HOW TO BREW SIPHON COFFEE- A BEGINNER'S GUIDE
The siphon-making process is beautiful and it brews a clean cup of coffee. The siphon brewing method looks like a theatrical work of art. Do you want to experience this? Then follow this guide correctly. With some practice, you can master the art. People have managed to get there, you will too.
WHAT IS A SIPHON COFFEE MAKER?
A siphon coffee maker is also known as a vacuum coffee maker. It is a full immersion brew system that uses consistent heat source to create a vacuum in one chamber by forcing water up into another chamber, where the grounds are steeped. Then, the brew drains back down into the bottom chamber.
This may be confusing but it's not. Let's break it down more. Siphon coffee makers have 3 unique features that set them apart from other coffee makers.
IMMERSION: The siphon coffee makers brew with a dramatic sounding process referred to as the ‘immersion method’. The total immersion method means all the coffee grounds and the water will be in contact through the brewing process. If you have used a French press before, this should be familiar.
THE VACUUM: After the coffee grounds are soaked for some time, the vacuum created in the bottom chamber pulls all the liquid back down through the filter, by forcing the water back down, through the grounds. A siphon coffee maker is different from a French press, it gives you the best of both worlds: It soaks the grounds and the hot water extracts any last bits of coffee goodness, leaving you with a delicious cup.
CONSISTENT HEAT: This is another unique feature of a vacuum brewer, it provides consistent heat all through the brewing process. The other brewing methods require pouring preheated water over the grounds but the siphon brewer on the other hand is continuously heated.
Since temperature is an essential part of brewing, having consistent heat allows for greater control over the brew. This brewing method allows the extraction of a broader spectrum of flavors. Despite the use of filters, oils still pass into the bottom vessel to give you a delicious brew.
THERE'S MORE, these are some things that make this method a better choice for some coffee aficionados.
DELIGHTFUL BREW EXPERIENCE: Some people enjoy watching the siphon maker brew. Watching the action take place is a different experience altogether. Some people say the delightful visuals in the morning awakens their senses even before they sip the java.
GIVES YOU CONTROL: The vacuum pot lets you control the coffee strength by regulating the number of grounds used. You can easily adjust the water temperature and measure ground depending on if you prefer a weak or strong brew.
GIVES A MORE INTENSE AROMA: When compared to other brewing methods, the siphon coffee maker emits a more intense aroma and flavor. It also produces a crisp, clear, and vibrant flavor that not only pleases your palate but makes your olfactory senses happy.
HOW IT ALL BEGAN
The history of siphon coffee goes back to the early 1830s when people who were served bad coffee decided to invent a brewing system. The brewing method soon gained popularity. Although numerous patents were filed for improvement of the Siphon coffee maker design, the most notable was done in 1841 by Madam Vassieux. The first version of the siphon maker was a French balloon style, similar to the ones used today. Despite all the changes that have been made to the brewer, the structure remains the same.
NOTE: You need to brew with freshly roasted coffee beans if you want to get the perfect brew. Stale beans won't give you the result you desire. Other factors can affect the taste of your brew like the water temperature, coffee water ratio.
HOW TO BREW
A siphon brewer, a burner to heat the bottom vessel, fresh coffee beans, hot water, a thermometer, and a burr grinder. If you want to add a bit of frill to your brewing to make it look fancy, get a halogen-based heater.
Another important thing you’ll need is a filter (we’ll get to this).
- Fill a kettle with filtered water and place it on a stove top and allow it to boil. When it has reached a boiling point, allow it to cool down for some seconds.
- Preheat the bottom carafe, using hot water. Then, attach the filter to the midsection of the top chamber using a hook.
- Measure your coffee, use 20 to 25 grams of coffee to brew. Grind the coffee to a coarse texture using a burr grinder.
- Put the grounds inside the top chamber. Fill the bottom vessel with two cups of hot water from the kettle. You can also fill it with room temperature water and boil it in the carafe. Light up the burner and put the bottom vessel on top of it to start heating the water.
- Then set up the top vessel and attach the filter properly at the bottom. Allow the water in the lower chamber to reach a boiling point. You can put the thermometer inside the water to check the temperature. The ideal temperature is 90 to 96 degree Celsius.
- Once the water starts bubbling, hold the top chamber securely into the lower vessel to create a seal. The next thing you’ll see is water traveling northwards into the upper carafe.
- Use a spoon to mix the water and the grounds, make sure they are all saturated. Wait for at least 50 seconds to one minute for the extraction to take place.
- At this point, you’ll see gases and bubbles from the top of the vessel. If you prefer stronger coffee, allow it to steep for a few seconds.
- Remove the siphon from the stove and stir it once more to ensure even extraction. When a vacuum is created, the brew will be sucked into the bottom chamber, the coffee grounds will be filtered as it travels through the filter.
- Remove the top vessel and allow the coffee collected inside the lower carafe to cool down for some seconds before you serve.
MORE TIPS FOR BREWING
- Always place the filter at the center of the top vessel with a spring. If you are brewing with a muslin filter, soak it for 3 to 5 minutes in a warm spot before attaching it.
- Use a butane burner to heat the siphon brewer as it fosters clean heating without odors that can change the coffee flavor. The burner also heats water faster than the heating device attached to the siphon.
- When the water goes up to the upper carafe, stir rapidly in an anticlockwise direction to create a whirlpool.
- When you remove the siphon from heat, cover the lower vessel with a damp cloth until the filtered brew permeates and collects into it. This serves as a stimulus to draw the coffee quickly and prevents over-extraction.
- Rinse the lid each time you use it.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What are the parts needed for siphon brewing?
As stated, the siphon coffee maker has 5 different parts- the top brew chamber, the bottom pressure pot, a lid, a burner, and a filter. They are different types of filters to choose from. Some of them are- cloth filters, paper filters, glass filters, metal filters, and nylon mesh filters.
Is the siphon-making process too difficult?
It seems difficult but it won't remain that way for long, once you master the process, it becomes a great experience you look forward to. It's just basic science that makes the brewing method work. It's a little time-consuming for sure, but it's worth the excitement. Don't you think so too?
How often should I replace my coffee filter?
If you brew with a cloth filter, it's a good idea to switch after 2-3 months of regular use. You should clean it from time to time, using hot water, a brush, and a mild odorless detergent. Make sure you rinse it properly under running water so that there will be no detergent residues left behind. As for the stains, you’ll see it after some time, you can't do anything about it. Just get used to seeing it that way.
This brewing method still has its charm after 150 years. This is because it gives a visual treat you can't find elsewhere. It might seem complicated at first, but you’ll get a hang of it with practice. With a little more practice, you’ll get a clean, full-bodied, and sediment-free cup of coffee. We hope you are looking forward to that.
Then hurry now, buy fresh coffee beans from Coffee hero, and start brewing. We have different coffee beans (single-origin and blends) that can are suitable for the siphon brewing method. We roast daily, so you are getting the best. Your new favorite coffee beans are just one click away!