For a coffee lover, being able to brew coffee at home whenever you want is a "must-have". When you buy a great coffee set with great expectations, but it never brews the delicious flavor that you remember, it can be crazy.
If the quality of your French press is fine, your beans are right, and the steps are correct, but you're still not satisfied, read on to find out what factors affect the flavor of coffee and what we can do about it.
Several Factors Affect the Flavor of Coffee Beans
As long as the French press you bought is of good quality, then using which brand of French press has little effect on the taste of coffee, perhaps some French presses are not filtered well and have a powdery taste.
Or as long as your coffee beans are fresh enough, then there is no problem with the coffee beans.
But grinding is a different story.
Don't skip this part, let's analyze several factors that affect the flavor performance of coffee beans.
Grinding is divided into coarse and fine grinding and grinding uniformity.
Grinding coarseness is well understood, look at the grinder we have in hand (manual or electric bean grinders have instructions), indicated by numbers.
The other one is grinding uniformity which involves whether we can grind evenly and whether there is too much fine powder after we have chosen a certain coarseness. This is usually used to measure how good a bean grinder is. For the French press, the grinding situation is the most important factor affecting
Water flow and flow rate
This factor can be ignored because the French press is an immersion extraction principle. This factor has a big impact if you use other coffee appliances, especially pour-over coffees.
The longer the time, the more material is extracted, and the higher the extraction rate and the higher the concentration of the coffee solution, all other conditions being equal. For the French press, it is the second key point.
For the French press, it refers to the filtration effect. We will know after careful comparison, some French press filters are double, some single, some are made of stainless steel, and some are made of silicone. Of course, the filtration effect will be better if the filter is thicker.
French press coffee is not particularly strict on water temperature, a range of 195 to 205 degrees is perfectly fine.
So how do you grind French press coffee beans? Read on.
The Perfect French Press Grind Size
Three main factors depend on the degree to which the coffee powder is to be ground:
- The appliance or machine used to make the coffee.
- The degree of roasting of the coffee beans.
- The flavor of the coffee is to be obtained.
Coffee powder regularity
1. The shorter the time spent on making coffee, the finer the coffee powder used should be; on the contrary, the longer the time spent on making coffee, the coarser the coffee powder used should be.
For example, if the time used to make a cup of espresso is only 20-30 seconds, it needs to use finely ground coffee powder; for a French press to make a cup of coffee, it takes 3-4 minutes, so it needs to use coarsely ground coffee powder.
2. Use the degree of coffee powder grinding to control the flavor of coffee: the darker the roast, the grind coarser; conversely, the lighter the roast, the grind finer.
For example, if you like a more balanced flavor of pour-over coffee, but you only have a bag of medium-roasted coffee beans, this time you can grind it like white sugar, the flavor is more suitable for you.
3. If you want to use the coarseness of the coffee powder to adjust the final flavor of the coffee, the rule is.
- The coarser the coffee powder, the stronger the acidity.
- The finer the coffee powder, the more bitter it is.
For the same coffee bean, if you want a fuller cup of coffee, you may want to grind the powder finer.
If you want to drink the fruit flavor, you can grind it coarser.
And which grinding level is suitable for our French press, please refer to the photo, this is what we often call "coarse ground coffee powder"
Meanwhile, we do not need to choose only one grind size, coffee flavor is in a sense, also a private taste buds enjoyment. Experiment a bit, this will help you find the coffee flavor you like.
Some Common Mistakes and Questions
1# Can I choose fine-ground coffee powder when using a French press?
I don't recommend you go with it, but you can try it. Fine grind is suitable for espresso-type coffee, too fine coffee powder is prone to filter leakage, as well as very deadly over-extraction. If you are tempted to try it, please do not exceed three minutes.
2# Why does a French press need coarse grinding?
Because it needs to be in contact with the beans for a long time. If the coffee powder is too fine, it will extract too much flavor and become cloudy and bitter.
3# Can the coffee powder be ground in advance?
Theoretically yes, it is possible. For coffee powder, our requirement is "freshness", followed by the quality of the grind. It is recommended to grind the beans during the warming process so that the aroma of the coffee powder can be better retained. Regarding the quality of the grind, we recommend using a burr grinder.