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Coffee Brewing Steps

Learn about the coffee brewing steps, starting with fresh green beans and and ending with hot coffee or espresso.

Roasting Coffee

Dry green coffee beans are roasted to a tan to dark brown color. Roasting changes the balance of acids, oils, caffeine, flavors, and aromas. There are four general categories of roasted beans.

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Heat Water

Water is heated to the right temperature, usually between 190 and 204 F (88 and 96 C). Hot water better dissolves the acids, oils, caffeine, flavors, and aromas.

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Coffee Grinding

Roasted coffee beans are ground to the right size. There are five general categories of grind size. A smaller grind size allows the water more access, and should be used when extraction times are very short. A coarse grind size allows the water less access, and should be used when extraction times are very long.

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Extraction

This is where is all comes together. Hot water is passed through roasted ground coffee beans at a specific temperature and pressure, for a specific amount of time, to extract acids, oils, caffeine, flavors, and aromasa. Extraction time can vary from 17 seconds for short espresso, to 4 minutes for coffee presses.

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Filtering

The extracted coffee grounds are separated from the brewed coffee, usually by some type of filter. Filters are usually paper, cloth, or stainless steel.

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