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Brewing with a French Press

The French press brews a full-bodied cup of coffee coffee. If you’re looking to pick up more of the characteristics that make your coffee unique, this is your brew method!

The French press is an immersion brewing method, meaning that the coffee grounds are steeped in hot water before being pressed to the bottom by a metal filter.

You will want to use a coarse grind for brewing your French press coffee. Pour the amount of coffee you’d like into the press then add hot water. Place the lid on top of the French press with the metal filter up. Wait 4-6 minutes and press the metal filter down. Pour and enjoy!

 

Why we like the French Press

It’s a great brewing method to relax and enjoy your coffee.

 

What you will need

Freshly roasted coffee from Red Cedar Coffee Co.

Grinder

French Press

Water Kettle

Digital Scale (to help replicate your favorite recipe)

 

Pro-tip

We find that steeping your coffee for 4-6 minutes is the sweet spot.

 

Pictured above

Our Tasting Room carries double-walled stainless-steel French presses. The French presses have new technologies that create a barrier between the coffee and coffee grounds meaning you won’t have to worry about bitter coffee. Also pictured is a handmade stoneware mug.

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Choosing a Coffee Grinder

Grinding your coffee beans fresh is one of the best ways to brew a more flavorful cup of coffee. Coffee begins to start losing some of its flavor and aromatics as soon as it is ground.

If you like to have the flexibility of grinding for different brewing devices or wish to get the most flavor out of your coffee, you may want to consider grinding your coffee before brewing.

 

Blade vs. Burr Grinder

Blade grinders heat the coffee as they operate due to friction. Many blade grinders have a button that must be held down to grind; depending on who is grinding the coffee, it is much hard to achieve a consistent grind on a blade grinder.

Burr grinders have two revolving abrasive surfaces (“burrs”) and in between which the coffee is ground. Burr grinders slice through coffee beans more consistently which is best for brewing flavorful coffee.

 

Why we Like Burr Grinders

Burr grinders help you brew coffee-shop quality coffee at your home or office. The Red Cedar Coffee Co. Tasting Room features two burr grinders models: Baratza Encore and Baratza Virtuoso grinders.

The Encore is a great entry level burr grinder. The Encore features 40 grind settings. It is lighter and has a small enough footprint that it will fit under standard kitchen cabinets.

The Virtuoso grinds coffee faster compared to the Encore and features a 60-second timed grind switch which is helpful when keeping coffee beans in the hopper. The Virtuoso also has 40 grind settings, however the Virtuoso grinds coffee more consistently for drip, pour over and espresso.

 

Keep your burr grinder in tip-top-shape!

Oils accumulate over time and using the Full Circle grinder cleaning tablet can help you get the most life out of your coffee grinder.

The grinder tablets have been formulated specifically to remove the coffee oils and residue on the grinder’s burrs and can also prevent jamming of the grinder.

Here’s a short article that explains how jams occur and how a little cleaning can prevent them.

The Full Circle grinder tablets we carry in the Tasting Room are food-grade safe and are the same quality of cleaner we use for our grinders.

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Brewing with a Chemex Coffeemaker

“What is that?” is a question we often overhear during our coffee tastings when we brew coffee using a Chemex. And for many reasons it is one of our favorite ways to brew coffee.

This brew method is a piece of art that is represented in numerous art museums including the Corning Museum of Glass and Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) in New York.

What is the Chemex?
Invented by chemist Dr. Peter Schlumbohm in 1941, the Chemex combines the beauty of an hour glass with the function of a coffee maker. What makes this piece of art even more impressive is that it brews consistently smooth coffee.

Why do we like the Chemex?
The double bonded Chemex paper filter removes a molecule in coffee oils which creates a clean cup of coffee free from bitterness.

The Chemex does especially well in with washed coffees like our Guatemala Antigua and Costa Rica La Lia Finca Dragon.

We carry the 8-cup (40 ounce) Chemex and coffee filters in our Tasting Room in Berea, Ohio.

Brewing Tip: Use a digital scale when using a Chemex for accuracy.

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Why we brew coffee using a scale

If you have attended one of our coffee tastings at our Red Cedar Coffee Co. tasting room in Berea, Ohio, you may have noticed that for pour over (i.e. Chemex, Hario) and emersion (i.e. French press) coffee brewing methods we use a digital scale. Did you know we also use a digital scale when brewing using a drip coffee maker?

Weighing ingredients helps with consistency

Brewing using a digital scale helps to brew coffee with consistency and accuracy. It’s a small step that is extremely helpful to make sure that you are replicating the same brewing recipe each time. Oftentimes a brewing recipe will show a brewing ratio such as 1:16 (one-ounce coffee to 16 ounces water).

How to use a digital scale for pour overs and emersion methods

For pour over and emersion brewing methods we place the brewer onto the digital scale, tare the weight with coffee, and then weight out the amount of water we use to brew our coffee.

Using the digital scale means you have more control in the amount of water you use. This can be helpful when using a 40 oz. Chemex to brew only 16 oz.

Where to get a digital scale

Red Cedar Coffee Co. carries a Hario digital scale in the tasting room.

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2018 Coffee Tasting Dates

We are pleased to announce the 2018 Coffee Tasting dates for Red Cedar Coffee Co.

The first Saturday of each month (excluding September) between 10am-1pm we will feature a different coffee to show the coffee’s uniqueness. The last coffee tasting for the tasting day will start at 12:45 pm.

If you ever had an interest in learning more about coffee, regions, or how to brew using different methods, then our coffee tastings are for you! Stop in and share a fun experience while learning how to improve your coffee brewing skills.

We will announce the theme for each coffee tasting prior to the event in our Tasting Room, on social media and in our monthly newsletter.

Dates for 2018:

  • January 6
  • February 3
  • March 3
  • April 7
  • May 5
  • June 2
  • July 7
  • August 4
  • October 6
  • November 3
  • December 1

 

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Toddy Cold Brew

We have recently been fielding questions on cold brew technique at the Red Cedar Coffee Co. Tasting Room in Berea, Ohio. As we head into the warm summer months it is not hard to think about cool summertime beverages. Cold brew coffee is one of those options.

While cold brew tends to be most popular during the summer, increasingly it is being served year-round in cafes and restaurants. The Toddy Cold Brew System brews a coffee concentrate using cold or room temperature water. When you are ready to drink cold brew coffee simply add 3 parts of water milk or soy (cool or steaming) to 1 part coffee.

We will feature the Toddy Cold Brew System as one of the three brew methods during our summer coffee tastings (May 6, June 3, July 1, August 5).

 

Why we like the Toddy Cold Brew System

One benefit to cold brew coffee is the longer brew time (using cooler water) removes much of the acidity naturally found in coffee (50-67% less acidity compared to drip coffee makers according to Toddy).

Another benefit is that the Toddy Cold Brew system is easy to brew and clean. The coffee concentrate stays fresh up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.

 

What comes with the Toddy Cold Brew System

The system comes with a brewing container, glass decanter, lid, Toddy filters (2) and a rubber stopper. The Toddy Cold Brew system is BPA free.

Red Cedar Coffee Co. sells the Toddy Cold Brew System, Toddy replacement stoppers and Toddy replacement filters.

 

Brewing Steps:

  1. Pour coarsely ground coffee and cold water into the brewing container.
  2. Steep for 12-24 hours.
  3. Filter the coffee concentrate into the glass decanter. Stays fresh for up to 2 weeks.

 

Cold Brew Coffee Recommendations

While any coffee may be used to brew cold brew coffee, we have a couple recommendations. If you prefer fruitier coffees try our Kenya AA or Ethiopian Sidamo. For chocolaty notes try our Fair Trade Certified Organic Colombian.

 

Thai Iced Coffee*

Ingredients

4 oz. Toddy® Cold Brewed Coffee

1/4 tsp. Cardamom

2 oz. Half and Half

Ice

Directions

Stir all ingredients, except the ice, together in a 16 oz. cup until well combined. Fill with ice.

 

Orange Truffle*

Ingredients

3 oz. Toddy® Cold Brewed Coffee (Use coffee beans with chocolate notes)

1 oz. Chocolate Syrup

1 oz. Caramel Syrup

1 oz. Orange Juice

6 Ice Cubes

2 oz. Cold Milk

Directions

Stir together ingredients (except milk and ice). Pour into tall glass over ice, add milk and serve.

 

Café Français*

Ingredients

1/4 cup Heavy Cream, Chilled

1 tbs. Confectioners’ Sugar

1/4 tsp. Vanilla

3/4 cup Toddy® Cold Brewed Coffee

1/4 cup Steaming Hot Water

Directions

Beat cream until rich and fluffy, with soft peaks. Mix in sugar, and continue to beat until stiff peaks. Add whipped cream to mug. Mix Toddy® coffee concentrate with water and steam. Add vanilla and pour over cream. Serve right away, and do not stir.

*Recipes from Toddy.com. Additional Toddy cold brew recipes may be found here.