Perfecting the French Press: Step-by-Step Brew Method

Perfecting the French Press: Step-by-Step Brew Method

Nov 03, 2023
The French press, a wonderful way to brew multiple cups at once, whether it's meant for sharing or you're just having one of those days. In this guide, we'll take you through the art of making French press coffee, ensuring that your every sip is comforting. Whether you're new to the French press or a seasoned enthusiast, you'll discover the key steps to brewing a perfect cup of coffee.
1. Measure and grind: Use a coarsely ground coffee. For a standard 32-ounce (4-cup) French press, we recommend starting with 70 grams of coffee, and adjusting from there. If you prefer more concentrated coffee, increase the dosage. For a less concentrated cup, lower the dosage. 

2. Preheat the French Press: Pour some hot water into the empty French press to preheat the glass. This will help maintain the brewing temperature and ensure even extraction. After 10-20 seconds, pour out the preheating water.

3. Add Coffee Grounds: Add the coarsely ground coffee to the bottom of the French press. Easy step 🙂

4. Bloom: Start a timer and begin by pouring a small amount of hot water (about twice the weight of the coffee) evenly over the coffee grounds to saturate them. Allow the coffee to "bloom" for about 30 seconds. This blooming step allows carbon dioxide to escape and promotes a better tasting cup!

5. Pour in the Remaining Water: Pour the rest of the hot water!

6. Stir: Let the coffee come to a "crust" (gross) at the top of the liquid, anywhere from 10-20 seconds. Gently stir the coffee and water mixture with a long-handled spoon. Avoid using metal or sharp utensils to prevent damage to the glass!

7. Place the Lid and Plunger: Put the lid on the French press with the plunger pulled all the way up. Do not press down yet. This lid helps retain heat during the brewing process.

8. Brew: Allow the coffee to steep for 6 minutes total for your first time. You can experiment with shorter or longer steeping times depending on your preference for coffee strength! Grind setting and roast level will change the amount of time required for optimal flavor. If you grind finer, the coffee needs less steeping time, and vice versa. Darker roast coffee needs less steeping time, while lighter roast typically needs more. However, start with 6 total minutes, and modify from there. The time starts from step 4, as you make your very first pour.

9. Press: After the brewing time, press down the plunger slowly and evenly. Apply gentle pressure to separate the coffee grounds from the liquid. There are a mulititude of reasons to avoid pushing too hard. Not only might it force fine coffee particles through the filter and into your cup (ugh), but we don't want to agitate the grounds at this point and ramp up the extraction. Once you're at the end of optimal flavor extraction, any additional extraction (over-extraction) will increase bitter, astringent, and generally off putting flavors in the cup! Plunge slowly.
10. Serve: Pour the freshly brewed coffee into your cup or a carafe immediately to prevent over-extraction.
As you savor that first sip of your freshly pressed coffee, you're tasting the result of a method that balances simplicity and rich flavor. Remember, the French press is not just a brewing method; it's an art form that allows for experimentation. Adjust your grind size, steeping time, and coffee-to-water ratio to create the perfect cup that suits your taste. With a French press, you're not just brewing coffee; you're crafting an experience. So, embrace the process, perfect your brew, and enjoy every moment of your coffee journey. And yes, a good attitude is a required tool in your French press arsenal! 😁
Required/recommended equipment for french press: 
- French press: Any quality made French press with a plunger and a fine metal or mesh filter will do.
- Kettle - don't need a goose-neck for this brew style, any stovetop kettle will do.
- Scale that measures weight in grams
- Kitchen Timer, stopwatch, or the timer on your phone - you need to time this brew method.
- A good attitude 🙂 

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