Best Home Coffee Gear to Get Started
Now that you know the importance of these basic fundamentals, you’re ready to start brewing barista-level cups at home. Apply the knowledge you learned on weight, water, grind, and freshness to your current brewing method and taste the difference; or upgrade your home kit with these picks:
Invented in the early 2000s, this popular brewing device makes a range of styles, such as espresso-like brewed coffee, drip coffee, cold brew, and many more. With the thousands of AeroPress recipes available online, this affordable device is a useful and versatile choice.
Good for: Espresso-like drinks at home on a budget like Americanos or lattes.
Pick one up: Amazon / Wal-Mart
One of the most iconic ways of making pour over coffee is the Chemex. It was invented in the 1940’s by an American chemist named Peter Schlumbohm. It was during a time when a majority of American households drank burnt percolator coffee. Schlumbohm wanted to create a simple brewing method that didn’t require any extra accessories. With the Chemex, you have your serving carafe and cone dripper all in one piece.
A favorite by both young baristas and baby boomers, this iconic kitchen appliance has made its name across all ages. This pour over is unique among all others due to its thick filter that absorbs and filters a majority of the oils, leaving you with one of the cleanest-tasting cups of coffee.
Good for: Replacing a drip machine for 1-4 regular cups
Pick one up: Amazon / Chemex filters
At home in the morning, my palate wants consistency in flavor so I brew the same one or two favorite coffees over the Kalita. After brewing thousands of cups of coffee at home I’ve settled with the Kalita which suits my lifestyle and palate. Occasionally on the weekends or when I get a new bag of coffee I’ll experiment with the V60 pour over or the Chemex.
Good for: Making great coffee for one
Pick one up: Amazon / Prima Coffee / Kalita Wave Filters
Essential Coffee Tools
A scale guarantees consistent ratio of coffee to water, which is also useful when you’re scaling your usual recipe up (or down) to accommodate different sized crowds. This scale is a great one to start with, as it measures in both ounces and grams.
Pick one up: Amazon
A gooseneck kettle is necessary for even water flow. This .8-liter electric kettle allows slow, precise pouring control, which is great for brewing coffee and tea at home. This kettle features an ergonomic design and temperature presets to make startup fast. It’s the budget version of the Stagg Kettle which is the Red Wing of trendy kettles.
Pick one up: Amazon
Burr Coffee Grinder
Fresh coffee isn’t fresh coffee without freshly ground beans. This burr grinder from Capresso has commercial-grade conical steel grinders, designed for precision grinding. It also features an adjustable grind setting, from ultra fine Turkish coffee to a coarse cold brew grind. Having a grinder allows you to grind coffee in small batches, which ensures each cup will be as fresh as possible. Be wary of cheaper “blade” grinders that slice more than they grind, resulting in an inconsistent mix of course chunks and fine dust.
Pick one up: Staples / Upgrade
Like whiskey, defining the best coffee beans is terribly subjective. If you’re just starting to experiment with serious brewing, look for whole bean options in small quantities so that they stay fresh and you’re not stuck with something if you don’t like it. A sampler like this one from Blue Bottle is a smart way to go.
If you’d like to start super simply, Primer’s editor Andrew Snavely has come full circle to a pre-ground medium roast available in most grocery stores. After years of experimenting, he’ backed off from more expensive beans to the readily available Portside Blend from Seattle’s Best for his day-to-day brew. At about $7 a bag, he says for his tastes, he enjoys it more than many of the home options costing three times as much. All to say, experimentation is how you will truly find a home brew you love.