Bialetti Moka Pot – recipe for specialty coffee

There are so many preconceptions about brewing specialty coffee in Moka Pot. But what if we are just doing it wrong? In this blog post I’ll walk you through my own experience, and convince you to experiment the device you thought is out of fashion.

Just to give you an idea of the direction where the post will go – I am drinking coffee made in Moka Pot right now, while writing these words (and also listening to the Queen concert in Montreal in 1981).

And, important detail, I don’t spit it out screaming how bad it is, as you would expect a “coffee purist” to be doing.

So if you are one of these guys – stop reading right here! I will not be linching moka pot here.

I just drink coffee made in thise device, as many other people on the planet do.

You think I am crazy, don’t you?

For my morning coffee I have lots of options. I constantly have coffee from San Agustin at the house. And I roast coffee myself. And sometimes I am offered a bag or two of other roasters. So there is plenty of coffees to be drank. And plenty of devices as well. Count with me: Kalita, V60, Aeropress, French Press, Auto Drip, Nespresso, Moka Pot.

So my choice in the morning is pretty much this: how do I want to drink this coffee?

When I have time, it is filter. When I have time and I am in the mood to be grinding a lot, it if French Press. When I want a big endless cup of coffee – Auto Drip. When I don’t want much work… When I don’t want much work, and I want to feel a bit old fashioned, it is Moka.

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Some weeks ago I conducted a post on instagram, asking, if people use Moka Pot, or no. I got some enexpected results, by the way. I was thinking the majority will be like “No, Moka, never!”. And then I got 58% of “yes”.

So, 58% of those who responded use Moka, or at least have nothing against it. Those who responded “no” in the majority were “coffee geeks”.

I will tell you something, purely my vision. I feel that sometimes “coffee geeks” cling to some ideas, but almost never test them personally. They basically adopt other people’s opinions, opinions of some influencers, and transmit them. Sometimes you talk with that kind of person, and hear somebody else, and sometimes you can even say exactly who’s opinion he adopted.

I don’t want to be like that, so I test. That’s why I have Auto Drip, and Nespresso, and, yes, Moka Pot at home.

Probably people will not like what I say about this device, or even will not like the fact that I am using it, and have a recipe for it. But what have to say is: it is good to know how to work with what you have.

What are the preconceptions people have about Moka Pot?

First of all, it is not cool, it is a grandmother’s device.

What can I say… It is really something retro. And the positive side of this retro thing is that almost everybody has it in the house. Does everybody has a V60? Nah.

Of course you can be buying new and new stuff, especially when the market feeds you with new coffee making devices every month… But isn’t it better to at least know how to use what you already have? It feels good to be smart. You know, just saying.

Second preconception. The water is boiling when goes through the coffee grounds.

I say – and what? It would be bad if you boiled the coffee after making, yes. Or leave it boiling on the stove. Or leave it heating up in the Auto Drip. But if you don’t do it – it is all fine! Water passes through coffee boiling (and so it does when you are making a syphon, btw), and then it cools down, the temperature of the coffee grounds is lower than 100C, so the sum of the tempertures will be lower than 100C, if it is something that preoccupies you.

Third preconception. Coffee made in Stove Top tastes like metal.

I say: according to this logic, espresso should also taste like metal. Does it? Nope. It can taste rancid – if you don’t clean your equipment (talking both espresso machine and Moka Pot). If you are considering buying a Moka Pot, and are choosing between stainless steel and aluminium – choose steel.

To resume, Moka Pot is an approachable, easy to use device that almost everybody has at home, able to produce viscous, dense, flavourful cup of coffee many people are striving to drink (I had 3 already today, gonna stop)

Here is the recipe I use for Moka Pot:

  1. Boil the water
  2. Fill the bottom part of the Moka Pot with boiling water almost till it reaches vapor valve (for my moka pot it equals 235 grams)
  3. Put the filter basket
  4. Fill it with 20 grams of coffee, evenly distributed, ground the way you grind it for V60
  5. Put on the top compartment of Moka Pot
  6. Place the Moka Pot on the medium heat
  7. When you see the coffee appearing in the top compartment, wait for 10 seconds, and then take to Moka Pot off the stove.
  8. Serve and enjoy!
IMG_20180312_162810-COLLAGE

For this post I made 2 coffees in Moka Pot, natural Guatemala from San Agustín and pulped natural Brazil from Café Sin Mentiras.

Moments where you have to be careful when making coffee in Moka Pot:

  • when you fill the bottom part with hot water – be careful, the whole device becomes very hot!
  • if the coffee is ground too fine, the water will not pass through it – pay attention at how moka pot behaes, and take it from the stove quickly if the water starts to infiltrate between bottom and top parts. In this case change the grind size coarser
  • afetr making coffee, serve it immediately, don’t store it in the moka pot – it will taste rancid and metallic.

And the rules of use are pretty the same as for any other brewing device:

Love your baby Moka, treat it well, clean it after use, don’t let the coffee grounds sit there for ages and oxidize, use appropriate water for brewing, freshly roasted coffee from your favourite roaster, if you are a coffee lover – buy a good grinder, and grind coffee right before making (believe me, it worth the investment!).

and stop fuckin feeling guilty and think about what other people could say – rejoice in breaking the rules, play, experiment, try new things, make your coffee your way, and, most importantly, enjoy!

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