Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The New Brew Crew; DRINKTried Adding Orange to Your Aeropress or Ice to Your Cafetiere? as the Capital Starts Coffee Hacking, Susannah Butter Calls Time on the Cappuccino

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The New Brew Crew; DRINKTried Adding Orange to Your Aeropress or Ice to Your Cafetiere? as the Capital Starts Coffee Hacking, Susannah Butter Calls Time on the Cappuccino

Article excerpt

Byline: Susannah Butter

LONDONERS in need of a caffeine hit have never had it so good. Or so complicated. It's no longer as simple as choosing between frothy and bracingly black. It doesn't even end with flat white or cold drip. Coffee connoisseurs are taking brewing into their own hands and shaking up traditional methods, customising grinders and improvising with slices of orange instead of paper filters. London has begun coffee hacking.

Discerning drinkers are tearing up the rulebook because they won't let anything come between them and a perfect brew.

"There is a lot of invention at the moment," says founder of Curators Coffee, Catherine Seay, who recently opened a second branch in Marylebone and runs home-brewing classes. "As more people are understanding what actually goes on when you make a drink they are coming up with new ways to make something delicious. There are no rules as long as it tastes good."

It's all to do with extraction, says Seay. "The taste is affected by how you dissolve the soluble coffee. Double filtering is popular, putting two filters on top of each other to remove more coffee oils and give a different feel." Every time Seay goes on holiday, she says, "I have to hack the equipment in hotel rooms doing things like using a paper towel as a filter."

Tim Williams, director of operations at Workshop Coffee, says: "The variety of adjustments is remarkable. At the Aeropress Championships, one guy wrapped a beer cooler around the aeropress for a higher brewing temperature. Another person used a brush with a puffer on the end to blow out light-coloured particles in the coffee grind. The result was cleaner, sweeter more focused coffee."

At Pact coffee subscription service, they make cold brew in a cafetiere overnight in the fridge and then double filter it with a V60 percolator. Will Corby, head of coffee there, says: "Filtering it through metal and then paper improves the clarity of the cup. …

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