The French Press

If you’re not interested in another entry about coffee then stop reading right now, because this is yet another entry about magic beans.

In my ongoing search for better brews I came across a little device called the French Press. I’d read about it on the internet (a line that’s becoming more and more synonymous with “I’m full of crap” every day), and I was intrigued. Six months and ten bucks later… I had myself a new coffee maker from Target. The look and feel of the device gives a certain amount of credence to the “experimentation” metaphor… it looks like something straight out of a high school chemistry lab (if long term memory serves)… complete with a tall glass beaker.

“What the heck is a French Press?” You may be asking. Well I’m glad you asked. Making coffee with a French Press has more in common with making Cool Aid than coffee. (My more discerning readers will object on the basis that, since it makes coffee, it’s exactly like making coffee, but I digress.) You take the glass beaker, dump in a coarse grind of your favorite beans, add hot water, and let sit for at least four minutes.

Fear not, dear reader… the instructions don’t end there, nor does this story. Nay, the last step is the critical step – the part that puts the press in the French Press. Picture a toilet plunger, but instead of a rubber plunger there’s a circular piece of extremely fine steel mesh that is slightly wider than the mouth of the beaker, reinforced with a metal frame that is slightly narrower than the mouth of the beaker. (When I actually write it down, it doesn’t sound much like a toilet plunger anymore, but I digress once again.) You fit it inside the mouth of the beaker and slowly push down on the handle. This separates the beans from the beverage, leaving you with a lovely looking coffee brine. (Don’t look up brine in the dictionary, lest another one of my metaphors falls apart yet again.)

Maybe I didn’t make it quite right, but my first cup of French Press Joe could cure you of coma. Yep, it’s that good.

Surgeon General’s Warning: Caffeine is not a substitute for a good night’s sleep. Excessive use of caffeine has been shown to cause digressing in laboratory animals.

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