The perfect cup of coffee is something coffee lovers the world over strive to achieve with each and every cup they brew. But...is there truly such a thing? After all, everyone has different flavors that they like, right? It seems like this perfect cup would be very subjective based on who is drinking the coffee. Yet, there is such a thing as a perfect cup!
The perfect cup of coffee has a very specific recipe which will work with every type of coffee and every extraction (fancy word for "brewing method"). When charted, this perfect cup of coffee lands in an area known as the "Golden Ratio" of coffee to water.
The three important variables in brewing great coffee are:
- Brew Ratio
Strength is the concentration of coffee solids which are in the water. For example, a weak coffee would be light brown because there is not much coffee solids in the water. A very dark and thick coffee would mean that there were too many solids in the water. The measure of solids in the brewed water is measured by a device called a refractometer which measures the total dissolved solids (TDS) in the coffee.
The extraction refers to the amount of coffee solids that have gone from the coffee grounds into the brewed cup of coffee.
The Coffee Control Brew Chart by the Specialty Coffee Association links all three variables.