Coffee is a (very necessary) expense. But if you want to save some money in the long run or are interested in exploring more coffee flavours I propose you start brewing your coffee at home.
This is the first in a series explaining the different methods of home brewing. Let’s start with the v60, which is my favourite method. It gives you light and fragrant coffee (with the exact same caffeine intake as espresso).
How to prepare for your V60
Set-Up Cost: around £70 (£50 if you use pre-ground coffee)
The v60 is a form of filter coffee; basically a more refined version of classic filter coffee. This type of coffee has been drunk all over the world for years which suggests there is something pretty damn good about it. You can choose the size of your v60; 01, 02 or 03, these numbers relate to the number of cups of coffee each v60 will produce. The v60 comes in a variety of different materials, the main 2 being heat retaining ceramic or cost-effective plastic. For first time, at home use plastic will be more than fine.
You will also need a speciality pour over kettle; the difference between this and a normal kettle is the spout, it gives you a lot more control over the flow of water which is very important for v60 coffee. (This kettle doesn’t boil the water, it just holds it while you pour it over your coffee.) You can pick one of these up for less than £10 from Amazon. The final things you need will be something for the coffee to drip into (this can be as simple as a mug) and scales. The scales either need to have a timer built in or you will need a separate timer, however you can easily use your phone.
Finally you will need coffee beans; either pre ground or you will also need to invest in a hand grinder, which you can pick up for around £10-£20 depending how much or where you buy from.
While the set up costs seem large, this is an investment and you will save money in the long run. Rather than spending a few pounds every day, you spend a lump sum and then don’t have to spend anymore. For example, if you buy a coffee every day you will start saving money in a month, as well as having more control over the quality and taste of your coffee. V60’s also bring with them a fun social element, it’s much more engaging and fun when you have guests around to make them v60 coffee compared to instant.
You need to try and be as prepared as possible, try and make sure you have everything prepped. So have your filter in your v60, your v60 set up, over the cup and scales and have your hot water boiled. The last thing you should do before you begin is to grind your coffee, obviously if you are using pre-ground this step is irrelevant to you.
The ratio of coffee to water in a v60 brew is 1:16, which means if you have 20gs of coffee, you use 340gs of water, you can play with this ratio and adjust it to get the flavour you prefer. Adjusting the grind of your coffee e.g. fine to coarser, will also affect the taste, in general a finer grind gives a stronger flavour but can stop some of the more delicate flavours coming through. You want to have a grind on the finer side of medium for v60.