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THE BREW AT COFFEE MODE


What we’re drinking: Coffee at Coffee Mode, Market Street’s freshest coffee spot from the creators of LOMA Coffee. We asked barista and manager Joey Lopes to take us through the exacting process that goes into each cup of pour-over coffee.

The beans: “For this pour over, we're going to use a coffee called Santa Isabel, which was sourced and roasted by a Elixr Coffee in Philadelphia. Every year, Elixir cycles through different farmers, different cooperatives that they work with. And just my experience working with them for about two years, I know the Santa Isabel lot they get in every spring is a very decent, cold-washed coffee. It's sweet, it has characteristics that I feel comfortable exploring.”

The brewer: “I thought that brewing it on the Kalita Wave Dripper185 brewer would do it a lot of justice. Complex coffees tend to stand out very well on this brewer. It's kind of a thing within the industry, if you're trying to pull out a flavor note from your coffee, a flat-bottom brewer is a very efficient way to do that.”

The filter: “You want to wet the filters. It's a little bit of an OCD thing. I don't know how much difference it really makes on the cup quality, but it's traditional for coffee brewers to rinse the filter as the first step of the process. The shape of the filter is very important part of this. The little ridges that go around the edge, I believe they assist with the way the water drains through the filter.”

The recipe: “We're going to take a pre-dosed amount of coffee. A couple days ago, we developed a recipe for this coffee that we really liked. It involved using 25 grams of whole beans, ground on a particular grind setting, and then we add water until we have approximately 310 grams of weight total. If you forget to set your timer or your scale, well, that's where the real skill of the brewer comes into play.”

Some random coffee trivia while we wait: “We refer to the smell of the coffee as an aroma. Fragrance is really the proper term. Fragrance refers to the dry smell of coffee. Aroma is the smell of coffee when it's brewed.”

The “bloom”: “I start my timer and start adding water. When I first add water, I only add about 30 grams. The purpose of this is to saturate the dry coffee bed. If you've ever neglected a houseplant, you might notice that when the soil in the plant dries and you add too much water, it just overflows the pot. It's because it's not saturated. Same thing with coffee. If you add too much water to a bed of grounds too quickly, you risk hitting dry spots. So we add a little but of water in the beginning. This is sometimes called The Bloom.”

The final cup: “We watch the timer and the weight. It's a little overkill to do both, but when you reach the end of the process and you realize the weight and the time are right where they need to be, it's very, very encouraging.”

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