Making Better French Press Coffee for Beginners

by GuestPoster on March 7, 2012

Learning how to make french press coffee is not difficult.  That’s one of the greatest things about using a french press is that it is so simple to learn – however, there are a number of things that you can do to drastically improve the french press coffee that you are already making.  These simple additions to your brewing habits won’t cost you any money and they really don’t take any more time than what you are already doing – they are ‘best practices’ that the specialty coffee community has been using for years.  They work and they work well, so here they are so you can start using them.

  • Make sure your coffee grind isn’t too fine.  It needs to be very course so that you don’t run the risk of getting coffee grounds in your coffee.  You want every piece of coffee to be stuck underneath the wire mesh after the plunge so it is important that the coffee is very course.  Most people do not grind their coffee course enough – so try a courser grind setting.
  • Stop boiling your water.  Boiling water will actually result in a much weaker extraction of the coffee grounds – the absolute best extraction comes from water that is 200 degrees Fahrenheit.  Anywhere between 195 to 205 will result in a good, tasty cup of coffee so aim for that.  You can either use a thermometer for the best accuracy or just boil the water and then let it sit and cool for a minute before using it to brew.
  • Try stirring the slurry.  This only takes a few seconds but can make a tremendous difference in the taste of your coffee.  After about a minute of brewing lift the lid of the french press and stir up the slurry, this will allow for a better extraction because a lot of the coffee grounds have floated back up to the top of the french press.  By stirring the slurry you are giving the water another opportunity to extract flavor from the coffee grounds.  It makes a huge difference.

These are very simple changes that you can make to your current brewing habits, but they will make an awesome difference on the flavor of your coffee.  For full instructions on french press brewing click here, otherwise just try out these few tips and witness how much better your coffee tastes.  Once you have mastered these tips you will be brewing french press coffee just like the pros, feel free to experiment with the process as you may find other tips and tricks that further the extraction that you get from your french press coffee at home.

Happy brewing.

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