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A step-by-step guide to brewing coffee using the French press method

A French press can appear intimidating but it's a boss at brewing coffee and making mornings much better!

The French press, a.k.a the press pot or plunger pot, is a classic coffee brewing method that has stood the test of time. Though it's widely associated with France, the origin of this coffee masterpiece is a little murky. Some say it was birthed accidentally by a Frenchman while others claim that it is an Italian invention. Regardless, the French press has become a coffee lover's favourite, thanks to its simplicity, portability, and ability to brew a rich and flavourful cup in minutes.

Components of French press coffee

A French press consists of a cylindrical glass container, which serves as the main brewing vessel, and a round metal screen filter, which acts as the plunger that is tightly fitted to the cylinder. This design allows the coffee grounds to be fully immersed in hot water. The metal screen filter separates the brewed coffee from the grounds, and the lack of a paper filter means all the delicious oils stay in the cup, making for a bolder, more aromatic brew that'll make your taste buds do the tango.

Perfecting a French press coffee is a matter of getting the details just right. To achieve a cup that's both flavourful and aromatic, it's important to understand the crucial interplay between the temperature of the water, the number of coffee grounds used, and the duration of the brewing process. Once you've got these elements down, you'll be able to produce French press coffee that will impress even the most discerning coffee connoisseurs.

French Press Brewing Kit Essentials:

  • Coffee grinder

  • French press

  • A long spoon

  • Thermometer (optional)

Once the gears are all set, it’s time to start the brewing process. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you achieve true coffee nirvana:

Step 1: Measure the Beans:

Follow this table to correctly measure the ratio between your coffee and water.

ServingsCoffee BeansWater1 2 tbsp1 cup2¼ cup 2 cups4½ cup4 cups81 cup8 cups

Step 2: Grind it Up

Give those beans a whirl in a burr grinder, and set it to the coarsest setting. If you don't have a burr grinder, chop them up in short, sharp pulses with a blade grinder, giving it a shake every couple of seconds, the end result should look like rough, coarse breadcrumbs.

Step 3: Warm up the Press

  • Fill the French press with boiling water and give it a good rinse.

  • Discard the hot water and get ready to brew!

Step 2: Add the Coffee and Hot Water

  • Put your coffee grinds into the press.

  • Boil the desired amount of water, then let it cool for a minute.

  • Pour the hot water into the press and give it a stir using a long spoon.

Step 3: Steep, sip and savour!

  • Allow the coffee to steep for 4 minutes, then use the plunger to push it to the bottom of the press.

  • Enjoy your perfectly brewed French Press coffee, free of any bitter aftertaste!

Pro Tip: The key to a perfect cup is to not let it steep for too long, or you'll be sipping on some bitter disappointment!

For the French press to really shine, you want to pick a roast with bold flavours that complement the full body this magical machine provides. Darker roasts are known to have a thicker and creamier texture, making them perfect for the French Press method of brewing. The coffee's natural oils are better preserved, giving the coffee its unique, rich flavour.

In conclusion, with the right equipment, coffee beans, and technique, anyone regardless of being a coffee noob can create a flavourful cup of joe in minutes that offers a satisfying and delightful coffee experience.


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