January 22, 2008

Nine or so steps to the "perfect press pot" coffee

Both Stumptown Roasters in Portland, Oregon and Blue Bottle Coffee in San Francisco provide detailed press pot coffee instructions. When you purchase Stumptown beans, you are given a 4.5" x 4.5" brewing guide printed on recycled paper. I love this book. I refer to it whenever I make press pot (i.e. French Press) coffee, even from other vendors. The Blue Bottle Coffee brewing guide is also cleverly presented. The postcard image differs depending on the style of your brew (French Press, filter drip, mokka pot, or espresso). I got the postcard with the French press cover photo because that's my preferred brewing method. (I also have an espresso machine). Perhaps I should have chosen the mokka pot postcard. As I mentioned before I use Stumptown's directions and I could have mailed the card to a friend who just got a mokka pot.

Anyway, the directions are quite similar and I have prepared a comparison chart below. You can use either set of directions whether you brew Stumptown or Blue Bottle or Kicking Horse (Canada - the coffee I brewed this afternoon).

Steps Stumptown
Blue Bottle
Grind coffee (ground coarse preferably with a burr grinder).
Coffee (3-4T of coffee for every 8oz of water).
2 Add coffee (1T of coffee for every 40z of water).
Double the amount of water you intend to use.
3 Add water (bring water to a boil and cool for 45s, then pour vigorously to saturate the grounds) but do not fill the pot.
Grind the coffee to a gritty consistency while water is heating.
Start counting down 4 minutes.
Bring water to a boil and cool for 30s.
After 1 minute stir the grounds and add water if needed.
Warm French Press with water and pour this water into cup to warm it.
Put press on pot.
Add grounds to the press pot and pour water into the pot "in a thin stream."
Slowly press the pot at the end of 4 minutes (press several if necessary).
Gently stir the coffee and place press on the pot (Blue Bottle recommends stirring with a wooden spoon or chopstick).
Pour the coffee immediately after pressing.
Wait 3 minutes.
Drink the coffee.
Stir the coffee again.
Clean the French Press. Do not use soap.
Gently press the coffee.

Pour the coffee immediately and drink it.

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