Have you ever heard of filtered coffee? Considering that most coffee-making processes, including drip filter coffee brewing, require some filter, it’s understandable if you don’t know what it is.
Filter coffee is a strong, clear, and highly caffeinated drink. The process of making it is said to have originated in Germany when a lady discovered how to filter coffee using her son’s ink blotting paper.
She was tired of getting coffee grounds in her teeth and needed some way to filter them out. However, that was when people made filter coffee using the pour-over method.
Since then, other methods have come up, such as using the Siphon filter coffee maker, the French press, and the AeroPress. In this article, we’ll learn about how to make filter coffee and the various methods of doing it.
How Do You Make Filter Coffee?
Filter coffee is a beverage made by pouring hot water over coffee grounds to extract its flavors and oils. It’s a brewing method that involves pouring ground coffee into a filter, letting it soak in a bit of water to loosen its flavor, and running hot water over it for about 2 minutes.
As the water passes through the coffee grounds, it pulls out their oils and flavors and brewed coffee drips into a container underneath via gravity.
Filtration allows you to extract the complex flavor of coffee beans, whether they are aromatic, fruity, nutty, or chocolatey.
Using medium-coarse ground coffee extracts the most oils out of your coffee beans, giving you a bold, clear, and flavorful brew.
Filter coffee is quite strong because the brewing water passes slowly over the coffee grounds, absorbing as many oils and flavors as possible.
When measuring your coffee to water ratio, use 1 gram of coffee for every 17 grams of water. It will give you the best coffee consistency.
Passing hot water over coffee grounds in a filter gets rid of any impurities, resulting in a clear brew that’s not too acidic. The longer you brew your filter coffee, the stronger its flavor and caffeine content.
The brewing process also improves the texture of coffee, giving it a fuller body to complement the flavor of coffee used. Other factors that determine the strength and taste of filtered coffee are:
- The filtration method.
- The type of filter used.
- The quality and size of coffee grounds.
Types of Filtered Coffees
Filtered coffee drinks are generally taken black all over the world. You may choose to use sugar, milk, or creamer in it after brewing to reduce any bitterness.
What differentiates filtered coffees is the type and size of coffee grounds, brewing technique, and equipment used to prepare them.
Some grounds produce strong coffee, while others will give you a light brew. Generally, light roasts will produce a stronger brew than dark roasts in terms of caffeine content.
The flavor of the coffee grounds may also differentiate coffee flavors. Some coffee beans have a chocolate flavor, while others are fruity, aromatic, or nutty. Dark roasts have a nutty or chocolatey flavor, while light roasts have a fruity or aromatic taste.
Some methods of filtering coffee also produce a more intense flavor than others. That may be because of the filter used, the coffee machine, or the length of filtration time. Let’s look at the types of filters used to brew coffee.
Different Types of Coffee Filters
Some people argue that the kind of filters you use can also affect the taste of your coffee. There are bleached or unbleached filters, cone filters, metal filters, and basket filters. How do they affect the taste of your coffee?
Unbleached and bleached paper coffee filters
Unbleached coffee filters are similar to your brown paper bags. Manufacturers clean bleached filters using chlorine or oxygen to make them sparkling white.Paper filters bleached using chlorine may pose a health risk to coffee drinkers. Those bleached using oxygen are less toxic.
However, all paper filters, regardless of the differences in texture, are bad for the environment due to their contribution to garbage.
Paper filters also absorb quite a bit of the oil in coffee grounds when used to brew coffee and should only be used if you prefer a light brew.
If you must use paper filters, choose thick paper coffee filters that do not absorb a lot of oils and will let water pass through without tearing.
Some people complain that coffee made with paper filters has a papery taste. If you feel the same way, a better alternative is metal coffee filters.
Metal coffee filters
Metal filters have an advantage over paper filters because they are reusable, which makes them better for the environment. Also, unlike paper filters, they do not leave a funny taste in coffee after brewing.
Metal filters also allow you to get all the essence from your coffee grounds because they let all the oils and flavors through. However, while that enhances the taste of coffee, it also exposes coffee drinkers to potential health risks.
A well-known risk is the increase of LDL cholesterol in our bodies due to compounds such as cafestol that are present in coffee oils.
These harmful compounds are usually filtered out when using paper filters but pass straight through when using metal filters. If you are uncomfortable with the idea of these oils getting into your coffee, a better option is cloth filters.
Cloth coffee filters
Cloth coffee filters are the best alternative to paper and metal filters. They do not absorb coffee oils, and neither do they let harmful compounds into your coffee.You are more likely to preserve the taste of your coffee by using cloth filters.
You can also reuse cloth filters, which makes them better for the environment. Reusing your cloth filters also helps to cut down on the cost of coffee-making clothes, especially if you are a regular coffee drinker.
When you buy coffee filters, pick those made of organic cotton. Once you start using cloth filters, you ‘ll find they produce a superior brew of coffee than paper filters.
As you consider which of the above filters you like, remember the shape of a coffee filter may determine the quality of your brew. You need a wide enough filter to allow the coffee grounds to absorb as much water as possible before it drips into the carafe below.
That will enable you to extract as much of the coffee’s flavor and oils as possible, increasing the concentration of caffeine in your coffee. In this respect, cone filters offer the best chance of extraction compared to basket filters.
The coffee machine you use will also determine the type and shape of the filter you use. For instance, you can use cone paper filters in a Cuisinart coffee maker, while flat bottom paper filters are ideal for Bunn Coffee makers.
Different Types of Filter Coffee
You may think coffee filtering only requires pouring water over the coffee grounds, but that’s not the case. Some filtered coffee is made manually by pouring hot water over coffee grounds in a filter, while other types are made using coffee-making machines.
Some coffee-making machines you can use to brew filter coffee are siphon filters, pour-over coffee machines, and French-presses, depending on the process you choose.
The time used to brew filter coffee, the type of roast, and the brewing method will also determine the taste of filter coffee too.
As the name suggests, pour-over coffee is made by pouring hot water over coffee grounds in a filter. It is also called manually brewed coffee because the process of making it requires no machinery.
Most people prefer this method of brewing coffee over other brewing methods because they have more control over the taste of their coffee than when using a coffee machine. It is also the simplest way to prepare coffee because it depends on gravity to drip coffee through the filter and collect it in a container below.
However, if the pour-over process is not done carefully, you may end up with a flavorless cup of coffee. Therefore, you need to soak the grounds for some time before brewing and ensure hot water permeates through all of them as it drips below.
Although you can prepare pour-over coffee manually, you can also use pour-over devices such as the Clever Dripper, the V60, the Chemex, Melitta, and Kalita Wave.
Flash Brew Coffee
Flash brew coffee is a version of filtered coffee also known as Japanese Iced coffee. It is made by brewing hot coffee over a filter and letting it drip over ice to lock in most of its flavors.
Brewing Flash coffee is as easy as scooping course coffee grounds into a filter, pouring some hot water over them in a circular motion, and letting the coffee drip into a carafe below with ice.
Flash coffee is similar to cold brew coffee or ice coffee but brewed differently for people who want to enjoy cold coffee beverages on a hot day.
French Press Filter Coffee
French presses also make good quality filtered coffee. The French Press originates from Italy. It is composed of a beaker with a plunger, a meshed screen filter, and a lid.
When using a French Press to make filter coffee, you use the immersion brew method. You must make sure the coffee grounds are not too coarse and not too fine to prepare a flavorful cup of filter coffee. That will result in a full-bodied, bold brew with a flavorful mouthfeel from the oils in the coffee grounds. Here’s the procedure.
Scoop the coffee grounds into the French Press beaker and saturate them with hot water. After some time, press the plunger and filter down to separate the grounds from the coffee brew and pour it into a coffee mug.
AeroPress Filtered Coffee
If you prefer the French press immersion method but would like to brew coffee faster, you can use the AeroPress. The AeroPress has been around since 2005. It is a modern version of the French Press that uses the Piston mechanism to produce strong filtered coffee faster than the traditional French Press.
The AeroPress has a better plunger than the French Press, which exerts more pressure on coffee grounds, bringing out most of their oils.
However, AeroPress is a portable device. Therefore, you can only use it to brew a cup of joe. But what you get is a flavorful, strong coffee drink.
The portability of Aero Press also means you can take it anywhere, which is a plus if you enjoy preparing and drinking filtered coffee throughout the day.
Siphon Filter Coffee
Siphon coffee is made using a device that was discovered by Mme. Vassieux of Lyons, France, in the 1800s. She designed a coffee-making device made of two glass balloons in a frame, which is the predecessor of the Siphon coffee makers we use today.
Another version of the siphon coffee maker was also discovered by a Scottish marine engineer at that time and named the Napier coffee pot.
The Siphon coffee maker is an entertaining method of brewing coffee that gives it a unique aroma. And although the Siphon coffee maker is often used in coffee shops, you can also brew siphon coffee at home.
The Siphon coffee maker has two chambers, one at the bottom and the other at the top, like in a percolator or Moka pot. The bottom part holds the water, while the top chamber holds the coffee grounds.
You prepare Siphon coffee by pouring water into the bottom chamber, heating it, and allowing it to move up into the upper chamber to the coffee grounds via vacuum pressure. Once the coffee grounds are saturated with water, their oils and flavor are loosened, and brewed coffee drips back into the bottom chamber through a filter via gravity.
Siphoning machinery is costly, but it’s worth it if you prepare filter coffee frequently. Some examples of Siphon coffee makers you can buy are the Yama Vacuum Brewer, Bodum Pebo, and Cona Vacuum Brewer.
Espresso filtered coffee
Although you may not think of it as filtered coffee, espresso is a type of filtered coffee because it involves the use of paper filters. It is a concentrated brew made from regular coffee beans that’s served in small shots.
The Espresso coffee brewing process results in a highly caffeinated, robust brew. People take a shot of espresso when they need a quick caffeine kick from a small serving of coffee. You may also take several espresso shots instead of guzzling pots of coffee.
You need an espresso machine to brew espresso coffee. It pulls out at least 70 percent of the caffeine in coffee grounds in about 30 seconds.
The brewing process of espresso involves pressurizing hot water through finely-ground coffee. A shot of espresso contains 64 mg.
Taking a shot of espresso is a better way to get your caffeine kick than drinking gallons of coffee. It can also help you reduce your daily consumption of caffeine because you take highly caffeinated coffee in a shot.
Benefits of Brewing Filtered Coffee
We’ve given you four different ways of making filtered black coffee from home. And you always have the option of visiting a coffee shop if you can’t brew coffee at home. But you may wonder how you will benefit because you don’t know the advantages of filtered coffee. Here are a few.
Prevent health ailments
When brewed with a paper filter, filtered coffee can increase longevity in men and women by lowering the risk of developing cardiovascular ailments.
Scientific studies show that unfiltered coffee, such as Turkish coffee, contains high amounts of oils called diterpenes that can jeopardize your heart health by raising your LDL cholesterol levels.
The diterpenes, also known as kahweol and cafestol, form plaque in your blood vessels, increasing your chances of suffering from strokes, heart attacks, and high blood pressure.
Therefore, health organizations like the European journal of preventive cardiology recommend coffee drinkers take filtered coffee to prevent mortality from cardiovascular disease. Drinking at least two cups of filter coffee can also lower your chances of getting diabetes.
Protect the environment
Drinking filtered coffee made using cloth filters is good for the environment. You don’t need to dispose of them as you do with paper filters that contribute to waste.
If you choose to use paper filters, compost them together with your coffee grounds or find something else to do, such as recycling them. However, choose brown paper filters, which are less harmful to the environment because they are not bleached using harsh chemicals. You may also use metal filters, which are reusable and do not pose a danger to the environment.
Give you control over the coffee brewing process
Making filter coffee is one of the best ways to control the consistency and strength of your coffee. You can do this by grinding the coffee beans to a specific size and choosing the right temperature of water.
Pouring water over coffee grounds for a longer period of time will also enhance the taste of your coffee. The longer you allow your coffee grounds to bloom, the more flavor and oils you get in your coffee.
Using a filter reduces the amount of fine coffee grounds you get in your brew, giving you a clear and strong cup of joe. However, your choice of filter will determine whether you get most of the oils and flavors from your grounds or not. For example, paper filters absorb a lot of the coffee oils, but metal filters give you most of what is in your coffee grounds.
If you had no idea what filtered coffee is and the different types you can make, now you know a little bit about it. Filtered coffee is an easy brew to make manually or using the various machines available, such as a French Press or Hario V60.
Remember, preparing coffee using the filter method only brings out the unique notes of a roast. Therefore, buy high-quality, fresh coffee beans from a roaster or any coffee house that roasts its own beans to make the best coffee.
If you don’t want to purchase different roasts, go for Omni roasted coffee. It tastes good when filtered or used in espresso making.
When in doubt, ask the barista at your favorite coffee shop what coffee they use to brew your filter coffee and buy it for home use.
You may also invest in a filter coffee maker to ease the process of brewing your coffee at home. Some examples are the Melitta coffee maker, Hario V60, and Kalitta. Some drip coffee makers also make excellent filter coffee.