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Coffee makiNG tips


The first step in brewing a great cup of coffee is to buy high quality coffee. If you’ve got La Mai, that’s step 1 covered!

The next step is to ensure the coffee is correctly ground. If you’ve got a filter (or drip) coffee machine, or a plunger, make sure you use medium grind coffee.

If you have an espresso machine or stovetop espresso maker, use fine grind coffee or, better yet, buy beans and grind when you’re ready to go – it’s definitely worth it as the coffee will be fresher. A burr grinder (as opposed to a blade grinder) is the ideal.

Making Great Plunger CoffeePlunger Coffee

  1. Make sure the plunger is really clean and doesn’t smell stale.
  2. Heat the plunger with water (a little cooler than boiling) first.
  3. Boil the jug, but let it sit for a minute before pouring.
  4. Add one tablespoon of medium grind La Mai coffee per cup of water, plus one additional tablespoon ‘for the plunger’ – just like making a pot of tea.
  5. Pour enough water to cover the ground coffee and give it a good stir, then add the remaining water.
  6. Allow the coffee to brew for three to four minutes (no longer!) before plunging.

Making Great Stovetop Espresso CoffeeStoveTop Coffee

  1. Make sure you use fresh, cold water.
  2. Fill the ‘brew basket’ with fine grind La Mai coffee and ensure it is evenly and firmly ‘tamped’ or pressed down.
  3. Wipe the top of the brew basket to clear off any excess coffee.
  4. Put on a high heat until the coffee begins ‘bubbling’, indicating it is passing through the spout at the top.
  5. Turn down the heat, or even remove from the heat (you may need to experiment here a little) once the coffee starts hissing to avoid scalding it.

Making Great Espresso Machine CoffeeEspresso Coffee

  1. Fill the brew basket with fine grind La Mai coffee and tamp firmly and evenly exactly to the fill line marked in the basket.
  2. Polish the surface by spinning the tamper over the coffee to ensure a smooth even surface. Wipe off any loose grinds sitting around the edges of the basket.
  3. There may be a slight delay before coffee starts to run through the head. Coffee extraction should be thick and syrupy when coming from the head (like liquid honey), and it should not be gushing out but running steadily on both sides.
  4. Let it run while the colour is a rich caramel. When it becomes lighter (‘blonding’) and either ‘thin’ or ‘fluffy’, the extraction is finished.
  5. The most important part of the process is ensuring you only extract the ‘good oils’ in the coffee and avoid over-extracting so that you tap into the bitter tannins. This is a combination of having the right grind and extracting for the right amount of time.
  6. If the coffee doesn’t taste right, and you’re grinding your own beans, you may need to adjust your grinder. If the coffee is running too slowly (doesn’t fill 30mls in 25 seconds) the grind may be too fine. If the coffee is running too quickly (overfills 30mls in 25 seconds) the grind may be too coarse.