that give this bloom. 

Okay, let's get to the manual brewing methods. This is a brief overview. 


This is one of the oldest, fastest, and cheapest ways to brew a great cup of coffee. Hot water is poured over the grounds in a paper filter. Then the coffee drips slowly into your cup or mug. The cones are usually made of plastic or stainless steel. The shape of the coffee cone and the type of filter used affects the flavor of the coffee.  The grind size has to be medium to coarse and the brew time for this method is 1 to 3 minutes. The coffee usually comes out smooth with a round body. The cones are easy to clean and portable. 

Related: Understanding the basics of drip coffee 

Related: Portable brewing methods 


Chemex is designed elegantly. It has a glass flask that is used to brew the coffee. This brewing method was invented by Dr. Peter Schlumbohm. The coffee maker uses a paper filter that is 20-30% heavier than regular coffee. It is similar to the coffee cones we mentioned above. The water is poured over the coffee grounds in a paper filter. Then the brewed coffee drips slowly into the bottom of the flask.  For this brew method, you need a medium-coarse grind. And the brewing time is 3 to 4 minutes. The coffee comes out balanced, clean, and refreshing. Note that this brewer is harder to clean and you need a special brush for cleaning. 


Coffee lovers consider the French press one of the best and easiest methods of brewing coffee. The brewer gives more superior flavors when compared to other methods. The coffee grounds are soaked and steep in hot water for 3 to 4 minutes. All the essential oils, antioxidants, and caffeine will be extracted. 

This method is best for coffee lovers that enjoy an expressive and luxurious taste in a cup of coffee.   The grind size needed for this method is a coarse one. It takes about 4 minutes to brew this coffee. The result is pure with a complex and robust body. 


This coffee maker comes in 3 parts. The filter stays inside the coffee basket at the bottom of the brewer. The coffee grounds are added to the brew chamber then hot water is added. The coffee is allowed to steep. Once the brew time is over, the plunger is pressed down. This creates air pressure that forces the brewed coffee through a filter into your mug. The grind size required is medium-fine. The brewing time is usually 1-2 minutes. The coffee comes out sweet and the brewer is easy to clean.  


Moka pot uses Steam pressure from boiling water in the lower chamber to pass through the grounds into the mid chamber of the coffee pot. Then after 5 minutes, when you hear a gurgling sound, it means the brewed coffee has moved to the top chamber, ready to be poured. The ground size required is a fine medium grind. The coffee makers brew espresso-style coffee.  It is easy to clean and portable. 

There you have it, these are the manual brewing methods to try at home. You can use recipes and measurements that suit your preferences. Whatever changes you are making, ensure that it's freshly roasted coffee beans that are being used if you get a delicious cup. 

 Related: Why is fresh coffee the best for your brew 

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