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Everything but Espresso

Scott Rao, 2010

CHAPTER 9 Steep - and - Release Brewing 

● The steep-and-release brewers deserve their popularity because they produce high - quality, uniform extractions more easily than do manual pour overs. 

● Choosing a Grind Setting and Immersion Time:capable of producing 19 % -20 % extraction yields in 2-4 minutes. In layman's terms, this range is from a " stovetop espresso " grind to a typical " automatic drip " grind setting. 

● How to Use a Steep-and-Release Brewer 
1. Set a paper filter in the brewer. Fill with hot water to rinse the filter and preheat the device. 
2. Weigh and grind coffee. Re - weigh the coffee after grinding to ensure the ground mass is accurate to a fraction of a gram. 
3. Drain the preheat water.
4. Pour the grounds into the filter. 
5. Measure water of the desired quantity and temperature. The water temperature should be 6°F - 8°F (3°C - 4°C) hotter than the upper end of the range of desired slurry temperatures. 
6. Set a timer for 1-4 minutes as soon as the first grounds are wet. 
7. While pouring, agitate the slurry with a spoon to break up any clumps. 
8. Dunk the bloom for about 30 seconds, or until it becomes merely a thin, moist layer. (This step may be impractical in a café setting.)
9. Cover the device when finished pouring. 
10. When the timer sounds, agitate the slurry to unstick any grounds that have adhered to the wall of the filter. 
11. Set the brewer onto the cup to open the valve. Briefly agitate the slurry again as the drawdown commences. 
12. Cover the brewer during the drawdown. 
13. When brewing is complete, the spent coffee bed should be radially symmetrical and either flat or mildly domed, depending on the shape of the brewer. 

● Using a finer grind or using very fresh coffee increases the tendency of grounds to adhere high and dry on the filter.


Scott Rao

Scott Rao authored The Professional Barista’s Handbook and many professional coffee books and works as a freelance advisor to the specialty coffee industry. He started coffee roasting in 1994 and has many years of experience as a barista, coffee roaster, and consultant. Scott secretly likes tea more than coffee.

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