V60 Pour Over

The V60 is a cone-shaped filter holder that sits on top of most types of containers (cups, mugs, pitchers, thermos, etc.). The V60 Pour Over method is an updated take on an age-old way of brewing coffee.

 

Background

The “typical” pour-over method involves pouring water over a flat-bottomed trapezoid-shaped filter that sits in a filter holder. The holder has small holes in the bottom that allow for a slow rate of water flow out of the filter. These designs rely on the size of the holes at the bottom of the solid filter holders to regulate the flow of water through the coffee, leading to difficulties in obtaining the best extraction.


The V60 method’s filter holder has a single large hole in the bottom, allowing the paper filter to protrude through the bottom of the filter. Because it is not closed at the bottom, the rate of flow of water through the filter must be controlled by the user, which makes this method of brewing coffee more challenging.

 

The V60 method’s filter holder has a single large hole in the bottom, allowing the paper filter to protrude through the bottom of the filter. Because it is not closed at the bottom, the rate of water flowing through the filter is controlled entirely by the user, which makes this method of brewing more challenging.

 

Besides the larger hole in the bottom of the filter holder, the V60 has two other design changes that help give the coffee a better extraction.

 

Instead of a flat pyramid shape, the V60 keeps a round cross-section throughout its body. This inverted cone shape of the filter paper permits water to flow through the filter faster, versus the flat trapezoid shape of previous styles of pour-over filter. Also, the thick ribs along the inside wall of the filter holder allow the coffee grounds to expand in volume and also permit the coffee to run down the sides faster. These two design additions mean that it is completely up to the user to control the rate of flow (and therefore the rate of extraction) of water through the coffee.


Coffee and Water

  • Beans
    Always have a good supply of freshly-roasted whole-bean coffee that is kept in an air-tight container away from sunlight or changes in temperature or humidity. Freezers and fridges are not suitable for storage  as they are great places for odor and flavor cross-contamination
  • Grind Size
    For this method, we recommend a medium to medium-fine grind setting. Something resembling sand is a good reference point. A high quality burr grinder will also give you better results, since grind size and consistency are important factors in extracting optimum flavor from your beans. Less expensive blade grinders produce uneven extraction and bitter coffee. We highly recommend using a good grinder.
  • Coffee Amount
    There are two different ways to measure the amount of coffee to use, either by mass or by volume. We recommend measuring by mass, because different roast levels will lead to difference in bean densities, which impacts how much coffee is used when measuring by volume only.
    We recommend using 1.7 grams per fluid ounce of water (30ml).
    For example, to brew 12 ounces of coffee you would require about 20 grams of coffee.
    7g x 12oz = 20.4g
  • Water

    Don't use water right at its boiling temperature - that's too hot. Instead, wait about 30-45 seconds after you take the kettle off the boil so that the water temperature drops to about 88-92 degrees Celsius. That's perfect for brewing.

    Since a cup of coffee contains about 98 percent of water, always use filtered water boiled fresh each time. Water that is continuously boiling or re-boiled will start to taste stale and have a rancid odor.


Equipment

  • Water Kettle
    We recommend a water kettle that has a long, skinny pouring neck. This will allow you to control the stream of water’s direction and flow rate easily. This piece of equipment is especially important when preparing coffee this way.
  • Scale
    We highly recommend having a precise scale that you can tare (reset to zero) for brewing. This way you can accurately measure the volume of water you are pouring into the filter.
  • Timer
    We recommend having a count-up or programmable count-down timer that shows minutes and seconds so that you can track your extraction time properly.
  • Pour Over Material
    There are many models of pour-over brewers available in the market, ranging from economically priced models to pricier options that come with coffee pots and cups. Let’s take a moment to help find the ideal type of Pour-Over.
    It’s important to note what the brewing container is made of. The most widely available options are ceramic, glass, and plastic.


    • Glass is highly recommended (notwithstanding the higher chance of breakage) because it will not absorb odors or flavors.
    • Ceramic is also highly recommended, and is certainly more durable than glass, but requires a very thorough pre-heating. Pre-heating is essential as room-temperature ceramic will significantly drop the temperature of the water that is poured into the filter.
    • Plastic is not highly recommended, as it has a high rate of odor and flavor absorption and will negatively impact future brews, but it is the most economical option and is available in many colors and sizes.
  • Filter Material
    There are two main types of paper filters available: bleached and unbleached paper. We recommend bleached coffee filter paper because, although it imparts a distinct papery flavor into the coffee, it is often subtle and minimal. We do not recommend unbleached coffee filter paper because of the very strong cardboard-like flavors that appear in the cup.
  • Serving Vessel
    Ideally, a cup of pour over coffee should be served in a thick-walled ceramic mug that has been pre-heated. Glass cups are also acceptable, but be careful of high temperature, as they will get very hot when you pour in your coffee. Plastic cups, thin-walled ceramics or china, or paper cups allow heat transfer far too easily and you will find yourself sipping cold coffee in a relatively short time!