How to Brew a Good Cup of Coffee

Many of us are old enough to remember the days when home-brewing coffee consisted of selecting between pre-ground Folgers and Maxwell House and then running them through an electric percolator.  More recently, most of us migrated to purchasing roasted whole beans and using an automatic drip machine — or even a French press.

Now, that, too, is passe for true coffee snobs.   In the video below,  Ben Helfen demonstrates, to the accompaniment of AC-DC, “How to Brew a Good Cup of Coffee.”

via Jason Kottke and Glenn Reynolds

FILED UNDER: General, , , , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Dale B says:

    Well, it would seem that you can either set up a fairly large, time consuming, coffee assembly line in your kitchen in order to brew a small cup of coffee every day or have a real, money paying, job. There would not be time for both.

    This guy is nuts.

  2. Grewgills says:

    I’m pretty sure this is a joke.

    I thought that it was just coffee people with way to much time on their hands until 0:47 in when they IDed the poorly roasted beans as “the good stuff”.

  3. sam says:

    As I was making my morning joe this AM I reflected that I’ve never had a better cup of coffee than one made in a percolator on a gas stove. Just can’t be beat for fresh, clean taste. One more data point in favor of the proposition that newer doesn’t always mean better. Brings out my inner conservative, I guess.

  4. Drew says:

    Dammit, James, now I’m going to have that godawful song running through my head for two days………. ;->

  5. Herb says:

    To paraphrase Mitch Hedburg, “I like fresh ground coffee, man. That’s why I want to try pre-ground coffee. Because maybe it’s just as good and won’t waste time.”

  6. randall in oklahoma says:

    All that time and effort, and in the end they drank it from 1970s coffee cups that I sold in a garage sale for 5 cents each. I wonder how they got them.

  7. I “only” weigh my beans to the 0.1 ounce, burr grind them, and mellita brew them. Thanks for making my level of detail look sane in comparison.

    Similar strategy though.

  8. Dutchgirl says:

    This must be a joke, as this is a list of eveything NOT to do to coffee. Using the badly roasted beans as the good stuff, seasoning (re-using) the filter, letting your coffee mold, cooling then reheating your coffee. yuk! For me, I’ve been spoiled by years of getting very fresh kona coffee from a small farm, mostly for free. when my coffee gets even a hint of mold or get a bit rancid, I toss it.

  9. greg says:

    FYI, you’ve been punk’d.

  10. JKB says:

    This is BS. The only way to grind coffee is between two granite stones intimately mated over years by the repeated crossing and uncrossing of a virgin’s legs as she sits upon them while watching bare-chested warriors demonstrate their prowess with bow and spear.

    Not to mention they’ll go through all that but still use beans roasted by some unnamed person? Sacrilege. They have the iron skillet, they should roast their own. Roast, place the cooled beans in a container with nitrogen to displace the oxygen, then 12 hours later you grind, prepare and consume the cup within a half an hour of breaking the seal.