May 23, 2017

How much coffee should I use?

Answer: How much coffee do you want to drink?

The ideal ratio to extract the best coffee flavors, using a pour-over or full-emersion brew like a french press,  is anywhere between 1:15 and 1:17. This means for 1 gram of coffee you should use around 16 ML (or grams) of water.  We recommend that you invest in a scale like this one made by Hario to dial in your coffee consistently. Good scales  come with both a scale and timer built-in.

 

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If you want to brew one cup of coffee using a pour-over, then try starting with a target of 20 grams of coffee to 320 grams of water, which is a 1:16 ratio. If you prefer your coffee a little lighter then use a 1:17 ratio and if you enjoy a more full-bodied coffee then try a 1:15 ratio. If you’re still not extracting all of the coffee potential that you desire then I would re-check your grind settings first.

Lastly, if you don’t have a scale you can try these commonly used kitchen hacks to help you measure your coffee weight:

  • 4 tablespoons of ground coffee equals 21.2 grams
  • 1/4 cup of ground coffee equals 21 grams

Happy brewing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

May 10, 2017

The relationship between shelf life and space? WOW!

We are working really hard to find the right distribution channels for Pourtables and yesterday we had a conversation with a company that inquired about the shelf life of our product. They wanted to know how long the coffee will stay fresh in the portable packets.

The short answer is Pourtables stay fresh for up to one year. Our barrier packaging provides defense against light, oxygen and moisture. Also, each packet is flushed with nitrogen as it is sealed. Impressive right?

To put thi in perspective: the earth completely rotates around, or orbits, the sun for as long as Pourtables stay fresh! How crazy is that? That’s some serious shelf life! This gives you plenty of time to stop your coffee habit and pick it back up again before the coffee packets go bad. You can go camping in the spring and again in the fall! Give as a birthday gift twice! You get the point.

The moral of the story is that a lot can happen in  365 days – but not to Libra Coffee Pourtables.

Cheers,

Eric

If you who didn’t remember your Astronomy- you’re not alone.

 

 

November 22, 2016

Life Tastes Great

October 21, 2016

Pourtables – A perfect cup of coffee without the fuss

After months of design, planning and promotion we are proud to announce the launch of Pourtables to the public. Pourtables are an excellent solution for the office worker, traveler, busy household and/or outdoors person.

Most people just want a perfect cup of coffee without the fuss. With Pourtables, you just add hot water and that’s all it takes. Pourtables come as individual packets of pre-ground coffee, inside a pour-over filter. This means your coffee packet is guaranteed to be fresh, easy to carry and convenient to brew- which is exactly what we have been striving for since we started Libra Coffee. Our whole-bean coffee subscription service is all about delivering you the experience of fresh roasted, quality coffee to your doorstep. This is no different – except we took it a step further. I encourage you to try a box for yourself – we are offering free shipping for a limited time.

Eric Medina
Founder

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August 22, 2016

Coffee at home, by the numbers

Everybody knows that going to a big box coffee shop is more expensive than making coffee at home. But not everybody understands how this seemingly small “pit stop” can impact your finances for years – even a lifetime. Let’s look at the example below to illustrate this point.

How much does a cup of black coffee cost at three of the largest coffee retailers? Survey says (by Square): $2.70 is the average price for a black coffee, not  including tip. With tips averaging somewhere between 17-20%, your morning cup of joe ends up costing  over $3 in many states.

 

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$3 might not seem like a lot of money, but lets look at the cost of buying coffee on-the-go versus making it at home over the course of a year.

 

         Large coffee retailers:  5 x a week = $15 per week  ($780 annual)

         Coffee at home:  5 x a week = $5.78 per week  ($300 annual)    

 

This equates to an annual savings of $480. I don’t know about you, but I can think of a lot better ways to spend $480 dollars (80 California burritos, 34 packs of Ballast Point Sculpin IPA or a surfboard).

Or, you can follow Benjamin F.’s advice, because $480 saved is a lot more than $480 earned when you take into consideration the time value of money. With long term investments in the stock market earning 7% annually, in 10 years you can expect to earn around $7k by investing the money you saved making coffee at home.  In 50 years, you’re topping $200k – just enough to purchase a nice RV to cruise through your golden years in style. And all because you decided to enjoy your cup of joe at home.

 

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While the numbers are persuasive, your taste buds hold the final decision as to where you buy your coffee. The good news is there are plenty of online resources to learn how to brew better coffee at home. Also, try out a coffee subscription service where you can get  higher quality coffee beans for less money, delivered straight to your doorstep.

 

August 16, 2016

Save money using a Pour-Over brew method

Do a Google image search for “things that absorb water” and you will find plenty of sponges and paper towel companies to choose from. Fascinating stuff right? But did you know that coffee absorbs water too? This doesn’t seem very interesting either, until you learn that this may actually impact the taste of your coffee and keep a few extra bucks in your bank account over the long haul. And lets face it, we don’t plan on stopping our coffee passion anytime soon!

One of the most popular ways to make coffee is with a full immersion brew method, such as a French Press or Aeropress, where coffee and water are in contact together for a set amount of time. Oppositely, with drip coffee (pour-over or Chemex), water flows through a bed of flavorful coffee and into your mug with less contact time. Logic would seem that the full immersion brew method would make a much stronger cup of coffee – and it does, sort of.

On average, coffee absorbs double that number in water. This means that 15 grams of coffee will absorb roughly 30 grams of water. Another way to explain this is 230 grams of water poured over 15 grams of ground coffee will yield 200 grams of hot coffee in your final cup.

 

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Now that you know that coffee absorbs water let’s look at a recent test performed by Matt Perger at Barista Hustle. After brewing the exact same ratios for both full immersion Aereopress and pour-over, he used TDS to calculate their strength. He found that the pour-over was actually 15% stronger then that of the Aereopress. But why? Wouldn’t the coffee in direct contact with water for a longer time produce a stronger coffee? Yes. But when that 15% (or 30 grams) loss of strong coffee water is not in the final cup, you have a weaker coffee.

This means that you will use 15% more coffee to get the same strength as that of a pour-over. If you get coffee delivered every other week at $17 x 2 per month = $34 x 12 months = a savings of roughly $60 a year. So it makes more financial sense to use a pour-over!

January 14, 2016

Our New Mural at Libra HQ

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We wanted to fill a large wall at our roasting facility so we brought in Sean Dominguez to work his magic. We asked him to paint something that represented our clean water mission and global warming concerns- in relationship to coffee producers. This is what we got back and we couldn’t be more happy with the finished product!

January 12, 2016

Ethiopia Case Study

January 10, 2016

Storing your beans – Freezer or Pantry?

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Most of us are under the impression that if you store something in a freezer it will keep fresh for a longer period of time. This is true of most food/beverage products and it worked for Encino Man, but it’s definitely NOT GOOD FOR COFFEE.

Coffee is like a porous sponge that absorbs all the aromas in your fridge or freezer, leaving you with just the smell of yesterdays pasta primavera and arugula salad in your morning cup of joe. Not the best part of waking up right?

Also, when you open your freezer door the temperature changes and during the day heat gets in through the walls of the freezer. These temperature changes create condensation on the outside of your fresh beans and totally stales them. Common cup notes are cardboard and flat instead of bright and floral…

I would keep your Libra Coffee beans in a dark, dry and cool place in the pantry. Libra bags are opaque and come with string ties to roll up after use- so just leave them in the original bag in the pantry. You can also put your coffee in an opaque, air-tight container  and that works too!

January 8, 2016

Your first brew session

A friend of mine said this about his Libra Coffee subscription: “I feel like I have keys to a Ferrari but I don’t know how to drive it.”

Libra Coffee may be better quality than what you’ve been drinking in the past, but how do you make sure you brew correctly to get the most potential out of your coffee?

Whichever brew method you use to prepare your coffee (Aeropress, Chemex,etc) there is always a starting point. The two ingredients are water and coffee and we talk about their relationship as a “brew ratio” or “coffee-to-water” ratio. I can offer you target ratios for different brew methods (Aeropress 14 grams to 200ml) but it is easier to start with what you normally do.

The most common mistake people make is adding more coffee or less water or visa versa right away- this is only going to complicate this issue more.

I suggest that you start with your grind size. If your coffee is too thin or sour then adjust your grind size a little bit finer. If your coffee is too thick and bitter then try a courser grind setting.

If you are new to the coffee game I would also suggest that you buy a burr grinder for a more even grind. This will help you get another step closer to your goal of your perfect cup of coffee.