Words and images by Ayanda Dlamini
If you haven’t been introduced to him already, meet Leroy Kgopa, the maestro of coffee at Home of The Bean. Brewing coffee is an art form for him, especially when it comes to his much loved Hario V60. From what I’ve experienced, Leroy's coffee craft is more than a skill; it's an intuitive dance. It’s a process so ingrained, that it flows effortlessly from him – a true reflection of his deep connection with the art of coffee making.
The coffee we used to make his ideal V60 was given to him from a friend in Indonesia, of which I was honoured for him to share with me. An experience well suited to the culture of Home of the Bean, this cafe will always have coffee from multiple regions around the world. The coffee we had was a beautifully balanced coffee from Flores Manggarai (Gulang Village), this coffee was very fruity, smooth and delicious, with lovely untones of sweetness and over ripe/cooked cherries, of which both of us agreed on.
“I love a V60 because it tends to give you the better characteristics of a coffee. So when I try all my coffees, I have it in a V60 to expose and honour the real and detailed flavours of the coffee. It’ll highlight if I’ve under roasted a coffee or over roasted. A V60 is a sort of guide, letting me know where I want and need my coffee to be in terms of flavour. My favourite types of coffees to have in a V60 are coffees that are very smooth on the tongue, it’s not a must for them to be fruity, but I love fruity coffees. I'm open to anything that’s not harsh on my palette, and keeps me intrigued at every sip, something that’ll give me a variety of flavours when it’s hot or cold. A V60 is really just my go too, it’s what I drink everyday when I’m at work.”
- Brewista Dripper
- Hario 03 range server
- VSSL hand Grinder
- gooseneck kettle
- Drip station Hario V60 Stand
- 2 x mini ceramic cups
- 15 g ground coffee (slightly finer than filter ground)
- 210ml = ratio 1:14
- Water temp 92 degrees
- Brewing time = 3min 10sec
On to your scale you will:
● Place your dripper over a glass/range server (in this case, using a V60 stand)
● Place your filter into the dripper that sits on top. Rinse the filter with hot water and
empty out the water when you’re done.
● You can then reassemble it onto the scale and tare your scale, until you see the number 0
● Begin to scoop 15g of filter ground coffee.
A tip from Leroy: he grinds his coffee slightly finer than filter grind, this is to promote all the intricate characteristics and flavors of the coffee to come through in the brew. He does this particularly when he’s using a light roast or medium roasted coffee, if it's anything darker he’ll stick to the usual pour over grind.
● Once your coffee has been weighed. You can tare your scale again back to zero
● Use a stir stick or toothpick to swirl and stir the dry coffee grounds, creating a sort of valley with coffee grounds (parallel to the cone shape of the dripper). Leroy likes to swirl the coffee grounds in this way because it helps to immerse the water and coffee grounds all at the same time. Compared to if you were to create a flatbed of coffee grounds on top, you tend to miss the bottom layer of coffee in the V60, and therefore don't merge and marinate with the water as quickly as you want it too. This can affect the characteristics in the coffee, which is why he prefers to create a valley with the dry coffee grounds before pouring water.
● Next, begin your timer, bring your kettle close to the grounds and in a clockwise motion, slowly begin to pour about 20ml - 30ml of boiled water from uyour kettle onto your ground coffee (recommended to be 92 degrees)
Another tip geared to Leroy’s taste is: he’ll play around with the temperature of the water depending on the roast type. If the coffee is a bit dark, he’ll reduce the temperature of the water, he finds that the coffee tends to brew better. If he uses high temperature water on a dark roast, the bitterness can be harsh on the palette.
● Let the water sit and develop bubbles, allowing the coffee to bloom for 30 seconds
● Next you’ll slowly pour the remaining 190ml of water (total 210ml of water)
A technique tip from Leroy: avoid exceeding the initial level of water you created at the blooming stage. Meaning, use the wet grounds ring around the filter as a marker, and try and maintain that level of water when pouring your second pour.
● Allow your coffee to brew for 3 minutes
● When your time is up, you can pour the coffee into your desired glass, and indulge in a beautifully made cup of coffee.