Chemex vs French Press: Which is Better for You?
Chemex vs French Press? When it comes to coffee, there are many different ways to make it. You can use a drip machine, espresso maker, or even a stovetop pot.
Are you looking for a better way to make your morning coffee? Do you want to know which brewing method is the best for you? Do you ever feel overwhelmed by the number of coffee brewing options available to you? If so, you’re not alone. It can be difficult to decide which method is best for your needs. In this blog post, we will compare the Chemex coffee maker with the French press and help you decide which one is right for you. We will discuss the pros and cons of each brewing method and help you choose the one that is perfect for your needs. So, let’s get started!
About The Chemex
The Chemex is a coffee brewing device that was invented in 1941 by the German chemist Peter Schlumbohm.
The Chemex works because of three basic scientific concepts: diffusion, capillary action and heat conduction. The first two are the most important to understand when using this brewing method.
Brewing coffee with the Chemex is very simple. You place a filter inside the hourglass-shaped brewer and fill it with medium grind coffee (about 3 tablespoons for every 5 ounces water). The water should be between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. At those temperatures, you’ll need about 45 – 60 seconds to brew each batch – longer if you use more than one tablespoon of grounds per ounce of water or don’t pre-wet your filter.
Now that you understand the basic concepts behind brewing with Chemex, here are three specific techniques to try:
– The Classic Method
This approach allows for maximum control over the design of your coffee’s bloom. The process starts by heating water in a kettle to 195-205 degrees Fahrenheit. While it is heating, wet your filter in the brewer and discard the water inside. When your hot water is ready, place two tablespoons of grounds into your filter and carefully bring the water up to around 200 degrees using an oven thermometer placed beside your kettle.
After one minute, begin slowly pouring just enough hot water to saturate all of the grounds above the Chemex’s “Dimple” (the small circular ridge at the center). Allow this bloom to sit for about 30 seconds. Then, add the remaining water in batches and be sure to maintain a constant pour by stopping every 20-30 seconds to let your filter drip into the Chemex’s cone below before adding more. The last cup or two should take slightly longer than 45 seconds since you will be adding water that has already dripped through your grinds in order to make up the difference.
– The French Press Method
When using this method, pre-wet your filter and add one tablespoon of coffee grounds per 4 ounces of filtered water (about 1:16 ratio). Slowly bring the temperature up to 205 degrees Fahrenheit after letting it boil for several minutes. Pour just enough water over the grounds wet them evenly, wait for ten seconds, and slowly continue adding your water until you have about an inch of liquid remaining in the Chemex.
– The Pour-Over Method
This is a great technique for brewing larger batches because it’s easy to reproduce without much practice. The pour over method works well when using Chemex filters with smaller brewers like Melitta or Chemex travel mugs . This method should start with around 195 degrees Fahrenheit water that has been placed into your decanter. Your grinds should be slightly finer than they are when brewing with Chemex in order to compensate for the larger filter used when pouring over. After wetting your filter, wait 45 or more seconds before pouring just enough hot or boiling water to saturate the grounds and let them “bloom.” Then, pour the rest of your water in a continuous stream and be sure to keep it above the “Dimple” (center circle) for even extraction.
Adding cream or sugar? – You can add either while the coffee is hot or after it has cooled. For hot coffee , let it cool down for about 30 seconds before adding any sweeteners because this will help prevent them from blending into the coffee’s flavor. If you want to add cold milk or half & half , then it’s best to place these ingredients in your cup first and then pour enough hot coffee over them until they dissolve completely. The opposite also applies if you prefer to add ice cubes instead of creamer, etc.
The Pros And Cons Of Chemex
The name “Chemex” is an odd one, but the coffee it makes is anything but. Made in a cylindrical, hourglass shape (and available with straight or curved sides), this French press alternative has made its way to cult status among thousands of caffeine addicts worldwide since World War II for good reason; it’s simple, easy to clean and beautiful. This year marks 69 years its manufacture, and the company continues to make beautiful coffee makers (all hand molded by artisans). Even if you’re not a design snob, the Chemex makes flavorful coffee that other pour-overs can’t reproduce. Here are a few reasons why:
– The Coffee is Rich
Chemex brewers feature thicker filters than your usual paper ones; it takes more time for the water to pass through and ultimately makes for a richer coffee. Paper filters tend to strip away certain components of the beans, creating inferior coffee—even with expensive, gourmet blends . With Chemex, you’ll enjoy all that your brew has to offer because there’s just no filter to get in the way of flavor.
– It Lasts Forever
Not many items manufactured today can boast up an impressive track record like this one . These things last forever—and by “forever,” I mean that they have been around since the 1940s and have never had a single piece break. Even those who’ve been using theirs for years report that it’s as good as new, aside from a few dings here and there. The Chemex can be passed down to future generations with ease.
– Pour-Over Coffee Becomes Americano
This is particularly useful if you share your coffee habit with others in your household or office—the Chemex makes a double serving at once, unlike most other pour-overs.
– Pre-infusion Brews Tea Like a Champ
The first step of brewing should always involve wetting the beans before you try to brew them; doing this helps ensure that heat isn’t the only thing that opens up the beans’ pores. Pre-infusion is a crucial part of most coffee brewing methods, but with Chemex, you can use it to make tea too . Just don’t forget to dump the floating grounds before brewing.
– It’s A Space Saver
Most pour-over makers are bulky and require more storage space than other coffee appliances—but not this one . Because its filters are reusable (wetted beforehand), there’s no need for paper filters or bulkier carafes that leave giant empty spaces in your refrigerator when not in use. A Chemex takes up about as much space as your average blender, but it makes twice as much at once.
– No Overflowing Grounds
I’m sure we’ve all got our own unique way of cleaning up spilled coffee grounds, but isn’t it nice to know that you won’t have to deal with any when pouring the Chemex in the sink?
– It Doesn’t Spill
Chemex comes with a clever little knob on top for gripping in addition to its wooden handle; this makes it virtually impossible to knock over when accidentally bumped into. The curve at the bottom also helps prevent dripping when you’re pouring.
– The Wooden Collar Adds Aesthetic Flair
You can pick out which color you prefer (there are nine options), but no matter what, your Chemex will look classier than most other brewers because of its wooden collar . It not only adds elegance and durability where other brewers wear down, but it also helps keep heat in for a consistent temperature throughout your brew.
– All Brewing Methods Are A-Okay
You can go the French press route and do it all by hand, or you can use a Chemex with any kind of machine—a percolator , an automatic drip brewer, even a pour-over brewer. Whether we’re talking about espresso machines or twenty-dollar hand grinders , as long as you have hot water on hand, you’re ready to make coffee.
– First and foremost, it’s just too darn slow. For simple math purposes we’ll assume that the standard brewing time takes 3 minutes (chemex recommends 4). If you’re brewing 2 cups at a time, that means 6 minutes total time. The average consumer is looking for convenience when they brew their morning cup of joe and waiting around 10 minutes for it simply isn’t going to cut it anymore. This is where the pour-over becomes frustrating…
You see, while the Chemex easily makes up for its lower speed by greatly reducing variables and making everything easy, clean and consistent; It does so at the expense of speed. If you’re willing to do a few simple things, your pour-over will brew just as fast if not faster than the Chemex.
– The second, and probably most important reason that you outgrow the Chemex is because it doesn’t fit on most coffee mugs or travel cups. That’s right, when you’re ready for that 3 o’clock pick me up cup of coffee from Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts, the shortest Chemex you can buy won’t even come close to fitting in their undersized cupholders! This is a pretty major annoyance for people who want to use one brewer at home and take another with them on-the-go. It also makes sharing a brewer difficult since people have different cup standards.
– The final reason you’ll find yourself outgrowing the Chemex is because it doesn’t fit under most water filters. No, I’m not talking about a simple Brita filter, but rather those awesome filters that attach directly to your sink and provide great tasting alkaline water for pennies on the gallon. If you’re serious about brewing tasty coffee, getting one of those will be a no-brainer…and the Chemex won’t fit under them!
Chemex vs French Press: What’s The Difference Anyway? Keep reading…
About The French Press
The French press, also known as a press pot, coffee press, coffee plunger or cafetière is a different way to brew your morning cup of joe. It was first invented by the Italians in the 1930s and has been known as a great way to flavor coffee ever since. The biggest difference between using a French press and using a drip machine is that it results in more oils being released from the beans which gives it a richer flavor. In this article we will look at how you can make coffee with this intriguing bit of equipment.
Please note: If you are one of those people who likes flavored coffees, then please note that french pressed coffee cannot be made into one. For flavoring your joe invest in some K-Cups and you’re all set.
The French press is very simple to use. All you have to do is steep the coffee grounds in hot water just off of boiling and then push a plunger down to trap them at the bottom. The result is rich, aromatic and natural tasting coffee that rivals even your favorite barista’s. Here are some step by step instructions on how to make this wonderful drink:
– Get Some Beans
You cannot press any old coffee beans as they will not give you as good of a cup as high quality ones will. Therefore, if you want french pressed coffee it would be best for you to buy them from a store with a high turnover rate such as a gourmet grocery or an online retailer.
– Grind the Beans
The type of grind will determine how you should do this, and it all depends on your personal preference as well as the equipment that you are using to make the coffee with. A course or percolator grind makes for very intense, strong flavored coffee so if you like a heavy experience then go for it. For those who prefer something lighter and more subtle you should use either a medium, fine or an espresso grind because these will deliver results that are much easier on the palate. Just note that too fine of a grind may result in under extraction which could lead to bitter flavors so be careful when making yours.
– Measure Your Grounds & Add Water
A standard French press holds 8 cups but most people make less than that at any given time. Therefore, it makes more sense for you to use between 1-2 tablespoons of coffee beans per cup depending on how strong you like your coffee. Add boiling water up to the amount you’re aiming for and then stir briefly to ensure an even mix.
– Froth It Up
Most people see this done in fancy cafes or restaurants but it is actually quite easy if you have an electric frother or a milk steamer so invest in one if you don’t have either already. If not, here are some other ways for how to achieve this affect: using a spoon, using hot water from the kettle or microwaving cold milk in a container until bubbles form around the edges before mixing it in. Whichever method you choose, make sure that the bubbles are present before proceeding to the next step.
– Brew For 4-5 Minutes
This amount of time allows for all of the flavors to infuse perfectly into your coffee and will give it a wonderful taste. After four or five minutes have passed go ahead and push down on the plunger slowly but firmly so as not to burn yourself which should trap all of those unwanted coffee grounds at the bottom of your cup. Pour and enjoy!
Chemex vs French Press? Have fun with this recipe book as well as experimenting with different types of beans so you can fine tune your own perfect brew skills. Also, consider investing in a milk steamer/frother from an online retailer such as Amazon so you can nix the need for using a spoon to achieve that lovely frothiness.
The Pros And Cons Of French Press
The Pros of French Press
There are many different varieties of coffee presses on the market, but at my house we love our French press. It got its name because it originally came from France, not because it is good for you! These small appliances work by pushing hot water down through a filter that holds back all the grounds; thus allowing you to separate the brewed coffee (aka “press”) with the leftover grinds (aka “grounds”).
Some people like to use paper filters in their java brews, however I am here to tell you why these are bad for your health. They contain bleached wood pulp and plastic chemicals known as dioxins or chlorinecompounds that can break into unhealthy fragments that may cause health problems. These dioxins are very toxic and have been linked to health issues such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and autoimmune diseases. The best way to avoid these potentially hazardous chemicals is to use a French press.
Another reason why the French press is so awesome is because you control how much coffee you want to make at one time! This appliance makes the perfect amount of java for me and my significant other; we can each enjoy our own cup without having any leftover or wasting excess grounds. This also allows you to experiment with different flavors by adding your favorite creamer, sweeteners, syrups or just plain sugar if your like me!
The French press is also very easy to clean. All you have to do is dump out the used grounds, give it a quick wipe down with a paper towel and wash the small mesh filter with soap and water! It’s really that simple. With most coffee makers I would have to run many cycles of hot water through them in order for all the residue to be washed away. Because this appliance uses only one cup at a time there are no leftover grounds or large amounts of wasted coffee.
A final reason why I love my java maker so much is because you can make it in bulk without worrying about your coffee becoming bitter/stale in. If you remember when I said that pressing the coffee grounds decreases its exposure to oxygen, well this is good news for your taste buds! Since there is no delay in the brewing process it will slowly release all of its flavors and nuances; thus allowing you to enjoy each sip without worrying about losing any flavor.
So if you haven’t already tried a French press I would highly recommend giving one a try! You can find many different varieties at your local department stores or grocery stores. Just look for “Coffee Presses” or “Filter Coffee Brewers” on the product packaging; these are sure signs that it’s what you need.
A French press is another method which is becoming more popular as it provides a good “cup” of coffee. However, there are many disadvantages too.
– The taste tends to be bitter when brewed for long periods of time (more than 5-10 minutes).
– The amount of flavor that comes out is very little in comparison with other machines.
– It can be hard to clean because of its shape and if the screen isn’t cleaned every day, it’s very likely mould will form inside it after some time due to leftover coffee in the mesh area.
– After brewing is finished, the used coffee grounds are still left in the mesh area. The only way to clean them up is by using a spoon, as you can’t wash them out with water as it will cause the screen to loose grip and detach from the glass pot. In addition, there’s a chance that mould will form inside this region which is very difficult to clean!
– Some people also complain that coffee made with a French press tends to be “sandy”.
Comparison Chemex vs French Press
To the uninitiated, choosing between a Chemex and a French press can be an intimidating experience. Since I began brewing coffee at home about five years ago, I have used both brewing methods on several occasions. Although it took me some time, after tasting the results of each system, I discovered which method suited my tastes best.
Chemex (Chemex vs French Press)
The first thing you will notice is how clear the final product is. Even with only 20 seconds of pouring, your cup will resemble a glass of apple juice rather than coffee. Aesthetically, there are few things more beautiful than watching boiling water slowly cascade down into a bed of freshly ground beans to create that clear liquid gold inside your vessel.
This is one area where the Chemex really shines. Upon pouring the hot water, aromas immediately begin to waft out of your cup like heavenly clouds – filling your nostrils with the scent of fresh coffee.
The flavors are much less concentrated than that of its French pressed cousin; however it still has a full body and sweeter tastes due to the lack of oils that typically get trapped in a French press. I should also note here that while there is no sediment whatsoever in the final product, there is usually a small amount of fiberous material floating at the bottom of my cup once all the liquid has been consumed. This has never bothered me though, because by this point I am so satisfied with my drink it feels wrong not to finish every last drop!
French Press (Chemex vs French Press)
Although most French presses retain a light color after brewing, the trapped oils typically cause the final product to look less clear than that of its Chemex cousin. If you use coarsely ground beans for your brew, the sediment at the bottom of your cup may also be more apparent.
Much like many cold brews, this method produces a coffee with very subtle aromas in comparison to that of a Chemex extraction.
This is where I feel that the French press really shines! The flavors are rich and flavorful in a way that cannot be achieved through any other method. There is also a certain boldness to this drink due to all of the oils in play here – which can either be an asset or a liability depending on your tastes. As I mentioned earlier, French pressed coffee often retains small bits of sediment and fiberous material even after the liquid has been consumed- this can be a deal breaker for some people as it is an acquired taste.
Chemex vs French Press – For those who do not care to invest in multiple pieces of equipment, my advice would be to choose one method and master it! If you are more concerned with how your drink looks, go with the Chemex every time. On the other hand, if rich flavors and boldness outweigh clarity in a brew, stick to the French press without hesitation! No matter which way you decide to go, both techniques will give you great results if done correctly…so pour yourself a cup – relax – and enjoy.
Tips To Use A Prench Press
There are many different ways to make coffee, but there is nothing quite like a cup of coffee made with the french press. The best thing about it is that the process of making the cup of joe can be enjoyed by anyone who loves to enjoy a hot cup of brew. More and more people are becoming partakers in this method because they know what joys await them for taking the first sip. These tips will help you master your french press and prepare it every time so you always get an amazing drink:
– Use Fresh Coffee Beans
A huge mistake that someone can make when brewing inside a french press is using old, stale coffee beans. Instead, purchase fresh whole beans and grind them just before use. For the best results, do not grind them too long or too short.
– Use Appropriate Amount Of Coffee
When adding coffee to your french press it is important that you follow directions carefully when talking about amounts. A good rule of thumb for a cup is a heaping 1-2 tablespoons per 4 ounces of water. If you want more, use 1 tablespoon per 6 ounces of water and if you want less make sure to use 1 teaspoon per 4 ounces of water.
– Measure The Water
You may think that filling up the carafe with enough room for the drink is enough but this isn’t always true. In fact, depending on how much coffee you add will determine how much needs to be added as well. If you add too much, the drink will be flat and if you add too little it will be bitter. The recommended amount of water that should be used is 4 cups for an 8-cup french press.
– Heat To The Right Tempurature
French presses are not perfect when dealing with hot temperatures but there’s an easy solution to this problem. You can either boil the water in a kettle or use a microwave to heat it up until it reaches between 200 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t have a thermometer, try boiling the water and then wait about 45 seconds before pouring in the carafe.
– Make Sure Not To Overheat
One of the most common mistakes people make is letting their coffee stay in the carafe for too long after pressing it. This is because they like to drink their coffee while it’s hot and end up forgetting about it. However, this turns out to be a mistake because allowing the coffee to sit inside will cause it to burn at the bottom of the pot. Only have your cup ready right before you are going to pour.
– Let The Coffee Brew
If you are using whole beans then you need to let them steep in water until they sink on their own or for between 3-5 minutes depending on how strong you prefer your brew. Once this time has passed, carefully press them down into the carafe so that all of the flavors release into the beverage underneath without getting any grit left over from grinding the beans.
– Pour The Coffee
Chemex vs French Press – This is the final stage of making a cup of coffee with a french press, but it’s also the most necessary because if you do not pour it into your favorite mug then all that hard work will have just gone down the drain. Make sure to properly place the plunger at the top so that no grinds go through and enjoy with family or friends who are also partakers in this amazing method!
How Does The Chemex Work?
Chemex vs French Press? The Chemex coffee maker has become quite popular in recent years, with good reason. It is one of the easiest ways to brew a perfect cup of coffee. The design draws inspiration from laboratory glassware and it looks like it too; made almost entirely of glass including the handle, which helps make sure you don’t get burned when pouring your hot water over your ground beans .The main parts are the 3-part high-quality bonded construction borosilicate glass cylinder (Chemex calls this ‘the lower part’), the handle (polypropylene), and wood collar/collar tie (cotton corduroy). So no metal or plastic touches your coffee at all during preparation. This ensures that there are no off flavors imparted on your beverage. It also ensures that the Chemex is nice and hot when serving, so you don’t accidentally burn your hand.
The main idea behind the design of the Chemex comes from its creator Mr. Peter Schlumbohm, an inventor and lover of coffee who dedicated much of his life to perfecting the process of brewing the best tasting cup possible. The natural expression of this can be found in his background as a chemist and his love for laboratory glassware. He took it one step further by creating a unique bond between coffee and glass by developing what he called “the chemex method”. The result was using a filter (chemex paper) which he also invented himself to filter out fine coffee grounds while preserving all necessary oils and essences along with the purest flavor of any coffee. This would be a long and detailed process to explain here (and it is also available on their web site), but essentially, after pouring boiling hot water over ground beans in the top chamber for about one minute, you allow gravity to slowly take your beverage into the lower part which contains more ground beans. Here it sits for 3 minutes (though some suggest 1-4) before being decanted by removing the filter and grounds from the top section and simply pouring off your fresh cup.
By using a paper filter we eliminate the need for a metal or cloth mesh filter because we want all oils and essences to remain in solution while trapping insoluble particulate matter such as fine coffee grounds and particles of paper filter. We have found that paper filters do this better than metal or cloth mesh… Chemex is the only coffee maker using a paper filter as part of its patented process!
This produces a very clean and clear beverage, which was also Schlumbohm’s aim. He compared it to wine, as both had to be “viewed against a white background”. For those who desire more body and mouthfeel we recommend trying the “reverse” brewing method: after pouring hot water over ground beans in the top reservoir pour grounds into your cup and continue to fill with boiling water (leaving about 1 inch from top) and let steep for several minutes before serving. This will give you some of those oils and essences but can produce muddier looking cup.
Chemex vs French Press? Which brings us to the next point: Grind size is important! For drip brewing we recommend a medium fine grind (similar to table salt) so that ground beans will be cleanly filtered through the edges of the paper filter. If you use too coarse of a grind or try to pour boiling water over your grounds without incrementally increasing the extraction time with added water, you may experience some particle/clumping which can detract from enjoying all those great flavors and oils found in fresh brewed coffee… not good!!
>>> See more: Chemex VS French Press – NOT SURPRISED
The Chemex vs French Press are two popular brewing methods for coffee. We’ve broken down what you need to know about each so that you can make an educated decision on which is right for your home or office. If convenience is important, then a French press may be best because it’s easy to use and does not produce any waste. However, if taste matters most, then consider using a Chemex since this produces more flavor in the end product than other types of presses do. There are many factors to take into account when deciding between these two options; but hopefully our guide has helped narrow down your choice by at least one! Let Sweet Basil’s Cafe know how we did in the comments below!