Making Coffee

Tapa’s top tips for making great coffee:

  • Start with top quality, freshly roasted beans. Beans are at their best in the first three weeks after roasting, so buying fresh is best. Buy little, buy often.
  • Store your beans in an airtight container away from the light. It’s best not to store beans in fridges and freezers because they are cold, damp environments which will reduce the viscosity of the flavour-containing oils in the beans.
  • Grind you own beans. Not only will freshly ground coffee make your kitchen smell amazing, you will have kept the amount of time that your precious grounds are exposed to air to a minimum. You don’t need to spend much – we use a hand-crank grinder found in a charity shop – but choose one that grinds, rather than one that chops.
  • Keep your coffee making equipment clean. Change filters and seals frequently. There’s no point letting a year’s worth of residual oils and grounds muck up the flavour of your coffee.
The Grind

Grind your coffee to suit your brewing method. The aim is to expose the coffee to hot water for the right amount of time to get a great cup of coffee. An espresso machine will push water through the beans in 20 seconds or so, so you need to expose as much of the bean to the water as possible (a fine grind). Coffee grounds thrown into a pan of hot water over a campfire will be exposed to the water for longer, so use a coarse grind. If you have a stovetop or espresso machine, grind your coffee finely. If you make your coffee through a filter or cafetiere choose a coarser grind. We’ll grind your coffee for you if you like.


Brewing methods:There are plenty of ways to brew coffee, and plenty of instruction available on the web. Here are a few of our favourites:Aeropress:
Chemex or V60:
Moka or stovetop:

(Made by ferociously enthusiastic coffee fiends. If you don’t schlep a set of coffee scales and a hand-grinder up Ben Nevis, we won’t think any the less of you).


The basic rule is to match the volume of water to the volume of coffee to the duration of the extraction. Try different grinds and volumes of water (measure it, remember it) until you have a brew that’s right for you.

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