As the name suggest. It is invented by the French and it has a press or piston kind of plunger which separates the grinds from the coffee. It is a simple and straight forward device which very few parts making it less complicated to handle.
It will generally have
1. A glass/plastic see through body
2. A plunger with a filter/sieve attached to one end of it
3. A lid which fits the body.
1. Boil water to pre-heat the French press. It is essential to heat the French press before using. When hot water is poured then we do not want the French press to absorb the heat of the water and leave nothing for the coffee extraction.
(A cold French press can eat up to 10 degrees of your water temperature leading to under extraction and a sour coffee)
2. Take out the plunger and the lid. Empty the pre heat water give it a quick wipe
3. Boil water again. Once it starts bubbling switch off. Do this now because we do not intend to use boiling water i.e. at 100 degrees. A 90-95 degrees would do for which we do not essentially need a thermometer. A 2-3 minute approx. wait after boil switch off should do.
4. For every 100ml of water you could use 7grams of coffee grinds. A table spoon would have somewhere around 5-6 grams so 1.25-1.5 tablespoons for a 100 ml of water. Check the capacity of your French press and use so much water so that you leave enough space at the top of the French press
5. Add the ground coffee to the French press (take off the plunger).
6. Add the water gently to the grounds. Stir gently 2-3 times and let the bloom form. A brown rich aromatic foam would cover the slurry of coffee and water
a. Make sure you wet all of the grounds equally
b. Don’t acrobatically pour water from heights which would disturb the bloom
c. BLOOM – the foaming of the coffee when it comes in contact with water
7. Assemble the plunger and lid. Do not push the plunger down yet. Wait for around 4 minutes or so.
(More than that might over extract the coffee and lend to a bitter taste or worse a rubbery plastic-y taste)
8. Firmly, slowly and straight-ly push the plunger down. The plunger will collect all the grounds and restrains them to the bottom.
9. Pour it into a nice mug and savour the coffee
(We do not want prolonged contact of the ground restrained at the bottom and the aromatic coffee we have made so transfer the coffee from the press to your Mug or to a flask)
About the author : 15+ years as avid coffee drinker, Nutan has had a chance to enjoy diverse coffee experiences -tasting coffee beans, visiting plantations, roasteries and coffee shops, trying out coffees makers, making practices & recipes. The blog is an attempt to distill & consolidate all the wonder in the coffee world , with special attention on Indian traditional versions