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Decoding the Brew: What It Means to Drip, Press, Pour, Percolate, and More

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If you’ve never given thought to the way you prepare your daily cuppa, we suggest you keep reading because we’ve got good reasons for you to start paying more attention to this part of your coffee routine. Not only does your brewing method of choice makes a difference in the taste of your coffee, it also influences the nutritional value, caffeine levels, and the amount of other chemicals that go in your cup and into your body.

Understanding the different options that you have when it comes to making your coffee allows you to choose the one that fits your taste, lifestyle, and diet. Lucky for you, we’ve got the guide to the most common brewing methods, including the benefits each one has, so you can choose which technique will work best for you.


Yes, please ditch the instant coffee!

Automatic Drip

An automatic drip is the most common type of coffee making machine. It brews your coffee by passing hot water over ground beans that sit on a paper filter. The paper filter sifts the oily compound and sediments found in coffee beans, preventing fatty acids from finding their way into your cup. However, the blend tends to be slightly weaker because coffee is filtered, and caffeine levels are higher because the beans are in contact with water for longer periods of time.

French Press

This coffee making technique involves pouring hot water over ground coffee and letting it steep for a few minutes, then pressing the grounds out. It’s pretty simple. Customizing the strength of your blend is easy with this brewing method: the longer you steep your grinds, the higher caffeine levels it yields.

Pour Over

Just like your standard auto drip machine, this technique is done with hot water and paper filter; but instead of the machine, you use either a coffee cone made of glass, plastic, stainless steel or ceramic, or a glass flask called Chemex. This manual dripping method gives a stronger brew and richer, more intense taste because the hot water evenly wets ground coffee beans, allowing for better extraction of flavors from the beans. The good thing about doing a manual pour over is that it gives you complete control of the taste, strength, and water temperature. As with auto drip, this technique yields higher amounts of caffeine, so if you can’t take in too much, either use decaf coffee beans or consider other brewing methods.


Also called the “stovetop style,” this old-school method is not very popular with coffee lovers. It involves boiling and reboiling ground coffee multiple times, which oftentimes lead to over-extraction and results in coffee that’s too bitter.

Cold Brew

Cold brewed coffee is exactly that--coffee that’s brewed cold. It’s done by steeping coffee in the fridge for about two days, which extracts flavor from the beans intensely and produces a strong, rich blend. Cold brewed coffee also features a sweeter taste. If you’re acidic, this method might be the one for you because cold brew is less acidic than hot coffee. However, because of the long steep time, coffee that’s been brewed cold has higher caffeine content.


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