Wondering how to choose the best whole coffee beans for French press? With this brewing method, the beans you select make all the difference in bringing out a full, robust flavor.
This guide will walk you through the key factors to look for when selecting whole beans to make an incredible French press coffee.
We’ll cover ideal roast levels, taste profiles, origins and more. You’ll learn how to pick beans that offer complexity, body and bold notes that shine through when pressed.
By the end, you’ll know exactly what to look for when buying whole beans to make your perfect French press cup. So read on to become a French press bean expert.
When it comes to French press coffee, using the best organic coffee beans makes all the difference.
Organic coffee beans offer exquisite flavor clarity and complexity without any chemicals. Look for USDA certified organic beans when buying coffee specifically for French press brewing.
The immersion process showcases subtle tastes and aromas that can be obscured by pesticides.
Treat your tastebuds to the clean, pure coffee experience that only the best organic coffee beans for French press can provide.
Why the Right Coffee Bean Matters for French Press
When it comes to brewing delicious French press coffee, choosing the perfect whole coffee beans is crucial. The whole coffee beans you use can make or break the full-bodied flavor that makes French press coffee so unique.
So how do you find the best whole coffee beans for French press? This guide will walk you through everything you need to know to get French press perfection.
Choosing the Best Whole Coffee Beans for French Press
Not all whole coffee beans are created equal when it comes to French press. You want beans that will stand up to the immersion brewing process and yield a flavorful cup.
Here are some tips on picking the right beans:
- Go for medium or dark roasts – They hold up better to French press extraction.
- Choose beans with rich, robust notes – Nuttiness, cocoa, caramel flavors shine through.
- Look for high-quality Arabica beans – They offer complexity missing from Robusta.
- Seek out fresh beans – Whole beans stay freshest. French press highlights fresh flavor.
Keep these tips in mind as you shop for whole beans to find your perfect French press match. The bean you choose is essential to French press success.
The Basics of French Press Brewing
Before picking those perfect good coffee beans for French press, it helps to understand what makes French press unique. Here’s a quick look at the basics.
- The French press involves fully immersing the coffee grounds in hot water and letting them steep before pressing.
- This long steep time and full immersion allows for bold flavor extraction from the beans.
- Quality bean selection tailored to French press is key to maximize the immersion process.
- The right beans will stand up well to the long brew time and fully extract without becoming overpowering.
- Understand what the French press highlights in beans – body, richness, complexity.
- Look for beans with taste notes and roast levels suited for bold immersion brewing.
Understanding the French Press Method
French press couldn’t be simpler – hot water and whole coffee beans are combined in a glass or metal cylinder, then pressed through a filter. But the full immersion brewing process is what sets it apart.
The grounds steep in the hot water for several minutes, allowing the fullest flavor extraction from the whole beans. Oils and compounds have time to mingle before pressing.
Why Whole Beans are Essential for the Best Brew
Whole coffee beans are integral for making the most of the French press method. Pre-ground coffee just can’t achieve the same results.
By grinding beans fresh right before brewing, you get the most flavor and aroma. The coarse grind size needed for French press also requires whole beans.
The whole beans soak up water for superior extraction versus pre-ground. Letting those flavors fully immerse makes French press coffee shine.
So embrace whole beans to unlock the full potential of French press. Now let’s look at some winning options.
What Makes These Beans Ideal for French Press
Picking the right whole coffee beans is key for making great tasting French press coffee. Here are two things that matter most:
Whole Coffee Bean Freshness
Freshness is super important for French press. Using new, fresh whole beans gives you the best flavor.
Whole beans stay fresher than pre-ground coffee. Grinding your own whole beans right before brewing helps keep all the oils and aromas inside.
Flavor That Comes Through When Pressed
Some whole beans are perfect for French press because they have extra flavor that comes out when brewed this way.
Beans with a nice body, richness and complexity taste great through the long steep and press. The right beans make the method shine.
Now let’s look at some of the best whole bean choices for tasty French press coffee.
1. Lavazza Super Crema
Lavazza Super Crema is a mild, creamy whole bean blend that makes a smooth French press coffee.
- One bag of 2.2 lb Lavazza Super Crema Whole Bean Coffee Blend
This is a blend of beans from Central and South America.
- Use 205°F water.
- Brew for 4 minutes.
The creamy notes in this blend taste great when brewed with the French press method. Give it a try for a smooth, easy-drinking cup.
2. Kicking Horse Cliff Hanger
Kicking Horse Cliff Hanger is a berry and chocolate flavored whole bean that shines when brewed in a French press.
This is a blend of beans from Africa, Indonesia, Central and South America.
- One Bag of Cliff Hanger Espresso Whole Bean Blend
- Grind coarser
- Brew for 4-5 minutes
The wild berry notes and complexity of this medium roast are perfect to extract using the French press technique.
3. Death Wish Organic Coffee
Death Wish Organic is an ultra-bold dark roast whole bean that makes a strong French press coffee.
- Low acidity
This is a blend of beans from India, Peru and Guatemala.
- EXTRA KICK OF CAFFEINE: Our whole roasted coffee beans will utterly transform your basic cup of joe into a delicious,…
- Use very hot water just below boiling.
If you like bold, intense coffee, Death Wish organic is a great whole bean choice for French press to yield a strong cup.
4. Stumptown Hair Bender
Stumptown Hair Bender is a balanced medium roast whole bean with nice acidity, perfect for French press.
- Chocolate notes
- Balanced acidity
This is a blend sourced from Africa, Indonesia, and Latin America.
- Contains one (1) 12 Ounce Bag of Stumptown Hair Bender Whole Bean Coffee
- Grind beans slightly coarser
- Brew for 4 minutes
The acidity and chocolate notes of this blend shine through when extracted using the French press method.
5. Peet’s Major Dickason’s Blend
Peet’s Major Dickason’s Blend is a rich, smooth dark roast organic whole bean blend optimized for French press.
A blend of the best beans from the world’s top coffee-growing regions.
- Contains one (1) 18 Ounce Bag of Peet’s Major Dickason’s Blend Whole Bean 100% Arabica Coffee
- Use a coarse grind
- Brew for 4 minutes
- Use 205°F water
This organic blend is specially created to deliver a delicious cup when brewed using a French press. The full body stands up beautifully to the immersion brewing.
6. Ethical Bean Lush Roast
Ethical Bean Lush Roast is an organic medium-dark roast whole bean with nice nutty notes that shine when pressed.
- Subtle earthy notes
This is an organic, fair trade blend sourced from small-scale farmers.
- GROUND COFFEE: One 8 oz. bag of ETHICAL BEAN Lush Medium Dark Roast ground coffee
- Use a coarse grind
- Brew for 4-5 minute
The nutty undertones in this responsible blend make it a delicious whole bean choice for French press coffee.
7. Cafe Du Monde with Chicory
Cafe Du Monde is a unique New Orleans-style whole bean and chicory blend perfect for French press.
- Chicory flavor
- Subtle spiciness
- Bold aroma
Sourced from South and Central America and blended with roasted chicory.
- Enjoy the taste of New Orleans Cafe du Monde Coffee in convenient pods
- Use hot water around 200°F
- Brew for at least 4 minutes
This classic combination shines when brewed with the French press technique. The chicory’s woody flavor comes through beautifully.
8. Blue Bottle Giant Steps
Blue Bottle Giant Steps is a complex dark roast whole bean blend crafted specifically for French press brewing.
- Rich chocolate
- Baked cherry notes
A blend crafted by Blue Bottle from beans grown around the world.
- Grind beans coarser
- Brew for 4 minutes
With bold flavor notes like cocoa and molasses, this blend makes an incredible French press cup when brewed properly.
9. Counter Culture Big Trouble
Counter Culture Big Trouble is a sweet, balanced medium roast whole bean that brews beautifully in a French press.
- Sweet, nutty
- Cocoa tones
This is a custom blend sourced from fair trade certified coffee farms.
- COUNTER CULTURE COFFEE: Relentlessly pursuing the perfect cup of coffee since our founding in 1995.
- Use a coarse grind
- Brew for 3-4 minutes
The sweet, nutty notes of this specialty whole bean blend make it perfect for French press – the immersion brings out the flavor wonderfully.
10. Four Sigmatic Mushroom Coffee
Four Sigmatic Mushroom Coffee pairs whole coffee beans with health-boosting mushrooms for a uniquely flavored French press brew.
- Rich umami flavor
- Smooth finish
This blend contains Arabica coffee beans and organic lion’s mane and chaga mushrooms.
- Four Sigmatic Mushroom Coffee Lion’s Mane and Chaga Pack of 3 (30 Packets Total)
- Coarsely grind beans and mushrooms together
- Brew for 5 minutes
The addition of functional mushrooms gives this whole bean blend a rich, earthy flavor and immune-boosting properties. A great French press choice for the health-conscious coffee drinker.
11. Intelligentsia Black Cat Espresso
Intelligentsia Black Cat is a classic medium-dark roast whole bean that makes a robust French press brewed espresso.
- Smooth, creamy
- Molasses and cocoa tones
Sourced from Brazil, Guatemala, and Sumatra.
- Contains one (1) 12 Ounce Bag of Intelligentsia Black Cat Classic Espresso Whole Bean Coffee. Packaging may vary for a…
- Grind very coarsely
- Press slowly for a bold cup
Though marketed for espresso, this whole bean blend also excels when pressed slowly in a French press to yield a robust, full-flavored brew.
1. Can I use whole coffee beans in a French press?
Yes, using freshly roasted whole coffee beans is recommended for French press brewing. Whole beans stay fresher longer compared to pre-ground coffee. Grinding the beans right before brewing helps extract the most flavor and aroma. Using whole beans allows you to tailor the coarseness of the grind specifically for French press.
2. What kind of coffee beans do you use in a French press?
Look for whole coffee beans that are medium or dark roast. Beans with a more robust, full-bodied flavor profile stand up well to the immersion brewing process. Choose beans with tasting notes like chocolate, nuts, caramel that come through when steeped. The origin and roast level both impact suitability for French press.
3. How do you grind whole coffee beans for French press?
Grind whole coffee beans on a coarse setting, similar in size to kosher salt grains. A consistent, uniform coarse grind allows the coffee to fully extract and develop complexity. Avoid a fine grind which can lead to overextraction. Use a burr grinder if possible for most consistent size.
4. How much whole bean coffee for French press?
The standard ratio is 1:15 or one part coffee to 15 parts water. But adjust to taste. Use around 14-16 grams of coarse ground coffee per 8 ounce cup. Reduce amount slightly for darker roasts. Your bean choice and coarseness of grind will impact ideal amount.
Choosing the right whole coffee beans for French press is essential to brewing a delicious, full-flavored cup. With so many bean varieties and origins to pick from, it can be tricky to select the perfect one for French press perfection.
This guide covered some of the top things to look for when shopping for whole beans, like flavor notes that come through when pressed, freshness, and medium to dark roasts. We also provided brewing tips to extract the fullest flavor once you have your beans.
While taste is subjective, hopefully the 11 highlighted bean choices provide a great starting point on your journey to French press nirvana.
Try out a few to find your favorites. With the right whole coffee beans and proper brewing, you’ll be sipping outstanding French press coffee in no time.