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French Press 101

Dinder1

Moderator Emeritus
Below is my method for making coffee in a French Press.

The tools:
French Press
Fresh coffee
Grinder
Timer
Long spoon for stirring. I prefer to use a bamboo stir stick.
Tea kettle.

Total brewing time will be four minutes.


Here is a simple way of measuring the coffee needed for your press.
Use two level tablespoons of ground coffee per 5-6 oz. of water used. If you are measuring whole beans (before grinding) use two heaping tablespoons per 5-6oz. of water.

Now it's time for the grind. I grind my coffee a couple of notches up (more coarse) from the cone filter setting.



Now I pre-wet the coffee by pouring water over the grounds until just covered, and start my timer. The water should be between 195-200f or about thirty seconds off boil.
At this time I also fill my coffee cup(s) 1/2 way with hot water so that it will nice and warm when I pour the coffee into it later.



At this point (if you have used freshly roasted coffee) the coffee will have expanded greatly.
Stir it well.



Now I fill the carafe about half full and stir.



Now I have filled the carafe to the top of the upper metal band and given it a final stir. Now I let it steep.



Now I use the last thirty seconds to SLOWLY plunge the coffee.



Now pour and enjoy!

 
Thank you! Thank you! I have received wonderful advice here, but this is a very concise, dare I say "idiot-proof" tutorial. This will be very helpful. Once I attempt to follow your instructions, then we'll know if they are indeed "idiot-proof". Again, thank you form your time and knowledge.

Rick

As an aside, what type of grinder do you use?
 
I gotta stupid question (total newbie)

At this time I also fill my coffee cup(s) 1/2 way with hot water so that it will nice and warm when I pour the coffee into it later.

Do you leave the hot water in the cup(s) when you pour the coffee to dilute it or do you pour out the water when you're ready to serve the coffee?
 
Do you leave the hot water in the cup(s) when you pour the coffee to dilute it or do you pour out the water when you're ready to serve the coffee?

You would discard the water in the cup(s) as it is only there to warm the cup(s). Then pour yourself some liquid love :001_rolle
 
Good job, but I have to take issue with one detail, which is how you measure the beans. My French Press is a Le Cafeteria model, which is not built the same. If I were to use the "bottom of the handle" method I would have way more beans in there than is needed.
 
Good job, but I have to take issue with one detail, which is how you measure the beans. My French Press is a Le Cafeteria model, which is not built the same. If I were to use the "bottom of the handle" method I would have way more beans in there than is needed.
DJ: I put three measures (blue SCAA scoop) of roasted coffee beans into my grinder (this is for an 8-cup/32oz Bodum French-press), and (ultimately) fill the press with just-off-boiling water up to the bottom of the handle-band at the top of the carafe.

Do you think I should be using four measures, instead of three?
 

Dinder1

Moderator Emeritus
I have tried to simplify the method for measuring the amount of coffee needed for making French Press as described above.
I hope that this will answer some of your questions.
Enjoy!
DJ.
 

Dinder1

Moderator Emeritus
Good job, but I have to take issue with one detail, which is how you measure the beans. My French Press is a Le Cafeteria model, which is not built the same. If I were to use the "bottom of the handle" method I would have way more beans in there than is needed.
Good point, JP. I have changed the dosing method described above, in hopes of making it more universal.
 
Am I correct in thinking that you've increased the amount of roasted coffee beans in your grinder, to compensate for the coarse(r) grind that you've selected?
 
French press is THE way to make coffee. I actually grind my beans a little finer than most people I think. I like my coffee sludgey and dark!
 
DJ: I put three measures (blue SCAA scoop) of roasted coffee beans into my grinder (this is for an 8-cup/32oz Bodum French-press), and (ultimately) fill the press with just-off-boiling water up to the bottom of the handle-band at the top of the carafe.

Do you think I should be using four measures, instead of three?
Wow. That's pretty weak coffee . . . you should have about ten tbsp of ground (or about 12 tbsp whole-bean) coffee in 32oz water.
 

Dinder1

Moderator Emeritus
Am I correct in thinking that you've increased the amount of roasted coffee beans in your grinder, to compensate for the coarse(r) grind that you've selected?
I use a heaping measure when I am measuring whole beans, but once ground, it should pretty much equal that of a level scoop of ground coffee (think volume).
 
Am I correct in thinking that you've increased the amount of roasted coffee beans in your grinder, to compensate for the coarse(r) grind that you've selected?
Wow. That's pretty weak coffee . . . you should have about ten tbsp of ground (or about 12 tbsp whole-bean) coffee in 32oz water.
I'd wondered if that might be the case; I'm surprised, but also willing to accept what you've written, in principle. :smile:

I use a heaping measure when I am measuring whole beans, but once ground, it should pretty much equal that of a level scoop of ground coffee (think volume).
Yup, that's it. I'm unwilling to unwittingly grind too much of my home-roasted coffee; better to use a standardized, whole-bean volume. "Heaping measure" is a good way of putting it; there's only so many coffee beans that can fit into-and-on an SCCA measure and be called "heaping", before they begin to fall off (and end-up getting stepped-on by us). :biggrin:

I'm going to increase the load from three to four level measures of whole beans, but stick with a finer grind (back-off from Espresso, until the sediment at the bottom of your mug lessens noticeably).

"Keep yer powder dry"
 
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