Coffeecatcher Mesh Filter Review
In the increasingly popular world of filter brew coffee, there are two main types of filters – paper and steel. Paper filters have been around for as long as you or I have probably been alive. Heck, my parents-in-law used them back in the 60s! Granted, they have improved since then, but i’d often wondered just how good the new breed of stainless steel filters was. Could they eliminate paper filter taste, were they really re-usable and designed to last, and would they taste as good, or better than coffee brewed using a throw-away paper filter? After acquiring the fancy new Coffeecatcher mesh filter from Wine of the Bean (which sells in their web store for a paltry $30, compared to about twice that much for competing stainless steel filter brands) I set about testing the device to see if it really did all that it promised.
First up, let’s take a real close look at the Coffeecatcher mesh filter from Wine of the Bean, using our magical macro vision digitally enhanced technology!
Examining the Coffeecatcher mesh filter
You can see in these shots the construction of the dual-layered mesh. It is stiched together using sterling silver thread, is held together nicely and the quality was excellent. It feels strong and the seams are all nice and even.
Testing the Coffeecatcher mesh filter
I decided to test the coffeecatcher using my chemex, the reason being the chemex is clear glass whereas my clever dripper or v60 brewer are not see through. The chemex will give us a nice view of the mesh filter as we brew, and fitted quite nicely into the small 3-cup chemex despite being sized for the wider mouth of the v60.
For this test i’ve roasted some lovely Kenya ‘Mtaro’ peaberry and Guatemala ‘San Francisco’ beans to a filter roast depth, with first crack at 10:00 at 195 degrees, dumped at 12:00 at 201 degrees.
The coffee – Kenya Mtaro peaberry + Guatemala San Francisco
In terms of grind, i found a medium filter grind setting similar to what you would use with paper filters works well. Since the coffeecatcher is designed to mimic the flow rate of paper filters, you don’t need to use a different grind setting. As usual, just adjust grind according to taste and flow rate.
Filter coffee dose
In terms of dose, i normally use about 7.5g of coffee for every 100g of water. For this pour i was aiming for 230g of coffee (about an 8oz cup) so i dosed 17g of coffee. I’ve found in the past that 17g of coffee for 230g of water has always worked well when working with a v60 or other filter brew device of similar size.
Filter coffee pour
Don’t forget to reset your scales at this point to zero. Your brewer should already be pre-heated using boiling water. Now we’re ready to pour. I always do a wetting/pre-infuse stage of about 25 seconds before beginning the pour. I fill, let the bed sink then fill again. Some people like to keep the bed lower, some take it higher. I find the amount of agitation is what affects the brew more than just the number of pours used or the height of the bed. Coffee is soluable and we are using water as a solvent so like any science experiment the agitation plays a big factor in how much coffee ends up in the water below your filter.
Now we have our 230g of filter brew. Let’s take a look at the final bed of coffee.
It looks just as you’d expect, and it performed just like any good paper filter would. Excellent! After a quick rinse in hot water, the filter looks clean and hasn’t collected any fines. I was worried a dual layer mesh might not clean up easily but i’ve actually found it to be very quick and simple. No scrubbing or soaking required, just a quick rinse seems to do the job. Very impressed.
How did it taste?
Let me start by saying this. Obviously, there is no paper filter taste to contend with here so you’re guaranteed that there won’t be paper filter taint in the cup.But even above and beyond that, the resulting brew from the coffeecatcher filter actually surprised me by how sweet and flavourful it was.
I think i’ll be reaching for the coffeecatcher mesh more often than my paper filters from now on.
Not that paper filters are necessarily bad, but I just think that this filter has outperformed others on so many levels. It doesn’t need rinsing (except for pre-heat), it’s easy to clean, it’s affordable at $30, the pour rate mimics paper filters and the resulting brew, to my taste, was super delicious!
You can buy the coffeecatcher mesh filter over at the Wine of the Bean web store.