New to pourover, need some help

Coffee preparation techniques besides espresso like pourover.
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#1: Post by berfles »

For years I've been using a french press and decided to move onto the V60. I'm using the V60 decanter seen here, a Fellow Ode grinder with v2 burrs, a pourover kettle, and Onyx Souther Weather coffee. I'm not getting results that taste amazing to me, so I'm guessing something or all of what I'm doing is off. I'm following a recipe online which calls for 30g of coffee to 510g of water. I pour 60g of water and let it bloom for 40 seconds, then pour again up to around 255g, then as it filters down a bit I pour again up to about 510g total. It takes around 3 minutes before it slows to a drip.

I have the Ode set to 5 which produces grinds like this:

Then I wet the filter down and pour the water into my mug to preheat it. Sidenote, is the fold ok? Does it look like it fits decently in there? I've tried two and they both seem to have more excess even with a fold:

Here is after I pour the coffee in just to show the grind size again:

Here's the bloom phase with the first 60g:

And here's the final bed of coffee, which I realize for this post I didn't level out like I usually do due to me trying to document everything:

So with all this said and all these examples, my points of concern are... how bad does an ill-fitting filter affect flavor? How forgiving is it if I go over my weights (pour 75g instead of intial 60 because I don't saturate everything with 60, end up with 515g instead of 510g etc)? Is my grind size in general ok or should I be going finer? It filters through pretty quick so I'm thinking I should go a little finer. As far as flavor, it's just really... bland. As it cools it seems to get quite acidic, and before that I can't really pick out any flavors. When it dries in the decanter it smells amazing, but I get none of that when I drink it.

Is pourover in general a lot more finicky than the french press? I'm down for any and all suggestions,

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#2: Post by baldheadracing »

berfles wrote: Is pourover in general a lot more finicky than the french press? I'm down for any and all suggestions,
V60 in general is way more finicky than immersion methods as it relies on you and your choice of grind size to control flow rate, pouring height, pouring technique, how the filters were packaged (really! Hario uses different packaging for different quantites/countries, which means that the paper filters were made in different factories with different paper characteristics ...), etc.

There's a whole lot of people coming up with V60 methods that try to take the human out of the equation, as well as brewing fast enough to be used in a cafe. Here's an example to try:
(I don't use this method, but one has to start somewhere.)

Good luck!
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada

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#3: Post by bznelson91 »

I've got a Ode Gen 2; I think you're saying you have a Gen 1 but with the Gen 2 burrs? Your profile doesn't clarify, Either way, my first comment is that my Gen 2, which I've zeroed based on burr chirp (I know, there's religion there), produces notably more coarse grinds than that at a 5; that looks more like a 3 on my machine. Having said that, that grind is not unlike what I use on V60, so I've got some experience.

I'll list my V60 workflow for comparison (this is with light roasts, probably lighter than that Onyx, based on my limited Onyx experience):
  • Preheat ceramic V60 by inverting brewer with rinsed filter on top of lidless kettle while heating
    1:16 (typically) coffee to water
    Full boil water
    Make "well" in coffee prior to bloom
    3x coffee weight in bloom water
    Stir bloom well to ensure all grounds wet
    Bloom for ~30 seconds
    Three pours of remaining water, letting it get low but not to the bed when pouring
    Gentle swirl (no stir) after first "brew pour" to level bed
    Slow gooseneck kettle (Fellow) pouring in spirals for the brew pours
    Drawdowns take a long time, usually >4m
(not sure why my list isn't working right)

This usually gives me a very flavorful brew. I'm a bit concerned about drawdown; maybe I'd be better off with more coarse grind. Stirring has resulted in bitterness/astringency, so I stopped doing it. Also, sometimes I'd pour too aggressively or let the water get too low, this also resulted in bitterness/astringency.

Looking over differences with your technique, two pours vs three is an obvious one. My brew uses more bloom water, You didn't mention temp, so don't know there. I don't think your filters are the issue; pics look fine to me. You mentioned maybe going finer; call me crazy, I'd try a click more coarse, even if it meant faster drawdown. Also counterintuitive: maybe try a little less coffee but the same amount of water.

Having said all of this, since I've received my NextLevel Pulsar, I haven't done a V60 brew, so they may taste weird to me now :)


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#4: Post by erik82 »

Well try more and thus smaller pours and swirl in between a couple of times. The grinds go up all the way on the filter which isn't a good thing. The filter and everything else looks fine and you don't need to really heat up the decanter as it's plastic. Just rinse the filter with hot water to preheat and you'll be fine.

I'll add a video in a bit as I'll be making V60 in 15 minutes. I've literally made thousands of V60's and am super consistent. Have to say this is a 18/300 pourover V60-01 but you can just scale everything up.

Ok, here's the video which is one pour less then I usually do. It was pretty hard to do everything with one hand, keep the phone out of the way, watch the pour, watch the scale etc :mrgreen: but hope this helps a bit. I skipped the preheat and started at the bloom. You can stir the bloom or just make a hole in the center and pour in there which in the end does the same. As I was using Cafec T92 light roast filter here which clog extremely easy I tend to agitate at a bare minimum. I swirl after the second pour to settle the grounds, somewhere in between and after the last pour.

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#5: Post by radioradio »

I'm not an expert by any means but I've been brewing with my V60 (plastic) for a couple of years now.
Here's a few things I've noticed and practices I've adopted over that time.
  • I choose temperature based upon the roast level (light-210F, Med-205F or lower)
  • Grind in the medium range, btwn 4 and 6 on an Ode Gen1 with SSP MP burrs
  • How one pours and how many pours really does make a difference, I used to not think it was not as significant as it is.
  • consistency of process is important for consistency of result.
  • Current process: Hoffman single cup method with some guidance/adjustment from Hedrick
  • Preheat cone and rinse filter.
  • Dose coffee
  • Five total pours, equally divided, first pour is the bloom for 45 seconds, swirl to ensure all grounds are wet
  • four more pours with 10 sec rest in between each pour, swirl after the last pour.
  • I've found pretty consistent results with this method. The bed is flat and drawdown is usually between 3 and 4 minutes total.
  • On pouring - I'm using a gooseneck kettle and using a circular pour mostly confining my circles to about a one inch or 2.5 cm circle.
  • I do occasionally go outside that diameter to washdown grounds that stick to the filter.
I've found that the pause between pours seems to be important. My theory it that it allows the bed to settle and improves the percolation of water through the grounds.
There's so many variables and I've only touched on a few. I'm sure other, more knowledgeable people here will be able to provide additional insights.
I have read Gagne's book and it really aided my understanding of the variables and forces in play. Much more complicated that it seems on the surface.