If you’re interested in coffee, you may have heard of the Hario V60 Coffee Dripper. But what sets the Hario V60 apart from other coffee making methods, such as the cafetiere or aeropress? And why do baristas love it so much? In this post, we’ll explain everything in our ultimate guide to using the Hario V60 to create the perfect cup of coffee.
What is a Hario V60?
Made by Hario, a Japanese glassware company, the V60 is an incredible piece of coffee brewing equipment. It uses a pour-over brewing method. To explain it simply, filter paper is inserted into the V shape of the funnel, and coffee grounds are placed inside the filter. Then water is poured over the coffee at a light pressure (gravity), and the brewed coffee drips into the cup like below.
The V60 has been expertly designed, with internal ridges that help water and air flow when brewing. These ridges allow the coffee to bloom beautifully, and it guides the water to flow through the coffee grinds evenly.
Because of its careful design, the V60 is a great coffee brewing method for anyone – even beginners! It delivers a fantastic cup of coffee, every single time.
Why do home coffee drinkers love it?
This design of the V60 really does set it apart. But it’s the results that it produces that makes baristas so excited about it.
- Perfect flavour – a cup of coffee made in a V60 is very clean, low in body and extremely tasty. It allows for all the subtleties of the coffee to be beautifully expressed in a way that other brewing methods just can’t replicate. Furthermore, unlike methods such as the cafetiere, the V60 reduces the amount of sediment in your cup – always a plus!
- Easy to brew – one of the most appealing aspects of the V60 is how much control you have over the pour. If you add water slowly, it will aid extraction and the coffee will be rich and full-bodied. And if the water is added quickly, you’ll get a lighter-bodied coffee. This means that baristas can easily experiment with different pouring techniques and grind sizes to find the method that perfectly suits every different coffee.
- Convenience – another great aspect of the V60 is that it is very portable, especially if you buy the plastic version. Other coffee equipment like the cafetiere can be a bit bulky to carry around, but you don’t have that problem with the V60. Furthermore, it is incredibly easy to clean, as you just need to remove the used coffee filter and it’s as good as new.
- It looks great – it also has to be said that the V60 is beautiful to look at. The conical shape is very pleasing, and it comes in a variety of materials including glass, copper, and ceramic.
How do you use it?
Here’s a quick video of our founder James showing you how to use the Hario V60.
What you’ll need:
- Digital scales – this is to weigh your coffee. It’s not essential but it’ll dramatically improve your quality as you’ll know exactly how much coffee to water you’re using. Once you’ve mastered the recipe you can then replicate for the best cup of coffee daily.
- The V60 itself
- V60 filter papers
- Coffee decanter – the decanter that we sell is perfect, as it allows you to brew coffee directly into it however, you could decant directly into your favourite mug or any other vessel.
- Medium ground coffee – any of the coffees in our filter coffee taster pack would do excellently
- Filtered water – for more information about why filtered water is the best for brewing coffee, head here!
Next up? Work out how many cups you’d like to make. (note – the V60 can only produce x2 cups maximum in one batch but here’s a coffee cup brewing scale below.
Balance Coffee Brewing Scale:
- For 1 cup (15g of coffee to 250g water)
- For 2 cups (30g of coffee to 500g of water)
- For 3 cups (45g of coffee to 750g of water)
- For 4 cups (60g of coffee to 1000g or 1L of water)
- For our brew method we’ll make 2 cups in one go.
- Rinse your filter paper with hot water. This will get rid of the papery flavour and will pre-heat your brewing gear. Discard the water before brewing.
- Add your freshly ground speciality coffee.
- Pre-infuse coffee before brewing by pouring approx 70ml or grams (they are the same) of water then give it a stir and leave it for 30-40 seconds.
- Add more water until you reach 220ml, give it a swirl and then add the rest of the water. Brewing should take around three to three and a half minutes.
How to overcome common coffee-brewing problems:
“My coffee is too weak” – use less water, use more coffee, or use a finer grind
“My coffee is too strong” – use more water, less coffee, or a coarser grind
“My coffee is too bitter” – you’ve over-extracted the coffee, use a coarser grind
“My coffee is too sour” – you’ve under-extracted the coffee, use a finer grind
Make sure that you’re using the right coffee for the V60. The grind should be a medium ish grind for filter. If the grind is too coarse, then the water will pass through the coffee too quickly with less resistance, creating less extraction of the flavour. A finer grind therefore allows for more resistance, and creates more surface area for the water to access resulting in a slower drip through the coffee bed. It’s all about finding the sweet spot. This will dissolve the flavours more easily, creating the desired flavour. James says, “The idea idea is to ensure that all the coffee grounds are evenly saturated with water so that the water passes through the coffee at an even rate. This will ensure no bitter flavours are produced and you’ll get a really fruity, clean up of coffee.”
It’s also important to consider the flavour of the coffee. The V60 is perfect for highlighting complex, light to medium-roast coffees. Washed coffees tend to do particularly well, as they are bright and clean, with a lighter body and texture. You can explore our current coffee selection here.
Finally, your pouring technique is also very important. You need to pour consistent concentric circles, as this will enable the coffee to extract evenly. Make sure not to dump your water down the centre hole, as this will make the water flow too fast, and produce unpleasant acidity and flavour. This can be a bit difficult to control with a standard kettle, so it might be worth investing in a gooseneck kettle, as this will make your pour much more precise. You can read more about gooseneck kettles here.
If you’re looking to improve your home barista skills, then the V60 is absolutely the method for you. Our founder James says: “It takes a little longer to make my afternoon cup but it’s a nice break from work and it really is a ritual. I think it has something to do with the gentle pouring in ‘concentric circles’ which is quite a relaxing experience.”
If you want to try the Hario V60 for yourself, you can purchase everything you need here. And if you’re not sure if the V60 sounds like it’s for you, then check out our other recommended home equipment.
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