Since its discovery, coffee has been something that humans have gone crazy for. The monks dating back to 800 AD believed it was a gift from God that gave them the power to pray for longer and now the modern-day person believes it gets them through their working day.
Not only that but it’s become a lifestyle that fits in with many different groups of people. Every morning I wake up, plod down my stairs and grind up my latest beans and brew whatever method I’m feeling, from a clever dripper to an Aeropress. It’s my ritual that starts my day, and I wouldn’t change it for anything. I’ve worked in specialty coffee for 5 years, and I’ve been in the coffee industry for 10 years so I know my way around a coffee bean.
Here I’m going to take you through some basic tips to get you started in how to be a home barista.
Know What You Like
First of all, you need to understand what you like. Now, this may seem like a silly thing to say but it’s going to help you get the equipment you need to make it at home. I love black coffee in all forms, but my preferred is a filter coffee so I know that I’ll need some brewing methods, a grinder, a mug, and a kettle. If you like espresso then you’re going to have to look into buying an espresso machine, we’ll look more into that a bit later.
Essentially, what I’m saying is to take your time and get to know the flavors you like. There are literally thousands of varietals, roast profiles, and styles of coffee you can choose from. Go to your local store and start experimenting, ask questions, and enjoy the cup!
Espresso is a drink that is the heart of any other coffee on the menu (apart from filter coffee). When you walk into a shop and you see the menu that reads; Latte, Cappuccino, Mocha, etc… They all have the same base and that’s espresso. It’s a small coffee that’s around 50-60ml depending on the recipe and it’s strong in flavor. Made up of three noticeable parts, the crema, the body, and the heart, the espresso is the Italian original. If you like this style then you know you enjoy strong flavors that dance on your tongue as you slowly sip.
Making this at home can be tricky because it really depends on how much money you want to spend on a machine. The espresso machines that are making your coffee in a shop are often $10,000 or more so to find something that is comparable for the home without spending too much money is very difficult. There are, however, some exceptions to this rule and you can find yourself pulling amazing espresso at home in weeks.
The best thing you can do is to read as many reviews as possible and decide on something that is going to suit you. Take a look at some reviews from Coffee-Brewing-Methods.com. There are machines that will be easy to use but produce a subpar product, and machines that will be tricky, to begin with, but once you’ve got the hang of it you’ll be flying.
A world that wasn’t truly investigated until later on, filter coffee was once a staple for most American diners and shops that wanted something quick and easy to serve. But now, with the introduction of specialty coffee shops and farms taking extra steps to produce the most incredible beans the world has truly changed for the better.
This is where your personal research will come in, you have to decide what coffee style you like, whether it’s light and tea-like in flavor, or a bit heavier with dark stone fruit notes in there. Each brewing method is going to give you something else.
Buy the filter method of your choice, and work at perfecting the recipe you like over a number of weeks. Try different coffees, different waters, and water temperatures and get your inner geek on.
The most amount of fun you’re going to get as a home barista is experimenting. Whenever I make a coffee, I make sure to write down the recipe I used and what it tastes like. I can then try to improve on that recipe by playing with it the next time I make a coffee. Don’t be afraid to experiment, it’s the best thing about being a home barista!
What Are You Going To Need?
To make it really simple, I’m going to list everything you will need to brew something delicious at home:
- Kettle (Never brew with boiling water)
- Brew Method (Espresso machine, clever dripper, Aeropress, V60, etc…)
- Good quality water (Do some research on this, it matters!)
- Scales (Weigh everything)
- Filter papers (Depending on brew method)
- Grinder (Grind only what you need for your coffee, just before brewing)
- Coffee (Choose your favorite)
- Mug (Something fancy)
Coffee is art, coffee is passion. For some people, it truly is a lifestyle that will be with them to their grave. I for one, am one of those people. Love what you do at home and be proud of what you are brewing, there’s something special about creating delicious coffee at home.
If you are interested in even more lifestyle-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels, then we have a lot to choose from.