Guide For Making The Perfect French Press Coffee

Making coffee with a French press coffee might require a bit more effort than a basic drip or a Keurig machine, but it’s actually easier than you think. Believe us when we say, you can put a pod in a contraption, press a button and boom! You’ve got yourself a riveting cup of French press coffee.

Not to mention, it’s really worth getting up early in the morning just to make it. French press tends to be richer, smoother and more flavorful when coffee grounds are immersed directly in hot water during brewing than most other methods. Chad Moore, who is a member of the Starbucks Global Coffee Engagement team, says that there are no paper filters involved with the French press method when then allows the oil and flavour in the coffee beans to come through. To help our fellow coffeedorks learn how to prepare an exquisite cup of French press coffee, here’s what you must do:

Recipe Instructions

This is a recipe specifically for the 4-cup (17 oz) French Press coffee maker (which is also known as a “press pot”), that can give you 2 small mugs of coffee. For the 8-cup (34 oz) version, you can just double everything and follow the same process.

What You Need

  • 27g (5 tbsp) coffee, coarsely ground
  • 4-cup French press
  • Spoon or chopstick for stirring
  • 400g (1.75 cups) water, just of boil
  • Kitchen timer

Equipment Required

  • Baratza Virtuoso Grinder
  • Bodium 170z French press
  • Jennings CJ4000 Scale
  • Hario V60 Gooseneck Kettle
  • OXO Digital Timer

French Press Coffee Ratio

A good role of thumb is to follow a 1:15 ratio of coffee to water, whatever the size of your French press may be. Hence, for every 1 gram of coffee, add 15 grams of water, which would then convert to about 3 tablespoons of coffee for every single cup of water. You can experiment to find the best ratio that works for you.

Step 1: Prepare

Preheat your French press machine with hot water, including the plunger, and then pour hot water into your cup. In the meantime, measure 27 grams or 5 tablespoons of grind and coffee, respectively. It should be able to give you the consistency of kosher salt.

Step 2: Add Coffee

Tip the coffee into the French press machine and give it a gentle shake to level the grounds.

Step 3: Add Water

Start the timer, add water in a circular motion, ensuring all grounds are wet, until the press machine is full. Pause and enjoy the bloom that comes with it.

Step 4: Stir

After about 30 seconds, use a spoon or chopstick to gently stir the grounds.

Step 5: Add More Water

Pour water evenly to the top of the press machine and add the lid as you gently rest the plunger on the grounds. (If, for instance, you’re using a kitchen scale, it should come at about 400g of water all at once)

Step 6: Plunge

Wait until the timer reads 4:00, and then push the plunger slowly all the way down.

Step 7: Pour

Decant the coffee immediately to prevent it from over-extraction.

Step 8: Enjoy

The last thing to do is obviously enjoy the tantalizing nectar of your precious cup of joe.

Extra Precaution

The above steps may leave you with a delicious cup, but it also leaves behind a bitter taste as well. Here’s what you should do in order to avoid that:

  • Buy without whole bean coffee and grind it right before use.
  • When the coffee is left in contact with the grounds after brewing is done, it will result in over-extraction. To prevent this, decant the coffee right away.
  • Consider using a burr grinder because uneven grinding can also lead to bitterness. You can also change the burrs on your grinder if they’re getting old.
  • Boiling hot water can cause the coffee to be scorched and also bitterness. Consider bringing the temperature of the water down to a boil at around 200°, and then let it sit for a minute.

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