Why does french press coffee taste better?

cuppED

New member
May 15, 2005
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A friend of mine made some coffee for me in a french press and it was much different from my drip coffee maker. The coffee was really smooth and so much better in taste. Is there a reasoning behind this?
 

caffe biscotto

New member
Jan 18, 2008
704
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MASS.
Cupped, I prefer the taste of my coffee from a french press as well.

The french press method allows the coffee to "steep" for a few minutes before filtering out the grounds. With a drip brewer, the water just passes through the grounds, as fast as gravity allows.

I would assume that's the difference.

Maybe there's a better chemical explanation. Or the fact that there's no paper filter? Hmmm.....
 

villagejoe

New member
Mar 10, 2007
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Part of the reason it tastes different is because there is no paper filter. A paper filter will soak up some of the coffee's oils... If you look at side-by-side cups of french pressed coffee and drip filtered coffee, you'll notice that the one from the press has an oilier surface. You get a similar effect using a metal cone for a drip brewer for the same reason.
 

MegLovesCoffee

New member
Sep 2, 2008
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French press is wonderful

French Press is a wonderful thing, After I discovered it, I put my auto drip coffee maker in the cupboard and it only comes out for when I have a lot of people over. :)
It tastes different because yes, the coffee seeps and water does not run through it quickly but also, when you brew coffee using a filter all of the wonderful oils and sediment that occur naturally in coffee beans is filtered out. When you use a french press, the only thing you don''t drink is the ground coffee- everything else is included in your cup and it allows you to fully appreciate all that coffee has to offer.

I found a great site with all the different brewing methods and information about them www.coffee-illuminated.com
 

roaster dave

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Aug 6, 2008
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Guelph, Ontario
As villagejoe said, part of the reason is that there is nothing between the coffee and your mug......well, I guess there is the fine mesh there....but nothing to taint or otherwise add a little impurities to your cup. With a french press, nothing is filtered out, meaning you get all of the goodness out of the bean and into your mouth!!
 

John P

New member
Jan 5, 2007
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Salt Lake City
1. Complete saturation of the coffee grounds
2. (usually) proper water temperature (196-200) for the duration.
3. No loss of oils or taint of flavor from "standard" paper filter.


You can try brewing on a Technivorm using a gold filter and the results will be awesome as well.

In addition, properly done Melitta (hand drip) will produce an incredible cup.
 

villagejoe

New member
Mar 10, 2007
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I've used several different brands of french presses, and I haven't really seen much of a difference between them. Bodum is one of the most popular... and it's easy to find replacement parts if you break a beaker or something. Probably where you have the most options is size... you can have a little 9 oz press or a 48 oz one. They're almost all the same basic design.
 

espressogirl

New member
Oct 6, 2008
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Ahh, the French Press!

There is so much to this brewing method than just the great flavor due to the factors mentioned in the previous posts.

It's handy, comes in many designs and colors, very earth friendly for not using electricity, and most of all, there is an element of "waiting".

Waiting for the coffee to fully steep takes about 4 minutes and this helps you become more patient! :wink:

Drinking coffee using this method can be therapeutic as well!
 

JohnB

New member
May 30, 2008
113
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Connecticut
CoffeeBeanScene said:
are there any french presses that are better than the others?

I like the Bodum Chambords much more then some of the other variations I've seen at friends homes. My favorite is the 16oz (4C) model as its a nice "personal" size. Brewing in a press adds some of the hands on romance of brewing coffee lost in an automated brewer. I own 4 different size presses & always look forward to making coffee in the morning. In fact I usually fall asleep thinking about which coffee I get to brew up in the morning. :roll:
 

djveed

New member
Jul 23, 2008
55
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JohnB - you and I share a sick sick problem. I, too, dream about making my coffee. That's if I get that far. Often I lay awake at night and think about tomorrow.

French press is the way coffee was meant to taste. Hundreds of years ago, they didn't use paper and automatic machines and hot plates to make coffee. They simply mixed the hot water and grinds, and then removed the grinds.

A classic.
 

SlowRain

New member
Jul 16, 2008
34
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a Canadian expat in Taiwan
I would probably say first and foremost that you simply like the flavor of French press coffee. I think the main thing it has going for it is the full-immersion method.

I was never a big fan of coffee when I made it using a cheap drip machine and pre-ground supermarket coffee. It wasn't until I got my AeroPress that I started to take coffee seriously, and my French press is just another step on my coffee journey. The main drawback to drip coffee is that the cheaper coffeemakers can't heat the water hot enough and, when the water is running through the grounds, the water overextracts the coffee grounds directly in its path and underextracts the coffee grounds around the edges. Better designed drip machines are able to solve this problem.
 

CoffeeDetective

New member
Jul 10, 2006
24
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Montreal
French press coffee is great, but I like my Aeropress coffee even more. If you don't know what the Aeropress is, it's like a big fat syringe with a paper filter at the pointy end (except there is no pointy end, it's like that end of the syringe were cut off).

Why compare the Aeropress to a French press? Because it also allows the coffee grinds to steep in the hot water. Why I prefer it is that it also makes it easy to stir the coffee grinds and water for a while, which helps extract even more flavor.

Nick
 

JohnB

New member
May 30, 2008
113
0
Connecticut
CoffeeDetective said:
Why compare the Aeropress to a French press? Because it also allows the coffee grinds to steep in the hot water. Why I prefer it is that it also makes it easy to stir the coffee grinds and water for a while, which helps extract even more flavor.

Nick

Thats quite a stretch when you compare the 3-6 minute steep time of a French Press to the 10 second recommended "steep" time of the AP. Considering that the AP is constructed of the same plastic that is making the news lately for leeching bisphenol-A this short steep time is probably a very good thing.
 
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