06 Oct A Guide to Grinding your Beans
For the first part of my home brewing education series I’d like to talk a bit about grind. Grind is the part of brewing that most directly effects the coffee’s flavor because it is specific to your brew method. A brew method’s grind is meant to place the grounds in their ideal conditions for what is known as the “golden cup”. When this happens you are able to taste the full complexity of a coffee. All those footnotes about grapefruit and cardamom will make sense and you will be able to fully appreciate your coffee.
You will notice that each number of clicks from closed has a range. This is because each coffee has its own natural flavor profile. Not to say that these flavors have somehow been added to the coffee beans, but the chemical compounds that make up a coffee’s flavor just happen to have similar shapes to ones that we know such as green pea, grapefruit or chocolate. This range of flavor can only be pronounced in full through proper extraction so a bean’s grind may vary a couple of clicks within the same brewing method.
The general rule of changing your grind is to grind coarser if you want it to be more acidic and finer if you don’t. We are aiming for 22% extraction from our grind. Any more and we will get more of the bitter compounds, which will overpower any more subtle flavors.