Coffee shops have an appeal like no other, and it is always a treat to pick up a cup of coffee as you make your way to your next destination of the day. Whether you are visiting a local shop while you are away on vacation, or stopping by your neighborhood’s friendly coffee shop where the baristas know your order, there is a familiarity to it all.
One of the best parts about having an early morning routine is stopping by your favorite coffee shop and ordering a drink to jumpstart your day. In the same token, leaving the comfort of a cozy home in order to get your first coffee of the day might not be everyone’s preferred method. Instead of changing out of your comfy around-the-house attire and having to brave the outdoors before consuming caffeine, why not brew your own pot of coffee or craft an espresso beverage in your home instead? What if we told you that you can use your favorite coffee company’s beans to make your coffee at home?
No matter if your daily coffee is a simple cup of brewed coffee beans or a twelve-ounce cappuccino made with foamed oat milk, your favorite espresso-based beverage can be homemade in no time. Before buying coffee beans to make your at-home coffee with, it is most important that you first do research and figure out which coffee maker is right for you and your lifestyle. If you do not have an abundance of extra time to spend making coffee in the morning, then a manually-operated coffee maker might become more of a curse than a blessing over time.
Likewise, if you are very specific about how you like your coffee, such as having a preference for ristretto shots over lungo espresso shots, then you might find yourself becoming awfully frustrated with an automatic coffee maker. There are so many different ways to make coffee, and none of these ways are inherently bad or lesser than others. It simply comes down to personal taste, and it only makes sense to brew your coffee the way you like it! Making coffee at home gives you total control of your morning coffee, so let’s talk about different coffee makers and which lifestyles they fit best. From there, you can decide which coffee maker is right for you!
Pod Brewing Systems
Pod Brewing Systems are best for people who…
- Need coffee to be brewed automatically
- Brew coffee for one or two people each morning
- Prefer a one to a two-step system
Skill Level: Basic
When considering a pod brewing system ( think: the infamous Keurig), coffee could not be made any easier. There is very little preparation involved in the whole process. Once you fill the reservoir, you just pop your favorite pod into the front, and voila! You have a fresh cup every time.
Most models are single serve, with the few exceptions that combine drip coffee machines into the same single-serve devices. Depending on how frequently you drink coffee at a single time, you may want to consider a hybrid or a different machine altogether.
Drip Coffee Maker
Drip coffee makers are best for people who…
- Run a busy household and need coffee to be brewed automatically
- Live with people who will share the pot of coffee with them
- Typically drink more than one cup of coffee at a time
- Want to keep the pot of drip coffee warm for a few hours
- Desire the convenience of black coffee at the push of a button
Skill Level: Beginner
There is an abundance of makes, models, and brands available when it comes to the automatic drip coffee maker. From the BUNN GR Velocity Brew Home Coffee Maker, to the Breville Precision Brewer, the best way of selecting an automatic drip coffee maker that you will love is to compare the smaller details. None of them are minor, and if you end up with a drip coffee maker that is even only a little different than what you are looking for, it might deter you from using it in the first place.
The goal is to learn how to curate the perfect cup of coffee from within your own kitchen, so if you really want to recreate the coffee from your favorite shop, consider talking to your local baristas. Ask them which coffee beans they use for their batch brew, and see if they can let you in on their brewing secrets.
Everything from the temperature of the water, to the ratio of hot water to ground coffee beans, plays a role in the final pot of coffee. It might take you some time to figure out a process that produces the best tasting coffee, but in time, and with some patience, you will master the art of the drip coffee maker.
Third Wave Coffee Maker Options
The French press, the Chemex, and the Aeropress are best for people who…
- Work from home and can enjoy coffee at their leisure
- Are coffee connoisseurs or looking to learn more about individual blends of coffee
- Want the option to brew a single cup of coffee at a given time
- Care very deeply about the taste of their black coffee
- Love to enjoy the experience of manual brewing
Skill Level: Beginner-Intermediate (depending on the device)
For brief clarification, third wave coffee is what comes to mind when you think of locally-owned coffee shops and companies that source from small-scale farming communities. The main focus of the third wave coffee scene is to look at coffee as an art form and an experience to be cherished rather than a casual beverage you rely on for alertness and caffeine. The French press is one of a few coffee makers that third wave coffee enthusiasts swear by, for the brewing process is very slow and the process requires patience.
Black coffee is the simplest and easiest brewing method. If you are looking to brew your own drip coffee at home but you want to add a touch of sophistication to your coffee brewing methods, then a French press is definitely worth trying. French presses are originally far more popular in countries beyond the United States, but slowly yet surely, they are making their way into more and more households every day. Essentially a fancier way of brewing black coffee than a drip coffee maker, the French press also gives coffee drinks more precision when it comes to aspects like temperature, sizing of grounds, steeping time period, and specific ounces of coffee.
Espresso Machine Coffee Maker
Espresso machines are best for people who…
- Are looking to save money on lattes, cappuccinos, and other espresso-based drinks
- Can take extra time in the morning to pull shots and steam milk
- Have a desire to become a self-taught barista
- Do not mind investing in an at-home coffee-making method
Skill Level: Beginner-Intermediate (device-dependent)
From an inexpensive machine like the Essenza Mini Espresso Machine by Nespresso, to the more costly of options, such as the Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine, there is a lot of variety among espresso machine coffee makers. To people who are not very familiar with coffee makers that are used specifically for espresso-based drinks, it might seem odd than espresso machines vary so much from one to the next. But when you become more invested in coffee extraction methods and the process of steaming different types of milk, it becomes clear as to why there is so much variation among espresso machines.
Price will certainly be a factor that you base your decision on, but there are other variables that come into play, too. Not all coffee makers allow you to craft espresso drinks use whole coffee beans. Believe it or not, the espresso machines that fall on the lower side of the monetary spectrum usually take pods rather than actual coffee beans. So if you are a fan of fresh ground, there is more to consider!
Brewing it Over
While there are hundreds of coffee makers and brands out there, we have highlighted some popular ones that will hopefully suit your lifestyle! Whether you are a parent on the go or a coffee aficionado, there is a coffee maker and a blend for you!