What is a French Press?

This is a very good question and one we are often asked. Given that you will have your own preference about how you like your coffee how many methods there are of brewing it, the answer depends on three main things - what coffee you want to produce, what bits of kit you have available to make it and the quality of the coffee you buy (spoiler alert: you cannot make a silk purse from a sows ear!). 

image of a cafetière AKA French press

The main brewing methods are espresso - this is the most expensive method as it requires an espresso machine but it produces, by some distance, the strongest coffee with the most caffeine. Next is the cafetière (AKA French press - shown to the left), filter (AKA the 'dripper' or 'pour-over' methods), Aeropress, and Turkish.

Of all the coffee we roast and grind for our customers, whole beans are the most popular followed by ground for cafetière. We think this is because if you don't have (or want) a grinder at home, a cafetière is easy to get along with, gives consistent results and is pretty cheap to buy. You can also buy a replacement glass part if you break it The main thing, though, is that you can produce excellent coffee in one.  

In case you've never seen (or even heard of) one, an Aeropress is a bit like a giant syringe - you pull the inner cylindrical part out of the tube, insert a filter paper and ground coffee, add water and allow to brew in the tube. Then you simply plunge the inner part to the bottom to force the liquid coffee through the filter paper directly into your cup. It's a sort of filter/espresso combo that can produce some great, strong coffee. Made of durable plastic and compact, they're excellent to take away on holiday, in a rucksack, suitcase, camping/fishing etc. 

image of dripper AKA filter or pour over

The most popular coffee drinks in the UK are café latte (which most people simply call 'a latte' which, if you asked for in Italy, would land you a cup of hot milk!), cappuccino and the flat-white. If you know what these three are you'll realise they are all very milky - which means if you want to taste the actual coffee, it needs to be quite strong.  

To get started with brewing great coffee, first of all buy some excellent coffee beans! Click on the beans to the left to buy some of our freshly roasted Arabica (which we will grind properly for you at no charge). The least expensive method is a plastic 'V' shaped filter paper holder that just sits on top of your cup. If you get to like this method you could always buy a more expensive proprietary version called a 'V60'. Filter papers for both are available bleached (if you insist on pure white paper) or unbleached (if you don't mind greyish/brownish paper and would prefer a more environmentally sound version i.e. no bleach. 
buy some of our coffee button

We encourage experimentation to find a method you like that produces the coffee you love. Whatever you do,  though, avoid stale old supermarket big brand coffee and buy some good freshly roasted stuff - like ours! Happy brewing.