Brewing coffee the French Press way is, by far, the simplest of the lot. In fact, at Koobies, we coffee lovers also think of it as the best for getting the most delicious flavors out of coffee beans specifically roasted and ground for the French Press method.
But the thing about the French Press brewing technique is that the sumptuous flavors of the brew are determined by many factors. And, no doubt, the most important one is the coffee bean.
So you’re going to come face to face with coffee beans that are not just a part of the French Press experience but that also enhance the special brewing style of this particular method. And there’s a lot more information to cover, so let’s get started right away!
Table Of Contents
- French Press Brewing - Coffee Bean and Grind
- French Press Brewing - Light or Dark Roast?
- French Press Brewing - Single-Origin or Blend?
- Best Coffee Beans For French Press: Top 8 Picks
- Real Good Coffee Co Whole Bean Coffee
- French Roasted Coffee LLC Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Coffee
- Kicking Horse Coffee Cliff Hanger Espresso Whole Bean
- Stone Street Coffee Fair Trade Organic Peru Whole Bean Coffee
- Koffee Kult Colombian Huila Fresh Coffee Beans
- Bulletproof French Kick Ground Coffee
- Two Volcanoes Coffee Gourmet Guatemala Whole Bean
- Peet’s Coffee Major Dickason’s Blend Whole Bean
- Best Way To Make French Press Coffee At Home
- 3 Most Common Mistakes to Avoid When Making French Press Coffee
- Final Words
French Press Brewing - Coffee Bean and Grind
So you think you can buy pre-ground coffee for your French Press? Well, you can but that won’t be right. Because French Press brewing demands freshly ground coffee. It’s the only way your cup of coffee is going to taste flavorful. Plus, it’s also the only way to savor the delicious nuances of French Press coffee.
This means grinding your coffee beans at home. In that case, the correct grind size for French Press is between medium and coarse. That’s because the brewing process uses the maximum water surface for complete flavor extraction.
So, when too fine, ground coffee runs the risk of passing through the filters. Also, at such times, hot water passes through fine grind very quickly. And that suggests under-extraction. Therefore, a coarse grind is perfect.
It’s perfect for allowing carbon dioxide to release during the steeping part. And that, in turn, enhances the delicious, rich flavors of your French Press brew.
The only reason why it’s highly advised to not use pre-ground coffee is that this version, more often than not, is too fine. And you and I have already established here why too fine grind size is not ideal for a French Press.
French Press Brewing - Light or Dark Roast?
More often than not, French Press lovers go for a medium or dark roast. But that doesn’t mean lighter roasts are a bad idea. It’s just that a light roast doesn’t prepare a strong brew.
However, if you prefer lighter-bodied French Press coffee, then feel free to choose a light roast. Otherwise, medium to dark roasted coffee works best. Just make sure you stay away from Espresso dark unless you plan on adding milk.
French Press Brewing - Single-Origin or Blend?
Needless to say, single-origin is a more common choice. Particularly among coffee drinkers who love to experiment. And are willing to spend more because single-origin coffee is more expensive.
On the other hand, blended coffee is the standard option. Therefore, more affordable since it’s produced all year round.
As for which one is better suited for French Press, the answer depends on your personal taste and preferences. Do you want your French Press brew to be more flavorful? If yes, then go for single-origin. Otherwise, for a more rounded and consistent flavor, choose a blend.
Best Coffee Beans For French Press: Top 8 Picks
Real Good Coffee Co Whole Bean Coffee
You’re dealing with the best Breakfast Blend Light Roast Coffee Beans; the perfect way to start every morning. The smooth flavors packed with a mild, pleasant citrus taste and delicious notes of cream and chocolate are something to look forward to in the morning.
It’s premium quality light roast coffee that gives you the caffeine kick you demand for starting your day. What’s unique about this is that it’s sustainable coffee. Meaning the coffee beans are grown, sourced, and even packaged responsibly. It’s also the freshest among many other things.
These whole beans are the perfect roast for not only the French Press but also Chemex and Drip. Not too mild and not too bitter. But simply robust and full-bodied!
French Roasted Coffee LLC Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Coffee
If it’s Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Coffee, then it has to be this medium roast floral-bodied creation by French Roasted Coffee LLC. Before anything else, let me state that the cupping notes are full of a mild flavor with lemon and honey.
The beauty of Yirgacheffe coffee is that it’s very well-rounded and well-balanced. And much less acidic as well, which means you can devour as many cups as you like without upsetting your tummy.
In fact, even after sitting for a long time post-brewing, the coffee doesn’t get acidic. On the contrary, it tastes better!
Kicking Horse Coffee Cliff Hanger Espresso Whole Bean
What about Cliff Hanger Espresso appeals to coffee lovers the most? Is it the tempting aroma that’s packed with blackcurrant, brown sugar, and milk chocolate? Or is it the deliciously silky and complex tasting notes with wild berry syrup tones and a smooth cocoa finish?
Everything about this organic medium roast whole bean coffee seems like a great deal. And you can brew it the French Press way, along with drip, espresso, pour-over, and cold brew.
It’s Kicking Horse Coffee after all. Meaning these whole beans are incredibly dark and strong but with a lot of smoothness and no bitterness. Sounds very enticing, doesn’t it?
Stone Street Coffee Fair Trade Organic Peru Whole Bean Coffee
This is a medium roast for those who prefer a well-balanced cup of coffee first thing in the morning. The flavor is deep and smooth with low acidity and a welcoming aroma. The sweet and nutty finish is also a factor that matters here.
It’s 100-percent Organic Fair Trade Peruvian coffee that is roasted just right. If you don’t like darker roasts, then you’re certainly going to appreciate every bit of this one. And to make the experience even more enjoyable, there’s no acidic or bitter aftertaste either.
Koffee Kult Colombian Huila Fresh Coffee Beans
You know it’s medium roast just by looking at it. The brown color and no oil on the coffee beans are proof of that. And upon tasting, you get the balanced acidity and smooth flavor medium roasts are highly acclaimed for.
But you’re dealing with Colombian coffee, which implies an even better, more flavorful, and more aromatic experience. The smooth cinnamon notes with the long bright finish combine deliciously well with the balanced acidity and heavy body.
With a French Press, the brew has a very rich sweetness that’s hard to create with any other type of brewing method.
Bulletproof French Kick Ground Coffee
The French Kick Dark Roast is sweet and smooth with delightful chocolate notes. And if your coffee ritual consists of a different type of roast, such as light, medium, or medium-dark, then these options are available too. It’s Bulletproof Coffee after all.
The Bulletproof process is a sustainable one. And one that also uses certified, clean coffee. No doubt, this is smoother and creamier when prepared with French Press. It’s also a great choice for preparing regular drip coffee.
Two Volcanoes Coffee Gourmet Guatemala Whole Bean
When you know the coffee beans are single-origin, it’s only natural to raise expectations in terms of flavor. Single-origin whole beans like these offer a uniquely delicious coffee flavor. And even more so when the beans are from Guatemala.
In my opinion, it’s the best way to begin your day. The slow roasting ensures smoothness in the brew, particularly with the French Press method. Speaking of French Press, this coffee’s taste and flavor are in harmony with the style of French Press brewing. And that’s the best part.
Peet’s Coffee Major Dickason’s Blend Whole Bean
An immensely satisfying and deeply roasted dark roast blend, this whole bean coffee has many layers. It’s complex, rich, smooth, and full-bodied. But it’s the deeply roasted and flavorful blend that makes the most impact once you start sipping.
It’s the perfect super-strong companion for your French Press. The whole beans here come from a brand that prioritizes freshness and quality. And they offer other roast options too, in case you like the mildness and smoothness of a light roast instead.
Best Way To Make French Press Coffee At Home
Until you learn how to prepare coffee using your French Press the right way, you’ll have to go to a cafe to enjoy a delicious brew. But if you want to know how to ace it, then please keep reading.
It’s a given that every brewing method requires attention to detail for the best results. And French Press even more so since it’s such a simple brewing technique.
So let’s find out all the factors to keep in mind before and during the brewing process
1. Coffee Bean/Grind Selection
I’ve already covered this topic, so I’ll keep it short here. By coffee bean selection, I do not mean pre-ground coffee. You should choose whole bean coffee and then grind it right before brewing.
Make sure the grind size is coarse. Because if it is fine, then water passes through very quickly. But with coarse ground coffee, the hot water filters slowly. Therefore, allowing all the delicious, rich, and aromatic coffee oils to get extracted properly.
2. Quality of Water
Are you using filtered water? If not, then you should if you want your French Press brew to taste better. It’s only common sense to assume that tap water and filtered or bottled water taste different, even though slightly. So the impact each has on your coffee is also different.
But what is better? Filtered or bottled water of course.
3. Coffee to Water Ratio
No matter the brewing style, the rule of thumb is 1 to 2 tablespoons of coffee with 6 ounces of water. Or 1 gram of coffee for 10 grams of water. This is perfect for a single serving of coffee. And it goes without saying that you can tweak these amounts based on your personal taste and preferences.
4. Clean French Press
More often than not, this is not taken into consideration before brewing. You simply cannot expect your brew to taste good if it contains coffee residue from the previous batch. That said, get rid of the leftover grounds that are often stuck inside the mesh filter of your French Press.
5. Water Temperature
For French Press extraction, a temperature between 195 degrees and 205 degrees Fahrenheit is perfect. This is both hot enough to extract the coffee oils and flavors and below boiling point to avoid burning them.
But how can you check? Use a thermal thermometer. Or boil the water and then let it sit for about half a minute before pouring it into your French Press.
6. Proper, Step-by-Step Instructions
So what is the correct procedure for French Press?
Here are the simple, easy instructions
3 Most Common Mistakes to Avoid When Making French Press Coffee
Coffee disasters should be avoided at all costs, right? And you can go about this simply by avoiding mistakes others have made so commonly. Using a French Press might seem tricky at first, but you can get it right eventually.
#1 Adding too much or too little coffee
With a lot of coffee grounds, the brew becomes stronger than it should be. And then you end up feeling jittery for too long. And with too little coffee, it’s only a watery drink instead of flavorful, robust coffee.
So what is the correct amount? For every 10 grams of water, use 1 gram of coffee. Or 1 to 2 tablespoons of coffee for every 6 ounces of water. This is perfect for a pleasantly strong brew. You can obviously adjust the amounts based on how light or strong your coffee preferences are.
#2 Using the wrong grind size
With the French Press, what works best is a grind size between medium and coarse. If it’s too fine, then the grinds are bound to slip through the filter.
#3 Stewing the brew
By far, this is the most common mistake. It’s only logical to assume that the more time your freshly prepared brew spends inside the coffee maker, the more it brews. And the more it brews, the more it gets extracted. Therefore, paving the way for over-extracted and overly bitter coffee.
So make it a point to transfer your coffee into a carafe or thermos right after brewing.
It’s a deceptively simple method of brewing, no doubt. I mean there’s a lot that goes into the French Press technique than just pour, steep, and press. The intricate details matter a lot here. Such as pre-ground coffee or whole bean coffee. Or the roast type, single-origin or blend, etc.
So, to sum it up, choose whole bean coffee from the list I’ve reviewed. And then grind those beans right before brewing. As for the roast type, the most preferred ones are medium, medium-dark, and dark. And finally, single-origin is better in terms of more flavor.
But then again, coffee is all about personal preferences. Nothing is set in stone here. So feel free to experiment and find your favorite choice for your French Press.