The V60 coffee maker is one of the most popular pour over dripper options, and I’m not surprised as they’re so good, and so inexpensive! I would call it a cheap coffee maker, but this makes it sound like it’s a poor quality coffee maker which it certainly isn’t, it’s up among the very best in terms of popularity, and in terms of the quality of the resulting cup, even though it’s one of the cheapest coffee makers available.
If you watch the zillions of videos you’ll find on YouTube of Baristas showing how they brew coffee with the V60, it may come accross as a fiddly and scientific process, that’s what I thought when I first started looking at V60. The reality of it is that it’s not nearly as complex as it may seem, and the scientific part of it is just down to measuring the amount of coffee and water used, and the grind sized and water temp. You can get as precise as you like about all that, with thermometers and scales, or you can just go with guessing. Baristas need to ensure they consistently produce the best quality coffee they can, which is why they need processes like this. If you’re just brewing for your self and sometimes you make a better tasting cup than at other times, and you’re not quite sure why, it’s not as important if you’re making coffee for yourself and friends / family than if you’re a professional Barista serving coffee to paying customers.
Drinking a cafetiere made coffee and a v60 made coffee side by side (which I am doing right now as I’m writing this), using the exact same pact coffee, they both taste amazing, but the v60 made coffee tastes slightly lighter, and the mouthfeel is also lighter and more clean; the cafetiere made coffee has a more dense, slightly powdery mouthfeel thanks to the coffee solids and oils remaining in the coffee, and the taste is slightly deeper. You can tell which is which by looking at the coffee, as you can see the coffee oils in the pressed coffee, which you don’t see with the v60 made cup.
If I was asked which taste I prefered from the two, I think I’d have to say it depends on what mood I’m in, but I enjoy both just as much. I can imagine that on a sunny spring or summer morning, the slightly more refreshing consistency of the v60 made coffee might be a bit more appealing, and on a cold winter morning the slightly heavier taste of cafetiere coffee might be prefered, but they both taste great.
By the way once I’ve got the Aeropress, and my espresso machine, I’ll make a coffee using the stove top, v60, cafetiere, Aeropress and espresso machine and I’ll try to describe the difference in taste.
One of the things I REALLY like about the V60 is how easy it is to clean up after, it’s just a case of picking up the filter and slinging it into the bin, or if you’re like me and you save your coffee grounds to put in the compost or straight onto your soil, you can just empty the filter into the compost or onto the garden, and stick the filter in the bin.
One of the things that has surprised me about this process is the speed. Before I had the V60, from the brew guides I’d read which list lots of steps, it seemed like a pain in the backside of a process which would take about 5 minutes just to make a single cup of coffee; I’ve since learned that this was a misunderstanding on my part, and it can be as quick a process as you require it to be. If you’re doing it carefully then the process will probably take three or four minutes, but if you’re in a rush then you could probably be done in a couple of minutes, without measuring and weighing etc.,
I’ve just made a coffee in my “Billy no mates” single cup cafetiere (I prefer my Savisto 1 litre cafetiere but it’s overkill for making one cup), and in the V60 at the same time. Even with following steps which I assume make only a slight difference to the end result such as wetting the filter first and blooming (pouring some hot water onto the coffee first and then waiting 30 seconds or so before continuing) the V60 coffee was ready about a minute and a half quicker than in the single cup cafetiere.
During this “coffee brewing race” I was using the cafetiere brew method I always use which is stir, 2 minute brew, stir again, another 2 minute brew, plunge – so I suppose you could make cafetiere coffee in about the same time with shorter brew time, but I don’t find it tastes as good that way, and there are some coffee geeks who insist that cafetiere needs 5-6 minutes for a proper brew.
The overall time from start to finish including cleaning, I think is even more impressive with the V60, as cleaning involves simply picking up the filter, and rinsing the V60.
Quality of product
For a cheap coffee maker at under a fiver I was expecting flimsy cheap plastic that I’d end up having to replace in the not too distant future, I was surprised to find a really high quality durable product made from very sturdy material. I’m not sure how they can make this for such a small amount, but I’m glad they can.
I ordered this yesterday, Friday from Amazon and it came this morning, Saturday, can’t grumble at that!! I have amazon prime, which means I get free next day delivery. By the way, I rarely use prime to watch movies etc., but I keep it because I buy loads of Amazon and it’s so convenient to be able to get free next day delivery on just about everything I ever buy from Amazon.
If you love coffee, you really need to try one of these. I wouldn’t be saying that if they were pricey, but for just under a fiver this is the cheapest coffee making equipment available, and one of the best, so if you’re a coffee lover you just have no excuse not to have one of these!
See the video below which shows how 2 x Aussie Barista champ Matt Perger uses the V60.
I’ve been brewing with the V60 for nearly a year now, and I absolutely love the thing, especially now I’m grinding my own beans. I have four of them now, and I even built my own V60 dripper station so that I can make four cups at a time with V60. Grinding does make a real difference with V60 as it does with all processes, so I would hugely recommend getting your own coffee grinder and buying whole fresh cofffee beans, rather than buying pre-ground. Having my own grinder has made a huge difference, I have the Sage Smart Grinder Pro.
I’ve been using the V60 for over 18 months, and my view hasn’t changed. The V60 is still one of my favourite brewers. It’s so small, so inexpensive & so easy to use – and the coffee it brews is lovely, as long as it’s lovely coffee to start with that is, and ground correctly, but this is the same with all brew processes. It’s handy for camping too – this is something that the Aeropress is usually praised for, and it’s true that Aeropress is great for packing into a small bag when camping etc., but V60 is too, all you need is the small dripper and some filters.