Coffee Water: Paper Filter

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Jason Coffee
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Coffee Water, Paper Taste

On a recent post, 5 Easy Steps to Chemex Coffee, someone left a comment about the paper filter I was using.  I have never noticed tasting paper in my coffee when I brew in a Chemex or any other pour over brew method. They challenged me to do a tasting of just the water brewed through the paper filter, oh yummy! Today I am taking on that challenge.

coffee setup water

Paper Filter Rinse

I decided to up the ante and rinse the paper filter 3 times to see if there is a change in flavor with each consecutive rinse. If the water from the 3rd rinse tastes better than the water from the 1st rinse I have just created a whole bunch of extra work for myself. Although, if this is true I won’t mind the extra work because of the added flavor benefit, either that or I will choose a different favorite brew method.

coffee filter paper

Blind Water Tastings

I decided to do this tasting blind to see if I noticed a difference between the rinses. As you can see in the video below, when I was out of the room, my wife, Chassy put numbers on the bottom of the cups and mixed them up for the blind tasting. Upon my first taste it was apparent that I hadn’t been tasting the completely obvious. The water in that first cup closely resembled sticking a piece of paper in my mouth. As I slurped each cup they all had a distinct paper flavor  and differed in levels of intensity in comparison to the each other. To my shock I was able to guess correctly which cup was which rinse number.

cup of coffee water

My conclusion is that I am going to rinse a minimum of 3 times when using a brown bonded Chemex filter. I will also be doing a white and brown paper filter comparison in a not to distant post.

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  1. Jennifer

    Hi Jason,

    What temperature water were you using to pre-soak the filter with? I use boiling water and that helps the taste and cuts down on the “extra work” you mentioned.

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