Learn how to make French press coffee perfectly in 5 easy steps from the pros! A French press coffee maker is one of the most popular ways around the world to make coffee. It’s fast, easy and tastes great.
Why does French Press coffee taste better?
The better taste of French press coffee is related to it’s brewing method: immersion brewing. A French press or cafetiere uses a stainless steel coffee filter screen and typically a glass carafe and metal or plastic housing. The advantage of immersion brewing is that it gives you a richer cup.
When coffee beans are roasted, they release coffee oils. These oils hold a lot of the body and richness. A French Press immerses these oils in your coffee. That gives bold and well rounded flavor.
As the coffee grinds are fully immersed in a French press, it allows a fuller flavour extraction from the coffee beans. How much coffee for French press all depends on how strong you prefer your coffee.
What is the ideal water temperature for making a French press coffee?
The water temperature for brewing coffee in a French press is very important. The perfect brewing temperature for coffee is 190-195F, or around 95C. Never use boiling water to brew coffee as it can burn the coffee beans. You will notice a scorched and off-flavor, masking the natural flavours of the coffee beans. If you don’t have a thermometer, get water to a boil, and allow it to stand for 1 minute before adding to your coffee press for brewing.
What kind of coffee grind should I use for French press coffee?
Always use coarse pre ground coffee to prevent grains from slipping by or plugging the mesh filter. Fine ground coffee can plug up the screen and pose a safety hazard when pressing down the plunger.
How to make French Press Coffee
Follow our 5 easy steps to make French press coffee, perfectly:
Step 1: Add coffee & Heat the water
Add coarse ground coffee beans to the French press. Separately, heat the water you will need to brew your coffee. How much coffee you should use depends on your personal preference. Typically, one tablespoon/5 grams of coffee grinds for 8 ounces of water is the go-to.
Add water to a kettle and heat to around 195F / 95C. Boiling water at 212F / 100 C can scorch the coffee beans. So its best to use water about a minute off a boil to get the true flavor from the coffee beans. Use freshly drawn water and not previously boiled water. Also using pure filtered water is always best. That is because hard water or mineral water can alter the flavor of coffee beans. Coffee brewed with boiling or hard water will be scorched and will lack the true flavors your coffee beans have to offer.
Step 2. Add your hot water & stir the grinds
This is the next step in learning how to use a French Press pot. Next, pour hot water, soaking beans in every corner of the French Press. Using coarse ground coffee ensures that the coffee grinds will not come through the French press stainless steel filter mesh. Also, evenly ground coffee beans mean even flavor extraction and consistent flavors from pot to pot.
Give a gentle stir using a wooden or plastic spoon. As you do this break the crust of the coffee beans in the hot water. Always use a wooden spoon as even a gentle tap in the right spot can lead to cracking and breaking of glass french press beakers.
Step 3: Cover & Wait
Then place the lid on the beaker. Leave the plunger in the “up” position, just enough to push the top of the floating coffee grounds into the water. Many French presses have a lid with a pour position, and a brew or stop position. You can turn the lid to close the pour spout and brew without losing heat. Then wait for 3 to 4 minutes for the coffee to brew to your taste preference.
At 3 minutes your coffee will gain a good body, but not be at full strength. At around 4 minutes the coffee starts to become pretty strong. You will need to try it and dial it down to your personal tastes. Also, each type of coffee bean brews in its own ideal time.
Step 4. Press the plunger down, slowly, & rest the coffee
Slowly and gently press the plunger down with some light pressure. Pressing too fast can cause hot water to spurt out of the spout or around the lid potentially causing injury, and it can also lead to fine grinds blowing by past the stainless steel filter resulting in gritty coffee. Push the plunger by using the weight of your hand at first, and take your time to slowly push the plunger down all the way.
Allow the beans to rest for another 30 seconds to release their flavour. This also helps settle any fine grit that may have come from uneven grinding and found its way past the french press filter screen.
Step 5. Pour and enjoy!
Pour your French press coffee into a mug, and enjoy your freshly brewed cup of coffee!
Now that you know how to make french press coffee, you can experiment with the amount of coffee and brewing time. Remember to maintain a coarse grind size to get a perfect brew.
Use your French press for loose-leaf tea!
A French press is very versatile! You can also use it to make loose-leaf tea or to make cold brew coffee. The MADRID 4-in-1 Brewing System makes hot coffee, cold brew coffee, hot tea and iced tea.
Up next: How to Clean your French Press
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