French Press Technique

French Press, Vac Pot, Drip or any other - air your views and results

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Postby CakeBoy » Fri Nov 14, 2008 5:40 pm

Nice vid James, thanks for sharing. Anthing that cuts down the sludge and associated flavours is always welcome here. It's one of the reasons that we rarely drink FP. We'll give it a go :)
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Postby Neo » Fri Nov 14, 2008 6:26 pm

Very nice vid, thanks for that :D
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Postby jon » Fri Nov 14, 2008 6:35 pm

Nice vid, thanks - weighing the water is a good idea...


Does that make a very strong brew? I use about 12g in 300ml...
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Postby lukas » Fri Nov 14, 2008 7:58 pm

12g for 300ml sounds very low to me, I'd expect quite some unpleasant (to me) tastes from that. Today I had two cups of (filtered) Kenyan coffee: one 16.0g/250ml, one 17.5g/250ml. The latter one did taste much better. Sometimes, it's just not easy to find the right extraction balance (and grind fineness!). 60g/litre is indeed a good rule of thumb, though.
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Postby kingseven » Fri Nov 14, 2008 8:15 pm

Yeah 40g/l is a little low for me too. 50g per litre should be enough to get a balanced but not overly strong cup if you don't like it too heavy. 55g per litre is the ideal if you are chasing SCAE Gold Cup brewing.
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Postby espressomattic » Fri Nov 14, 2008 10:09 pm

Just tried it out. Removed the sludge and then stuck it through the aerobie. I had about .5mm of ultra fine grounds in the bottom of the aerobie. I made the brew stronger than normal and the resulting cup didn't have a certain bitterness. The flavours were much more pronounced (Sidamo). Looking at the bottom of the cup there are still some finer grounds, but only a spattering.. May try using two papers in the aerobie.

Thanks James.
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Postby Steve » Sat Nov 15, 2008 12:07 am

kingseven wrote:Yeah 40g/l is a little low for me too. 50g per litre should be enough to get a balanced but not overly strong cup if you don't like it too heavy. 55g per litre is the ideal if you are chasing SCAE Gold Cup brewing.


Do you find removing the grinds has an effect on the amount you need on this as you stop (quite rightly I think) the grind extracting?
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Postby jon » Sat Nov 15, 2008 1:40 am

Ah, will try with a higher dose in the morning.

Odd - what I brew at home tastes as strong as/slightly stronger than filter or FP from the couple of coffee shops I've used that do them tends to...
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Postby CakeBoy » Sat Nov 15, 2008 2:43 am

espressomattic wrote:May try using two papers in the aerobie.



We've done that inadvertantly a couple of timesin the past. It seems to work well in crema formation and body :)
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Postby kingseven » Sat Nov 15, 2008 6:45 pm

Interesting! Just done a couple of side by side tests and not breaking the cup dramatically dropped the strength. In terms of extraction percentages there seems to be a 4% difference.

This would imply that changing the technique would need a compromise in grind, or steep time or perhaps dose - though that's probably not the way to go....

Will do some more testing!
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Postby jon » Sat Nov 15, 2008 6:48 pm

Right, this trick along with upping the dose seems to give a richer taste, and less grit :) Strong, though...and fruitier tastes actually seem to come through a bit more with a lower dose...

What about adding water, stirring, then spooning the grounds you can off the top after 4 minutes? Seems to give a bit more foam on top, though a bit more grit too...
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Postby geedee » Sat Nov 15, 2008 7:14 pm

I started stirring after reading an article by Lukas, and liked the result. This morning I stirred and skimmed and noticed the difference. I use a French Press for the flask I take shooting and there was noticeably less bitterness come lunchtime ... thanks Jim!!
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Postby kingseven » Sat Nov 15, 2008 7:29 pm

Glad this has been helpful!

After another round of experiments it seems to be holding true. Stirring before skimming does significantly increase the strength/extraction of the final drink. Might have to blog a bit about this one.
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Postby Stuggi » Sat Nov 15, 2008 8:51 pm

I tried this a couple of minutes ago, and the most obvious pro with this method is the decreased clean-up one has to do. Now I can just wash the pitcher instead of having to scoop out the used grinds and stuff.
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Postby Aadje » Sat Nov 15, 2008 9:11 pm

I must admit I never used a french press, but I the vid is very clear :)
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