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While the pour-over coffee brewing method continues to gain popularity, many people wonder how to grind for Chemex to make the best coffee.
See having the right coffee grind for Chemex allows you to brew great coffee with high control throughout the brewing process.
Chemex is one of the best easy ways to brew coffee without having to purchase expensive equipment.
It has won awards in both design and functional science communities and obtained a permanent location in some prominent museums in the world.
Most Chemex users like this coffee maker as it can brew perfect coffee with any type of roast.
If you are wondering what the right coffee grind to make the best cup of coffee is, you have come to the right page.
This text will help you know the correct grind for coffee and teach you how to grind for Chemex to make coffee.
But first, let's understand the meaning of a Chemex:
What is a Chemex?
A Chemex is a coffee maker that brews coffee through the manual pour-over style. It features a glass flask that is usually shaped like an hourglass.
The glass flask’s handle is enclosed with a wood or a leather tie. Peter Schlumbohm invented the Chemex Coffee maker in 1941.
Being a quality coffee maker, Chemex is actually what most coffee makers try to be. It has never needed improvements since invention.
This coffee maker features all the things you need to make great coffee for your family.
Like most coffee makers, Chemex uses gravity to pull hot water through a bed of ground coffee beans that are placed on Chemex filters.
The unique thing about the Chemex physical appearance is the heatproof wooden collar on the neck for easy handling.
Chemex Coffee Maker is available on various online stores like Amazon, in different sizes and with two handle options.
While Chemex looks like most coffee makers, its thick filters make it unique and a better option for brewing coffee at home.
The Chemex filters are thicker than those filters used in most pour-over coffee makers. This results in slow brewing to achieve a richer and strongly flavored coffee.
Heavy filters also filter all the unwanted fats and oils to ensure that your coffee has the best natural taste.
Another fantastic thing about thick Chemex filters is that they can remove more cafestol, a compound that elevates cholesterol level in coffee.
If you want to make clean, pure, and flavorful coffee with no bitterness or sediment, Chemex filters will help you achieve that with ease.
How to Grind Coffee for Chemex Brewing
As with other coffee makers, the type of grind matters a lot when brewing coffee with a Chemex. Thus, it’s essential to learn how to grind coffee for Chemex brewing.
Keep in mind that the Chemex coffee grind type is different from that of a French Press that uses a coarse grind.
The best thing to do is to grind your coffee with a burr grinder as it will help you achieve a medium-coarse grind (less chunky coffee grind). It allows you to select the desired grind size.
This grind size will allow the right flow rate and for the best extraction of various coffee components.
You can follow the following steps to grind coffee for Chemex to make the best coffee:
Set your burr grinder to grind coffee to a medium grind, which is usually 5 to 10. The good thing about a burr grinder is that you can set it to any ground level.
Measure your freshly roasted coffee beans and be sure to use the right ratio. If you want to brew three cups of coffee, 55 grams of coffee will be okay.
Start the grinder according to the manufacturer's instructions to grind your coffee. Let the grinder slice the coffee beans until they reach the proper (set) grind.
The secret to great Chemex coffee is having a reliable and quality burr grinder. If you want to buy one, ensure that you get the best one.
You can buy a manual burr grinder or electric burr grinder, depending on your budget.
Why Burr Coffee Grinder is the Best for Chemex Coffee
A burr grinder is a type of coffee grinder that uses metal surfaces known as burrs. These burrs revolve against coffee beans to grind them into almost equal size pieces.
Burr grinders are designed in a way that you can adjust the burrs, depending on the grind-size you want to achieve.
This is because some brewing methods require coarse grind, while others require a very fine grind.
Having a quality burr grinder will provide you with uniformly sliced coffee beans, which will result in a very smooth coffee drink.
Most blade grinders lack this quality as they deliver coffee pieces that are smashed unequally.
What Grind Size is the Best for Chemex Brewing?
The right grind size for Chemex may vary from one person to the other, depending on their needs.
While the filter does most of the work when brewing coffee with a Chemex, it's vital to have the suitable grind size for Chemex to steer clear of over-extraction or under extraction.
Brewing coffee with very fine grind will lead to over-extraction, while using a too coarse grind will lead to under-extraction.
Over-extracted coffee won’t be ideal, as it might be bitter. Under-extracted coffee will taste a bit sour and sharp as water hasn’t had to absorb and break down enough sugars to neutralize the acids.
How does the Grind Size Relate to Coffee Extraction?
When it comes to coffee extraction, the grind size determines how the extraction will be through the brewing process.
Using the wrong grind size usually changes how the flavor compounds dissolve in the water. For instance:
Too fine grind size increases the amount of time that the hot water sits on the beans, leading to the extraction of the unneeded components that make your coffee bitter.
But if bitterness is not a bad thing for you, you can use very fine grind size to brew your coffee with Chemex.
Coarsely ground beans don't allow water to have enough time to extract essential compounds that balance the acidity. So, you end up with a sour and less flavorful cup of coffee.
How to Brew Coffee Using Chemex
Brewing coffee with a Chemex is one of the easiest ways to make coffee at home. The key thing is to ensure that you have the right Chemex coffee grind.
Whether you like light roast, medium, or dark roast, Chemex allows you to brew your favorite coffee.
To brew coffee with a Chemex Coffee Maker, you will need various things:
- Chemex brewer
- Chemex filters
- Roasted coffee beans
- A coffee grinder (burr grinder-recommended)
- A gooseneck kettle
- A cup
I highly recommend that you use a burr grinder if possible, as it provides the perfect grind needed for making coffee with a Chemex coffee brewer.
Once you have gathered all the requirements, you can then follow these simple steps to brew the best coffee with a Chemex Coffee Maker:
1. Heat the Water
Fill your kettle with clean water and start heating up until it boils in 195 to 200 degrees. It will take a while for the water to boil, and so you can do other preparations.
2. Place Your Chemex Filters In the Chemex
Tri-fold the Chemex filters to achieve a funnel shape and put one of them in the Chemex. The three layers are thick enough to promote perfect brewing.
3. Grind the Coffee Beans
Measure the desired amount of your favorite freshly roasted coffee beans and grind them into a uniform medium grind using a burr coffee grinder.
As mentioned earlier, the best grind for Chemex coffee brewing should not be too fine or too coarse. It should be slightly finer than the French Press coffee grind.
However, it should still look like granules and not fine like sand. If you grind your coffee beans to a very coarse texture, it will under extract and will pour through too fast.
4. Rinse the Chemex
Rinse the Chemex with hot water to seal the filter and remove any paper flavor before pouring your ground coffee.
Rinsing the Chemex with hot water will also preheat the unit and get it ready for brewing.
Then dump the water out by turning the Chemex upside down. Ensure to hold the filters in place when pouring the water to drop them.
5. Start Brewing
To brew your coffee, pour the ground coffee in the filter and get a timer.
Start the timer, then take hot water and begin saturating the coffee beans. Freshly roasted coffee beans will produce a bloom as you pour water to remove the carbon Dioxide created during roasting.
Pause a bit after wetting all the ground beans and give it one minute to bloom.
The bloom is very important as it allows the CO2 to escape. If you don't let your grounds bloom, the CO2 will make your coffee develop a sour taste.
Moreover, CO2 repels water, and it may affect the brewing process. Water will extract the coffee oils and aromatics easily when there is no CO2 interfering with the brewing process.
6. Add More Water
Add more water to brew your coffee and ensure that the water-coffee ratio is right. Generally, the ratio should be 1 gram of coffee to 15 grams of water.
If you used 35g of coffee, you would want to pour up to 525g of water, which is about two cups of water.
Be sure to pour the water slowly, but don’t go beyond five minutes to avoid brewing bitter coffee.
Some people also wonder if it’s possible to make iced coffee with a Chemex. The answer is yes, and you don’t have to wait overnight.
You brew coffee with hot water, but with ice in the flask to instantly cool the coffee.
7. Dispose of the Grounds and Serve Your Coffee
Once you have brewed the desired amount of coffee, dispose of the used grounds by removing the filter out of the Chemex.
Then replace the filter with a Chemex lid to keep the coffee hot as you serve it. Don't use heat to keep your coffee hot, as it will develop an unpleasant flavor.
How Do You Keep Your Chemex Clean?
Cleaning a Chemex doesn’t have to be a tough job. You just have to rinse it with warm water and a few drops of liquid soap after brewing your coffee.
If a residue is left on the bottom, you may want to do a deep cleaning. In this case, you can use salt and water to swirl and slosh the Chemex.
When your Chemex is clean, turn it upside down to dry.
Chemex Coffee Maker is also dishwasher safe, but with the wooden handle removed.
How to Make the Chemex Coffee Stronger
If you are one of the coffee fanatics who loves strong coffee, you must be wondering how to make the Chemex coffee stronger.
Luckily, it’s very easy to strengthen your Chemex coffee. All you have to do is adjust your coffee-water ratio.
The golden ratio for Chemex brewing is 35g of coffee for two cups of water or 55 grams of coffee for one liter of water.
To make stronger coffee, you can use 60 to 65 grams of coffee for one liter, depending on how strong you want your coffee to be.
For the grind, you can increase the fineness a little to boost the coffee's strength.
Chemex Brewing Tips
- If you found that the brewing time was way too long, you can coarsen the grind to steer clear of bitter coffee.
- If the brew time was too short, it will result in sour coffee. You can use a finer grind to solve this.
- Always put the multi-layered side of the filter on the upper (pouring) side of the Chemex to keep the filter even as you pour hot water.
- If your coffee is too bitter, it results from over-extraction. So, you will want to increase or coarsen the grind.
- If you brewed too weak and sour coffee, it resulted from under-extraction. So, you need to reduce the grind size to achieve a finer texture.
- Always use a burr grinder to grind coffee beans for Chemex brewing as it allows you to select the desired grinding level. It also slices the beans uniformly, instead of smashing them.
Chemex coffee requires medium-sized ground. Hence, it will be best to use a Burr grinder. Burr grinder is preferred because you can set the grind size of your choice.
Once you have your burr grinder set, take freshly roasted coffee beans and put in them in the grinder.
Start the grinder and allow it to slice the coffee beans according to the set ground size.
The ideal coffee size grind for Chemex coffee should be (medium grind) less chunky. Unlike the French press, Chemex coffee makers have thicker filters.
Very fine grinds will be over-extracted by the Chemex filter, which will result in a bitter coffee.
The Chemex flow rate will allow the extraction of the best flavor with a medium grind.
Chemex coffee makers have thicker filters compared to most traditional coffee makers. These filters are meant to regulate the rate at which coffee will flow.
This allows the extraction of most coffee components. Coarse grounds will not allow full extraction while fine grind will be over-extracted. The best ground size for Chemex coffee should be medium grind.
The time that you should grind coffee for Chemex is never constant. It depends on many factors that include the method and coffee grinder that you use.
The best answer to this question is when you reach the recommended grind size.
There are some grinders in the market today that allow you to preset the grind time for your desired ground size.
You can refer to your grinder’s user manual for the grind time that is recommended for your ground size.
When brewing coffee using Chemex, it is essential to use the correct water coffee ratio. The best ratio for Chemex brewing is 1gm of coffee to 15gm of coffee.
In this case, you can use 55 grams of coffee to brew three cups of coffee drink.
What is the Best Size Chemex?
There are different sizes of Chemex makers to choose from out there. However, the right size that you should get depends on your needs and the budget.
A 6-cup or 8-cup sized Chemex coffee maker is most preferred because it can make a larger number of people and is also good for one person.
Chemex Coffee Maker is a great way to change up your coffee routine. It can help you enjoy clean, non-bitter coffee.
I highly recommend it to any coffee enthusiast looking for an excellent tool that can brew the best cup of coffee.
When making coffee with a Chemex, the most important thing is to ensure that you have the right grind.
Always use a burr grinder when grinding coffee for Chemex to achieve a fine texture and uniformly-ground beans.
Regardless of the roast you have, Chemex brewing will give you a rich-tasting cup of coffee.