Did you know that a majority of people do not use the French Press correctly?
This is a very surprising fact, especially since it is among the most popular coffee brewing methods in the world. Making a delicious cup of espresso using a French Press is actually pretty easy, and this article will show you how to do it just like the best baristas around!
What Is A French Press?
A French Press is a simple coffee maker that you can find in any coffee shop. It is made from a few components:
- The beaker where you insert hot water and ground coffee
- The base of the French Press
- The handle so that you can lift it without burning your hand
- The lid which also comes with a plunger and filter
Since the setup is not complicated, you can comfortably assemble and disassemble the parts for convenient cleaning. The French Press is considered a type of immersion brewing since the ground coffee is immediately submerged in hot water, not poured with a paper filter.
Types Of French Press
There are a few variations to the French Press, each with different characteristics and advantages:
- Small Glass French Press: it is the most common type for home use. A small glass French Press can produce about 3 – 4 cups per press (12 – 16 oz), making it perfect for brewing espresso for yourself and a couple of family members.
- Large Glass French Press: if you are looking to brew a lot of coffee for a lot of people, such as if you have a large family or you’re looking to open a coffee shop, then this is the one for you. Large glass French Presses can brew 8 – 12 cups of coffee per press (32 – 36 oz).
- Electric French Press: are you too lazy to do the various steps in brewing coffee? Then this one is right for you! An electric French Press can automatically heat your water, make your coffee, and even keep it warm after brewing!
- Metal French Press: this particular French Press is made fully using metal instead of a glass beaker. It is perfect for those living somewhere cold since metal retains heat better than glass.
How To Use A French Press?
- Preheat: similar to other brewing methods, you must preheat your French Press by pouring in hot water, swirling it, and then discarding the water when the beaker is warm. This is done to avoid temperature fluctuations when brewing.
- Weigh your coffee and make sure it matches the amount of coffee you want and the size of your press. Then use a strong grinder to grind your coffee beans. We also recommend using quality arabica beans for the best flavours.
- Measure your water (according to the ratios we have given below) and then heat it to around 90 – 96 ℃.
- Pour the hot water and ground coffee into your French Press. Use a spoon to lightly stir and make sure all the ground coffee is fully submerged.
- Place the lid in place and let your coffee steep for 4 minutes. Use a timer to ensure accurate steeping time.
- Once the timer goes off, gently push down the plunger. You should press it all the way down, or the coffee will continue extracting and create over – extracted, bitter coffee.
- You can also decant your coffee if you want to prevent bitter coffee.
- All there is left now is to serve your coffee!
What Is A Good Coffee To Water Ratio For A French Press?
The standard coffee to water ratio for French Pressing is 1:15 (1 gram of coffee to 15 grams of water).
Of course, you can further adjust this ratio according to your tastes. You can increase the amount of water for a lighter coffee, and decrease it if you like your coffee to be stronger.
What Is The Proper Grind Size For A French Press
For French Pressing coffee, a good grind size would be around medium – coarse.
But again, this can be adjusted according to your preferences. A finer grind will result in a stronger coffee, while a coarser grind will produce weaker coffee. However, going too far in one direction will result in either an over – extracted or under – extracted coffee.