The Chemex is simply beautiful – a pour-over style coffee brewer, with a glass flask shaped like an hourglass. The design is so simple yet stunning that it’s actually featured in New York’s Museum of Modern Art. And, not only will it make your coffee look good, it’ll taste great too. That’s why it’s on our list of favourite at-home brewing equipment. Just be sure to use it right.
Just got your first Chemex? We suggest you practice to make sure you get the most out of this divine coffee maker. And, because we love all things ‘great coffee’, we’ve put together a list of coffee brewing tips to help you get the best possible Chemex-created cup.
Seven tips for getting the most out of your Chemex
1.Medium grind is best
Just before brew time, use a burr grinder to grind your coffee (we suggest single origin from a reputable roaster) for an even consistency. Go for a medium grind size (roughly the texture of sea salt) for the best possible brew. Too fine a grind will take too long given the thickness of the Chemex filers (see point 4).
2.Take time to measure it out
True coffee making is a a science and art and it should take some time and consideration. Get a good scale and measure your water and coffee as per the suggested amounts per cup. We work on a 1:16 ratio (coffee to water). So, for the large chemex, we place 50g ground coffee and 800g of water. This should take around 4-5 min to brew.
3.Get the right kettle
The pour-over method works best when combined with a gooseneck kettle like the Buono Drip – an elegant design (to complement the Chemex) that offers a no-spill pour from a neck perfectly suited to the Chemex’s shape.
Chemex filters are top notch for a reason – they’re about 30% thicker than regular coffee filters which means they filter out bitterness, oils, and grounds for a truly clean cup of coffee. Before brewing, pour a little hot water over the filter to wet it. This warms the glass and removes any paper taste. Dump out this water before carrying on with the actual brew.
5.Brew it right
Ready to make your coffee? Wet the grounds with about twice as much water as coffee grounds and wait 45 to 60 seconds. Bubbles (trapped gas) should emerge from the grounds. No bubbles? Be sure your coffee is fresh. Now pour the remaining water, in a circular motion, into the centre of the grounds.
6.Know when it’s done
Once the stream of coffee exiting the filter slows to a drip, you can remove the filter and dispose of it. Chemex requires an overall brew time of approximately 5 minutes but we suggest experimenting with this until you find the right strength for your personal taste. Now simply serve and savour!
7.Clean with care
To clean your Chemex, rinse it out with warm water and a few drops of liquid soap, and then turn it upside down to dry. If you have residue on the bottom, fill your Chemex halfway with ice and a quarter full with water. Add a few tablespoons of salt and a few drops of liquid soap. Swirl, then pour out and rinse.
Want to know more about our coffee? Talk to us or buy our top quality coffees or choice brew equipment on our website, and try them out for yourself. We love sharing good coffee (and the journey that comes with it) with our customers so please let us know how you enjoy the Science of Coffee experience – we’d love to hear from you!