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Tips for Great Coffee ~ Drip Coffee Maker

There are several choices, such as the French Press, that make amazing coffee, however if you’re an "average joe", you have a drip coffee maker that gets a lot of use. If your drip coffee maker is your "go to" machine in the morning before running off to work, here are a few tips to making better coffee with a drip coffee maker.

Whole Beans

The first, and one of the most important steps is to buy whole bean coffee. Ground coffee may be convenient, but if you want great tasting coffee, you need to buy whole beans. Ground coffee starts losing flavor as soon as it’s ground and can go stale within fifteen minutes. You never know how long it was sitting on that shelf before you bought it.

Daily Grind

You have whole beans, now you’re going to need to grind them. A twenty dollar blade grinder is a good start, however if you’re serious about getting a the perfect cup of coffee consider buying a burr grinder. Using a burr grinder you can fine tune the size of the grinds to get the optimal amount of flavor out of them. Just a note - for most drip coffee makers a medium grind works perfectly.  Check out "Get Into the Grind" for more detailed information on grinding your beans.  

Clean Your Coffee Maker

When was the last time you cleaned your coffee maker? Depending on how often you use your coffee maker, you may want to consider cleaning it as often as once a week. The minerals from water and the oils from coffee can start to build up and it isn’t long before they start affecting the taste of your coffee. You don’t need special coffee maker cleaning solutions, all you need is some vinegar.

Staying Hydrated

How is the water from your faucet? Do you drink it directly from the faucet, is it labeled hard or loaded with chlorine? If you don't care for the taste of your water from the faucet, think of how it tastes in your coffee. An easy way to improve the quality of your coffee is to filter your water. A water filter that attaches to your faucet or a pitcher with the filter built in will make an immediate difference.

Just Don't Sit There

Do you have your coffee sitting on the warming plate or in the coffee pot? You’re probably safe lettingcoffee sit for half an hour or an hour (not on the heater). Making smaller pots of coffee multiple times, rather than one huge coffee pot of coffee that sits around all morning long, will give you the best results.

Baby, It's Cold

Definitely don't reheat your coffee, microwaving your coffee kills the flavor.  Enough said.  

Store Your Coffee Properly

The best place to store your coffee is someplace cool, dry, out of direct sunlight and in an air tight container. Contrary to popular belief, do not store coffee in the refrigerator or the freezer.

The Hardware 

Invest in a coffee maker. Think of it this way - you’re going to be using it every morning, getting a lot of use, so don’t just buy the ten dollar model on sale. Buy a good one, it will most likely longer and produce better coffee. For a few suggestions, check the post "Consumer Reports on a Classic Gift".

Reader Comments (2)

Your right. Just using good, filtered water can make a hige difference in the taste of your coffee. Even the water that comes out of the fridge is better than the faucet. Thanks for the good article!!

May 14, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbrad

Thanks, Brad, for taking the time to comment on the article. The support is much appreciated.

May 15, 2012 | Registered CommenterBoris

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