General Tipps & Tricks for Brewing

We love to share our knowledge about brewing to help you make excellent coffee at home because there are many moments where something can go wrong from the roasting machine to the cup. So keep reading to become a coffee brewing professional.

General Prep | Your Equipment

We highly recommend measuring your coffee and the amount of water you use for your brew. This way, you will consistently receive the best results. Therefore, we recommend you to use a scale to weigh the exact amount of coffee and water you use for your brew.

1 ml of water = 1 gr of water


Your basic equipment for brewing Coffee should include:
— scale
— hot water

Nice to have but not necessary:
— grinder

A grinder will also help to make your brew more delicious by giving it the extra freshness: you can adjust the grind setting if you are not satisfied with your coffee.

Why should I NOT use spoons of coffee grounds to brew my coffee?

Sure you can, but be honest, how much do you enjoy your daily brew? 😉 This is how people do it usually, one spoon for 1 cup. BUT eye measuring the coffee grounds is not precise enough to guarantee you a tasty brew every day. For a great cup of coffee, you can’t just buy quality coffee beans and expect excellent results; there also needs to be some investment into your brewing equipment to make it flavourful, complex and enjoyable.

BREWING | How can you brew your coffee?

Depending on which kind of roast you prefer – Filter or Espresso – there are various ways of brewing coffee. You will find all our brew guides on our website.

Cold Brew
Find two great Cold Brew recipes in our blog!

Adjusting your brew by adjusting your GRIND SETTING

Why your Coffee will blow your mind, when also freshly ground.

go coarser if your coffee is bitter and flat (you will get more acidity and complex flavours)
go finer if your coffee is sour or acidic (your brew will be more balanced and sweet)

Can I use Tap Water / What type of water should I use?

Yes, you can, but it is not ideal. All tap water contains a lot of minerals and organic materials that do not taste too good in your coffee. Your water should have a mineral content btw. 100 and 200 mg/ L.
you can ask your roaster which water he would recommend

Never use distilled water!
Extraction is a chemical reaction; therefore, you need some minerals in your water to extract the flavours out of your water. To find out what the amount of minerals in your water is you can find for example here.

A water with a mineral content that will compliment your brew is Volvic.

Bences Tipp: When you want to improve your cup of coffee, buy good coffee and adequate water.



Cleaning your coffee machine is crucial!

To keep the quality of your cup consistently great cleaning your coffee machine is key. You don’t want to taste old coffee, but your freshly brewed coffee. Therefore you want to avoid contamination – from old (mouldy) coffee grounds in your brewing device. So make sure to keep it clean.

What is the best way to clean my brewing equipment?

Do not put soap into your coffee machine!

How to clean your brewing device depends on the equipment you use – make sure it’s as clean as possible: We would not recommend soap, but rinse it with hot water after using. For a deep clean, follow the instruction of the manufacturer.


Our Roasting Style

The coffees are too acidic. I rather like bitter coffees. What shall I do?

We like a medium roast – not too light, not too dark, right in the perfect middle: More developed but still light. Read more about our roasting philosophy.

What is a nordic roasting?

Nordic countries prefer lighter roasts as they drink a lot of longer filter coffee methods.

We, from 19grams, are closer to the Australian types of coffee roasting. Always use outstanding quality and roast them perfectly.

I prefer strongly developed coffees.

If you like a darker roast, go for the espressos – we also love brewing them as a filter so that you will love it, too.

Freshness: What is the best way to store coffee?

You should keep your coffee in the original package. We have chosen our bags with a valve to allow the freshly roasted coffee to de-gas, but it will keep its full flavour potential. Moving the coffee into another storage opportunity does not guarantee that the coffee won’t absorb the smell of what has been in the storage unit before.
You don’t need to keep your coffee in the fridge – room temperature is perfectly fine.

What is strong coffee?

There are two ways of defining “strong”: flavour-wise strong or high in caffeine content.
Both ways are very different. Strong does not necessarily mean the coffee has a high amount of caffeine. The Italian idea of a ristretto will have less caffeine than a typical cup of filter coffee. Read our blog article about strong coffee.

Grind settings

These are rounded numbers as every grinder always works differently. So we can provide you with rounded numbers to give you a direction from where you can start.
Also, every coffee is different; therefore, the grind setting needs to be adjusted accordingly.

Here are some recommendations for most common grinders:


The Comandante is one of the most popular grinders, handmade in Germany. It’s effortless to handle and delivers a consistently great grinding result for your brew. To adjust the grind setting, adjust the clicks below. Following numbers of clicks are recommended:

<8 clicks: Ibrik
8 – 15 clicks: Espresso
15 – 20 clicks: Moka Pot (Bialetti)
20 – 25 clicks: Pour-over
25 – 30 clicks: AeroPress / French Press
> 28 clicks: Karlsbader Kanne



The light and stable Rhinowares hand coffee grinder is made of stainless steel, allowing you to grind your coffee quickly and with ease whether being on the road, in the office or at home. The precise and robust conical ceramic burrs ensure a perfect coffee wherever you are. We recommend the following Settings for different brewing methods:

Aeropress: Tighten the grind adjustment screw completely and then loosen it by half a turn.
French Press: Tighten the screw and turn back about 1.5 turns
Pour Over: also tighten the screw completely and then turn it back one turn.
Moka Pot: if the grind is between a hand filter and an espresso, select the finest grind setting.


Introduction to Specialty Coffee and the 19grams World

What is Specialty Coffee?

According to the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA), coffee that scores 80 points or higher on a 100-point scale is graded Specialty. CQI (Coffee Quality Institute work hand in hand with the SCA)
The requirement to reach 80 points is always graded by flavour quality. The better it tastes, the better is the number of points. Coffee with a score of 80 points has no defected flavours (free of any defects, rubber, medicinal, ashy) and it has to be sweet.

Is Arabica Coffee Specialty Coffee?

The best Specialty Robusta Coffees are on the same level as lower scoring Specialty Arabica Coffees to us. They are judged differently. Arabica and Robusta have different characteristics. Arabica is more flavourful and complex. In comparison, Robusta coffee is way less complex and more bitter, due to the high caffeine content. We, at 19grams, are only working with Specialty Arabica Coffees.

What does Single Origin mean?

Single Origin means that the Coffee beans have been sourced from one Farm or Origin (can also be one washing station). Washing Stations work with specific regions, so the coffee washed in a particular region the flavour is very similar as the terroir is the same.

Where do you take the strange names from for your coffees?

We name the coffee after the Farm or Washing Station to point out the farmers’ work.

What does Third Wave Coffee mean?

First Wave of Coffee was the traditional way of drinking coffee. Espresso started in Italy. The first ways of enjoying espresso coffee.

Second Wave of Coffee brings the idea of consuming different sizes and varieties of coffees, so as big coffee chains serve their coffees (Starbucks, Costa, CaffeineNero a.s.o.)

Third Wave of Coffee is a quality-driven idea of consuming coffee; part of this is Specialty Coffee. Coffees can be the Third Wave, but not Specialty. The green beans (the product) qualifies it Specialty Coffee.

Why do I find so much Coffee Information on the bags?

Because we can – the Specialty Coffee Movement focuses on traceability and sustainability, we want to embrace conscious consumption.

Why is coffee packed in huge jute bags?

There are different reasons why coffee is packed in the way we find it today: the huge jute sacks have been chosen as it is cheap material you can find in all the coffee origins. But the coffee is usually packed also in plastic bags (grain pro bags), that protects it from humidity from the surrounding environment. They are big because obviously, it would be very expensive to have smaller bags for export. They can contain 63 to 69 kg. This is the weight a human being can carry.

What do you mean by Microclimate?

A microclimate is a climate unique to a small area, which differs from the climate of the surrounding area.

Why do you guys know all the farmers, and why is that important?

We are trying to make direct trade – it’s not possible with all farmers. We have close contact with an exporting company in Costa Rica; therefore, we can direct trade with our Costa Rican Farmers.
It cannot be the only possibility as a roaster often cannot pre-see the circumstances in certain countries and regions. An importer’s company might know trading habits in its country better and be able to adjust faster and manage the sale faster and more professional than a roastery itself.
Direct trade allows you to minimise the people in the coffee chain, but you need to know the local situation to pay good and fair prices, that are higher than the average.

An “easy” question for the beginning: What is the difference between an Espresso and a Filter coffee? Read the answer right here on our website.

Growing Coffee

What is the difference between Arabica and Robusta Coffee?

Robusta has more caffeine; therefore, it is less sensitive and more protected towards diseases: Caffeine is a way the coffee plant protects itself from pests and bacteria. We only have 100% Arabica Coffee at 19grams. Caffeine is bitter so that you will taste this also in Robusta Coffees – they are much more bitter than any Arabica Coffee is.

What impact has the soil/terroir on the coffee?

A great example of this is the Geisha (or Gesha) Variety. This variety grown originally in Africa was imported to Costa Rica and successfully grown when Costa Rica’s Coffee growers suffered the plague of coffee leaf rust. They found out that this variety would not suffer this disease, but it has a low yield, and the terroir would give the plant a unique flavour. The Geisha seeds were brought to Panama where the Geisha coffees, thanks to Don Pachi, would become the most desirable coffee variety as it develops incredibly complex and balanced flavour profiles with fruity and floral notes in the cup. You will find one Geisha coffee in our Advent Calendar!

What is Terroir?
Terroir describes the surrounding where coffee is grown. Terroir also includes soil and Microclimate.

Do Coffee Farmers fertilise the soil?
Yes, they do, because the plant needs nutrients. Therefore you feed the soil. That does not mean chemical, but also with organic fertilisers.
Bio and organic are defined differently in the EU. Bio is superior to organic as it’s focusing on giving back to nature.

Why don’t we have bio-certificates on our coffees?
Bio or organic does not provide a better quality product ever. It’s just more accessible for the consumer to choose a product with specific characteristics, or grown under certain conditions. Certificates are often expensive, and the farmer can’t afford those certificates.

Why is altitude essential for growing coffee?
Higher altitude slows down the sugar maturation process, which will result in a richer flavour profile/ higher acidity.

What do the different processing methods mean?
After harvesting the cherries are usually taken and processed to prepare them not only for storage and export but the processing method will also have a dramatic impact on the resulting cup you drink.
The most common processing methods are the natural process, the honey processing and the washed process.

Natural processing means, the bean will be sun-dried or dried in the shadow of trees (or some sun protection), then they are left for resting in a warehouse and finally hulled and prepared for the export.

During the honey process, the beans will be mechanically pulped, only a thin layer of the fruit flesh remains on the bean. Then the beans dry in the sun. Due to the leftover parchment, they will be very sticky, but this process will increase the sweetness of the coffee beans. The name honey process comes from the sticky mucilage of the beans, which is very sweet; actually, there is no honey involved in this processing method.

Finally, the washed process is one of the most common techniques; it is very popular as it leads to great acidity and clean cups in terms of taste.

There are many other ways of how coffee cherries can be processed. Often it can vary from Farm to Farm as it highly depends on the farmer himself and his willingness to experiment.
Within the past years, there have been many experiments as the producers/ farmers take more of the responsibility during the process from crop to cup. This does not only help improve the quality of the coffee but particularly its taste.


What is the Cup of Excellence?
COE is the most prestigious competition and auction for high-quality coffees. The level of scrutiny that COE coffees undergo is unmatched anywhere in the Specialty Coffee industry. Each year, thousands of coffees are submitted for consideration. Winning coffees are sold in global online auctions at premium prices, with the vast majority of auction proceeds going to the farmers.

What can you use for the Advent Calendar tins after Advent?
Our community suggests using the little aluminium tins to

— plant pileas and other small plants.
— store dry fruits or nuts.
— store coffee in them.
— fill up with wax to make a little candle (or 24).
— store herbs or spices.
— store sprinkles for baking.
— put socks in them and give them away as Christmas gifts.
— use them for other small gifts.
— store loose screws and spare parts.
— make your very own Advent Calendar!
— make your percussion instruments: fill them with different materials, and rock it!
— use for a face scrub you made with your coffee grounds. Recipe below!

What can I do with my leftover coffee grounds?
Turn it into an invigorating face mask or a body scrub! Find the recipes below.

Face mask:
1/4 cup very finely ground Coffee
1 Tablespoon of honey
1 Tablespoon of coconut oil
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon of cinnamon for anti-acne

Body Scrub:
1/2 cup very finely ground Coffee
1/4 cup raw brown sugar
3 Tablespoons honey
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

Store in your fridge in an airtight container for up to one month.

Use your coffee grounds as a natural fertiliser
Mix it with the soil you buy from your plant shop and add it to your plants. You will see how good they will grow!