How to Prep Coffee Without an Espresso Machine

How to Prep Coffee Without an Espresso Machine

There’s no denying that the best way to make a good, strong coffee at home is to invest in a deluxe home espresso machine, which can cost anywhere between $1,000 and $4,000 on average.  One of our VIP clients even has a $15,000 café-quality machine installed in his kitchen – now that’s dedication to the caffeine cause.

However, for those of us with tiny kitchens (or tiny budgets), this kind of investment is totally out of the question. So how do you get that café quality coffee at home, without spending a fortune? It might surprise you to learn that some members of the Mongrel Joe team don’t use espresso machines at home either. Partly this is because they can rely on the high-end La Marzocco machine we have at the office. Partly it’s because they firmly believe you can create excellent coffee using other methods. 

Here’s how they do it.

Cafetiere/French Press/Plunger Coffee  maxresdefault

1)      Always use quality ground coffee, ground specifically for plunger styles. Ensure your coffee is fresh—better still, grind it yourself.

2)      Dose your cafetiere properly.  We suggest around 7g per cup but you may need to experiment with slightly more or less to get your perfect taste. It often looks overfull but it isn’t – this is how you deliver an intensely flavoured coffee.

3)      Boil your kettle, then leave it a minute before pouring. Fresh off the boil will burn the coffee.

4)      Stir first. Don’t just plunge away.  Then leave it 5 minutes and press the plunger.


Stove Topadd-heat-espresso-maker

1)      Clean, clean, clean. Keep your stove top coffee maker completely scrubbed clean of old grinds and residue or you’ll soon start to notice a bitter flavour in your coffee.  

2)      Fill the basket (top part) with grounds. Don’t skimp or you’ll get a weak brew. And avoid that amateur error: make sure you screw the top and base together tightly!

3)      It only takes 3-5 minutes so don’t wander off and do something else, or you’ll have a mess and burnt flavour.

4)      You’ll need to change the rubber seal about once a year, when it starts to look worn or cracked.



‘The Little Guy’ Stainless Steel Stovetop Espresso Maker.  Not only will this bad boy pull a perfect espresso coffee shot every time, but it texturises your milk and LOOKS incredibly cool doing it.  otto_the_little_guy_coffee_maker_xz5

Invented by Aussie Craig Hiron and made in Australia to this day, ‘The Little Guy’ is an homage to Giordano Robiatti’s design classic, originally patented in Milan in 1947.

Go to the website for more details or to order;


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