October 2011

How to Make French Press Coffee

French press is a popular and gourmet-style way to make coffee. Fans of the French press will swear by the boldness and flavor it brings out of coffee beans. While it’s seen by some coffee aficionados as a fancy cup of coffee, making it is actually a pretty straightforward process!

Here’s how you make French Press coffee:

  1. Preparing for a French Press Coffee Brew. Using a French Press (Press Pot) is one of the easiest and best ways to get truly excellent coffee at home.The keys to getting good results are: using high quality fresh beans, grinding the coffee correctly for the brewing method, and timing the process.

    You’ll need a Press Pot, coffee, a grinder, a spoon, a timer, cups, and thermal carafe if you make more than one cup if your press isn’t insulated.

  2. Grind the Coffee. It is important that the coffee be ground coarse. Ideally use a quality burr grinder because it will provide an even grind. A blade grinder produces a somewhat inconsistent grind, so if you’re serious about coffee, start saving.By grinding the coffee coarse, you’re allowing for a slower and more even extraction, which results in a fuller bodied and more nuanced cup.

Blade grinders chop the coffee rather than grinding it, resulting in uneven and unpredictable particle size. This leads to an uneven extraction, creating increased bitterness. In addition, the lack of consistency in particle size results in inconsistent and unpredictable results from pot to pot.

  1. Add Coffee to the Pot. You’ll need one tablespoon (7 grams) of coffee for every 4 oz of water.

Feel free to adjust this amount based on your own personal tastes. Make sure the pot is clean and dry.

  1. Boil water and add it to the pot. Bring the water just to a boil. Pour it aggressively into the pot so that it saturates the grounds. The key is to saturate all the grounds evenly. Move the stream around as you pour to facilitate this. Do not fill the pot entirely.With many fresh coffees you will see significant expansion of the coffee in a sort of foam at the top of the liquid once you add water. This is known as bloom and is the result of the off-gassing of CO2 from the coffee.
  2. Set the timer to count down 4 minutes. Using this standard steeping time is essential to getting consistent quality coffee.
  1. After 1 minute stir the Pot. Add water to fill the pot.

Stirring the pot guarantees even and optimal extraction of the coffee. It also breaks down the bloom and allows you to add water without spilling.

  1. Put Press-Top on Pot. Make sure you line up the spout and the corresponding opening in the lid. Wait till the timer goes.
  2. Press the Pot At exactly 4 minutes. Push the press (slowly) into the pot to force all grounds to the bottom.
  1. Pour the Coffee. Do this as soon as you’ve pressed the pot. If you’re making more coffee than you can fit into a cup and want to hold some for later, pour the coffee into a thermal carafe. Do not leave the coffee in the Press Pot.

We hope these tips help you enjoy great coffee!

Maybe you have some tips for us. We’d love to hear from you! Drop by any of our Vancouver or Richmond locations and pick up some coffee beans for your French Press.

Interview with a Trees Organic Cafe Barista

Vancouver cafe coffeehouse barista serving coffeeTrees Organic barista Irene took a few moments out of her busy day so she could tell us what it’s like working in the heart of Vancouver’s café culture. Thanks, Irene!

Tell us a little about yourself.

I am quarter Japanese and three-quarters Korean. I moved to Vancouver in 2005. I love to sit in cafes and write letters. I like to ride my bike with my friends to Commercial Drive and explore neat cafes, pubs and restaurants. My hobby is collecting vintage Cameras and Playmobiles. And I am crazy about the band Metronomy, but nowadays I like to listen to Melody Gardot.

What’s so special about organic coffee beans?

Organic Coffee beans are good for you. They are chemical free, environmentally friendly and bird friendly. And we get our beans from fair trade farmers.

What do you like most about working at a cafe?

I love the atmosphere. The staff I work with are amazing and friendly. It’s warm and cozy. The Gastown location has two big windows with benches and pillows which make it a nice and comfortable place to relax, read a book, or hang out with a friend.

What is your favorite Trees beverage to drink and why?

During the summer I love to drink iced Lady Hannah tea. In the autumn, I like to have London Fogs. Our lovely Earl Grey tea has lavender in it which makes it something special. During the winter, I switch over to Soy Mocha. Chocolate makes me happy.

What’s your favorite cheesecake flavor?

That is a very hard question, I am not joking when I say they are all my favorites.

However, if I had to pick one, it would have to be the classic New York with strawberry sauce. During October I do really enjoy our feature of the month which is our Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake. It is so yummy!

Which sandwich would you recommend for lunch?

My favorite Sandwich is Turkey and Brie. The brie is mouth- watering. The crunchy lettuce on the baguette, and the combination of turkey and cranberries is to die for.

Tell us about your favorite customer.

My favorite customer is a girl by the name of Willow who comes in and orders a caramel latte and a scone. She always gets a small table and works on her school work. Also, there’s a gentleman who comes in almost every evening and grabs a skim milk Latte. He seems really humble, polite and genuine.

You’ll always be welcomed at Trees Organic by friendly service with a smile. Our October’s cheesecake flavor is Pumpkin Spice and our featured drink is a Pumpkin Pie Latte. Come into the cafe and enjoy some seasonal good cheer.