Pourover methods using a flannel filter (shortened to “nel”) have been used in Japan since the early 1900s. Nel drip has made a comeback in recent years, in line with the thriving third wave coffee movement. Coffee from a Nel drip tends to be substantially full-bodied, without the intensity of espresso. It is thick like a french press minus the graininess.

Step 1

If you have not used your nel filter before, place it in a boiling pot of water for 5 minutes. Place the filter back on the wire hook and run water through the filter, warming up the glass as well.

Step 2

Grind your beans to a medium grind, between an espresso and french press coarseness. Preferably the beans should be ground right before use, using a conical burr grinder (manual or electric).

Step 3

Weigh out 40 grams of the ground beans and place it into the filter. Make a whole in the center of the grind bed in preparation for the bloom.

Step 4

Bring the water to roughly 205ºF and pour the same amount of water as you had coffee grinds. If you weighed 40 grams of coffee then pour 40 grams of water and let the grinds stand for 45 seconds. This will allow the bloom to occur.

Step 5

Begin to pour the rest of the water, slowly and evenly. Try not to wash down the sides of the filter. If the water flow is slow pour more water directly into the center, if the water is moving too quickly make circles around the center without pouring directly into the center. I tend to use a 1/10 ratio so if you weighed 40 grams of coffee then you would pour 400 grams of water.

Step 6

Once you have reached the final volume of water let the slurry sit until the flow reduces in speed. Remove the filter, using the handle, before the last drops come out of the filter.


Turn the filter inside out over-top a garbage can (or compost). Using a soft bristle brush run the filter under water while scrubbing the coffee oils out (do not use soap). Once the filter has been cleaned place it into a cup and keep it in the fridge (this prevents mold). Rinse the glassware under warm water, without soap. Use the soft bristle brush if necessary.