Coffee by Hand v.58

January 11, 2011 at 5:57 AM | Posted in Coffee, Food | 4 Comments
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My arsenal

I allow myself one cup of coffee a day and that, not a big one. To counterbalance this asceticism, I make as big a production out of it as I can. No Nespresso, my wife’s delight, for me — it is too fast, too set in its ways.

My way is seemingly simple: I pour water over grounds in the time-tested manner. But to get to that moment:

  • Work in Process

    I need to decide which coffee to use. Of late I’ve mixed three types: Peets French Roast, Allegro Vail and Pilao, a Brazilian import of nuclear character. I’ve got Stumptown in mind for my next batch.

  • I boil water, Brita filtered.
  • I place a Peets #2 filter (“oxygen cleansed”) in my new Peets porcelain funnel.
  • I pour steaming water over the empty filter to prepare it for the coffee.
  • I put a combined 2 heaping double tablespoons of coffee into the filter.
  • I just wet the grounds and let them sit for 45 seconds(feel free to do one or two seconds more or less).
  • In a circular motion I pour water over the coffee.
  • My creation

    While the coffee is wending its way into the cup, I quickly put my supplies away.

  • I fill the cup almost to the brim.
  • I add a little half and half; the coffee has taken on a rich, dark allure.


  • I go into my library and shut the door.
  • I put on music, something that I’ve been thinking about since the day before.
  • I sip slowly, very slowly as I know this apotheosis is short-lived.


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  1. As you know, I’m a Nespresso man but you could turn me around with this excellent post.

    • My perfect day would include my coffee and then, a little later, a double Nespresso. Sadly, after a day or two, my hands shake and my mood descends. I miss that second cup every single day.

  2. There is something more rustic and natural about the drip versus any other brew. For me, one cup is the right amount. More than that leads to shaky hands and heightened emotions.

    • I must have passed you the one-cup genes.

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