A “French press’ is essentially open-pot- coffee with a sophisticated method for separating the grounds from the brew. We believe it is the best way to brew your freshly roasted organic coffee. The pot is a narrow glass cylinder. A fine-mesh screen plunger fits tightly inside the cylinder. You place coarse-to-medium ground organic coffee in the cylinder, pour water that is just beginning to boil over it, and insert the plunger in the top of the cylinder without pushing down. After about 4 minutes, when the coffee is thoroughly steeped. You push the plunger down through the coffee, clarifying it and forcing the grounds to the bottom of the pot.
The plunger pot was apparently developed in Italy during the 1930’s but found its true home in France after World War II, when it became a favorite method for home coffee brewing.
The growing popularity of this method in the United States has unleashed a flood of French-press brewers, A few made in France and many from other places. A consumer’s first decision in purchasing such a brewer is whether to spend a little money on a version that supports the glass brewing receptacle in a plastic frame ($20 to $30), or to spend considerably more on a brewer with a metal frame ($40 and up). Make certain the one you decide on has a tempered cylinder, otherwise you will be replacing it frequently.
The coffee the plunger pot produces is full bodied and deeply flavored. None of the flavor containing oils are filtered out and the resulting brew is very rich indead. Starting with a premium organic coffee bean that has a balanced acidity is very important. Beans with a high acidity will impart an unpleasant aftertaste. Many coffee aficionados prefer this method of preparing their brew. Those who take their coffee with milk or cream may also prefer this method due to the fact that the coffee’s flavor is not diluted.
Style of coffee aside, the advantages of the plunger brewer are its drama, its portability and its elegance, all of which make it an ideal after-dinner brewer. It certainly isn’t any more difficult to clean than most drip or filter pots but unless you buy a design with an insulated decanter, the coffee must be drunk immediately. That also is just as well, since coffee ought to be drink immediately. The french press is one of the best ways to brew your organic coffee.