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My First Brew with a Scale

Published on under the Coffee category.

My coffee scale recently arrived and I decided that I’d brew my first coffee with a scale today. This is the biggest change to my brewing process since I bought a grinder almost a month ago. I’ve never measured the weight of my coffee. I’ve always eyeballed my measurements.

I decided that I would focus entirely on the brew. I didn’t want to try to multi-task. My coffee brewing process is getting more complicated and I needed to be on my A-Game to brew a good cup.

I started by setting up my scale and taking a few measurements. The bottom part of the Aeropress (the brewing chamber) holds 250g of water. I needed to know this as a reference point for my brewing. I know that every cup I make with my Aeropress will be 250g as long as I follow my recipe. I also measured how much liquid my Starbucks mug can hold. It can hold up to 300g of water. That’s good to know for the future but I do not need this measurement at the moment.

I placed the bottom part of my grinder on my scale and zeroed out the scale. I started to grind and then put the bottom part of the grinder on the scale to measure how much coffee I had ground. I now know this is an inefficient process. I kept detaching the bottom-half from the grinder to check my measurements. In the future, I’m going to weigh out how many beans I need to brew a cup before I grind them.

Because I measured the ground coffee as opposed to the beans, I found myself obsessed with getting the quantities right. I poured my grounds into my Aeropress scoop to see how my coffee measurements compared to the scoop. I did not need to do this. I need to have confidence in the scale. I’m getting used to a computerised device telling me how much coffee I have ground. I usually use my own judgement.

The cup of coffee I brewed was somewhat bitter. I definitely used more coffee than normal. I used about 14g of coffee for my 250g cup. I can only say “about” because I kept fussing with the scale. This is a ratio of around 17:1 water to coffee. For every 17 grams of water, I used one gram of coffee.

I feel like I may want to use a bit less coffee next time. Either my scale is off or I ground too much. I didn’t measure exactly how much coffee I had before I put the coffee into the Aeropress chamber. Next time, I’ll just measure the grounds. That would be a whole lot simpler.

I’ll need to do a few more brews with a scale so I can adjust my technique. I’ve added another step to my brewing process which was already somewhat complex. I do hope that using a scale will get me closer to making a more consistent cup. The cup I brewed was stronger but it was delicious.

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