Ah… Holiday coffee. Good coffee on vacation is such an important part of a trip for us. We cannot imagine that we are alone in this. In 2020 I already shared a blog about holiday coffee , and how you can ensure increased coffee enjoyment when you're not at home. I thought it was time for a new blog on this topic!
Can't you just find good coffee (specialty coffee) on vacation?
You might ask yourself whether you can score a good cup of coffee at the holiday destination itself, or find coffee beans to make yourself. My short answer to this question is basically no. This is really not available everywhere. Unless of course you go to a big city like Prague, Melbourne, Barcelona or maybe even New York.
If you have a city trip ahead of you as a holiday, you certainly don't have to think about holiday coffee preparations! Then it is of course nice to visit all kinds of specialty coffee bars and / or micro roasteries and shake up your taste buds.
But if, like us, you go more towards nature or have some quieter and/or lesser-known destinations planned, or "just" go to a campsite in the South of France for example, I definitely advise you to think carefully about your coffee needs on vacation. Otherwise you often have to rely on supermarket coffee, and of course I don't know about you... But I like shopping in another country, but I don't like drinking old bitter coffee from the supermarket. Then I'd rather not drink anything, honestly! #coffeesnobproblems #firstworldproblems
What do you have to think about if you want to drink good coffee on holiday?
A good question as a follow-up to the previous piece would be what you should think about when it comes to coffee. Of course this differs greatly per person, everyone has different coffee needs. So many people, so many wishes. But I would start with freshly roasted Specialty Coffee first. Research whether there are options to buy this on the spot, if not: calculate what you need and take it from home!
If you have obtained your Specialty Coffee and have it ready to go, you should of course also choose a suitable brewing method and bring the necessary coffee gear . What you bring depends on your preference (espresso/filter style), your options there (camping/hotel room/cottage), what you may already have at home (I can assume you don't take an electric coffee grinder to your hotel room, so maybe a hand mill?), whether you are prepared to purchase something for a trip (such as that hand mill or a portable coffee maker ) and the space you have to carry things with you.
If you drive to a house with excellent electricity and you have space in your car, why the hell not bring the perfect coffee gear with you? Why make it difficult when it can be done easily :-).
What do we take with us on holiday in terms of specialty coffee and coffee gear?
Fortunately, we are going away again in the summer this year and one of the most important parts of our holiday is therefore the preparation of the coffee ritual in the morning. We travel with 2 little ones and don't necessarily go to a big city, so we don't want to count on being able to buy fresh espressos or a bag of Specialty Coffee locally in the village. So we prepare ourselves to basically make all the coffees ourselves and if we come across a nice coffee bar, that's all extra.
- Space: We go by plane (and there a compact car), and since we already have a buggy / baby carrier / mega pack of diapers / swim tires / 2 car seats / 2 little danglers (and so on) we can't really take ourselves anymore ' call light travelers'. But that also means that we have very little room left for coffee gear. So this is definitely an important factor for us.
- Quality: As roasters and coffee aficionados, we are not going to spend 10 days drinking lesser coffee that has already been pre-ground at home, so bringing a coffee grinder is really a major pro for us. However, that will be a hand mill given the space. We recently treated ourselves to a 1ZPresso JX-Pro . What a beast of a hand mill this is... You just grinded a good shot in about 15 seconds! What?! An upgrade from our simpler Hario hand mill , also a nice thing, but the price of the JX-Pro certainly accounts for the difference in convenience. Do you want to be in between in terms of price? Then we recently also have this super beautiful Timemore Chestnut C2 MAX in our range. Are you still looking for a suitable hand mill? Then read this blog about manual grinders !
- Quantity: We don't want to bring too little or too much coffee, and of course also want to change the taste. So we often calculate how many grams of coffee we use for the brewing method x the number of brews per day x the number of days + 25%, so that we have some leeway if we feel like coffee more than we thought! We then divide this amount over different coffees, preferably small bags.
- Coffee gear: We already know (always by the way) that we will be bringing filter style coffees, but we do not yet know exactly which brewing method we will use. We are still very hesitant about the Aeropress ( do you want to know how it works? ), because we don't use it that much at home, while we love it and it is nice and sturdy (plastic) for traveling. And between the Origami Dripper , because we've been so crazy about that lately. And with the Origami Dripper Air version you also have a handy unbreakable thing because it is now made of durable plastic. Do you want to know more about this beautifully designed dripper? Then read this blog about the Origami Dripper . Tough choice, maybe we can take them both? That will be fitting and measuring at the last minute.
Of course there are many more options suitable for taking on a trip, depending on your preferences and what you may have at home. For example, for espresso-style coffees and cappuccinos, it is best to use a percolator or Bialetti. The push pot (also known as French Press and Cafetiere) is also extremely popular for camping and most filter style methods (except the Siphon and other fragile devices perhaps) are suitable to take with you such as the Hario V60 (plastic variant) .
- Extras: We do bring a scale , but not a kettle with thermometer and gooseneck. The latter is going a bit too far for us, but maybe next year we will be so crazy ;-).
Hopefully this will also give you some inspiration to think about holiday coffee. If you don't want to take a hand grinder with you and don't want to invest in it, you can always order pre-ground coffee from us!
Have a nice summer!