Coffee plunger, french press, cafetière - whatever its name, this humble little contraption is loved for its simplicity and the clear, untouched and honest coffees it creates. But whether your cafetière is a permanent fixture on your kitchen-top or just the celebrity guest brought out for the occasional lazy Sunday brew, we’ve got the perfect guide of dos and don'ts to make sure your getting the most out of your beloved french press.
Our pre-ground coffees are perfect for this, but if you’re grinding your own beans, a medium-coarse grind is what you should be aiming for. A good way to test is when you plunge the coffee - if you struggle to push down, you’ve gone too fine; and if there’s hardly any resistance, you’ve gone too coarse.
Here at CRU Kafe, we recommend between a 1:10 and 1:12 of coffee to water, depending on exactly how strong you’re looking to make your cafetière. Another way of looking at this is between 10-12 tbsp of coffee per 1 litre of water, or around 1.5 tbsp per coffee cup.
A good rule of thumb is to leave your cafetière for 4 mins before plunging - but we like to get a bit more nitty-gritty here. For the more traditional espresso blends that include Robusta (such as our Merchant’s Blend) 4 minutes is still the absolute maximum, but for our 100% Arabica coffees (like our Honduras) you can afford to leave them to steep for a minute or two longer, if you like your coffee a bit punchier and richer.
(Before you begin, be sure to preheat the plunger and decanting vessel with hot water)
Weigh out your dosage and add the ground coffee to the plunger. Tap the plunger to make sure you have a nice even bed of grounds.
Start your timer and pour in the required amount of water depending on your coffee dose. Ensure that all the grinds are saturated and stir the brew back and forth 5 times. Then place the top chamber on top without plunging.
Let your coffee steep for 4 minutes. Depending on your desired strength, the time can be increased. Once the time is up, stir the crust and scoop off the foam. Doing this before you plunge will help reduce 'sludge' and give a cleaner tasting cup.
Plunge and decant your coffee immediately - including any coffee left over in the cafetière itself.