Monday, October 12, 2015

Lingering over breakfast with a french press

I enjoy drinking coffee. I'm not one of those people that needs coffee to function first thing in the morning; my first coffee will often be 5 to 6 hours after I wake up. I drink coffee for the flavors of the beans and for the art of making coffee.

I recently attended the 2015 International Food Bloggers Conference (disclaimer: this post is one of three posts I'll write in return for a discounted ticket) and a pre-event sponsored by Sur La Table and KitchenAid. I'm all about gadgets and cool kitchen cookery, so it was a great to visit the Sur La Table's test kitchens and see the new products coming out this fall. And I was quite pleased by the new Kitchen Aid Precision French Press that we were given.
If you've seen my Instagram photos, you know I love coffee and geeking out about it, maybe half of my pictures are of coffee in the making. Not only is the Precision French Press beautiful in it's stainless steel glory, it has a scale and timer built in so you can get your coffee just right every time. And because a French Press says lingering over breakfast or a baked good, the double wall construction keeps the coffee warm longer.
Photo by Parker Raines
Using the press is quite simple, especially given that it is self-contained.  I warm my press with boiling water, empty it and measure the coffee with the integrated scale. The manual comes with a table for a 1:16 coffee to water ratio, so no early morning math is needed! Tare the scale and fill with water to the target weight and then start the timer, all right there on the handle.  I like a 4 minute brew time and after a stir to break the crust, a gentle press of the plunger makes great tasting coffee.

Keep in mind that brewing with French Press does require a slightly coarser grind coffee, otherwise pressing the plunger will get pretty tough.  I've had glass presses break on me as I've been pressing and its quite a mess, but with the strength of stainless steel, I'm not sure how this one would fail - no matter what it would be a hot mess. So, just make sure you use an appropriate grind, which is nicely pictured in the manual, as well.

Personally, I'm quite happy that the art and science of making coffee is becoming more prevalent. It's no longer the brown stuff from the can that my grandparents would drink; like wine and chocolate, the subtle flavor nuances are now being appreciated.

How do you like to make and drink your coffee? Are you on board with the craft coffee movement or does coffee help you survive the morning?