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    Reading time: 5 Min

    Bitter coffee? Here’s why

    Tired of asking yourself ‘why is my coffee bitter?’ You’ve come to the right place. It’s so disappointing when you go to take your first sip of coffee only to find that it tastes bitter. There are a few factors that can result in bitter coffee or sour coffee, including poor quality coffee grounds, dirty brewing equipment, and an inaccurate coffee-to-water ratio. If your coffee tastes sour, or you simply want to know how to make coffee taste good all the time, we’re here to show you how.

    Why is my coffee bitter?

    Before you can find a solution to bitter coffee or sour coffee, you need to address why your coffee tastes bitter. If your coffee tastes sour or bitter it could be due to the following reasons:


    • Dirty brewing equipment
    • Poor-quality coffee beans  
    • Coffee grinds aren’t the right size
    • Incorrect brewing time or water temperature
    • Inaccurate coffee-to-water ratio

    Once you determine which one of these issues is the culprit, you can start taking steps towards better brewing techniques.

    How to make coffee less bitter

    How to make coffee less bitter

    Now that you know what could be causing your coffee troubles, it’s time to discover a solution for each of the culprits. Have a look at these tips on how to make coffee taste good:


    1. Clean your equipment
      If you want to know how to make coffee less bitter, the first step is to ensure that your brewing equipment is clean. When you don’t clean your coffee machine regularly, the residue from one brew builds up and affects the way your next coffee tastes. Maintaining clean equipment is also essential to prolong the life and functionality of your coffee maker.   

      The solution? Opt for an easy-to-clean coffee machine, and regular cleaning will easily become part of your coffee-making routine.

    2. Treat your beans with care
      The quality of your beans significantly impacts the quality of your cup of coffee. If you want to know how to make coffee taste better, make sure you’re storing your coffee beans and grounds right.   

      Store your coffee beans in a tightly-sealed container that’s placed away from direct sunlight and heat. Don’t put your coffee beans in the refrigerator or freezer, as the moisture can ruin the beans and affect the flavour of your coffee. Knowing about correct coffee storage can make all the difference.  

    3. Ensure correct size of coffee grounds
      Grinding your own coffee beans gives your coffee the best quality flavour. The downside is that it can also leave room for error. If you want to know how to make coffee less acidic tasting, make sure that you’re not grinding your beans too finely. This can result in over-extraction of the coffee, which will give you a bitter cup of coffee.   

      Be sure that you are using the correct grind level for the specific brewing technique that you’re using. Consider a machine that comes with durable ceramic grinders that can turn beans into anything from ultra-fine powder to coarse grindings – ideal for any type of coffee you want to make!

    4. Accurately measure coffee-to-water ratio
      An inaccurate coffee-to-water ratio can throw off any cup of coffee or espresso and affect its taste. The general rule of thumb – also known as the ‘Golden Ratio’ – is to use 17g of coffee to 34g of water for espresso, and 15g of coffee to 240g of water for coffee.*

      Of course, this depends on personal taste preferences and the type of coffee drink you are making. But it’s the general standard to follow when you’re trying to learn how to make coffee taste better.   

    5. Check the brewing time and water temperature
      The water temperature and brewing time are two very important factors when it comes to making good-tasting coffee. The water temperature should be 90-96°C when brewing coffee. Anything colder than that may produce under-extracted coffee that doesn’t have the right taste.  

      As for the brewing time, this will vary depending on the method you use. If you want to know how to make coffee less acidic with a cafetiere, for example, the brewing time is about two to four minutes. If you’re not going to drink it straight after brewing, just pour it into a jug. Espresso, on the other hand, brews for only 20 to 30 seconds. And a regular coffee machine takes about five minutes. Avoid over-extracting or under-extracting by making sure you’re brewing for the right amount of time.  

    Now that you know what to do if your coffee tastes bitter, you can enjoy delicious coffee and espresso drinks with every cup.


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