Top 5 Tips for Brewing Delicious Coffee at Home

As the Home of Daily Happy, we believe brewing coffee at home should be stress-free, enjoyable and delicious. Regardless of whether you’re just starting out or you’re a home-brewing expert, these crucial tips will help you to make a café quality cup of coffee every morning, without fail. 

Regardless of whether you’re just starting out or you’re a home-brewing expert, these crucial tips will help you to make a café quality cup every morning, without fail. 

1. Use Fresh, High-Quality Coffee 

When it comes to coffee, fresh is best, and we’ll explain why. Once coffee beans are roasted, they begin to oxidise and subsequently lose both flavour and aroma. To get the most out of your coffee, we recommend consuming within 5 weeks from the roast date. There is, however, such a thing as too fresh: waiting a minimum of 5-6 days from the roast date will optimise the flavour of your coffee, as the gases being released in the first few days can alter the taste and make extraction trickier.  
Often, supermarket coffee brands won’t provide you with a specific roast date because more than likely it is on the shelf for many months, so it’s always best to buy your coffee from a local roaster or online from a specialty coffee roastery (like us!).  
At Old Quarter, we have a collection of Southeast Asia’s best specialty coffee which we’ve roasted with care, in small batches, and we know you’ll taste the difference. Browse our coffee collection here.

One more thing, for the best results, make sure you’re choosing beans that were roasted for your preferred brew method. Coffee roasters determine how best to roast and serve each unique batch of green beans based on its unique characteristics. Typically, different beans will do better at different roast levels and with different brew methods. 

Old Quarter Specialty Coffee Home Brew Guide

If you’re using an espresso machine or stovetop at home and drinking your coffee with milk, you’ll most likely be looking for a medium roast. A medium roast usually gives the coffee more body and balances the acidity so it pairs well with milk, while still retaining some of the coffees unique flavour characteristics. Alternatively, if you drink your coffee black and you're brewing using a filter method, AeroPress or plunger, a more delicate and lighter roast will be ideal, which will highlight the coffee’s nuanced characteristics such as its acidity and floral notes.
2. Store Your Coffee Right to Keep it Fresher, for Longer 

Once purchased, store your beans in a sealed, airtight container away from sunlight and moisture. Light, heat and oxygen all cause coffee beans to oxidize and break down or go “stale”. The Airscape Container is a great option, as you'll be limiting the coffee’s exposure to these factors and making sure your beans stay fresher and tastier for longer. Alternatively, you can keep your coffee in its original Old Quarter bag with the zipper completely closed. Either way, remember to also keep it off the windowsill and away from the toaster or oven! We recommend trying the pantry ;)

3. Always Follow a Recipe 

Consistency is just as important as freshness when it comes to making the perfect cup of coffee at home. A recipe is a simple formula created to get the best extraction and flavour out of your beans. Just like baking a cake, following a recipe and using scales are crucial steps in achieving the desired results, no matter your brewing method. Coffee recipes are always written in the format of: DOSE, YIELD, TIME.

Make the perfect cup of coffee at home.
We start by weighing the amount of ground coffee we are using (the dose), then we weigh the amount of brewed coffee we get out (the yield) and we measure how long the whole process takes (time). Our passionate and experienced baristas have put together these easy-to-follow brew guides, which we recommend as a great place to start. Once you’ve got the hang of it you can tweak them according to your taste and preference: Pour Over Brew Guide, Aeropress Brew GuidePlunger Brew Guide and Stovetop Brew Guide.

4. Keep it Clean

While it may seem obvious, this one is a must. Coffee oils go rancid overtime and can seriously impact even the most meticulously brewed cup. Wash your brewing equipment with hot soapy water, wipe down grinders with paper towel, purge and wipe your steam wand after every use and invest in cleaning products for espresso machines. We liken it to cooking in a dirty pot. Maybe in our uni days… 

5. Invest in Quality Tools 


Starting every cup with fresh, whole beans is a must. It tastes A LOT better. Having your coffee ground fresh means it will have the most amount of aroma, sweetness, and flavour. There’s nothing wrong with pre-ground if that’s more practical for you, but over time ground coffee will oxidise and go stale much faster than beans due to the increased surface area available to react with the environment The fresher the grind, the better your coffee will taste. 

An adjustable burr grinder is the way to go to get the most of your beans, as burr grinders use pressure (rather than blades) to evenly grind beans, providing consistent extraction (and a delicious cup of coffee). 

And remember…grind size DOES matter! Matching your grind size to your brewing method plays a big role in extraction. In general, coarser grinds are used with brew methods that have longer brew times (such as a plunger) and finer grinds are used with methods that have shorter brew times and are extracted under pressure (such as espresso or stovetop). Suggested grind sizes are below:

Espresso Very Fine
 Stovetop Very Fine
Aeropress Medium - Coarse
Pour Over Medium - Coarse
Moccamaster Medium – Coarse 
Plunger Coarse 
Cold Brew Coarse


If you like to mix it up and drink stovetop one day and plunger the next, buying an adjustable home grinder will change your life! 

Old Quarter Coffee Home Brewing Gear


As mentioned above, following a recipe is crucial when brewing coffee, and a set of digital scales will help you to weigh out the dose and yield. Using a measuring scoop or cup won’t cut it, as different coffee roasts can vary significantly in mass. With a set of scales, you’ll be sure to measure the exact weight of your beans and therefore achieve the perfect ratio. While it may seem excessive, using scales to weigh as you brew will help rule out inconsistencies and lead to a more balanced cup.


A timer can be helpful when measuring and controlling the extraction time, no matter your brew method. Brew time can have a significant effect on how balanced your coffee tastes, as well as how strong it is. Some at home coffee machines come with a built-in timer, but if not, your phone will suffice!

That’s it! With these simple tips, tricks & tools, you’ll be able to make a delicious cup of coffee at home every time. If you have follow up questions or feel you need more guidance, pop in and visit us at our Roastery and Café in Ballina or contact us here. Good luck, and happy brewing! 

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