What is the correct water temperature for brewing coffee?
Some of us might not realize how critical water temperature is for coffee brewing. Turns out that if the water being used is too cold the coffee will come out flat. If the water is too hot the coffee will lose its quality. So what is the correct water temperature for brewing the perfect cup of coffee?
French Press, pour over, and Chemex methods require a precision temperature between 195° F (91° C) to 205° F (96° C). Water that’s less than 195° F (91° C) will not extract the flavor properly and taste flat, and water that is boiling 212° F (100° C) will leave the coffee with a slightly burnt taste.
Good drip coffee makers will automatically heat the water to the correct temperature. Check older coffee makers to ensure the heating element is still consistently brewing within a few degrees of 200° F (93° C).
Not sure what’s the temperature on the water you are using to brew your coffee? Here’s an easy fix: buy a kitchen thermometer. Or, bring the water to a boil then set a timer for 30 seconds, the water will be right around 200° F (93° C) for the perfect brewing temperature.
If you are a coffee perfectionist and in a long-term relationship with coffee: invest in a kettle with built-in temperature control.
What Type of Water?
The quality of water is almost as important as the bean itself. While tap water is safe, especially after boiling, any aftertaste in the water will linger in your coffee. Most of us reach for filtered water but the natural minerals found in spring water or “hard” water enhances the flavor of the bean and many people prefer the earthly essence. Distilled or “soft” water may extend the life of your coffee maker and it will mute the flavor of the beans.
For the very best cup of coffee, try different water, temperature, brewing methods, and bean to discover YOUR favorite!