Simplicity is one of the primary points of appeal with the Chemex system. You add coffee grounds to the filter, you pour over the water and voilá - quality coffee in seconds.
But when it comes to brewing the best Chemex coffee, a more strategic approach is called for. It’s still a walk in the park from start to finish, but one that involves a little more precision.
Before Brewing with Chemex
Prior to getting started, a few pointers to ensure the best possible results:
- Always start with the highest quality whole bean coffee, grinding as much as you need just before you brew.
- Using a reliable scale to ensure you get the right ratio of coffee to water will help keep the results consistent.
- Note any changes in ratios you make along the way, as you experiment with different quantities of coffee and water.
- A gooseneck kettle may seem like an elaborate investment, but nonetheless holds the key to optimal control of the flow.
How to Brew an Unbeatable Cup of Chemex Coffee:
- Add the required quantity of filtered water to your kettle and switch it on. Once it has boiled, allow it to begin cooling as you progress through the following steps.
- Weigh out the precise amount of coffee you need, in accordance with the size of your Chemex and the number of cups you are brewing.
- Place the Chemex filter paper in the opening, ensuring it is the right way up.
- Pour water over the filter paper to pre-soak it - essential for getting rid of the papery taste and for preheating the vessel below.
- Dispose of the water in the carafe without removing the filter, as to do so will compromise the integrity of the suction/adhesion.
- Grind the coffee beans at the last possible moment, ideally using a burr coffee grinder. Add the grounds carefully to the filter.
- Pour a small amount of water over the grounds in a spiral motion to saturate them, before leaving for around 45 seconds to allow the grounds to bloom.
- With the bloom complete, you can continue pouring the rest of the water over the grounds using the same circular motion. While doing so, try to avoid contact with the sides when pouring the water.
- When the water level reaches around 1 inch (i.e. 2.5cm) below the wooden collar of the Chemex, stop pouring and leave to drip.
- Discard the coffee grounds, transfer the coffee to your favorite cup and enjoy an epic Chemex coffee experience!
Once again, it can be enjoyable (and beneficial) to mix things up with weights, measures and coffee types. Take notes along the way regarding what works for you, helping you come up with the perfect recipe for your dream cup of coffee.
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