The rest of New Zealand has some catching up to do as far as soft brewing goes, but don’t worry, we’ve known about this black magic for a while now, and we think you’re ready to learn too. The Soft Brew explosion that begun in the States with coffee pioneers such as Intelligentsia, and Blue Bottle has spread to Melbourne and we’re stoked that soon it’s going to be in every laudable café in New Zealand worth stepping in.
The Soft Brew method of making coffee is a slow extraction, as opposed to the quick high-pressured extraction of an espresso. The slow ritual of the soft brew paired with coffee-to-water ratio, technique, and temperature allows the drinker to taste the pure characteristics of single origin coffee, and its so damn good you can hold the milk and sugar.
There are a few sexy-looking vessels to prepare a soft brew: the Hario V60, Chemex, Syphon, or an AeroPress. The V60 and Chemex use similar techniques whereby pouring hot water (our own baristas like 96 degrees) over the coffee grounds through a paper filter; producing one complex cup. The Syphon has been around for 160 years but the dirty hippies of the 60’s lost love for this method and it fell off the map, to be resurrected once again. It yields an incredibly clean and pristine single cup of coffee by using some dusty scientific principles like the expansion and contraction of gasses in a vacuum without needing a filter. The American born AeroPress is unique because it encourages flexibility of brewing techniques, making for incredibly complex brews, whilst being the least sexy looking of the soft brew crew. To develop your maturing affair of coffee, soft brew is our pick.