The French Press is the perfect low-maintenance brew method for lazy Saturday mornings. Done right, it produces a creamy-bodied coffee. Follow this guide to brew the perfect French Press.
27g (5 Tbsp) coffee • 400g (1.75 cups) water •
This recipe is for the 4-cup (17-oz) French Press coffee maker (also known as a "press pot"), which makes 2 small mugs of coffee. Double everything and follow the same process for the 8-cup (34-oz) version.
What you'll need
- 4-cup French Press
- 27g (5 Tbsp) coffee, coarsely ground
- 400g (1.75 cups) water, just off boil
- Chopstick or spoon for stirring
- Kitchen timer
French Press Coffee Ratio
Whatever size of French Press you use, a good rule of thumb is to follow a 1:15 ratio of coffee to water. So for every 1 gram of coffee, add 15 grams of water, which converts to about 3 tablespoon of coffee for every 1 cup of water. Experiment from there to find the ratio that works for your taste.
Step 1: Prepare
Preheat your press with hot water, including the plunger, then pour hot water into your cup. Meanwhile, measure 5 tablespoons or 27 grams of coffee and grind. It should have the consistency of kosher salt.
Step 2: Add coffee
Tip your coffee into the press and give it a gentle shake to level the grounds.
Step 3: Add water
Starting the timer, add water in a circular motion, wetting all the grounds, until the press is half full. Pause and enjoy the bloom.
Step 4: Stir
30 seconds in, give the grounds a gentle stir with a chopstick or spoon.
Step 5: Add more water
Evenly pour water to the top of the press and add the lid, gently resting the plunger on the grounds. (If you're using a kitchen scale, it should come to around 400g of water altogether.)
Step 6: Plunge
Wait until your timer reads 4:00, then slowly push the plunger all the way down.
Step 7: Pour
Immediately decant the coffee to prevent over-extraction.
Step 8: Enjoy
Enjoy with friends, by yourself, or with the dog.
Tips for French Press perfection
Following the steps above should produce a delicious cup of coffee. However, the French Press can leave a bitter taste in your mouth if not brewed appropriately. Here's a few tips to avoid bitterness:
- It all starts with good coffee. Buy quality whole bean coffee and grind it just before use.
- Bitterness is usually a result of over-extraction. Leaving the coffee in contact with the grounds after it’s done brewing will result in over-extraction, so we recommend you decant the coffee immediately.
- Uneven grinding can also contribute to bitterness: tiny pieces of ground coffee (called ‘fines’) extract faster than larger pieces. Consider using a burr grinder, if you aren’t already, or changing the burrs on your grinder if they're getting old.
- Boiling-hot water can scorch the coffee and cause bitterness. The ideal temperature is around 200°, which you can achieve by bringing the water to a boil and then letting it sit one minute.
- Old coffee stuck in the filter will impart unpleasant bitterness; we recommend thoroughly cleaning your French Press after each use.
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