By Olivia Crowel

How to Brew French Press Coffee

Delve into the Secrets of the French Press!

Ah, behold the marvels of French press coffee! It is a sacred elixir that transcends simplicity or extravagance, for it holds the power to yield exquisite coffee regardless of your mischievous brewer's ways. (Oh, if only hollandaise sauce were as forgiving!)

Now, should you encounter a plunger predicament while following the instructions below, fear not, dear adventurer! If depression proves challenging, your coffee grounds are but too fine, longing for a coarser grind in future endeavors. And should the plunger defy your will, simply retract it by a mere quarter of an inch, as a master swordsman would retreat, and resume your valiant pressing.

Let us now bask in the realm of body and texture, where French press coffee reigns supreme! It is the caffeinated embrace that rivals the warmth of a crackling hearth. With a creamy body and a delectable flavor, it sets itself apart from the delicate, crisp notes bestowed upon coffee trickling through paper filters.

This divine mouthfeel, my dear comrades, owes its very existence to the mystical metal mesh filter screen that resides at the bottom of the plunger. While its metallic threads are finely woven, they serve not as an impenetrable fortress like their paper or bamboo counterparts. Nay, they grant passage to greater realms of flavor, allowing the oils and solid particles to permeate the final nectar. Thus, when you finish your cup, do not be startled by the enchanting residue of silt-like coffee grounds that grace the bottom of your mug. These "fines," born of the grinding process, possess the audacity to sneak through the mesh, adding an extra touch of whimsy to your indulgence.

Now, let us embark on a grandiose quest to brew the perfect cup of French press coffee:

Ingredients and Tools:

  • Coarsely ground coffee beans
  • Hot water (just below boiling point)
  • French press
  • Stirring utensil
  • Timer (optional)
  • Coffee grinder (if needed)
  • Coffee scale (optional)


  1. Grind the Coffee: Grind your coffee beans with the precision of an alchemist seeking the perfect potion. Aim for a coarseness that rivals the grains of sea salt. A burr grinder, my friend, is the key to unlocking a symphony of flavors.

  2. Preheat the French Press: Pour steaming hot water into the French press, granting the glass vessel a gentle caress of warmth. This sacred act ensures that your brew remains at the pinnacle of heat during its magnificent creation. Allow it a minute to revel in the bliss, then bid the water adieu, as it embarks on its own aquatic adventures.

  3. Add Coffee Grounds: Bestow upon the preheated French press the gift of your coarsely ground coffee. The amount you use shall be determined by your yearning for strength. Yet, a wise sage advises a ratio of 1:15 or 1:17, where coffee dances harmoniously with water. Thus, for every gram of coffee, let 15-17 grams of water be your mystical formula.

  4. Add Hot Water: Carefully pour the hot water over the awaiting grounds, ensuring their complete saturation in this baptism of flavor. Begin with a small offering of water, allowing the coffee to bloom like a captivating blossom for approximately 30 seconds. This entrancing blooming phase allows the release of tantalizing gases and amplifies the extraction of flavors. Then, in a grand crescendo, gradually pour the remaining hot water over the coffee, merging the elements in a union of aromatic wonder.

  5. Stir and Steep: Unleash your inner maestro and gently stir the coffee grounds and water, guiding them towards a symphony of even saturation. Place the plunger atop the French press, but hold your pressing impulses, dear comrade, for now is the time for patience. Allow the coffee to steep, as a potion matures, for approximately 4 minutes. Ah, the time may vary, based upon your personal taste desires. Adjust as you see fit, for you are the conductor of your own brew.

  6. Plunge and Pour: As the final moments of steeping grace us, summon your strength and commence the ceremonial act of pressing. With measured force and grace, plunge the plunger downward, separating the grounds from the celestial liquid. Be resolute, my friend, and prevent any grounds from escaping into this ethereal concoction. Once the plunge is complete, the gateway to nirvana shall open, and the coffee shall be ready for its descent into your awaiting vessel.

  7. Serve and Delight: Pour the elixir of creation into your most cherished mug or cups, and witness as its hues and aromas captivate your senses. French press coffee, my companion, yearns to be embraced immediately. Sip it as is, for it possesses unparalleled allure, or embellish it with your desired additives—milk, cream, sweeteners—allowing your taste buds to indulge in the symphony of flavors that resonate with your spirit.

  8. Clean and Maintain: As the curtains close on this magnificent performance, cleanse the French press with utmost care to banish any remnants of the past. Disassemble the plunger, and with warm, soapy water, cleanse all its parts. Rinse away the shadows of the brew, and allow them to dry in the warmth of the sun before reuniting them once more.


  • Seek out the freshest roasted coffee beans, for their flavor and aroma shall enrapture your very soul.
  • Tread the path of experimentation, dear adventurer, and dabble with various coffee-to-water ratios and steeping times, until you find the harmonious balance that resonates with your palate.
  • For a bolder voyage, increase the amount of coffee or extend the steeping time, should your spirit crave a more robust elixir.
  • Beware, noble traveler, of the perils that lie in boiling water, for it can scorch the essence of your brew, leaving naught but bitterness in its wake.
  • Should the need arise, adjust the grind size with the wisdom of a sage. Finer grinds may yearn for a shorter steep, while coarser companions may thrive in the embrace of an extended infusion.

Dear companion, armed with these whimsical instructions, you shall wield the power to brew a cup of French press coffee so rich, so flavorful, that it shall leave all who taste it spellbound. Embark now upon your brewing escapades, and may your endeavors be eternally blessed with the enchantment of a perfect cup. Cheers to your magical brewing odyssey!