Everyone has their opinion of how to make coffee. Me included. Obviously. He said to grind medium/course. I like mine a bit finer. He said steep for 3:30. I steep for 4 minutes. I don't count the additional 7 minutes after scooping floating grinds and foam as "steep" time. The idea is that the grinds that are still floating are still extracting. Those that have sunk to the bottom are fully extraxted and therefore, scooping the floaties stops the brew process. What happens after the scoop effort is not brewing or steeping but something else. I'm not sure what you call it but it's not brewing. I'm going to go out on a limb here. I don't think your palette likes french press coffee. I think I recall you saying you might try other brew methods. I think that's probably not a bad idea. A Bodum or Chemex pour over carafe and filter is all of $20. You have everything else you need. Give that a try. You may save yourself a whole lot more aggravation.