Melitta Bentz - The Woman That Invented Modern Filter Coffee
It was in 1908 that German homemaker Melitta Bentz would make her very first and very simple coffee filtration system, and the Melitta Company would come to life. The common brewing method of her time was to wrap loose coffee grounds in a cloth and boil them in water – however, this produced an over-brewed and therefore bitter cup of coffee, it also left a great amount of residual grounds in the bottom of the cup making it unpleasant to drink.
Tired of this bad brewing method, Bentz decided to try something new, so she punched holes into the bottom of a brass cup and fitted a piece of blotting paper from her son’s school notebook inside. She took her fresh ground coffee and placed it in the paper, filling the cup and covering the grounds with hot water, and letting it drip through the holes into another cup below. It’s during this moment of curiosity that Bentz would find she had made a sweet and clean cup of coffee.
She patented her filter system and began producing copies of her original design to sell to the those also tired of bad coffee. Although commercial production was brought to a halt in both the first and second world wars Bentz is noted to have worked continually on her filtration method, making the necessary improvements to her design so that the cone filter brewing method is still one of the most popular methods. It was because of Bentz that the Melitta Company was born and still to this day it’s her grandchildren, Thomas and Stephen that control the company.
Bentz’ passion for great coffee is something that Melitta is still incredibly proud of, producing new products and greater versions of her original filter cone system to honour her lifelong work.
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How To: Filter Coffee, Melitta Aromafilter
- Place the filter cone over your mug, or serving jug
- Fold the paper filter along the edges and place inside the cone
- Douse the filter paper with hot water - this will get rid of any 'paper' flavour and preheat the filter cone
- Add 30 grams of coffee grounds to the centre of the filter paper
- Gently and evenly cover your coffee grounds with approx 60 grams of hot water and leave to 'bloom' for 30 seconds
- Repeat the pouring process 4 times until you have a total of 350 grams of water
- Enjoy your fresh brew!
Remember you can reuse your coffee grounds by putting them in the soil in your garden! For more information read the Gardening Know How blog about it here.