Some people ask me why I'd share tips on how to make coffee and espresso at home when I own a coffee house. Well, thing is, not everyone wants to go out or can afford to every morning. And also, we're closed on Sundays. Ideally, folks brewing at home will get their coffee from us, because it really is the best one available here, but to each his own.
I've made espresso, and coffee, pretty much every way you can make it. I have all too many methods of making coffee at home, but it positions me to be able to share what I feel makes the best coffee. I'm all about what they call "slow coffee" or manual methods. I feel it really does make the best coffee at home. For espresso, I have found it's also true. The best espresso comes from a moka pot, other than a twenty thousand dollar authentic Italian machine. And if you've got one of those at home, good for you and when can I come over?
For the moka pot, it starts with the grind. Normally, you want the finest grind possible for espresso, it's practically coffee dust. But, with a manual espresso method, you need the grind to be a little coarser. I use a regular fine grind for my home espresso. It's always best to grind your coffee as you go and leave it in whole beans until you need it. But, it's not absolutely necessary to have a grinder at home. If you buy it from us, we'll grind it accordingly for how you make it at home.
The moka pot allows you to make espresso and americano. The difference is the amount of water you use. The water goes into the bottom part of the pot, which unscrews. ALWAYS use cold water. Best even to use it filtered. For espresso, you fill the bottom pot to about half way up to the indicator. For americano, fill right to the indicator line.
You then add your ground espresso into the basket and, unlike an espresso machine, you do not press it down, you leave it loose. The basket then goes into the bottom compartment and you screw the top on.
You place it on the stovetop, at low to medium heat. Most directives will tell you to heat the espresso with the top closed. However, the humidity and condensation that builds up will affect the taste of your coffee. So, I recommend brewing with the top open. You'll see it start to bring its way up, and hear a pressure sound as it does, not unlike a percolator. It takes about 5-7 minutes to brew. Once done, you take it off the heat and close the top. I pour it immediately, because I like my espresso hot, and I add cream which cools it a little.
Once it's done, this is where you have it how you like it! Have it black, with sugar, with steamed milk, with cream, with water, with cinnamon, with cocoa, whatever.
I personally, like it with cinnamon and cream. If you're going to use a milk frother at home, I'd recommend the Nespresso steamer. It makes the best foam!