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Preparing and enjoying a great cup of coffee is a pleasure, and few things as simple as brewing coffee provide such rich rewards. Brewing coffee is actually a lot like cooking with fresh produce; start with the best, freshest ingredients, take care to do it well, and you will produce something astonishingly delicious.

Brewing Basics

  • Use freshly roasted and just-ground coffee.
  • Brew with water heated to between 195 and 205F.
  • Use one ounce (30 grams) of freshly ground coffee per 16 fluid ounces (454 grams) of water. Adjust to taste.
  • Store whole-bean coffee in an airtight container. Keep it out of direct sunlight and away from heat, cold, and moisture. Avoid storing your beans in the fridge or freezer, as these places can facilitate odor contamination and damaging condensation.

Five Steps to Greener Brewing

1. Go Organic.

Choosing organic can reduce coffee’s carbon footprint by one-third.

2. Use a Mug.
Paper cup = paper taste, and 58 BILLION paper cups hit landfills annually.

3. Measure.
Heating excess water can double a cup’s carbon footprint; grinding excess coffee exposes volatile aromatics prematurely.

4. Handcraft Every Cup.
Hand brewing improves taste and efficiency.

5. Waste (Not).
Compost—don’t throw away—grounds and filters.


Related Updates:
Sustainability Manager Meredith Taylor visited East Timor last month. It was the first time anyone from Counter Culture has visited the country. Since 2002, coffee has been a major export for East Timor, and Meredith was excited for the opportunity to check out this under-the-radar origin. Read...
As I've said in previous posts, we have some awesome employees here at Counter Culture who think about sustainability not only at work, but in their own lives, as well. One of these sustainably-minded folks is Chelsea Thoumsin, the customer support representative at our Philadelphia Training Center...
March 13–19, 2016 On this weeklong trip, students participate in each step of the coffee production process at origin—from harvest to export—and learn about the benefits and challenges of building long-term coffee relationships. The 2016 Origin Field Lab will cover the complexities of...
In this post, I'm going to shift away from talking about sustainability where we buy coffee and focus on our own operations as a roaster. A coffee grown sustainably shouldn't necessarily retain that "sustainable" designation if others involved further along the supply chain aren't also acting...
In this post, I'd like to dive in to what I mentioned in the first post as a good indicator of a coffee's sustainability: certifications. Wouldn't it be great if there were a certification and corresponding label that could simply tell us whether a coffee is sustainable or not? The good news is...