Hario is one of the most well-respected Japanese coffee machine and accessories manufacturers across the globe. The company itself is more than a 100-years old at this point and the Hario V60 Size 3 is one of their most popular V60 pour-overs. First, let’s get introduced to a few core concepts of specialty, pour-over coffee brewing as the brew guide would not make much sense otherwise.
What is Pour-Over Coffee?
Pour-over coffee is a type of specialty coffee which is brewed using a pour-over technique. The general method is relatively simple to explain as you only need to add hot water to freshly ground coffee beans through a filter. Despite the seemingly simple brewing process, the resulting beverage is often considered to be a gourmet specialty. This is largely because the pour-over brewing method is simply a broad term for multiple specialized versions of it.
What is Drip Coffee?
Drip coffee and pour-over coffee is different in the way that the former is a popular variant of the latter. “Pour-over” is a general brewing method which summarizes the technique’s main principles. However, the dripper method adds more steps and requirements to those basic principles, which fine tunes the specialty brewing process to true gourmet perfection. In fact, the V60 moniker that we are used to seeing on a Hario dripper actually refers to the fact that they are suited for brewing pour-over coffee in the V60 method.
Is V60 the Same as Pour-Over Coffee?
It can be, but not always. If the pour-over brewing method in question involves having the filter create a 60-degree pour, then the answer is yes. In that particular instance at least, pour-over coffee and V60 coffee are one and the same. However, when that angle is changed, then the pour-over brewing method can no longer be called V60.
Is V60 the Same as Drip Coffee?
For the most part, the answer is yes, and the two terms are often used synonymously. V60 refers to the filter’s angle while brewing drip coffee, but they will only be synonymous as long as the filter is making that 60-degree angle. In some brewing methods, the angle is changed, which means that the drip brewing method is no longer using the V60 technique.
Hario V60: What is It?
The Hario V60 is not just one product, but several products manufactured by Hario Coffee. However, they are all high-end, pour-over drippers from the Japanese company which share the following components at the very least:
- A cone for holding the filter at an angle (V60), which always has just one dip (hole) under it.
- A base which holds the cone in place and over the coffee cup or mug.
By now, all readers should be properly introduced to the various terms will be referring to, while explaining the Hario V60 brewing technique. If you are a bit confused regarding the right size, that’s exactly what we will be explaining next.
Hario V60 Dripper: Size Guide
For the brewing guide, we will be using a Hario V60 Size 2 Dripper, but you can choose a bigger size if that better suits your needs. Just for reference, here’s everything you need to know about the different sizes in which the Hario V60 dripper is available:
Hario V60 Size 1
The smallest of the three only brews about 200ml of coffee. It also has the shortest rim and the smallest drip hole.
Hario V60 Size 2
The medium sized Hario dripper can brew up to 400ml of coffee at a time. The larger dripper has a longer rim and a bigger drip hole. Also, the specific heat capacity of this model will be much higher because longer exposure to high temperatures requires more thermal mass for resisting it.
Hario V60 Size 3
The Hario V60 Size 3 is rated to have the highest specific heat capacity, capable of brewing as much as 600ml of coffee at once. As one would expect, the largest of the Hario coffee drippers also sports the longest rim, biggest drip hole, and widest spiraling ridges.
Hario V60 Brew Guide: Requirements
You will need to have the following ready in advance:
- A Hario V60 Dripper.
- The right sized Hario v60 filter; they too come in Size 1, 2 & 3.
- A gooseneck coffee pot/kettle.
- Coffee cup/mug.
- A timer (your smartphone already has one).
- Burr grinder.
- Fresh coffee beans: Quantity is variable, depending on how much coffee you wish to make, and the Hario coffee dripper’s size.
Step 1: Freshly Ground Coffee
As we are discussing specialty coffee here, nothing short of freshly ground coffee beans will do. Technically, you can use preround beans as well, but that will not make for the best brew. Instead, use your burr grinder and grind about 20-21 grams of fresh coffee beans before we get started. In case you are wondering, use your coffee scale to measure the beans before grinding them, not after. Expert baristas suggest that the ideal ground should match kosher salt in its size.
Step 2: Heating Water
Add roughly 310-315ml of water to the gooseneck kettle and heat it to a temperature of 202-207°F (94.4-97.2°C). We only need 300ml to brew, but the extra few milliliters will be handy for wetting the filter later, as well as to accommodate the evaporation.
Note that the water will be on the verge of boiling at this point, but it should not start boiling either. This is important because if you see the water boiling, then you have already crossed the delicate threshold and gone up to or over 212°F (100°C). This is exactly why it is of the utmost importance to have precise and visible control (LCD display) over the water temperature.
Step 3: Fold the Filter
As long as you are using a Hario coffee filter, folding the filter should be really easy as they come with fold-lines. Just make sure that the Hario coffee filter matches the Hario V60 model in size. What that means is, you can only fit a size 3 Hario coffee filter inside the cone of a Hario V60 size 3 dripper. The same is true for size 1 and 2 as well.
In case you are using a third-party filter, it’s up to you to make sure that it fits your Hario dripper properly, which is ill-advised. After fitting a filter inside the cone properly, use a tiny bit of the heated water to wet the paper filter first and then get rid of the water which has made its way down to the mug. The mug should feel warm to the touch at this point.
Step 4: Degassing, aka Blooming
Add the coffee grounds to your Hario V60 and try to make an even bed, before putting it on the coffee scale. Now add 40-60ml of the hot water onto the bed, keeping in mind that the water should be enough to wet the entire grounds. Wait for 10-20 seconds, during which you will see the coffee degas itself, making the coffee “bloom.”
Step 5: Pouring
There are several ways in which baristas prefer to pour the heated water down onto the coffee bed. However, slow, spiraling and continuous motion is the preferred method. It should take about two and a half to three minutes to pour the hot water in and make a cup of coffee measuring 300ml plus the weight of the materials on the coffee scale. Do not forget to note down and subtract the weight of the apparatus beforehand. The scale will not just show your coffee weight, unless it is a specialized coffee scale designed to do just that. They too are available, but a regular scale will do just fine, as long as you don’t forget to subtract the Hario V60 + filter + cup weight from the total.
What if I reach 300ml before 2-3 minutes?
It matters, but not as much as you think. Learn from your experience and slow down the next time you start pouring for a cup.
What if I do not reach 300ml before 3 minutes?
Once again, you are only just starting, and it doesn’t matter as much. Just make sure that the next time you use your Hario dripper, you pour the water a bit faster than the previous time.
Is ceramic better than glass or plastic?
This is a debatable question with uncertain answers. Hario Coffee makes their V60 drippers with the right specific heat capacity in line with the material used. Therefore, the difference between the materials should be minimal. Nevertheless, an argument can be made in favor of glass and ceramic over plastic due to environmental reasons, if not anything else.
That is it, because you have just finished preparing your first cup of Hario V60 dripper coffee successfully! If it does not taste like a professionally brewed cup of Hario coffee, do not worry, because you will get there with some practice and experimentation of your own