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Senior Member

Joined: 17 Nov 2013
Posts: 3
Location: Illinois
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Wed Jan 29, 2014, 10:42am
Subject: Hello! E/everyone

I have been coming here quite some time lurking. Especially finding critics on about coffee beans :) Seemingly some buy the best of the best and most of the time. Either it's to expensive or I cannot find it in my area..

I'm going shopping today to buy new beans, relatively on my budget. I use a French Press, sometimes I'm having a struggle with it, at times my coffee will taste weak, or it would taste like someone had literally sprayed hair spray in my coffee YUCK!

I don't know if I'm heating the water to long or to short, or it's the water in my town?

I have used Goshen Coffee and Just Coffees.. I haven't find what I like. I read that'd be better for french press is less fruity and the beans from Brazil or Colombia. I'm really tight on my budget. I'd love to have a good beans for my French Press. I heat the water about 195 degrees. I grind my beans with a Kurps, nothing to expensive LOL I don't really measure out my coffee beans etc I do freshly ground my coffee per usedů.

I'm in Illinois central area in the states. I live outside of Chicago in a small town

This would be a big help! Thanks

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Senior Member

Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,586
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: CC1
Grinder: Baratza
Posted Wed Jan 29, 2014, 11:40am
Subject: Re: Hello! E/everyone

Your problem is the Krups grinder. Krups doesn't make grinders, more like a bean smasher/knawer unfortunately. And French press is extremely picky. French press requires "fines" control and consistency which unfortunately Krups grinders don't, otherwise even with Fresh Beans a French Press will taste awful b/c of the poor grinder as your gonna end up with a combo of underextracted and far overextraced grounds (fines). If your using a blade grinder it's even worse. For Press you need to spend around 100-200 bucks for a quality grinder, Encore at the low end, and the Virtuoso is the better choice as it uses the same burr set as my espresso grinder which has excellent fines control and consistency for coarse use.... specifically French Press.

You could get a Hario Skerton and do the bearing mod from Orphan Espresso to make it more stable for coarse use, which will be far better than any Krups grinder. It's a hand grinder, but good choice. So already getting fresh roasted, it's your grinder holding you back. You should measure your beans too with a digi scale that weighs to .1g as just going by teaspoons/TB/scoops is inaccurate and you'll never get the coffee right when your dose is different each time.

Chicago has a ton of quality roasters and shops, how close is the nearest Metropolis from you? Metropolis is excellent. But really them or any good shop (other shops carry their beans and other roasters), you could go to and try Press there and see what you like and how much a difference there is when a good grinder is used.
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Senior Member
Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 274
Location: Maryland, East coast peninsula
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale Vivildi S1
Grinder: La Cimbali Jr. , Virtuoso
Vac Pot: Hario DECO, Bodum press
Drip: Gevalia
Posted Wed Jan 29, 2014, 7:47pm
Subject: Re: Hello! E/everyone

Yes a good grinder will make all the difference. I can speak to the Virtuoso grinder, quite nice if you have the cash. You can find manual coffee mills, used coffee grinders that will do the job and even some low models at like Boscov's or Kohl's for around 50 bucks. Make sure they are a burr type grinder not any kind of spinning blade. French press isn't that finicky, most people grind too small. I wouldn't grind smaller than like coarse Kosher salt, a good starting point anyway. Basically you want a consistent size granule and not a lot of fine dust. Rather a little too coarse then a little too fine. But really... a good quality grinder will show up in the cup.

I'd bump the water temp up to 202 degrees use a quick check or quick read thermometer don't let it get to a boil (just under). Get your water cooking on the stove, when you get up around 150 degrees or so grind your beans dispense them into your press. The idea is to wait to grind until you are ready to poor. Soon as your water is at 202 pour over the grounds, have enough excess hot water for a pour in your coffee cup (pre heating your cup). Stir the grounds nice and easy for 60 seconds then press. Dump the hot water out of your cup (wipe with a towel if you want I don't bother) Pour your coffee in the pre-heated cup don't let it hang around in the pot (Yum). Okay I'm probably going to get a little flack on the amount of coffee. Mind you I'm just trying to get you a good starting point, if the coffee is too weak but tastes good "score" add some more coffee next time (or tweak the grind down a little)..measure it out though. Start with 1 tablespoon of whole beans per cup. So if your going to make 4 cups put 4 tablespoons of whole beans in your grinder. Ideally.. it is best to weigh them out.

Good luck
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