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How to brew your best cup of Joe for International Coffee Day

(SOUNDBITE OF JULIE LONDON SONG, "BLACK COFFEE")

A MARTÍNEZ, HOST:

How do you take your coffee? Two creams? Two sugars? Something different? Oh, you fancy.

NOEL KING, HOST:

Baileys. However you enjoy it, today you can celebrate because October 1 is International Coffee Day. It became official in 2015.

MARTÍNEZ: The mission was twofold - to express love and appreciation for the aromatic beverage and to better understand the work of coffee bean farmers. Sandra Walimaki is a coffee connoisseur and educator who's been in the industry nearly 20 years. She's also brand partner for the NPR Coffee Club.

SANDRA WALIMAKI: Coffee has so many, like, flavor compounds, countless ways to brew it and is such a, like, beautiful thing.

KING: It is a beautiful thing. But a good cup of coffee needs good ingredients. And Walimaki says it starts with water.

WALIMAKI: How your water tastes is definitely going to affect how your coffee will taste. So choosing good water is very important for brewing good coffee at home.

MARTÍNEZ: And fresh coffee beans. So if you haven't already, maybe invest in a good at-home grinder she also says you should pick a brewing method that fits your personal tastes and lifestyle. Want a heavier brew? Invest in a french press. For those that don't...

WALIMAKI: Then go maybe for a pour-over method that requires that paper filter mainly because those paper filters will trap some of the coffee oils, so it makes your cup of coffee slightly more, like, clear, more crisp, more brighter flavor.

KING: She also advises that you don't get stuck in a rut. Walimaki encourages people to venture out and try new flavors.

WALIMAKI: I think the more you taste coffee, the better you're going to get at tasting. I think that goes with anything. The more you taste something or consume or eat something, the better you're going to get at identifying what's good and what's bad.

MARTÍNEZ: If you need to step up your coffee game, we can help you with that. You can learn what you need by listening to NPR's Life Kit "It's Pretty Easy To Level Up Your Coffee Game" episode.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "YOU'RE THE CREAM IN MY COFFEE")

DEBBIE REYNOLDS: (Singing) You're the cream in my coffee. You're the salt in my stew. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

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