The Biggest Coffee Brewing Mistakes Slideshow

Mistake #1: Your Coffee

We’re obviously not proponents of waste, but bagged coffee goes bad faster than you think. Coffee’s biggest enemies are oxygen and moisture, says Starbucks — and the moment that the coffee is ground is when it starts losing freshness. (It’s why Ultimo and coffee connoisseurs are proponents of freshly ground, freshly made coffee and espresso drinks.) But a major problem can occur even before you grind the beans (which, if you’re not doing it already, should be done right before you start brewing). It’s often how coffee is stored that causes a loss of oxygen and moisture. 

How to fix it:

Starbucks advises that over-extracted coffee tastes much worse than under-extracted coffee; so when in doubt as to the brewing method, always err on the coarse side. Coffee connoisseurs agree that the best coffee — thick, rich and truest to its flavor profile — is made in a traditional coffee press. A coffee press requires a coarse grind.

Mistake #4: Your Water

We don’t always hate on tap water, or even filtered water, but for this purpose, we’re not fans. Imagine the flavors of tap water ending up in your cup of coffee — not OK. While it may not seem like an important ingredient, coffee is 98 percent water, says Starbucks. The type of water used when brewing greatly affects the final taste. 

How to fix it:

Jane Bruce

According to Starbucks, "The general rule for coffee-making is 2 tablespoons (10 grams) of ground coffee for each 6 ounces (180 milliliters) of water." So measure it — it’s not hard!