This is not my usual kind of posting, no software testing tips, and no leadership discussion involved, today is just about coffee. And about our long love relationship. A lot of coffee is going to be involved in this post together with exciting tools we have discovered along the way.
I used to be a cappuccino lover and still enjoy a good, tasty, foamy cappuccino occasionally. But I never managed to prepare myself that frothy delicious cappuccino at home, so I ended up drinking my well-known Turkish black coffee, with no milk nor sugar added.
I am living in the heart of Transylvania, in Cluj Napoca, where even before the pandemic hit, the coffee industry somehow exploded. Many fancy and chic cafes have been opened, attracting coffee lovers with the finest specialty coffee, freshly roasted. While writing these lines I cannot stop but think of the amazing smell that delights our senses while walking into a cafe.
Enough daydreaming, let's dig into serious stuff here.
More than three years ago, for the sake of black coffee, we transformed our home into a small "home of coffee" (thanks Meron for inventing such a description) and both my husband and I tried to replicate at home the great taste that coffee has in professional cafes. During the pandemic was quite hard for us to constantly go and sip our coffee in a cafe because of the lockdown and all that and also because we had a little baby by that time and parenting and enjoying a good and warm coffee did not go hand in hand back then :)
How did we start?
First of all, we gave up our espresso machine. We used to use a Phillips Saeco, like the one below.
We had a love-hate relationship with this espresso machine and until today we're not sure why. It might be because we did not buy the proper coffee beans for it, maybe because the machine was not equipped with enough bars of pressure so we could do that dreamy frothy milk, but the only thing that stood with me was the taste of bitter coffee.
So, we started to experiment. First, we bought a V60, just like the one below. We bought filters, we changed the coffee that we used, and we started to study a bit what type of coffee is suitable for V60 and what type of grinding needs to have.
We had quite a good relationship with the V60, the only reason why we put it away was that the glass recipient was too small for our needs.
Soon after that, we met the one that stood with us since then.
Soon after welcoming Chemex into our kitchen, we also bought a "grade smart scale that brings consistency and insight to your coffee brewing and which provides all the help you need to make that perfect cup of coffee." (courtesy of Acaia's official website).
The Acaia scale comes with a phone app that needs to be installed, Brewguide. You can add your own recipe in this app, reflecting your taste and preferences. I won't dig into details explaining why is important to weight the coffee and the water you're pouring into it, there are plenty of baristas out there on the Internet explaining this way better than I do.
During the past few years, we tried different coffee suppliers, and we end up concluding that the one that reflects our taste best is the coffee that is roasted lighter, as you can taste the flavor better.
Since we have the Chemex, my husband insisted to grind the coffee himself and he bought a manual grinder (which by the way, was so annoying for me to use it). We had something similar to this one.
Naturally, we went after an electric one and chose Baratza Encore and suddenly our lives become easier.
This is pretty much all our setup for enjoying a good coffee at home. Of course, take this "good" with a grain of salt, as every person defines what good coffee means for him or her in their own way. We usually have up to two cups of coffee per day, as I said before, with no milk or sugar added. Just coffee.
If you are a coffee lover too you know that a good day definitely starts with a good coffee. I usually say that life is way too short to waste our time drinking bad coffee.
Hope you find these suggestions as being helpful.