Don’t be fooled by the haters—decaf coffee can be just as delicious as its caffeinated counterpart. The key is knowing how to make it right. With these simple tips, you’ll be brewing up a cup of Joe that’s sure to please even the most discerning coffee snob.
Step One: Choose Your Beans
Not all coffee beans are created equal, and that goes for decaf beans as well. When choosing your beans, opt for a dark roast. Darker roasts have more depth of flavor, which will help offset the slightly bland taste that’s inherent in decaf coffee.
Step Two: Go Heavy on the grounds
Because coffee grounds lose their flavor quickly after grinding, it’s important to use a bit more coffee than you would for a regular brew. A good rule of thumb is to use two tablespoons of grounds for every six ounces of water.
Step Three: Brew with Hot Water…But Not Too Hot!
You want your water to be hot enough to extract the entire flavor from the grounds, but not so hot that it burns them. The perfect temperature is between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit.
Use a thermometer to make sure you hit that sweet spot! If you don’t have one, boiling water and then letting it cool for 30 seconds should do the trick.
To ensure that your water stays at an even temperature, invest in a quality kettle with temperature control settings.
This way, you can set it and forget it while you attend to other important things (like picking out the perfect mug).
Once your water reaches the ideal temperature, slowly pour it over your grounds in a circular motion until they are fully saturated.
Step Four: Let It steep…but not for too long!
After all the hard work you’ve put into making your coffee just right, you might be tempted to let it steep for hours (or even overnight). But resist the urge! Extending brewing time beyond four minutes will result in a bitterness that even the darkest roast can’t offset. So set a timer and enjoy the wait—it’ll be over before you know it.
Follow these simple steps and you’ll be enjoying a cup of delicious decaf coffee in no time! Just remember to choose your beans wisely, go heavy on the grounds, brew with hot—but not too hot—water, and let it steep for no more than four minutes. And if all else fails? Add some sugar or cream and call it a day—your coffee will still be miles ahead of anything you could get from a chain restaurant. Happy brewing!