Coffee Basics: Coffee Brewing


Time to read 4 min

In the intricate world of coffee, the brewing method you choose can significantly impact the flavors that dance on your palate. At Tapestry Coffee, we are firm believers that any coffee can be transformed into a delicious cup using various brew methods. Want to take it slow and enjoy the process? A pour over might be a great choice for you! Like to maximize the deep, rich flavors of coffee; you might love a French press.

In this guide, we delve into the nuances of popular brewing techniques, helping you find the perfect method that aligns with your preferences. 

The Science Behind Brewing

Understanding the basic science of coffee brewing can elevate your appreciation for the art. Let's explore how hot water, grind size, and contact time intricately contribute to the brewing process.

1. Breaking Down Cellular Structure with Heat

The foundation of brewing lies in the application of heat to coffee grounds. Hot water acts as a catalyst, breaking down the cellular structure of coffee beans. This process, known as extraction, extracts compounds that contribute to the aroma, flavor, and body of the final brew.

2. Impact of Grind Size on Extraction

The grind size of coffee beans plays a pivotal role in extraction. A finer grind increases the surface area exposed to water, accelerating extraction. Conversely, a coarser grind reduces surface area, resulting in a slower extraction. Finding the ideal grind size for your chosen method ensures a balanced and flavorful cup.

3. Contact Time and Brew Strength

The duration of contact between water and coffee grounds directly influences brew strength. Longer contact times lead to more comprehensive extraction, yielding a stronger and more intense flavor profile. Conversely, shorter contact times produce a milder cup. Balancing contact time is an art, allowing you to tailor your brew to match your taste preferences.

Understanding these fundamental principles empowers you to experiment and refine your brewing technique. As you embark on your coffee journey, consider the intricate dance between heat, grind size, and contact time, shaping each cup into a unique and delightful experience.

Understanding Brewing Preferences

Selecting a brewing method is a deeply personal choice, and at Tapestry Coffee, we celebrate this diversity. Whether you prioritize convenience, indulge in weekend coffee rituals, or find solace in on-the-go brewing, there's a method tailored to your lifestyle.

1. Pour-Over Elegance

Manual pour-overs cater to those who enjoy brewing one to two cups at a time. This method, exemplified by brewers like Beehouse, Kalita Wave, or V60, allows you to unravel the subtle flavors of your coffee. The pour-over, using a cone and a filter, empowers you to control each variable, resulting in a sweet and clean cup.

  • Grind Recommendation: A finer grind for smaller pour-over cones (resembling table salt). Medium-coarse grind for larger brewers like the Chemex (similar to kosher salt).
coffee brewed inside chemex pour over  coffee brewer


  • Maximizes sweetness and lighter flavor notes of coffee
  • Able to control brew ratio to customize brew strength 


  • Time-consuming
  • Takes some adjustment to learn techniques 
  • Best to own a grinder to have fresh ground coffee

2. French Press Indulgence

The French press method is a classic for creating a full-bodied coffee experience. In this full-immersion method, coffee grounds steep in water, delivering a strong flavor due to prolonged contact.

  • Grind Recommendation: Coarse grind, reminiscent of sea salt.
coffee brewed with french press coffee brewer

3. Amplify with Espresso

Espresso is the art of magnifying the characteristics of your favorite coffee. As coffee under a microscope, this concentrated shot is achieved by forcing water through grounds at high pressure. Espresso is for those who savor strong, bold flavors.

  • Grind Recommendation: A very fine grind is required, and an espresso-specific grinder is recommended.
espresso brewed from espresso machine

4. On-the-Go Excellence with AeroPress

For the coffee enthusiasts on the move, the AeroPress is a go-to method. Its low profile, durability, and paper microfilter ensure a clean, full-flavored experience, making it a reliable companion for travelers.

  • Grind Recommendation: Fine-to-medium grind.
brewing coffee in an aeropress coffee brewer outside

5. Auto-Drip Convenience

Auto-drip brewers redefine convenience and ease of use, making them a popular choice for many households. Quality models, like the Bonavita 8-Cup, offer better saturation and more even extraction. We especially love auto drip with a great drip brew coffee like Loom Blend!

  • Grind Recommendation: Medium-fine grind, similar to kosher salt.

Choosing Coffee for Each Method

While any coffee can be brewed using any method, understanding the nuances of flavor notes can enhance your coffee experience.

Flavor Notes Consideration

  • Light and bright flavor notes pair well with methods emphasizing flavor clarity, such as pour-over.
  • For heavy and rich coffees, French press or espresso might be the perfect match.

Coffee for Espresso

  • Espresso demands personal flavor preferences and consistency.
  • Experiment and choose coffees that align with your taste preferences.
  • Our go-to coffee bean for espresso is our Abstract Blend which was designed to be the perfect shot of espresso. 

Choosing a brew method is just the beginning. For a deeper dive into the world of home coffee brewing, explore our three best tips for making better coffee at home. At Tapestry Coffee, we hope this guide becomes your compass, leading you to the perfect brewing method for your favorite coffee. Cheers to your coffee journey!

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