The stunning, innovative Trinity ONE coffee maker is an exquisite piece of design.

Trinity ONE coffee maker

One of our most extravagant favourite products is an incredible coffee maker from a talented designer and coffee fan in Australia. We supported Mark Folker’s Kickstarter campaign to develop the Trinity ONE a couple of years ago and have admired Mark’s commitment and search for quality as he has pursued his idea.

We received a small number of the first batch of this device just a matter of days ago, and are taken aback by the result – it’s a beautiful yet functional design featuring kitchen grade stainless steel and American black walnut heartwood timber.

The Trinity ONE can be used to brew coffee by press, immersion, or drip filter method. The unique design and approach is unlike any product we’ve seen before – and if you’re interested in handbrew coffee making it’s worth looking at our feature page on Trinity ONE to see what it’s all about.

It is genuinely original! Yet the Trinity ONE works with what we know about coffee making to produce an excellent device. It is a large item and that can be a bit of a surprise when you first see it – but this can take centre stage and do its 3 different jobs: drip, press, or immersion.

We’re very impressed with Trinity ONE – it will be an elegant addition to any serious coffee shop or be a stunning home coffee making station.

Trinity ONE
Trinity ONE in press coffee making mode

The AeroPress :: One of our favourites for great coffee!!

AeroPress Series 5

One of our favourite products is the AeroPress that helped start our journey into handbrew coffee equipment and techniques.

It’s a straightforward easy to use product that creates great tasting coffee.

The AeroPress is possibly the simplest, most consistent, easy, and cost-effective way to make espresso-based drinks at home… without crazily expensive equipment!

The AeroPress is an amazing coffee maker – if you’re used to instant coffee the AeroPress will be an eye opener, as it barely takes more time than making instant coffee, yet tastes many, many, many times better!

The AeroPress is essentially two plastic tubes that fit together – one that you put the coffee and water into, and one that you use to push the water under pressure through the coffee. So the AeroPress creates the ability to get close to an espresso coffee with a simple, easy to use, portable, coffee-maker which is almost self-cleaning too.

(Of course espresso is used as the base for most coffee-shop coffees – so the AeroPress can also be a gateway to americanos – by adding more hot water, lattes or cappuccinos -by adding frothed milk (see our Cappuccino Kit including an AeroPress and a milk frother), and more…. )

The AeroPress is a great coffee maker and can fit with a very outdoors based life, as it’s so portable. It can be used on holiday, at the beach, on picnics, at work, as well as in the kitchen or at home.

There are increasingly opportunities to have your coffee shop coffee made with an AeroPress too. Many baristas do take this product really seriously – and World AeroPress Championships take place every year!

If you’d like to find out more about how the AeroPress was invented (by the guy who created the Frisbee!) then see here

The journey gets more serious? ….starting to discover pour-over coffee!

Hario Buono, and V60 Ceramic Dripper from Artistry Coffee

So for many of us coffee is a part of our life whether we think about it or not!

The question do you want a coffee has probably already been said to you or by you today, even if only in your mind to yourself!

However, to start to pay more attention to what your cup of coffee contains can be the beginnings of a journey that gradually increases in intensity.

There was a point when – rather than using drip-filter by accident (i.e. without realising) or french press because it sat there (thinking it was just a cafetiere: which of course it is!) – the idea of hand-brewing coffee became more than a means to an end, it became an enjoyment in itself!

This started with a V60 Ceramic pour-over: a cup-like thing with a conical shape and a hole in the bottom. You place a filter paper within it then add ground coffee and pour hot water over the coffee which then drips through to a mug sitting below.

This is a slow coffee making process to savour: not perhaps the best method to use if you’re in a rush!

But this is where a real enjoyment in coffee making started for me and my wife. The process of thinking about the coffee and what it was doing as you were making it became interesting, and the time taken in the pour-over coffee making started to be a relaxing routine.

Starting with the same ground coffee we were using from the supermarket, we enjoyed “blooming” the coffee by pouring a small amount of hot water for about 15 seconds to let the Coffee grounds swell; then pouring hot water gradually over the coffee for another 2 to 3 minutes whilst seeing gasses from the coffee bubble up a little.

Hario V60 Pour-Over Coffee Maker available from Artistry Coffee
A V60 Pour-Over Coffee Maker
Pour-Over Coffee Making Equipment available from Artistry Coffee
Making Pour-Over Coffee

The aroma from the coffee when making it, as the coffee interacts with the hot water and then drips though, adds to the pleasure – and this is heightened because of the slow process of the pour-over coffee making. We found that the coffee was much more pleasurable as black coffee than we had ever experienced before: which then took us to a new place in coffee appreciation.

Discovering pour-over coffee making was a great find, and we recommend it to all – when you have time to savour the process!

Water Temperature Experiments for Coffee (6): …

Recording Temperature of Poured Water

This series of posts started from a fairly simple question in my head – what is the rate of cooling of water from boiling – to have some sense of what temperature coffee making is conducted at when there are no thermometers to hand! It has turned into a rather more complex investigation than first thought – but has been at least a little fun along the way. Here, were close to the end of my write-ups!

We’ve already covered that when transferring water after boiling from an electric kettle into another vessel such as a Buono kettle (in order to achieve greater accuracy for pour over coffee making) there seems to be about a 3 or 4 degree Celcius loss of temperature straight away.

So this post is about the expectation that as the water is then poured from the Buono onto the coffee grounds themselves there is likely to be another (notable?)drop in temperature.

That was the expectation and indeed has been exactly what I observed in my experiments.

In order to attempt to measure this effect, I rigged up a set-up (imperfect, but trying to get close to something realistic) where I could pour water from the Buono spout directly onto the bulb of the thermometer. That’s the closest I’ve been able to construct to something reasonably meaningful.

I conducted most of my previous efforts over a 10 minute observation window – however the idea of pouring water from a Buono kettle for 10 minutes was never going to be achievable – I did try and control it well, and managed around 5 minutes each time, which I think was a good achievement (also meant my rate of pour should have been similar on each attempt).

Chart of Observed Temperatures (time from Boiling Point)
Top Line (darker) : Observed Temperatures in Electric Kettle
Next Line (mid-tone): After being poured into Buono Kettle
Bottom Line (lightest): Temperatures of the Pour

The temperature within 30 seconds had dropped to 90 degrees Celcius, but took till almost 6 minutes to drop the next 5 degrees – by which point it was almost equal to the observations of the temperatures achieved in the Buono kettle itself(with no pouring).

That line on the chart that resulted did puzzle me at first – although the greater initial drop in temperature made sense, the slower rate of decline in the following minutes than observed in the kettles did seem odd ( I haven’t worked all the way through this yet, but I think one of Newton’s Laws does help – I need to look into that a bit more, and will try and write something in a few days).
What also seemed odd is that the water poured from the Bouno (having been poured in the Bouno from the electric kettle) was at a lower temperature in the earlier moments of observations than the water in the open-top vessels.

Observed Temperatures from Boiling Point
Top Line (darker): Temperatures in Electric Kettle
Next Line (mid-tone): After being poured into Buono Kettle
Bottom Line (lightest): Temperatures of the Pour
Yellow Line: Temperature in open-top container

OK – only for 30 seconds, but that it crossed the line, then crossed back again made me think that this science lark was just far too complicated!

But here could perhaps be the most important thing to understand from these experiments – that the pour itself is where the temperature changes the most (pouring from the kettle used for boiling, into another vessel in the first place, and from the pouring vessel onto the coffee).

And therefore different styles of pour, durations of pour, or methods of dealing with the water will mean that the temperature, in effect, on the coffee is different.

This is where the water is coming into most contact with the air (or perhaps more importantly (scientifically) the much lower ambient temperature) and so is losing the most heat.

So I guess one of my biggest conclusions is that when we’re talking temperature we may or may not be talking the same thing – the temperature of the water can change greatly quite quickly depending on how it is transferred from the boiling vessel to the coffee.

Water that is the same temperature for 2 different coffee making techniques at the starting point could actually be at very different temperatures when hitting the coffee grounds seconds later.

This coffee making really is both an art and a science!!

please note: boiling and hot water can be dangerous if not handled with care!
(despite the haphazardness of some of my approaches above, I did take some care and would suggest anyone else does the same: and children should be accompanied by an adult)

Water Temperature Experiments for Coffee (5): ….

Hot Water onto Coffee Grounds

Interim Conclusions …?

Instead of being one simple set of experiments to while away an afternoon and get the brain cells working – this little exploration has actually turned into a set of experiments and blog notes and pseudo scientific activity that has occupied rather more than the initial expectation!

Where we’ve travelled so far, I think, is that the temperature of the hot water as it hits the coffee could vary perhaps rather a lot – affected by all that can happen between the boiling of the water and the drips hitting the coffee.

What I seem to be able to conclude so far is that if the water remains in the kettle it retains its temperature much better than if poured into another vessel. If this other vessel is closed top (e.g. Buono kettle) the temperature will perhaps drop 3 to 4 degrees on the initial pour from the kettle, then hold at a slower rate of decline than if poured into an open-top vessel (where over a few minutes the temperature difference may easily be 10 to 15 degrees Celcius).

All of that fairly logical (and some would say obvious or a matter of common sense perhaps), but I’ve found it rather interesting to be able to place some (amateur) quantification on what’s going on, and helpful to think through what may be affecting the readings.

But the key issue is perhaps what temperature the water is as it hits the coffee. And for my own normal coffee making at home, this involves first pouring the boiling water from the electric kettle into the Buono, and then pouring from the Buono onto the coffee grounds themselves.

So the idea that there might be a second heat loss as poured from the Buono kettle seems to be a logical expectation, and that’s exactly what we get – but the results did puzzle me at first.

(I’ll write that up next post…..)

please note: boiling and hot water can be dangerous if not handled with care!
(despite the haphazardness of some of my approaches above, I did take some care and would suggest anyone else does the same: and children should be accompanied by an adult)

Gradually Piecing Coffee Learning Together…..

Coffee Making with Artistry

Through accident, experiment, and impediment it’s possible to gradually realise that there are better ways to make better coffee.

Realising not to pour on absolutely boiling water, realising that there are a wide variety of coffees available, realising that there are ways to become more consistent or methodical in your approach to coffee making, and that there is a choice of many ways of making coffee.

Piecing all this together brings an awareness that coffee making can be a bit of an art that you can enjoy for itself aswell as for the caffeine kick!

In fact each part can be made into a bit of an art. There’s the choosing of the coffee to buy, the decision about which way (brew method) to make your coffee, the process itself including the grinding of the beans, the pouring of the water, the timing of the process, and the method of delivery (which can be experimented with and varied to produce discernible, and perhaps sometimes not so discernible results), and of course the sitting down and savouring the result.

Basically you can take your coffee making as seriously as you want. If you know what you like and you know how to make it and don’t want to think any further than that, then fair enough. But if you want to you can explore the coffee and the coffee making process and even turn it into a new hobby! You can explore different tastes and simply enjoy learning the various processes that can be applied to the coffee to vary the flavour.

At Artistry Coffee we became fascinated by the old and new techniques that there are to create hand-brewed coffee: and have enjoyed exploring and collecting together some great products to make coffee with.

My main basic learning came about in the last decade through blundering around with various cafetieres and a simple one-cup drip filter maker. Gradually coming to some of the realisations above.

In the last couple of years I have:
– discovered the art of the pour-over method and greatly enjoyed taking time over the process of pouring and making the coffee
– discovered hand grinding, and explored various grind settings that affect the interaction of the water and the coffee grounds.
– and discovered that there really is so much to explore about coffee making. We have favoured exploring hand brewing options rather than anything with machines: as for us it feels closer to the coffee.
Experiencing the AeroPress coffee maker as a way to quickly make a cup of coffee that packs a punch was great, and it still remains a favourite.
As well as the ease and simplicity, and yes cleverness, of the Clever Dripper which has an innovative valve shut-off system to help serve the coffee.

I don’t think you ever end the learning about coffee beans and the growing methods though.

Enjoy making coffee, whether in straightforward ‘just get me the caffeine’ mode, or in ‘fascinated, artistic, exploration’ mode.

One scoop or two…..

A scoop to measure coffee

Of course soon enough in time on the coffee journey you come across a cafetiere to make coffee with (or French Press as some like to call it). This is a simple yet clever device, with the mesh disc to push the ground coffee down in the coffee maker and keep them (mainly) separate from the coffee that will be drunk.

There are lots of things that can be said about making coffee this way – and I’m sure we’ll come to them one day – but the biggest thing that puzzled me was how much coffee to use. And it’s not like I did the sensible thing and work it out then remember it: so every time I make coffee this way was like starting afresh.

It actually gets complicated by the fact that making coffee in different homes, with different coffees, and different size cafetieres means that even if you get the amount of coffee right one time, the next coffee you make with a different blend may need a different amount. And what about the 1 cup vs the 4 cup, 6 cup, 8 cup vessels?

How can anyone ever get it right?

And how do you judge the right amount of water each time?

In fact here we are at the heart of the brew recipe: a phrase which at first (for coffee) seems bizarre, yet is increasingly used by coffee fans to record how they made their latest coffee.

In simple terms something like – 2 scoops of ground coffee to one mug of water. [In reality a brew recipe will potentially record all sorts of things, but that’s for another time].

At its simplest remembering the proportion of water and ground coffee that you use is a first key step to getting a consistent approach to coffee making. And a first simple brew recipe.

A lot of it is about proportions – so you can then double the numbers for 2 mugs, quadruple for 4 etc. Maybe a bit more complex than that, but not far off.

If you use the same type of coffee all the time, you will no doubt hit on proportions of coffee and water that you prefer: and it is worth experimenting with this as it can affect the enjoyment you get from your mug. Also try with different lengths of time after the kettle has boiled, as the temperature of the water can be an important factor. And different timing before you push the plunger down.
Write down what makes the best cup for you, along with the blend of coffee that you made it with.

Once you start weighing the coffee for more precision you know you’re taking it seriously !

So learning the cafetiere is not quite as complex as learning a musical instrument, but maybe a bit similar – you can pick it up and get some coffee out of it: but if you play it well, the notes the coffee delivers will change and become more melodic perhaps. And just like music, I’ve hinted that timing is important too: but that’s also for another time!

There’s something in the water….

Water pour onto coffee

More and more I realize that the starting point for things really matters – so for coffee the water and the beans are the prime ingredients. So it’s obvious really that what you do with each of these is fairly key to what ends up in your cup. It’s perhaps one of the first things that you learn about coffee that it’s not good to use absolutely boiling water as you make the cup.

Even with instant coffee this can be pretty early learning. The fizz of the granules as the water boils them is interesting but not a prequel to a good cup of coffee. So the water and what you do with it in making the coffee is important.

The water temperature should probably be a good 5 to 10 degrees off boiling point, and for some coffee making even lower than this. I don’t know the full science behind this, but it does make some common sense that the water can be too hot and spoil the grounds (or the instant). So a little patience after the kettle boils can only be a good thing.

I do want to do some experiments with what happens to water after it has boiled: partly for fun, and partly jut to be inquisitive.

It’s also true (OK perhaps not strictly speaking, but certainly practically speaking) that water does not equal water does not equal water.

We all know the stories of washing your hair in hard and soft water areas – or the dishes, or clothes – and perhaps the fact that water can taste different on holiday or in different locations. So it’s got to be no surprise that there are characteristics to the water that we use, and these affect the taste of the water and therefore the effect that the water has on the coffee that is made.

There are even discussions amongst the most eloquent of the coffee aficionados about which spring water is the best one to use to make your coffee.

That may be a bit extreme for most people, but it highlights the point that the water does affect the end result. So water filters may not be a bad idea, or at least being aware that water matters and at least keeping an eye on not scalding the coffee by being too eager after the kettle has boiled.

How I wished I’d paid more attention….

drip filter for one

My weekend coffees in the noughties facilitated then by supermarket bought ground coffee – of such better quality than my weekday ones facilitated by instant coffee – were also made to a better method than I realised at the time.

Actually it was a fairly simple and very plasticy mechanism, but one where hot water dropped slowly through a plastic container with holes in it onto the ground coffee below, and then through a mesh into the cup at the bottom. So even though I never described it as such this was genuinely a Drip Filter coffee which gave a good chance of getting the best out of the coffee that I had bought.

Oh how I now wish I had paid a little more attention – attention to the coffee I bought, the different blends I tried, the way the device made the coffee. Had I done that I might have progressed through the coffee journey more quickly, and appreciated the views along the way a bit more too.

Coffee this way was surprisingly straightforward to make – it kind of made itself while getting breakfast ready, or seeing what the kids were getting upto. Pop the grounds in, pour the water into the top container, put the lid on – then pick up the coffee in a couple of minutes. The little device still sees the light of day occasionally!

Easy for a busy Saturday morning before taking our youngest son to music school. Or now and again with the luxury of breakfast in bed on Sunday before heading off to church.

At the time the fact that the coffee tasted better than during the week seemed good enough.

Only more recently have I really appreciated how much more it’s possible to learn about coffee – and realised that if you’re interested enough you may never run out of things to learn – and that its a bit like wine: the more you know, the more you discern, the more you appreciate, the more you realise that there is still more to learn.

So journey fast or journey slowly, journey a short way or a long way – but enjoy your coffee journey.

How many types of coffee are there……?

coffee cup

As the coffee journey continued from that very naive early years experience of mainly instant coffee – when freeze dried Gold Blend was posh! – there came a realisation that coffee came in more than just 3 or 4 options.

I suppose that I ought to have known more – because my foreign relatives in my fathers homeland of Denmark used to have a very different kind of coffee than I’d ever experienced elsewhere. Looking back I now know that it was properly brewed filter coffee – but wayback then it was just strong and different.

Eventually progressing to ground coffee at weekends – maInly using a 1 cup cafetiere – there was now a bigger task of making sure we always had some available. And so comes the task of buying coffee more seriously (certainly trying a bit harder than just picking up the best value jar from whichever supermarket we happened to be in).

So where do you start when essentially youre considering a new product that you have very little experience of ? Start with the colours, or strength numbers, or the price, or the origin? [That’s an official coffee word now – just means what you think it should …. where does it come from?!]

I dont thinknthat there’s a right and a wrong on this. Even starting with the colours can be sensible – cause it’s more likely that you’ll remember what you had next time you’re buying! The important thing is maybe just that – remember what you try and remember what you like. Maybe take some notes about what you’ve tried and what you liked, and why.

If you do the remembering, you’ll journey on in coffee terms much more quickly and generate an appreciation for and knowledge of coffee perhaps far more speedily than being directed by someone else at what you should like and how you should like it.

Experiencing the journey of discovery of coffee is part of the joy. There’s no shame in being on a learning curve but plenty of interest and fun in  the exploration!

There are so many coffees out there, and so much to discover!