Pour Over Coffee Level 1: Brewing Perfection, as Easy as Baking a Cake

Pour Over Coffee Level1 Guide
Are you familiar with pour over coffee? Perhaps you’ve seen it on the menu at your local café or in your social media feed. Commonly used to brew a single cup of coffee, pour over brewing involves controlling the brewing process through precise measurement and careful technique to produce an exceptionally sweet and clean cup of coffee. The process is laid out much like the recipe for baking a cake, with a list of ingredients, equipment, and a series of simple steps to follow. And just like with cake, making it yourself is so much more rewarding and delicious!

The equipment you’ll need includes a coffee grinder, digital scale, gooseneck kettle, and a pour over brewer. This recipe is suitable for most conical brewers like the Hario V60, Fellow Stagg Dripper, or a Chemex, but will also work for flat-bottomed brewers like the Kalita Wave. For specific equipment recommendations, check out our blog post on Pour Over Equipment. Testing for this recipe was done using the Hario V60.

It’s important to note that pour over brewing can produce an exceptional cup of coffee, but it can’t make bad coffee beans taste good. If you have a favorite coffee already, use that. Otherwise, head over to the Driven Coffee website for a full selection of thoughtfully sourced and craft roasted coffee delivered to your door. We recommend grabbing the Single Origin Sampler, so you can try out a few different coffees and explore your preferences. The sampler features three coffees and includes my personal favorite: our Ethiopia – Kayon Guji. With a strawberry sweetness and a floral nose, it truly is a special coffee.

Alright, so you have the necessary equipment and a bag of delicious coffee; let’s get to the recipe!


This recipe makes one 10oz cup of coffee

Phase 1 — Prep:

1. Bring 600g of filtered water to 203°F/95°C.

Coffee is over 98% water, so using filtered water, rather than tap, will allow your coffee to really shine.

While 203°F/95°C is a good temperature for most coffees, if you prefer dark roasted coffee, we recommend reducing the temperature to 195°F/91°C. Conversely, if you prefer very light roasted coffee, you might try raising the temperature to 208°F/98°C.

2. Grind 20g of delicious coffee medium fine.

It’s difficult to give an exact recommendation for grind size, as it varies from coffee to coffee and with each person’s preference. Start with a grind that resembles table salt. If the coffee tastes overly acidic, move the grind slightly finer. If the coffee tastes bitter, move the grind slightly coarser. It’s a good practice to only change the grind by a small amount, usually only one step in either direction, as even small changes make a big difference in the cup.

3. Place a filter in the brewer, then place the brewer atop the carafe.

If your filter papers have a pressed seam, crease the filter parallel to the seam so the filter lays flush against the brewer.

4. Rinse the filter and discard the rinse water.

This will rinse any paper taste out of the filter and help preheat the brewer.


5. Place the brewer and carafe atop the scale and add the ground coffee.
For the full experience, give the coffee a sniff before adding it to the brewer. When coffee is ground, it begins releasing volatile compounds, which can range from bright and fruity to rich and chocolatey!

6. Tare out the scale.
Bring the scale to a reading of zero by pushing the button that says either “tare” or “zero”.

7. With a spoon, gently create a small well in the ground coffee.

When we make our first pour, called the “bloom”, this well will make wetting the grounds thoroughly a little easier.

Phase 2 — Brewing:

1. Start the timer and immediately pour until the scale reads 60g.

(The pour should take about 15 seconds)

This first pour, known as the “bloom,” allows gases trapped inside the coffee to escape so they don’t inhibit extraction. You will be able to see bubbles being released and the grounds will rise slightly, hence the term bloom.

2. Gently swirl the brewer to ensure all the grounds are fully saturated.

Gently swirl the brewer in a circular motion once or twice until the grounds appear evenly wet. It’s best not to overdo this step by agitating too aggressively, but it is important that all the grounds are in contact with the water.

3. At 45 seconds, begin pouring steadily in a circular motion until the scale reads 340g.

(The pour should take about 1 minute.)

Using a gentle stream, pour from a consistent height in a circular motion to evenly cover the coffee bed. It’s best not to pour directly on the filter, as some of that water will escape through the side of the filter without touching the ground coffee. It’s okay to pour onto the filter a small amount to knock any floating coffee down into the bed.

4. Gently swirl the brewer.

Like the bloom, swirl the brewer in a circular motion. This will help settle the grounds to the bottom of the brewer and create a flat bed of coffee, which helps ensure even extraction.

5. Allow the brewer to drain completely.

The total brew time should be between 2:30 and 4:30. If the drain time falls out of this range, consider adjusting the grind (coarser to shorten or finer to lengthen), but grind should primarily be adjusted based on taste, not brew-time.

Phase 3 — Enjoy:

1. Allow the coffee to cool for at least 5 minutes before consuming.

We know you just brewed your favorite coffee and you’re ready to give it a taste, but your coffee will be much more flavorful if you allow it to cool slightly before consuming. Personally, I allow 8 minutes for my coffee to cool, and in professional coffee tastings called cuppings, coffee is tasted for as long as 20 minutes after brewing. Give it a try; you’ll be surprised by how much of a difference it makes.

Did pour over brewing bring a little something extra to your favorite coffee? Have you tried brewing a new coffee from a local roaster? Have you experimented with variations of this pour over recipe? We’d love to hear about your pour over experiences! Send us a message on our Facebook page.

Slim Pickens

Driven Coffee’s Pour Over Recipe
(This recipe makes one 10oz cup of coffee)
20g Coffee, Ground, Medium Fine
340g Water, Filtered, 203°F/95°C
1. Rinse paper filter and discard rinse water.
2. Add ground coffee and make a small well.
3. Tare scale to zero.
0:00 Pour until scale reads 60g in 15 seconds, then gently swirl the brewer.
0:45 Pour until scale reads 340g in about 1 minute, then gently swirl brewer.
2:30-4:30 Allow to drain completely.
1. Allow 5 minutes for the coffee to cool.

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