Why do some coffee grounds cause pour-over coffee to take longer to brew?

Why do some coffee grounds cause pour-over coffee to take longer to brew?

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  1. Two main things affect the flow rate for pour overs, the grind size and the water temperature. Coarser grinds naturally would make the flow rate higher, same with higher water temperature. I generally aim for a 3–4 minute brew time, and thats including the 30–45 second bloom stage at the start. Anything less may be underextracted, anything longer may be overextracted.
    To dial in your preferred taste, I would use water fresh off the boil and grind it as fine as you can to the point it does not cause any channeling. Then I would grind a step coarser until I get the taste what I want, which most of the time results in a 3–4 minute brew time.

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  2. If you’re happy with the size of the grind you are using or are using pre-ground coffee, but are brewing weaker coffee than you like, try tamping the dry grounds down so the water flows through the grounds more slowly. I was in Alaska recently and used the coffee provided at the cabin we used. It was a coarse grind, but I was able to improve the flavor and richness of the coffee with a spoon. It compressed the grind by nearly half.

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  3. Finer coffee grounds cause water to take longer to pass through it, coarse coffee passes water more quickly. Age of the beans affects the rate of flow as well. This is why espresso machines need to be “dialed in” every time there’s a new kind of bean, or each day as the same coffee ages. You’ll want to do something similar with your pour over. Try to grind your coffee so that it takes 3–5 minutes to brew. This means if you’re brewing larger batches, you’ll want to grind coarser, and vice versa. When you change beans, reevaluate your grind setting. It’s not nearly as picky and detailed as dialing in espresso, but it will make your pour over coffee taste better if you’re at least in the ballpark.

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