Start with the bean and pick your roast. Quality coffee can only come from a quality coffee bean that is properly roasted. The process of roasting a coffee bean is complex and can result in a given bean tasting very differently depending on how it is roasted. If you desire a strong intense flavour to your coffee, choose a dark roast (ex: French Roast). If you like a light flavour, less intense, choose a lighter roast.
Never use pre-ground coffee. Pre-ground coffee will lose its flavour and essence within a short period of time. Grinding before you brew will assure you that no flavour is lost due to time.
Always use cold filtered water when brewing your coffee. The water you use represents 98% of your cup of coffee. Filtering the water will remove impurities that could affect the taste. Poor quality water can come from a variety of sources. For example, the older house will have older pipes. These pipes tend to give the water an off-flavour. You will want to remove this by filtering. The basic rule is the better the water, the better the coffee.
Skip the paper filters and go for the gold. Yes, these are 23k Gold plated stainless steel filters. Paper filters will influence the flavour of the coffee in a negative manner. The Gold plated filters influence the flavour by allowing natural oils to infiltrate into your brew, adding a level of flavour and aroma you won’t find with paper coffee filters. Another plus is that these filters can be reused over and over, and will last a very long time. Not only will your coffee be better, but you will be helping the environment by saving on waste.
Never overdo it on the add-ins. Cut down on the sugar, cream, and other flavour add-ins to really enjoy the true essence of the brew. If we disguise the coffee too much; we will never know the true taste.
Part of what makes a great cup of coffee is how and when we enjoy it. We all have our favourite times and rituals. For me, nothing beats enjoying a great cup of coffee on a Sunday morning and reading the paper.