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You are asking an extremely complex question that is very hard to answer without knowing what else you like. We've done a number of coffee threads over the years, with devotees of french presses, the aeropress, Technivorm coffee makers, pour-over makers, cold brew makers and even vacuum makers.

There are a number of solutions, and what you choose generally depends on factors such as what you're willing to spend, how much coffee you want to make at any time, whether you want to be able to hold a portion of coffee warm, and how easy you want the clean-up to be.

Yes, freshly ground beans will help. IMO, they are one of two features that every decent home brewing solution will have. The other is proper temperature control of the water so that it is brewed between 195 and 204 degrees fahrenheit (unless you are using a cold brew method).

I personally use an Aeropress most often, as I'm generally only making coffee for myself or myself and my wife. I do have a pour-over pot and a Technivorm coffee maker that can make 40oz of coffee at a time.

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I think arguing about the best brand of beans is kind of pointless. Different people like different varietal characteristics, and if you like a well made blended brew (like Dunkin, say), I don't think the brand of beans will make much difference. Far more useful to perfect a method that eliminates over or under extraction so that you don't get bitterness.

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As a new coffee drinker. Within the last year or so. Don't love DD or Starbucks.

I like Wawa Hazel Nut

but now my regualr morning brew is this

http://www.greenmountaincoffee.com/Coffee/BreakfastBlend

with this

http://www.internationaldelight.com/Hersheys-Chocolate-Caramel picture - http://static.caloriecount.about.com/images/medium/international-delight-hersheys-chocolate-50192.jpg

Edited by belljr
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I am a big fan of Seattles Best either Italian or French roast. I am a big fan of the bold dark flavor offered with these two styles. If those are not available costco usually carry's a french roast of some kind that i use as a back up.

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I am new to the coffee game so I have a limited knowledge of brands etc. What I know is that I do not use any sweetener or creamer, I am not looking for a caramel this or a hazel nut that. Just lookin for good strong black coffee with as little as bitterness as possible (with out going to extremes).

What do you drink if you're not making your coffee at home? If you're at Starbucks, do you order "coffee" or a "bold?" If it's the latter, you may like the French and Italian Roasts that sbonomo favors. If it's the former, you may prefer a blend or a Columbian like the 5'O Clock brand previously mentioned. You probably don't need single origin coffees yet. I would recommend buying:1) A programmable electric water kettle that can heat water to set temperatures (not just boiling) with some precision. This is great for more than just coffee, I use it to cook and to make tea as well.2) A simple pour over coffee maker and some filters. Chemex is a popular brand.3) A decent home grinder (burr grinders are better, but just make sure it's adjustable).If you'd only be making it for yourself, I'd recommend replacing the pour-over maker with an Aeropress.
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Check your area for a local roastery. Stop in a few times and try some different beans. You will find a great coffee, get some good tips and help a local business. In lieu of that option try some different stuff most groceries in my area have a selection of grind your own and even walmart has a decent bean. Unfortunately I can't remember what it is of the top of my head. If YOU like it it is good.

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:thumbup:

I like the mild breakfast blend kinds for most days. The hazelnut ones are good but I can't drink they everyday.

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Check your area for a local roastery. Stop in a few times and try some different beans. You will find a great coffee, get some good tips and help a local business. In lieu of that option try some different stuff most groceries in my area have a selection of grind your own and even walmart has a decent bean. Unfortunately I can't remember what it is of the top of my head. If YOU like it it is good.

Most Whole Foods will also feature beans from at least one local roaster (and the bins will tell you when the beans have been roasted). Time exposed to air and light is the enemy, so buy in relatively small batches and try to store in airtight containers.
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:thumbup:

I like the mild breakfast blend kinds for most days. The hazelnut ones are good but I can't drink they everyday.

Agree. I never use sugar, well very rarely. The new KANO at Wawa is dreamy.
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Looking for some suggestions on the best coffee I can make at home. I have tried a few of the Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts and was not overly impressed. Is it the best to buy beans and grind them before each cup? Need Info.

Which Starbucks did you try and what did you find wrong with it?We buy Starbucks French Roast from Costco - whole bean - keep it in an airtight container on the counter. Grind it each night at about 10pm, put it in the drip coffee maker using a natural brown paper filter and the timer goes off at 6am to brew.Every time I get back from a week of business travel our coffee at home taste better than anything I've had on my trip.ETA: We also use purified water from our Sparkletts tank. Edited by 17seconds
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for most people, the real difference-maker will be quality beans. high quality appliances, gadgets and kitchen geegaw are good for those folks that are more serious-minded. the average person though can get near instant gratification by simply getting better beans. if you have a local roaster then go there and sample their wares. i always recommend these guys - coffeeguys - because they were fantastic. really good selection, good prices and service offered by them. my wife worked around the corner from this store and we were able to use them every week for beans.

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Looking for some suggestions on the best coffee I can make at home. I have tried a few of the Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts and was not overly impressed. Is it the best to buy beans and grind them before each cup? Need Info.

Which Starbucks did you try and what did you find wrong with it?

We buy Starbucks French Roast from Costco - whole bean - keep it in an airtight container on the counter. Grind it each night at about 10pm, put it in the drip coffee maker using a natural brown paper filter and the timer goes off at 6am to brew.

Every time I get back from a week of business travel our coffee at home taste better than anything I've had on my trip.

Do recall the type, but it tasted burnt to me. I have only been drinking the stuff for a couple of months so my tastings have been limited. The best I have had was at a restaurant this past weekend but they would not give out any info other than the beans are ground when you order it.
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Looking for some suggestions on the best coffee I can make at home. I have tried a few of the Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts and was not overly impressed. Is it the best to buy beans and grind them before each cup? Need Info.

Which Starbucks did you try and what did you find wrong with it?

We buy Starbucks French Roast from Costco - whole bean - keep it in an airtight container on the counter. Grind it each night at about 10pm, put it in the drip coffee maker using a natural brown paper filter and the timer goes off at 6am to brew.

Every time I get back from a week of business travel our coffee at home taste better than anything I've had on my trip.

Do recall the type, but it tasted burnt to me. I have only been drinking the stuff for a couple of months so my tastings have been limited. The best I have had was at a restaurant this past weekend but they would not give out any info other than the beans are ground when you order it.
That's a common criticism of Starbucks. I don't mind it, I like smokey burnt stuff. I'm the guy who eats the burnt pieces off of grilled meat.
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for most people, the real difference-maker will be quality beans. high quality appliances, gadgets and kitchen geegaw are good for those folks that are more serious-minded. the average person though can get near instant gratification by simply getting better beans. if you have a local roaster then go there and sample their wares. i always recommend these guys - coffeeguys - because they were fantastic. really good selection, good prices and service offered by them. my wife worked around the corner from this store and we were able to use them every week for beans.

See, I'd argue that this is 100% wrong.

You don't need expensive gadgets. A Chemex or an Aeropress are both under 30 bucks. But I would bet that you can make a better cup of coffee with supermarket beans in an aeropress, chemex, or french press than with La Minita single origin beans in a Mr. Coffee (or in all but about 3 or 4 consumer drip coffee makers).

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for most people, the real difference-maker will be quality beans. high quality appliances, gadgets and kitchen geegaw are good for those folks that are more serious-minded. the average person though can get near instant gratification by simply getting better beans. if you have a local roaster then go there and sample their wares. i always recommend these guys - coffeeguys - because they were fantastic. really good selection, good prices and service offered by them. my wife worked around the corner from this store and we were able to use them every week for beans.

See, I'd argue that this is 100% wrong.

You don't need expensive gadgets. A Chemex or an Aeropress are both under 30 bucks. But I would bet that you can make a better cup of coffee with supermarket beans in an aeropress, chemex, or french press than with La Minita single origin beans in a Mr. Coffee (or in all but about 3 or 4 consumer drip coffee makers).

which 3 or 4 would those be?
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As a new coffee drinker. Within the last year or so. Don't love DD or Starbucks.

I like Wawa Hazel Nut

but now my regualr morning brew is this

http://www.greenmoun.../BreakfastBlend

with this

http://www.internati...ocolate-Caramel picture - http://static.calori...olate-50192.jpg

To me at this point it stops being coffee and becomes a warm mildly coffee flavored beverage.

If you need to put that many flavorings in it then I think you don't actually enjoy coffee.

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Looking for some suggestions on the best coffee I can make at home. I have tried a few of the Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts and was not overly impressed. Is it the best to buy beans and grind them before each cup? Need Info.

Which Starbucks did you try and what did you find wrong with it?

We buy Starbucks French Roast from Costco - whole bean - keep it in an airtight container on the counter. Grind it each night at about 10pm, put it in the drip coffee maker using a natural brown paper filter and the timer goes off at 6am to brew.

Every time I get back from a week of business travel our coffee at home taste better than anything I've had on my trip.

Do recall the type, but it tasted burnt to me. I have only been drinking the stuff for a couple of months so my tastings have been limited. The best I have had was at a restaurant this past weekend but they would not give out any info other than the beans are ground when you order it.
So the easy fix to this is to avoid "french roasts", "italian roasts", and "espresso roasts." If you're buying coffee where you can see the roast, you'll likely want coffee that is lighter brown, closer to the color of milk chocolate than dark chocolate. We call these "city roasts" or "first crack roasts". They are generally milder and either have a predominant varietal characteristic (acidity, flowers, sometimes nuttiness) or they are blended to be "balanced". Almost all Columbian coffee blends are city roasts that provide the "balanced" cup that seems to appeal to the broadest range of American palates.

You may find that you prefer Kenyan or Kona blends. See what you like. But I'd start with one brand (the 8 O'Clock Columbian makes sense) and work until you find that you can brew it consistently.

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for most people, the real difference-maker will be quality beans. high quality appliances, gadgets and kitchen geegaw are good for those folks that are more serious-minded. the average person though can get near instant gratification by simply getting better beans. if you have a local roaster then go there and sample their wares. i always recommend these guys - coffeeguys - because they were fantastic. really good selection, good prices and service offered by them. my wife worked around the corner from this store and we were able to use them every week for beans.

See, I'd argue that this is 100% wrong.

You don't need expensive gadgets. A Chemex or an Aeropress are both under 30 bucks. But I would bet that you can make a better cup of coffee with supermarket beans in an aeropress, chemex, or french press than with La Minita single origin beans in a Mr. Coffee (or in all but about 3 or 4 consumer drip coffee makers).

which 3 or 4 would those be?

Technivorm, certainly, but that's a $200+ machine. I've heard good things about the Capresso machines. I'm not completely up to date, you may want to check consumer reports.

I know that a lot of very expensive Bunn/Kitchen Aid machines don't reach the proper temperature.

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I am new to the coffee game so I have a limited knowledge of brands etc. What I know is that I do not use any sweetener or creamer, I am not looking for a caramel this or a hazel nut that. Just lookin for good strong black coffee with as little as bitterness as possible (with out going to extremes).

What do you drink if you're not making your coffee at home? If you're at Starbucks, do you order "coffee" or a "bold?" If it's the latter, you may like the French and Italian Roasts that sbonomo favors. If it's the former, you may prefer a blend or a Columbian like the 5'O Clock brand previously mentioned. You probably don't need single origin coffees yet. I would recommend buying:1) A programmable electric water kettle that can heat water to set temperatures (not just boiling) with some precision. This is great for more than just coffee, I use it to cook and to make tea as well.2) A simple pour over coffee maker and some filters. Chemex is a popular brand.3) A decent home grinder (burr grinders are better, but just make sure it's adjustable).If you'd only be making it for yourself, I'd recommend replacing the pour-over maker with an Aeropress.
Do you have a recommendation for #1 and can you walk me through this process?1. Grind beans and put in top of Chemex2. Heat the water to exact temp3. Pour into Chemex4. Wait for it to filter throughis that it? about how long does that all take?
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As a new coffee drinker. Within the last year or so. Don't love DD or Starbucks.

I like Wawa Hazel Nut

but now my regualr morning brew is this

http://www.greenmoun.../BreakfastBlend

with this

http://www.internati...ocolate-Caramel picture - http://static.calori...olate-50192.jpg

To me at this point it stops being coffee and becomes a warm mildly coffee flavored beverage.

If you need to put that many flavorings in it then I think you don't actually enjoy coffee.

So I drink Wawa Hazel Nut on occasion with a bit of lo fat cream or plain "black"

OR

I drink a regular breakfast blend with a touch of the creamer I posted.

They aren't half and halfs I'm making just a splash of cream - I guess I enjoy coffee flavored drinks :shrug: I'm no hardcore coffee guy for sure...

Edited by belljr
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We buy whole beans and grind it fresh each morning. Black and no sweetner. Blue Mountain is considered the best but at $39/lb most people shy away from it. We did buy a half a pound a few months ago just to try it and it was extremely good and smooth. We now get a blue mountain blend at about $16/lb. Not sure of the brand. Its from a local store (Central Market by HEB). Some type of "morning blend" seems to be a good balance. You might try starting there and then going to more of a medium roast. The French or Italian roasts are going to be the most bold. Probably the best coffee I have had was a "french press" version.

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I am new to the coffee game so I have a limited knowledge of brands etc. What I know is that I do not use any sweetener or creamer, I am not looking for a caramel this or a hazel nut that. Just lookin for good strong black coffee with as little as bitterness as possible (with out going to extremes).

What do you drink if you're not making your coffee at home? If you're at Starbucks, do you order "coffee" or a "bold?" If it's the latter, you may like the French and Italian Roasts that sbonomo favors. If it's the former, you may prefer a blend or a Columbian like the 5'O Clock brand previously mentioned. You probably don't need single origin coffees yet. I would recommend buying:1) A programmable electric water kettle that can heat water to set temperatures (not just boiling) with some precision. This is great for more than just coffee, I use it to cook and to make tea as well.2) A simple pour over coffee maker and some filters. Chemex is a popular brand.3) A decent home grinder (burr grinders are better, but just make sure it's adjustable).If you'd only be making it for yourself, I'd recommend replacing the pour-over maker with an Aeropress.
Do you have a recommendation for #1 and can you walk me through this process?1. Grind beans and put in top of Chemex2. Heat the water to exact temp3. Pour into Chemex4. Wait for it to filter throughis that it? about how long does that all take?
It's a bit more involved than that, and I'm still perfecting my Chemex technique myself (I've only made about 5 or 6 Chemex pots). I use the Aeropress a lot more. But here's the process. The programmable kettle I use at work is designed for tea and sold by Cusinart. The one I use at home is by Capresso. For coffee, the Capresso is probably a bit better as it measures water in OZ as opposed to liters. Anyway, I set my kettle to 200 degrees fahrenheit and set it heat.I grind my beans. The chemex comes with a scoop (which is just 1 Tbsp). I use one scoop of beans for every 5 oz of coffee. My chemex has a 40oz capacity, so that is 8 scoops. I grind my beans between the settings for drip coffee and espresso. Essentially, a fine drip grind. Chemex has their own wacky filters, which have to be folded. I have used a normal # 2 filter in a pinch. I fold the filter and fill with coffee. When the water is boiled, I first just cover the coffee with the hot water. This is called "blooming" and is more important the fresher your coffee is. You're getting the coffee to give up its CO2. After 30 -40 seconds, I then pour more water over, but not to the very top and let it drain through. I top off the pour every once in a while and watch the water gauge on the kettle to make sure that I use 40oz of hot water. I put the kettle back on the base and set it to reheat in between time topping off. When all 40oz have brewed through, I throw away the filter with spent grounds, give the pot a little swirl or stir, and pour into mugs.It takes about 4-5 minutes from heated water to brew a pot. That's over twice as long as two batches with my Aeropress, but a little less labor.
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for most people, the real difference-maker will be quality beans. high quality appliances, gadgets and kitchen geegaw are good for those folks that are more serious-minded. the average person though can get near instant gratification by simply getting better beans. if you have a local roaster then go there and sample their wares. i always recommend these guys - coffeeguys - because they were fantastic. really good selection, good prices and service offered by them. my wife worked around the corner from this store and we were able to use them every week for beans.

See, I'd argue that this is 100% wrong.

You don't need expensive gadgets. A Chemex or an Aeropress are both under 30 bucks. But I would bet that you can make a better cup of coffee with supermarket beans in an aeropress, chemex, or french press than with La Minita single origin beans in a Mr. Coffee (or in all but about 3 or 4 consumer drip coffee makers).

while a FP or Chemex are simple tools, I don't think most people want the hassle. they want the convenience of scooping the beans, setting the coffeemaker and forgetting about it. they want results rather than process or the hassle. people are lazy and beans remain the simplest way to improve their coffee-drinking experience. this should come as no surprise.

chemex and presses are barely inconveniences but, for enthusiasts, they are totally worth it.

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We buy whole beans and grind it fresh each morning. Black and no sweetner. Blue Mountain is considered the best but at $39/lb most people shy away from it. We did buy a half a pound a few months ago just to try it and it was extremely good and smooth. We now get a blue mountain blend at about $16/lb. Not sure of the brand. Its from a local store (Central Market by HEB). Some type of "morning blend" seems to be a good balance. You might try starting there and then going to more of a medium roast. The French or Italian roasts are going to be the most bold. Probably the best coffee I have had was a "french press" version.

A site called Sweet Maria's does quality unbiased testing of premium coffees. I agree with them about Jamaica, even Blue Mountain; its really gone flat. The quality of the plants and equipment has deteriorated and been surpassed by other regions. But the marketing and reputation is still holding a high price.

My sis bought me a roaster so I buy green beans and roast my own. Doing that or going to a roaster is the only way to get true fresh roasted. The taste changes in 5-6 hours and not for the better, though 24-48 hour fresh roast is still way fresher than any brown beans in a store. I bought three pounds of extra fancy for $44 from Kona a couple months ago. Great coffee. I just had some from Guatemala that was better/richer. I've tried a dozen I prefer to the Blue Mountain I had last summer. It was flat and acidic. Not much different than big brand store bought.

Vacuum coffee maker for me. I enjoy the process, but Scooby may have evidence that better coffee can be made by a different technique. :shrug:

I took Tipsey's advice and got a Toddy cold filter concentrate maker. I like it okay, but the vacuum is better.

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while a FP or Chemex are simple tools, I don't think most people want the hassle. they want the convenience of scooping the beans, setting the coffeemaker and forgetting about it. they want results rather than process or the hassle. people are lazy and beans remain the simplest way to improve their coffee-drinking experience. this should come as no surprise.

Then they should save their money. I imagine people enjoy the convenience of their microwave. But if you don't enjoy a steak cooked in the microwave, the solution is not to buy Kobe beef. It's to not use the microwave. If you under or over extract your coffee, I don't see any way you'd be able to tell the difference between "good beans" and bad beans. Any overextracted bean will taste bitter. Any underextracted bean will taste flat.
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:blackdot:

Never been a big coffee drinker...but have enjoyed a cup from time to time.

Just have not had the time to figure what I like (and hate most stuff around the office).

Now that I will be staying home after the holidays, Im probably going to get off the diet soda crap and go with coffee from time to time.

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Vacuum coffee maker for me. I enjoy the process, but Scooby may have evidence that better coffee can be made by a different technique. :shrug: I took Tipsey's advice and got a Toddy cold filter concentrate maker. I like it okay, but the vacuum is better.

I've never used a vacuum pot. The science makes sense. My wife would kill me if I got another coffee solution, and I'm pretty sure I'd hate cleaning it and/or I'd break it. I don't care for the Toddy cold filter, which removes bitterness, but which produces (to my palate) pretty flat, bland coffee. The Aeropress probably can't compare to a true vacuum pot. It's essentially a pour over combined with a (manual) espresso machine. It produces "shots" of espresso like coffee that you water down with hot water to make something very like an Americano. It's the best combination of ease and taste for my needs. It is slightly inferior to my Technivorm, but less hassle and easier on my limited counter space.
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Pressure is a major component.

I have had the best cup of coffee I will ever have. My friend dissects coffee the way Tim dissects the Civil War and I'm telling you he has a restaurant grade industrial coffee maker, all copper type insides that costs him over $2,000 when he bought it and I laughed at him...until I tasted the coffee. The crema on that cup of coffee is enough to make you say "I gotta sit down" the way they do in the Soup Nazi episode of Seinfeld, it's that good. It took me 6 months after leaving SoCal before I would even try a cup down here in Miami.

Point is coffee is as serious and strong a topic as you want it to be, easily as in depth if not more than wine connoisseurs so if someone is serious about their coffee and they want to share it with you, take them up on it but be warned...it will ruin almost any regular cup of coffee you have at Starbuck's McDs, whatever going forward.

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Did someone just compare coffee to steak?

Uh, yes?
I have no doubt that you make the single finest cup of coffee out of anyone on these boards but that comparison was just :loco:.
I'm not sure of that at all. But I'll stand behind the comparison. I have relatives who love Sizzler. I have relatives who love a filet mignon from Outback. And I have relatives who prefer grass fed steak or very pricey prime cuts. Similarly, I have relatives who may prefer a grilled steak or a broiled steak or even a pan fried steak. They may prefer their steak to varying degrees of doneness. My relatives may value the convenience or price point of different options for steak differently, but nobody prefers a boiled steak or one with absolutely no sear. The maillard reaction is a fundamental component of what we enjoy in steak. ICoffee is also a food product. It's a product done in many different styles and at vastly different price points (with the most expensive coffee rivaling expensive beef in cost per oz). It can be made in a number of more or less convenient ways. I prefer Latin American single origin coffees. My wife prefers well-exectued house blends. My brother is completely happy with what comes out of a Keurig. None of that is wrong. But I doubt my brother can honestly say that he prefers the coffee from a Keurig. He prefers the convenience and he doesn't care enough about coffee to bother with the difference. Similarly my cousin Jill is perfectly happy with steak from Sizzler. The price point is right. It tastes good to her. And she doesn't see the need to spend $20 lb on a steak. Different strokes.I don't blame anyone who doesn't think coffee is important enough to stress over anymore than I blame someone who likes to eat at Sizzler. That's fine. But it seems silly to me to pay $15/lb + for coffee (which is what many of the better beans go for) and then prepare the coffee in a way that is likely to stink. It's like paying for a premium cut of beef and cooking it the way you'd cook chuck roast.
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I'm primarily an espresso drinker and have 3-4/day. Back when I got married 8 yrs ago, we invested in one of these.

At the time, it was $399 on sale, shipped, including 2 lbs of coffee and a set of cups. While coffee connosieurs will say the superautomatic machines don't make the purest coffee, I can tell you that it still makes a damn fine cup. The beauty of it is that there is no setup, cleanup, or anything of the sort. You put fresh water in, you buy whole beans, and it grinds the bean, makes the coffee, and dumps the grounds in the push of a button. It literally takes seconds to warm up.

While it's great for espressos, it also makes regular cups of coffee with a nice crema on top as well. I consider it one of the best $400 investments I've ever made. I've since upgraded my machine and the quality is even better. But, if you aren't THAT serious about your coffee but would still enjoy a very good cup of coffee on a very regular basis, I can't recommend one of these machines enough.

Check out the wholelattelove site and read through some of the reviews there.

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Pretty sure you have to go here:

World's Bes Cup of Coffee

Some would consider this...well, the most expensive, not sure how good it tastes:

Well, it involves a civet

Kopi luwak (Malay pronunciation: [ˈkopi ˈlu.aʔ]), or civet coffee, is one of the world's most expensive and low-production varieties of coffee. It is made from the beans of coffee berries which have been eaten by the Asian Palm Civet (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus) and other related civets, then passed through its digestive tract.[1] A civet eats the berries for their fleshy pulp. In its stomach, proteolytic enzymes seep into the beans, making shorter peptides and more free amino acids. Passing through a civet's intestines the beans are then defecated, keeping their shape. After gathering, thorough washing, sun drying, light roasting and brewing, these beans yield an aromatic coffee with much less bitterness, widely noted as the most expensive coffee in the world with prices reaching $160 per pound.[2]

Kopi luwak is produced mainly on the islands of Sumatra, Java, Bali and Sulawesi in the Indonesian Archipelago, and also in the Philippines (where the product is called motit coffee in the Cordillera and kape alamid in Tagalog areas) and also in East Timor (where it is called kafé-laku). Weasel coffee is a loose English translation of its name cà phê Chồn in Vietnam, where popular, chemically simulated versions are also produced. However, 2 farms have 300 civets in the wild in Dak Lak, the farmers collect the coffee seeds, they produce 300kg only of authentic vietnamese chon cofffee. The civets live in the wild and are fed beef. The processed civet beans are processed and imported to the UK to the farmers' sole UK supplier.

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We buy whole beans and grind it fresh each morning. Black and no sweetner. Blue Mountain is considered the best but at $39/lb most people shy away from it. We did buy a half a pound a few months ago just to try it and it was extremely good and smooth. We now get a blue mountain blend at about $16/lb. Not sure of the brand. Its from a local store (Central Market by HEB). Some type of "morning blend" seems to be a good balance. You might try starting there and then going to more of a medium roast. The French or Italian roasts are going to be the most bold. Probably the best coffee I have had was a "french press" version.

A site called Sweet Maria's does quality unbiased testing of premium coffees. I agree with them about Jamaica, even Blue Mountain; its really gone flat. The quality of the plants and equipment has deteriorated and been surpassed by other regions. But the marketing and reputation is still holding a high price.

My sis bought me a roaster so I buy green beans and roast my own. Doing that or going to a roaster is the only way to get true fresh roasted. The taste changes in 5-6 hours and not for the better, though 24-48 hour fresh roast is still way fresher than any brown beans in a store. I bought three pounds of extra fancy for $44 from Kona a couple months ago. Great coffee. I just had some from Guatemala that was better/richer. I've tried a dozen I prefer to the Blue Mountain I had last summer. It was flat and acidic. Not much different than big brand store bought.

Vacuum coffee maker for me. I enjoy the process, but Scooby may have evidence that better coffee can be made by a different technique. :shrug:

I took Tipsey's advice and got a Toddy cold filter concentrate maker. I like it okay, but the vacuum is better.

Whole Foods and Costco both roast coffee in the store (at least in Austin) for immediate purchase also.
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