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Newbie:  Time/Temp for Kenya Grand Cru in French Press
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Senior Member
Joined: 25 Jul 2013
Posts: 1
Location: NOLA
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Thu Jul 25, 2013, 11:43am
Subject: Newbie:  Time/Temp for Kenya Grand Cru in French Press

Hey Y'all.

Sorry for the uber-basic question, but I just can't find a good time/temp table for varieties of coffee.

In particular, I'm hunting up the ideal brew time and temperature for Kenya Grand Cru, which I will be brewing in a French Press.  

If you can help me with grounds/water ratio also, that would be spiffy.  I won't have a scale, so Tablespoons/Ounces is the preferred measure; can I assume that 2T/6oz would be workable?  I've seen the 15.3g/something on here, but... again, no scale.  

I discovered that coffee was more than caffeine at Moxxee in Charleston WV, where I unwittingly ordered a Clover brew and was totally floored.   Now I'm a bit of a snob, tho for day-to-day my boyfriend manages to produce a decent cup out of our drip machine.  I'm on vacation this weekend, and the coffee on offer is... hazelnut.  Bleh.  So I have to build my chops rather quickly. :)

Thanks much. :)
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Joined: 1 Jun 2013
Posts: 291
Location: UK
Expertise: I like coffee

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Posted Thu Jul 25, 2013, 3:12pm
Subject: Re: Newbie:  Time/Temp for Kenya Grand Cru in French Press

Hi Joz,

Firstly, I'd say that some 1-2kg max scales with 0.1g graduation are pretty cheap & easy to find. These will help your coffee making a whole lot more consistent. So, sermon over, let's answer you question...;-)

Yes, 2 level tablespoons, or one rounded tablespoon (30ml volume) should be around 10g, ideal for 6oz of brew water. This ratio is based on cold brew water, prior to heating, so if using hot water from the kettle, use 170g in weight of hot water. But taste is personal, so look at this as a starting point?

Let the kettle sit for a few seconds after coming to the boil, then pour on to your grinds, using the pour to stir up the grounds & make sure everything is fully wet. You can give the brew a little stir once full, but just enough to saturate everything, stirring is easy to overdo.

Put the plunger in the pot, resting above the surface of the coffee. Wait 6 minutes, have a look, then gently sink any grounds sitting on the top, you can scoop out any visible floating foam too if you like.

You might like to try a taste of the coffee at this point. Pour a mouthful into a cold cup, swirl the coffee until it is cooled to blood temperature and taste. Coffee taste perception changes as it cools, so it's a good idea to taste at a comfortable drinking temperature. Personally, I usually put the plunger & lid back on and leave for another 10-15minutes, or more, before drinking. But that's the beauty of steeped brewing in things like the French press, you add your water & just wait as the coffee develops.

It might start off "green" tasting & pithy, then might go bright & juicy (can be good here when hot, but may be sour as it cools), then there can be metallic/carbony/burnt flavours (if you get this don't panic, either wait, or gently rock/swirl the press - avoid stirring), then you should get sweeter flavours coming out. Dark roasted coffee may taste more of caramel, dark toffee & black treacle, lighter roasted coffee may be fruiter, more syrupy. Floral, tea-like coffees might be preferable in the earlier stages...experiment with different coffees.

I don't push the plunger down into the coffee anymore, James Hoffmann (a well known barista & coffee roaster) suggests pouring the coffee out through the mesh filter whilst it is kept above the upright brew, be sure to hold the lid & filter screen in place when pouring & to be sure that the screen is sufficiently deep in the press to trap any grinds that might escape past the screen, via the spout etc. You can push the plunger down as level of the coffee drops between pours.

There isn't any urgent need to decant the coffee, it can sit on the grounds in the French press until it's stone cold. I often make a brew in the morning and carry on drinking throughout the day as it cools, sometimes chilling it right down for a cold coffee in the afternoon.
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