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from http://friendsofjuan.com/# on March 18, 2004

MAKING A DELICIOUS CUP OF COFFEE

Tips from TV's Favorite Chef Alton Brown

    Making a delicious cup of coffee is easy if you start with the best beans and follow some simple guidelines. Colombian coffee beans are especially flavorful because they are grown in rich volcanic soil, and are handpicked by Colombian cafeteros dedicated to bringing you premium quality from the crop to the cup.

    To help you avoid some common coffee-making pitfalls, Alton Brown offers these tips:

1. Always start with fresh, cool water.

•  Do use fresh spring or tap water
•  Do use clean water with no detectable tastes or odors
•  Don't use demineralized water, such as distilled water, which lacks the necessary level of dissolved mineral solids (100-200 ppm) needed to give the water that “crystal fresh” taste

2. Brew with high quality beans like Colombian.

•  Do use freshly ground beans before brewing to release their fragrant aromatics
•  Do store your coffee beans in an airtight container away from light
•  Don't let your beans absorb moisture in the refrigerator or freezer because this hastens staling

3. Preparing coffee in a French Press is easy and fun.

•  Do preheat the glass pot before brewing
•  Do brew with fresh clean water just off the boil
•  Do fill the pot, then give it a quick stir. Cover with the plunger lid, allow the brew to infuse for four minutes, then gently depress the plunger through the grounds for 30 seconds
•  Don't leave the coffee in the press after brewing – pour it into an insulated carafe, so it doesn't get cold or bitter
•  Don't ever re-use coffee grounds, because their desirable, dissolvable flavor solids were extracted during the first brewing

4. The proper coffee-to-water ratio makes all the difference

•  Do use 2 tablespoons of ground coffee per six ounces of water
•  Don't try to make “weaker coffee” by decreasing the amount of coffee you use to brew. This only results in a bitter, over-extracted beverage. Instead, just add a little water to your cup and you will be able to enjoy a less intense, but still high-quality coffee flavor

Stirring Up Conversation

Tips From Chef and TV Personality Alton Brown

    Along with the best coffee goes the best conversation. The best beans are handpicked, like Colombian Coffee. Grown in the shade of the Andes , Colombian Coffee means a dedication to quality throughout the process, from tree to cup. Who better to survey Americans on the best conversation than the Colombian Coffee Federation, producer of the best beans?

Coffee drinking

bulletMen prefer to talk politics with their friends, while women prefer to talk about family or friends over a cup of coffee.
bulletAlmost six out of 10 men have a special coffee mug they like to use.
bulletDoughnuts are still the best accompaniment to a good cup of coffee, with a quarter of survey respondents opting for the deep-fried delicacy.
bulletHalf of men and a third of women claim to know what country of origin their coffee comes from.
bulletTaste is the number one influencer of coffee choice with 65% of respondents choosing it.
bulletNearly half the people in the country take their coffee with sugar and cream, but in the northeast, that number jumps to 63%.

Hot topics

bulletRocker Ozzy Osbourne holds the title of “Person America Would Most Like to Share a Cup of Coffee With” with nearly a third of respondents choosing him. Martha Stewart was second, with 19%.
bulletIn a one-on-one meeting with President Bush, 41% would discuss the concerns of their families and the future while 31% would discuss the fight against terrorism and the war in Iraq and only 3% would discuss the upcoming election.
bulletA quarter of respondents (27%) say Paris Hilton is the most overexposed celebrity followed by Britney Spears (19%) and Jennifer Lopez (8%).
bullet62% of those surveyed would prefer to go without their television and cell phone than go without their computer.
bullet75% said they would not sell a personal sex tape. (Which left 25% saying that they would!)
bulletWhen it comes to romance, more than three quarters of those surveyed (79%) believe men should always make the first move.
bulletNearly half of those surveyed (47%) would participate in a reality show. Top show choices for participation included “Extreme Makeover” (38%) and number two “Survivor” (23%).
bulletOnly 28% said they would have or did have plastic surgery with the top two procedures being liposuction (42%) and a tummy tuck (38%). And 81% would tell at least a few people they had or are considering the procedure.

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Last edited on 08/27/2010