Many home drip coffee brewers, regardless of their cost or bells and whistles, brew a disappointing cup of coffee because they are unable to maintain proper water temperature throughout the brewing cycle. They simply don’t get hot – and stay hot – enough for a proper extraction of enjoyable coffee flavors!
One of the easiest ways to brew a delicious cup of coffee at home is to use a press pot, aka, French Press. A pressed cup of coffee has a heavier body and mouth feel than drip coffee, allowing you to taste and feel in your mouth coffee characteristics that aren’t as apparent as when using a drip coffee brewer. We press new coffees all the time at thump to familiarize ourselves with them and to determine if their flavor profiles suit us. Kent and I don’t even own a drip brewer at home – we use a press pot almost exclusively.
Timer – set to 4 minutes
Quantity of Coffee Needed:
12 oz. Press Pot: 3 tablespoons of coffee
32 oz. Press Pot: 8 tablespoons of coffee
(Or, 1 tablespoon of coffee for every 4oz. of liquid your press pot holds. We use slightly more coffee at thump, but the 1:4 ratio of coffee-to-water, is a good starting point to help you determine your personal preference.)
How To Use a Press Pot:
• As water is heating, coarsely grind the suggested amount of coffee and place it into a clean, dry, press pot.
• About 20 seconds after the water has boiled, start your timer (set to 4 minutes). Evenly and quickly pour the water into the press pot, wetting all of the grounds. Once the water hits the grounds, they will look frothy (also called “blooming”) as they release CO2. Anticipate that the blooming action will take up as much as 1/2 of the space in the press pot, so don’t pour in too much water! (If you don’t see blooming, your beans are stale!)
• Stir the bloom and grounds about 1 minute into the brewing cycle.
• Add more hot water to right below the pour spout and gently place the lid on top of the press pot to help retain heat.
• At 4 minutes, gently plunge the press and enjoy!
Using the right amount of beans for the size of the press pot, the proper grind, stirring the coffee mid-brew, and using a timer, are all key aspects to brewing a great cup of coffee with a press pot.
• Pre-heat your coffee cup (hopefully ceramic or porcelain) with hot water, to prevent the coffee from rapidly cooling when being poured into the cup. Maintaining the coffee’s temperature helps preserve its flavor.
• The coffee will extract harsh, bitter flavors if left in the press pot after 4 minutes. To avoid this, decant all of your coffee immediately into a preheated carafe or directly into preheated cups.
• Hand wash your press pot with a fragrance free dish soap, as no one likes to drink a cup of coffee that hints of lemony fresh or grease cutting blue!
• If you’re interested in learning more about the impact that coffee bean freshness and proper grind have on the quality of your sipping experience, please read previous Thumpology articles at the Thumpology Catagory.