By clicking “Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information.

A Detailed Guide on How to Use a Cafetière

Be your own barista! With our detailed guidelines on how to use a cafetière, you will be able to make a perfect cup of coffee every time.

Luc Hubeli
May 17, 2023

There are many reasons for using a cafetière to prepare delicious coffee. The coffee plunger is currently experiencing a real comeback – and with good reason! It’s effortless to use and ideal for beginners. Nevertheless, we would like to give you a step-by-step guide on how to use a cafetière, as nobody is born a master of the art.

Incidentally, a great advantage of the coffee plunger is that the grounds are continuously in contact with the water during the preparation process, which means that a particularly full-bodied aroma can develop.

Want to know how to prepare your favorite hot beverage yourself the old-fashioned way?  In this article, you will find out how it works!

What Is a Cafetière?

A cafetière, or French Press is a rather practically built coffee press, which typically consists of a lid with a press plunger as well as a pot, which is traditionally made of glass.

Since French Press preparation eliminates the filtering process, the essential oils of the coffee beans remain intact, and therefore the result tastes especially aromatic – as mentioned earlier! However, to prevent the coffee grounds from infiltrating the beverage, the stamp is equipped with a metal strainer that retains the coffee grounds.

A cafetière can, but does not always have to be, designed in the classic style. Meanwhile, there are also devices that are made of stainless steel or stoneware, for example. Ultimately, the design is always just a matter of personal preference because the focus in on the flavor, isn't it?

Fun fact: all brewing methods where coffee is in contact with water for a longer period of time are called immersion methods.

The Advantages of the Cafetière

Are you thinking about adding a cafetière to your kitchen equipment? We can absolutely relate to this consideration because, the coffee plunger offers numerous interesting advantages, which we have summarized for you :

  • Ease of preparation: the plunger is one of the simplest coffee preparation methods, and so you can make the perfect cup of joe with very little effort. All you need is hot water, (preferably freshly) ground coffee beans and a bit of patience.
  • Cost-effective manner of preparation: With the French Press, you don't have to buy expensive coffee pods or capsules. Instead, you can grind large quantities of coffee yourself at a low price and enjoy your favorite beverage whenever you want. Ideal for smart spenders!
  • Full aroma: The taste of freshly ground coffee prepared with the plunger is incomparable. It has a full, aromatic flavor and a rich bouquet – something that is not necessarily always guaranteed with other methods.
  • Environmentally friendly use: The Coffee Plunger is made of durable materials and can be used for years, which means we can avoid recurring waste and protect the environment. There is also no paper waste here.
  • Easy transportation: have you ever tried to take your fancy fully automated coffee machine on your travels? Exactly! A Cafetière, on the other hand, fits easily into any suitcase.

What Is the Best Coffee for the French Press?

Firstly, you should know that there are different coffee flavors and each flavor affects the taste of the French Press in its own way. Therefore, when it comes to plunger coffee, it is important to consider your personal preferences. Some like it fruity, while others enjoy a slightly more bitter taste. So, it's important to think in advance about the flavor you want.

To find the right coffee for the cafetière, you should also bear in mind that certain varieties are better suited for this appliance than others. Ideally, you should choose a medium to strong roast, as it contains more aromatic substances and provides a stronger taste. But of course, this is also a matter of personal preference!

In our opinion, African Arabica varieties are particularly well-suited for the French Press and deliver a full-bodied aroma with slight acidity and a hint of chocolate or caramel. Robusta coffee, on the other hand, is ideal for those who prefer a stronger flavor. But beware: this coffee can quickly taste a little bitter, and therefore it's (literally) not to everyone's taste.

You can also try different blends to find your personal favorite. A blend of Arabica and Robusta coffees can round out the flavor and will help you find your perfect cafetière coffee. In addition to selecting the right beans, the roast also plays an important part in making delicious coffee with your French Press.

Slightly darker roasts contain more aromatic substances than light roasts, and therefore produce a more nuanced aroma and stronger flavor. So, if you are looking for the best possible taste, you should use a slightly darker roast.  Finally, please bear in mind that the quality of the water is just as essential as the quality of the grounds.

Therefore, always use fresh water with a low mineral content for the best results. If you follow these simple tips, you'll quickly find out which coffee tastes best in your coffee plunger!

Moreover, be prepared to experiment a bit and try different types of coffee grounds – you're guaranteed to find the perfect beans to suit your individual preferences. And don't worry: we'll get to our detailed instructions on how to use a cafetière later!

The Fine Art of Making Plunger Coffee.

Before you set out to make your first – and hopefully delicious – French Press coffee, there are a few important things to consider. After all, if you take these to heart from the start, you can look forward to a future of perfect cups of coffee.

The best starting point is the selection of beans, which you should ideally grind yourself. This is particularly critical for this type of preparation, since the grounds are not filtered and have a lot of contact with the hot water, which ensures the desired, particularly intense flavor.

Of course, if it is not possible for you to grind the beans yourself, you can buy ready-made coffee grounds. In a specialty store, they will grind the beans for you, and those grounds will certainly be superior to any packaged product from the supermarket.

Essential Considerations

Most instructions on how to use a cafetière will tell you that the right beans are of no use if the other factors aren't right as well. Therefore, we’ll give you a few more tips!

Which Coffee Plunger Is the Best?

If you want to make good French Press coffee, you need to invest in a good plunger. Needless to say, cheap plungers are readily available, but they might prove pretty worthless.

The good news is that French Presses are usually not terribly expensive, and generally have the same structure and design. However, the container is typically made of glass, which does make it susceptible to breakage.

If you want to play it safe, go for a cafetière that comes with a container made of sturdy stainless steel.  Regarding the frame, there is no question – this should definitely be made of metal, which is more environmentally friendly than plastic and also more durable.

How the tamper is assembled is also of vital importance. In inexpensive coffee plungers, it's often just held in place with a simple screw, which can quickly come loose during cleaning. It's better to opt for a tamper that is held in place by a tightly sealed joint.

The Correct Amount of Coffee for the French Press

What dosage is needed for the French Press? In general, it should be about 60–65 grams per liter of water. Here's a small dosage guide: since most Coffee Plungers are a bit smaller, and contain around 750 ml, in this case it should be 45 grams, which corresponds to 4.5 tablespoons.

Coffee plungers are usually supplied with a small measuring spoon to determine the dosage.  As this is slightly smaller than a tablespoon, it's better to use 7 to 8 measures.

Ultimately, this is all about your personal preference as well. How much grounds you actually use depends on how strong you want your favorite beverage to be.

The Right Coffee Grinder

Now that we have clarified these questions, let's focus on the grinder. In general, you should go for a device that delivers good results even with a coarse grind and keeps dust formation as low as possible.

Unfortunately, cheap grinders often cannot guarantee this; therefore, it's worth investing a little more for a high-quality grinder. If the degree of grinding is not optimal, poor extraction will occur and the result can be a furry taste.  And that would be extremely undesirable, right?

And last, but by no means least, you have the choice between an electric or manually operated grinder. As far as the grind quality is concerned, there aren't any major differences. Once again, it's all about which option you prefer!

The Ideal Degree of Grinding for The Cafetière

Another essential factor for great tasting coffee is the ideal grind! If possible, you should make it a habit to grind your beans right before you use them to get the best possible flavor.

Incidentally, while a particularly coarse grind was recommended in the past, this is no longer the case today.  Medium to coarse is sufficient! However, under no circumstances should the grounds be too fine. In our detailed instructions on how to use a cafetière, we'll tell you why!

Selecting the Correct Water Temperature!

Especially when it comes to the water temperature, you should not make any compromises.  The roast of your beans determine how high this should be.

The general consensus is that the ideal water temperature is 203 °F (95 °C)  with certain varieties benefiting from a temperature of 194–198 °F (90 to 92 °C).  A thermometer comes in handy here. In general, the water should never be hotter than 205 °F (96°C).

The Perfect French Press Coffee in 9 Easy Steps!

Here’s what you’ve been waiting for: our detailed instructions on how to use a cafetière

To get the best possible results.

  • First, boil some water to prepare the glass pot. Pour the hot water into the pot and pour it out after a few minutes. Why is this essential? This way, your hot beverage will stay at an optimal temperature longer!
  • Now you should weigh out the beans (or measure out the grounds, whichever you prefer). As already mentioned, 45 grams are sufficient for most devices (for a 0.75 liter pot)
  • If you're not using grounds, this is where the grinder comes in! A medium to coarse grind is ideal.
  • Now it’s time to put the grounds into the coffee press.
  • Pour some of the boiled water, into the pot and stir well once so that the coffee grounds come into contact with the water from all sides. Please ensure that the water temperature does not exceed 205 °F (96°C).
  • Let the aromatic mixture brew for 30 seconds before adding the remaining water. An additional 4 minutes of brewing time is required.
  • Then place the lid on the coffee plunger and press the filter slightly below the surface to allow it to warm up. This causes the metal of the stamp to expand slightly.
  • Then slowly and gently press the plunger down to separate the coffee grounds from the beverage. If you feel a lot of resistance, wait a little longer because then the coffee requires a bit more brewing time.
  • And now for the best step: enjoy your excellent coffee!
How to use a cafetière

Coffee Plunger Tips for Those Who like to Experiment

A good cup of joe is a truly marvelous experience! If you feel adventurous, you can try different types of coffee to find out which one you prefer. Some people like to mix different varieties together to create a custom-made flavor. By the way, you can also make espresso in the French Press.

Some connoisseurs like to add a pinch of ground cardamom to the French Press, and others swear by a pinch of salt, a touch of cinnamon, and a teaspoon of cocoa powder as additional ingredients. A hint of vanilla also goes down well. Feel free to get creative!

Coffee Annan – Good coffee with a Good Conscience!

As with all coffee, everything comes down to the quality of the beans. At Coffee Annan, they are not only sustainably grown and harvested, but also roasted directly in the country of origin.

This not only ensures a particularly enchanting aroma, but also helps the people in the producing countries to build a sustainable future for themselves and their children. Feel free to take a look around our store: we bet that you will find your favorite variety there.


How Do You Clean a French Press?

Fortunately, cleaning it isn't that hard. Simply empty the coffee grounds into a kitchen strainer to prevent clogging the drain, and then clean the French Press with dish soap and a sponge.

The plunger itself requires a little more care when cleaning: unscrew it and clean the individual parts separately.

What Happens If the Coffee Is Too Finely Ground?

If the grind setting is too fine, the coffee extraction is too high and this can make your favorite brew taste bitter. Our recommendation is a medium to coarse grind!

Which Roast Is the Best for the Cafetière?

As we explained in the detailed guide on how to use a cafetière – anything goes. However, you should bear in mind that a medium to heavy roast will provide the strongest flavor.

The Bottom Line

With our instructions on how to use a cafetière, you should be able to make a perfect cup of coffee every time. From now on, you can forego coffee to go! This guide will help you make your own gourmet coffee in no time at all, and you can save a lot of money. You can also add a personal touch to your favorite brew. Give it a try! We hope you enjoy getting creative and honing your barista skills.

Share this post
Luc Hubeli
May 17, 2023