On a recent trip to Costa Rica I learned something that has really improved the taste of the roasted coffee beans I brew each morning. We were in a rural kitchen adjacent to a roasting machine and our host and brew master offered to make us a cup of coffee from beans that had just been roasted! This gentleman was a perfectionist in everything he did. Special water, the freshly ground coffee for each cup was weighed to the gram, his kettle heated the water to exactly 203F!
Our coffee was made in a French press and I noticed that he first poured just enough water to cover the coffee grounds and then stopped and waited for about 30 seconds before pouring the rest of the water over the coffee.
This process of pre-infusion is known as Blooming and essentially forces carbon dioxide to escape from the coffee. If you look closely, you will notice tiny bubbles leaving the grounds and bubbling up to the surface. The bloom is an important step in the brewing process, because the presence of carbon dioxide can negatively affect your brew by pushing water away from the ground coffee and weakening the extraction.
If you make your morning coffee in a French press it’s easy. If you use an automatic coffee maker, boil your kettle and slowly pour a little heated water over the grounds making sure to thoroughly wet all of them. Let this sit 30 - 45 seconds before starting the coffee maker as usual.
And there you have it, a blooming simple step that will greatly improve the taste of your coffee!