Does Finer Grind Make Stronger Coffee?
Nowadays, you can brew tasty coffee at home in many different ways, thanks to a good number of appliances, coffee products, and experts like TheBrewExpress.com site that share helpful pieces of knowledge. This also allows you to adjust the strength of your coffee, depending on what you need and like on a particular day.
Some people prefer to drink a strong cup of coffee because it gives them more energy and helps them focus more. If you’re part of this population and brew your own coffee at home, you probably wondered and asked, “Does finer grind make stronger coffee?” Let’s answer this question and discuss the other factors to keep in mind when brewing coffee at home.
Does Finer Grind Make Stronger Coffee?
Generally, the size of the grind can affect your brewed coffee’s flavor because it affects extraction time. Fine coffee grounds have a large surface area, so the water will come in contact with more coffee than when brewing coarse grounds. Since they’re also densely packed, the water will pass through the grounds at a slower rate, increasing contact time.
The oil found in the water bean contains most of the flavor, aroma, and caffeine and gets released once you grind the bean. It is water-soluble, so the longer the water comes in contact with or steeps the coffee grounds, the more coffee oil gets extracted. In turn, it can make your coffee taste stronger than when you use larger grind sizes.
What Other Factors Affect Coffee Quality?
As noted, the answer to the question “Does finer grind make stronger coffee?” is yes, but mostly in terms of caffeine level. You must keep in mind that not just because you use fine grind size doesn’t mean you’ll end up with a good-quality beverage. The cup of coffee you prepare at home will either be weak or strong because of the following:
Coffee Brewing Method
One of the reasons why there are different coffee grind sizes is that different coffee-brewing appliances require particular grind sizes because they use specific brewing methods. When you use the wrong grind size, the flavor can be under or over-extracted, affecting the beverage’s quality.
If you use finer grounds with the wrong coffee-brewing method, your coffee will be stronger but will taste bitter and feel gritty due to over-extraction. With that in mind, the best appliances for fine coffee grounds are espresso machines, stovetop espresso makers or Moka pots, and Aeropress. Apart from choosing the right appliance, you must also ensure you meet the required brewing time.
Coffee Bean Roast
You must consider the bean’s roast level when you grind your coffee at home, especially when achieving extra-fine and fine grind sizes. You’ll find that there are light and dark-roasted beans, wherein the former has a fruity taste while the latter has a chocolate-like flavor. Thus, light-roast beans contain lesser flavors and taste weaker than dark-roast ones. Experts also suggest that you use dark-roast beans when making finer grounds.
Coffee Ground Freshness
Most coffee enthusiasts grind their beans at home instead of buying pre-ground products because they have more flavor. As mentioned, the flavorful compounds are trapped inside the beans and get released upon grinding.
Once grounded, the coffee loses its flavor over time when unused; in fact, the grounds will last for approximately seven days after you grind them. That is why experts suggest that it’s best to grind the beans right before you brew them.
You can also grind them the night before, but make sure you store the grounds in an air-tight container and place it in a cool, dry area. Of course, expect that its strength, flavor, and other characteristics are a little lower than when you use freshly ground coffee. Nonetheless, you can adjust the ratio to achieve the coffee strength you’re used to or prefer.
Coffee to Water Ratio
The SCA coffee standards state that the golden grind to water ratio is around 1:18. Meaning, you should use 55 grams of coffee grind for every 1,000 milliliters of water. If you prefer a stronger coffee, add more coffee grounds.
Just make sure you don’t add too much to maintain proper flavor balance; adding at most two grams is advisable. You must also ensure that you measure your ingredients correctly. Use a weighing scale or measuring cups and spoons instead of a scoop or regular spoon.
The Secret To Preparing Strong, Tasty Coffee at Home
Bland-tasting coffee won’t serve its purpose, especially if you’ve been drinking one every day to keep you energized and focused. The main key to preparing strong, good-quality coffee is achieving the right balance of flavor. You can do so by making sure you meet all the factors, such as the right grind size for your coffee brewing appliance and the coffee bean’s quality and roast level, as they affect extraction time.