Learn How to Brew Better Coffee at Home

The experts at Phil & Sebastian can teach you how to brew coffee three different ways and how to make bad tasting coffee taste better.

Photograph by Vanessa Ng, Phil & Sebastian Coffee Roasters.

The class in a nutshell: Learn how to brew coffee using three of the most common home brewing methods: French press, Aeropress and a pour over. Test and taste how tweaking elements like grind size and temperature change the way coffee tastes, how to recognize good coffee from bad coffee and how to fix bad tasting coffee.

When: Monthly from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The next three classes take place on April 4, May 2 and June 6.

Where: Simmons Building, 618 Confluence Way S.E.

Cost: $60. Plus, you get 10 percent off equipment and coffee beans the day you take the class.

Click here for more information on classes.

For a lot of people, making a pot or cup of coffee is an integral part of their day. And yet, despite being such a regular, everyday activity, many still haven’t mastered the art of the perfect cup of joe. To teach us how, Phil & Sebastian Coffee Roasters offers monthly home coffee brewing classes.

Led by Javaid Shah, who has been a coffee ambassador with Phil & Sebastian for about a year and a half, the class goes over some of the theory behind what exactly happens when making coffee and how the idea of extraction relates to coffee. When it’s time to brew, participants learn three different brewing methods – French press, Aeropress and a pour over – that show off the drink in different ways. Shah demonstrates how changing different variables like grind size, temperature, time and agitation can affect the way coffee tastes. Plus, participants learn how to turn a bad tasting coffee into a good one once they can recognize the difference.

Shah, who also teaches Phil & Sebastian’s espresso and steaming and latte art classes, says many people who take the class are surprised at how different coffee can taste.

“Lots of the time we’ll be doing, let’s say an over extracted coffee, and they’ll be like, ‘Oh, this is what my coffee at home tastes like at all the time.’ And you can see that lightbulb turn on in their head that they can change their coffee that they’re maybe not so happy with into something they like a lot more,” Shah says. “Like they were settling for something that was really bitter when if they just made a small change in how they’re making their coffee, it could be really sweet and complex.”

While making coffee may seem like a simple task, the class proves that having the knowledge to make the right brewing decisions can improve the quality of a drink that many ingest daily. Helping people discover how much better tasting their coffee can be is one of Shah’s favourite things about teaching the class.

“I think because coffee’s such a ritualistic part of most people’s lives, they end up settling for something that maybe isn’t as great as it can be. So I really like to open their eyes to the potential for how good coffee can be,” Shah says. “Also, I take whatever opportunities I have to sort of educate and bring light to the journey coffee takes and how many people working in the coffee growing countries actually end up interacting with each coffee bean that ends up going into their cup of coffee.”

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