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Article: A Beginner's Guide to Using a French Press

Man pressing down the French Press, with the Namesake coffee bean bag next to it on the counter.

A Beginner's Guide to Using a French Press

There's a certain charm to brewing your own coffee, and for beginners, the French Press is an excellent gateway into the world of coffee craftsmanship. In this tutorial, we'll explore the simple yet rewarding process of using a French Press to make a delicious cup of coffee and understand why it's a fantastic choice for those new to the art of brewing.


Step 1: Gather Your Tools

To embark on this coffee adventure, you'll need a few essential tools: a French Press, coarsely ground coffee beans, hot water (just below boiling), and a stirring utensil. The French Press, with its uncomplicated design, consists of a cylindrical glass or stainless steel container and a plunger with a mesh filter. Check out our Namesake Store (link) if you need to purchase any of these items! 


Step 2: Measure Your Coffee

The golden ratio for French Press brewing is 1:15 – one part coffee to 15 parts water. Begin by measuring the amount of coffee grounds you'll need based on the number of cups you want to make. For instance, for a single cup, use about 25 grams (around one tablespoon) of coarsely ground coffee to 350 grams of water (around one cup). Using a scale to measure your coffee is the next step up to making a super consistent cup, check out this one we suggest (link to scale). 


Step 3: Add Coffee and Hot Water

Place the measured coffee grounds into the French Press. Heat your water until it's just below boiling, around 200°F (93°C). Pour the hot water over the coffee grounds, ensuring they are fully saturated. Give it a gentle stir to ensure an even distribution of coffee and water.


Step 4: Steep and Wait

After adding the water, attach the lid to the French Press and let the coffee steep. The recommended steeping time is about four minutes, allowing the coffee to extract its full flavor. During this time, if you’re feeling a bit extra, you can savor the delightful aroma filling the air.


Step 5: Plunge and Pour

Once the steeping is complete, slowly press down the plunger, separating the coffee grounds from the liquid. The mesh filter ensures that only the rich, flavorful coffee makes its way into your cup. Pour your brewed coffee into your favorite mug and marvel at the beautiful crema on top.


Why French Press?

  • Simplicity: The French Press is user-friendly and requires minimal effort, making it an ideal choice for beginners.
  • Control Over Brewing: You have control over the brewing time, allowing you to experiment and find your perfect balance between strength and flavor.
  • Full-Bodied Flavor: The French Press method extracts more of the coffee's natural oils and flavors, resulting in a full-bodied and robust cup.
  • Affordability: French Presses are cost-effective and readily available, making it an accessible brewing method for anyone looking to elevate their coffee experience.

Embarking on the journey of brewing your own coffee can be so much fun, and the French Press is the perfect companion for beginners. Its simplicity, control over brewing, and ability to bring out the full-bodied flavor make it a fantastic choice. So, grab your French Press, your Namesake Coffee beans, and enjoy the satisfaction of brewing a cup that suits your taste preferences perfectly. Happy brewing!