Top 8 Best Coffee Beans for French Press


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I tried out eight different coffees, and the Estate Medium Roast Whole Bean Kona Coffee is the best pick for using with a French press.

Why trust my coffee tips? Well, I love coffee just as much as you do, and I’ve turned my kitchen into a coffee-testing lab. My mornings are about grinding, brewing, and tasting to find the perfect cup. So, when I share my favorite pick, it’s because it made an impression.

The Estate Medium Roast Whole Bean Kona Coffee came out on top. It’s especially good for the French press, and I’ll explain why in more detail soon.

And if you’re wondering whether there’s a coffee out there that’s the “best” for your taste, I’ve got you covered. Whether you like your coffee strong and bold or smooth and mild, there’s something for everyone.

So, stick around as we dive deeper into what makes a great French press coffee and how to find your perfect match. Keep reading!

Key Takeaways

  • Choosing the right coffee beans and grind size is crucial for exceptional French press coffee.
  • Knowing the origin of beans and brewing techniques can enhance the overall coffee experience.
  • Proper storage and brewing instructions are decisive in maintaining coffee freshness and flavor.

Our Best Coffee Beans for French Press

  1. Estate Medium Roast bean Kona coffee (Best coffee for French press Overall)
  2. Volcanica Costa Rica Peaberry
  3. Koffee Kult Columbian Dark Roast (Best Dark roast beans for French press)
  4. Kenya AA Nyeri Ichamara (Best single origin coffee beans for French press)
  5. Lifeboost Coffee Medium Roast (Best low acidic coffee beans for French press)
  6. Peet’s Coffee, Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee (Best Budget coffee beans pick for French Press)
  7. Intelligentsia coffee medium roast frequency Blend (Best coffee blend for French Press)
  8. Death Wish Coffee Medium Roast ( Best organic blend coffee beans for French press)

8 Best Coffee Beans for French Press

Of course, there are other great options for French press coffee besides the best overall choice. To help you find the perfect brew for your French press, we’ve considered various criteria, such as roast level, origin, variety, processing method, freshness, and customer reviews.

Based on this, we’ve compiled a list of eight top coffee recommendations for French press enthusiasts.

1. Estate Medium Roast Bean Kona coffee

  • Roast Level: Medium roast
  • Flavor Profile: 
  • Beans Origin: exclusively sourced from Hawaii
  • Certification: Assures single-estate 

Pro

  • A unique blend of fruity and nutty flavors creates a rich and delightful taste.
  • Smooth finish with no bitterness, suitable for a wide range of coffee enthusiasts.

Cons

  • Higher price point due to its rare Hawaiian origin.
  • Requires a grinder for whole beans, adding an extra step in preparation.

Why It’s Our Top Pick

The Estate Medium Roast Whole Bean Kona Coffee is our favorite for many reasons. It comes from a special part of Hawaii called Kona. The coffee there is super tasty because the soil is just right, and the weather’s perfect for growing coffee that tastes unique and good.

The roast level of this coffee is just right, too. It’s not too dark or light, so it’s just for anyone who loves a great cup of coffee. It’s like the Goldilocks of Coffee Roasts, just perfect for most people.

When you buy this coffee, you get it in whole beans, which is great because they keep their yummy flavors longer. When you grind the beans right before you make your coffee, it’ll taste fresher and more flavorful.

The taste of this coffee is also something special. It’s got a mix of flavors, from a little fruity to nutty, and it ends with a sweet and smooth taste that makes you feel cozy and happy.

Now, this coffee is a rare treasure. There’s not a lot of it because it only comes from a small area in Hawaii, which means every cup you drink is something special.

A Teeny Downside

There’s just one little thing you’ll need to grind the beans yourself. But even though it’s an extra step before you make your coffee, it’s worth it. Most folks who like coffee don’t mind because it’s part of the fun of making a really good cup.

2. Volcanica Costa Rica Peaberry Coffee

  • Roast Level: Medium 
  • Flavor Profile: Sweetly citrus with a smooth finish 
  • Beans Origin: Cultivated in the Tarrazu region near San Marcos
  • Certification: Rainforest Alliance Certified; Kosher Certified

Pro

  • Vibrant citrus notes make for a refreshingly bright cup.
  • It has a smooth and clean finish, ideal for a gentle morning start.

Cons

  • Specific taste profile may not appeal to those preferring classic coffee flavors

The medium roast of Volcanica Costa Rica Peaberry Coffee is optimal for French press brewing, maintaining the coffee’s unique flavors and balanced acidity for a rich, smooth cup.

The French press technique enhances the bean’s natural sweet citrus notes, ensuring a complex taste profile. Grown in the Tarrazu region, these beans bring a distinct taste that the French press method captures by not filtering out essential oils and fine particles.

The Rainforest Alliance and Kosher certifications add value for those who prioritize sustainable and pure coffee production.

3. Koffee Kult Columbian Dark Roast

  • Roast Level: Dark 
  • Flavor Profile: smooth, caramel, cinnamon, heavy body, and bright with a long finish.
  • Beans Origin: Harvested from the fertile lands of Colombia, Guatemala, Brazil, and Sumatra
  • Certification: none

Pro

  • Full-bodied coffee with a long-lasting aftertaste.
  • A blend of beans from various regions adds complexity.

Cons

  • The intense dark roast may be overpowering for some.

Bright spots:

For aficionados of robust brews, the Koffee Kult Colombian Dark Roast stands out as a bold, artisanal choice for French press enthusiasts. This dark roast presents a flavor profile that is both smooth and complex, featuring caramel and cinnamon notes, a heavy body, and a bright taste with a prolonged finish. 

The blend of beans sourced from the fertile regions of Colombia, Guatemala, Brazil, and Sumatra promises a richly textured cup that’s intensified by the French press method, which allows the full spectrum of flavors to shine without filtration. This coffee is a celebration of global coffee heritage, offering a deep dive into the world of dark roasts.

4. Kenya AA Nyeri Ichamara 

  • Roast Level:  medium-dark, SL28, SL34, Ruiri 11 Varietals
  • Flavor Profile: Peach Blossom, Orange Zest, and Black Tea
  • Beans Origin: Grown in Kenya’s renowned Nyeri region, an area synonymous with coffee excellence.
  • Certification: Kosher Certified, Sustainably Sourced and Proudly Roasted, Blended, and Packaged in USA

Pro

  • Complex flavor profile with fruity and tea-like notes.
  • A distinct and appealing aroma of peach blossom.

Cons

  • Medium-dark roast might not suit all taste preferences.
  • Unique flavor profiles may not align with traditional coffee tastes

The Kenya AA Nyeri Ichamara coffee is a medium-dark roast that perfectly balances bold intensity with nuanced flavors, making it an exceptional choice for French press connoisseurs.

This blend comprises the esteemed SL28, SL34, and Ruiru 11 varietals, each contributing to the coffee’s dynamic profile. The result is an aromatic cup that bursts with the fragrances of peach blossom and the zestiness of ripe oranges, underpinned by the subtle, comforting notes of black tea.

These beans are cultivated in the high altitudes and fertile soils of Kenya’s Nyeri region, a place that’s become synonymous with the pinnacle of coffee excellence. The meticulous care in cultivation and selection is palpable in every sip. This coffee not only tantalizes the palate but also resonates with the drinker’s values, holding a Kosher certification and a commitment to sustainability.

The entire journey of the bean, from its Kenyan roots to its roasting, blending, and packaging, is carried out in the USA, ensuring quality and traceability.

5. Lifeboost Coffee

  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Flavor Profile: Smooth, nutty, balanced
  • Beans Origin: Mountains Of Nicaragua (Central America).
  • Certification: USDA Certified Organic and 3rd Party Tested for mycotoxins, heavy metals, pesticides, and 400 other toxins.

Pro

  • Gentle on the stomach due to low acidity.
  • Nutty, well-balanced flavor for an easy-to-drink experience.

Cons

  • Mild flavor might lack intensity for some coffee drinkers

Lifeboost Coffee’s Medium Roast is a prime selection for those who prefer smooth, gently acidic coffee. It strikes a delightful balance with a medium roast profile that is both smooth and nutty, offering a harmonious flavor that’s easy on the palate.

These beans are cultivated in the lush mountains of Nicaragua, a region in Central America known for its rich volcanic soil, which contributes to the coffee’s low acidity and robust taste.

Lifeboost takes pride in not only having USDA Certified Organic credentials but also in going the extra mile by ensuring their coffee is 3rd Party Tested. This rigorous testing process checks for mycotoxins, heavy metals, pesticides, and over 400 other potential toxins, making it an exceptionally pure choice.

Choosing Lifeboost Coffee means enjoying a cup that’s as clean and wholesome as it is flavorful and aromatic.

6. Peet’s Coffee, Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee 

  • Roast Level: Dark roast
  • Flavor Profile: Earth, Spice
  • Beans Origin: Americas, Indo-Pacific
  • Certification: none

Pro

  • An affordable option for quality dark roast coffee.
  • Diverse bean sourcing adds to the richness of flavor.

Cons

  • Very dark roast may not be preferred by those who enjoy lighter coffees

Peet’s Coffee offers a Dark Roast Whole Bean selection that stands out as an affordable option for coffee lovers. This dark roast boasts a full-bodied flavor with pronounced earthy and spicy notes, making it ideal for those who prefer a robust cup of coffee.

The beans are sourced from the rich and varied terrains of the Americas and the Indo-Pacific, contributing to the coffee’s hearty taste profile. While it doesn’t come with specific certifications, Peet’s Coffee’s reputation for quality roasting ensures that each bag delivers a premium taste experience without the premium price, solidifying its place as a top budget-friendly choice.

7. Intelligentsia coffee medium roast frequency Blend.

  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Flavor Profile: Chocolate, Molasses
  • Beans Origin: Sourced from Brazil, El Salvador
  • Certification: Direct Trade

Pro

  • Rich and indulgent chocolate and molasses flavors.
  • Consistently smooth and well-rounded for daily drinking.

Cons

  • The flavor profile might not cater to all palates.

Intelligentsia’s Frequency Blend medium roast stands as a distinguished selection, perfect for those who favor a rich and balanced cup. This blend comes with a medium roast, highlighting a luscious flavor profile of chocolate and molasses, offering depth and sweetness in each sip.

The beans are meticulously sourced from Brazil and El Salvador, combining the best of both regions to create a harmonious flavor. The Direct Trade certification reinforces Intelligentsia’s dedication to ethical sourcing, ensuring that the coffee is not only of high quality but also supports fair and direct partnerships with the growers.

8. Death Wish Coffee

  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Flavor Profile: Subtle undertones of stone fruit and caramel
  • Beans Origin: A blend of Arabica and Robusta for a high-impact brew.
  • Certification: USDA Organic and Fair Trade, ensuring ethical sourcing and ecological respect.

Pro

  • Extremely strong, ideal for a significant energy boost.
  • It has a complex flavor with subtle undertones of stone fruit and caramel.

Cons

  • The unique blend might not align with traditional coffee flavor expectations.

For those seeking an organic option without sacrificing strength, Death Wish Coffee’s Medium Roast presents itself as an exemplary choice. It’s a meticulously balanced medium roast that delivers a bold and invigorating coffee experience, enhanced by the nuanced flavors of stone fruit and caramel. 

This blend marries the best of Arabica’s smoothness with the potent kick of Robusta, creating a high-impact brew that’s sure to energize. 

The Organic USDA certification assures that every bean in your cup has been grown without synthetic fertilizers or chemicals, ensuring that you’re savoring coffee that’s not only robust in flavor but also pure and produced with ecological integrity. 

Additionally, the Fair Trade label ensures that your purchase supports responsible sourcing and promotes the welfare of the farming communities. With every French press plunge, this coffee offers an intense awakening while honoring ecological and ethical standards.

Understand French Press

A French press is a manual coffee brewing method that offers a simple and convenient way to make a delicious cup of coffee. It consists of a cylindrical glass or stainless steel container, a plunger, and a metal or nylon mesh filter.

To make coffee with a French press, hot water is poured over coarsely ground coffee beans, and the mixture is allowed to steep for a few minutes. The plunger is then pushed down, separating the coffee grounds from the liquid, resulting in a rich and full-bodied brew.

One of the advantages of using a French press is the control it gives over the brewing process. The coffee-to-water ratio, water temperature, and steeping time can be easily adjusted to suit individual preferences. Furthermore, this brewing method typically produces a more robust and complex flavor profile compared to other methods, such as drip or pour-over coffee.

However, some disadvantages may include the presence of coffee sediments in the brew and a relatively longer brewing time compared to other methods.

When choosing a French press, several factors should be considered. Firstly, the size is important, as it determines the number of cups that can be brewed at once. Common sizes range from single serving presses to larger models that can serve several cups. Secondly, the material of the vessel is an essential aspect; while glass offers a visual appeal, stainless steel or double-walled French presses provide better heat retention and durability.

Another factor to consider is the filter type. Some French presses come with a deep metal filter, which helps reduce sediments and provides a cleaner cup of coffee. On the other hand, nylon mesh filters are easy to clean and generally more affordable. Last but not least, the durability of the plunger mechanism and other components should be considered before making a purchase.

Understand the Origin of the Beans

When choosing the best coffee beans for French press brewing, it’s essential to understand their origin, as it plays a significant role in determining their flavor and quality. Factors such as climate, soil, altitude, and cultivation practices all contribute to the unique characteristics of coffee beans from different regions.

Various coffee-producing regions around the world yield beans with distinct flavors and qualities. Ethiopian Yirgacheffe coffee beans are known for their light to medium roast and bright and fruity flavor profile, with notes of blueberry, lemon, and floral undertones. The high altitudes at which they’re grown contribute to their exceptional taste.

Apart from Ethiopia, other renowned coffee-producing regions include Colombia, Brazil, and countries from Central America. Each region has something unique to offer, making it essential to explore these variations while selecting beans for French press brewing.

To make an informed decision, it’s advisable to read the labels on coffee bags. These labels often provide crucial information regarding the origin of the beans, the roast level, and other details, such as whether the beans are single-origin or part of a blend. Learning to decode this information will help you select beans that suit your taste preferences.

Factors to Check Before Buying

Roast Level

The roast level of coffee beans plays a crucial role in the flavor profile of your French press coffee. Depending on your preference, you can choose from light to dark roasts. 

Light and medium roasts are associated with fruity and floral notes, while dark roasts have a bolder, richer flavor. 

For a full-bodied cup that highlights the unique characteristics of the bean, opt for a medium to dark roast.

Freshness

The freshness of coffee beans dramatically impacts the taste of your brew. Ideally, you should look for beans with a roast date within two weeks of purchase. Proper packaging, such as a sealed bag with a one-way valve, helps maintain freshness. Remember to store your coffee in an airtight container, away from heat, light, and moisture.

Origins of the Coffee Beans

Coffee beans from different regions have distinct flavor profiles. Some popular coffee-producing countries include Colombia, Ethiopia, and Guatemala. 

Make sure to pay attention to the origin of the beans when purchasing coffee for your French press.

Flavor Profile

Each coffee has unique flavors, which are influenced by factors such as bean origin, roast level, and processing method. To avoid monotony, try various flavors like sweet chocolate, spicy cinnamon, or fruit notes. Ultimately, choose a bean with a flavor profile that suits your palate.

When using a French press, remember to select coarsely ground coffee beans, as finer grinds can lead to a bitter taste in your brew.

By carefully considering factors like roast level, freshness, coffee origins, and flavor profile, you can find the perfect coffee for your French press experience. Finally, don’t forget quality accessories like a stainless-steel filter to ensure a consistent, rich, and satisfying cup of coffee.

How to Choose the Best Grind Size for the French Press

Grind size is essential for French press coffee because it directly impacts extraction and flavor. Choosing the right grind size ensures your coffee is well-balanced without overpowering or watery. So, how do you determine the best grind size for your French press?

One of the main issues with choosing the wrong grind size is that it can lead to over-extraction or under-extraction, resulting in bitterness or sourness in your coffee. Too fine grinds can cause sediment or sludge at the bottom of your cup, while too coarse grinds can lead to clogging or leakage in your French press.

The ideal grind size for French press brewing falls within the coarse to medium-coarse range. Coffee grounds should resemble small breadcrumbs and have a texture similar to sea salt. 

You may need to rely on visual cues and trial and error to determine the right grind size. Start with a coarse grind size and adjust it based on your taste preferences and extraction time. 

Brew Instruction

Brewing coffee with a French press is a simple and enjoyable process. To start, gather the essential tools and equipment, such as a kettle, a scale, a timer, a spoon, and a mug. Here’s a step-by-step guide to get you started:

  1. Preheat: Preheat the French press by pouring boiling water into it. This helps maintain a consistent water temperature throughout the brewing process. It is also a good tip to preheat your mug by filling it with hot water while you wait.
  2. Measure and grind: Measure your desired amount of coffee beans based on your preferred strength and grind them to a coarse consistency. A good starting point is a 1:15 ratio of coffee to water. For example, use 30 grams of coffee with 450 ml of water.
    For more detailed guidance on getting this measurement just right, be sure to check out our in-depth article on coffee measurement.
  3. Heat water: Bring the water to a temperature between 195°F and 205°F. A kettle with a temperature control is helpful for achieving the correct temperature quickly.
  4. Combine coffee and water: Empty out the preheated French press, then add the ground coffee. Pour the heated water over the grounds, making sure they are evenly saturated. Start your timer right after adding the water.
  5. Stir: Give the coffee and water mixture a gentle stir with a spoon to ensure no clumps are left and that all the coffee is evenly soaked.
  6. Steep: Allow the coffee to brew for your desired time, usually around 4 minutes. You can adjust the brewing time based on your taste preference.
  7. Plunge: Press down the plunger slowly and steadily. Make sure not to press too hard or fast, as it may cause the coffee grounds to escape into your brew.
  8. Decant: Pour the freshly brewed coffee into your preheated mug, leaving the coffee grounds at the bottom of the French press.

Some additional tips to perfect your brewing process include being mindful of the water-to-coffee ratio, experimenting with different grind sizes, and adjusting the brew time to achieve a balanced flavor. Enjoy your skillfully crafted cup of French press coffee!

How to Store the Beans

When it comes to enjoying delicious French press coffee, the freshness and quality of the beans play a significant role. Properly storing coffee beans helps maintain their flavor, aroma, and overall quality. While coffee beans may seem quite resilient, they are susceptible to various factors that can lead to their degradation. These include oxygen, moisture, heat, light, and odors.

To keep your coffee beans in optimal condition, use an airtight container, which prevents air ingress and locks in the delightful aromatics.  A cool and dark place, such as a pantry or cupboard, also helps preserve the beans’ freshness.

But what about the materials in the storage container? To maintain the flavor profile and avoid negative interactions, ensure that you select a non-reactive storage material like glass or ceramic. Popular options include short mason jars and sauce jars.

Contrary to what you might expect, using a freezer or fridge for coffee bean storage can be advantageous if done correctly. While these methods can lead to condensation and moisture accumulation, impacting the coffee’s flavor and grit, a recent study provides insights into effective storage. The research showed that coffee beans, whether green or roasted, stored at lower temperatures (−10 °C and 10 °C) had better preservation compared to those at 20 °C (Scientific Reports, Nature.com). The National Coffee Association also notes that while coffee is hygroscopic, absorbing moisture and odors, using a truly airtight container can mitigate these effects. If freezing, they recommend taking out only what’s needed for a week at a time to prevent condensation.

Lastly, handling the beans crucially influences their freshness. Ensure a wide-mouthed container for easy access without causing blisters while scooping. Make it a habit to open the container only when necessary to limit the beans’ exposure to air and environmental elements.

By adhering to these simple yet effective tips, you can protect your coffee beans from degradation, ultimately resulting in a rich and flavorful French press coffee experience.

Outro


Your French press demands a coffee that delivers high-quality flavor and a rich, satisfying experience. If the beans aren’t right, your brew could fall flat, lacking the depth and robustness that French press aficionados cherish.

Coffee comes in a small package but needs to pack a substantial punch to shine in a French press.

Each person’s coffee preference is as individual as they are, and it’s worth taking the time to find your perfect match.

However, for a coffee that consistently impresses with its depth and full-bodied flavor, Estate Medium Roast Whole Bean Kona Coffee is an outstanding choice for any French press lover.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of roast is best for the French press?

When it comes to French press coffee, the type of roast is a personal preference. However, many coffee enthusiasts enjoy using a medium or dark roast for a more robust and full-bodied flavor. 

Which grind size should be used in a French press?

The ideal grind size for French press coffee is coarse. Using a coarse grind allows for a proper extraction process and minimizes the amount of coffee grounds in your cup. Using a fine grind can result in over-extraction and a bitter taste, as well as an increased chance of coffee grounds making their way through the press filter. So, it’s best to stick with a coarse grind for a smooth and delicious French press coffee.

Is there a specific brand of coffee beans recommended for French press?

While there isn’t a universal brand of coffee beans recommended for French press brewing, several options stand out. For example, Partners Coffee Brooklyn Blend offers a flavor profile of chocolate, toffee, and dried fruit notes that many find pairs well with the French press brewing method. Other options include finding a brand that allows you to customize your grind, like ordering directly from Partners and selecting a French press grind option.

What is the best brewing technique for French press coffee?

Achieving the best French press coffee requires some attention to detail. Start with the right coffee-to-water ratio, which is between 60-70 grams of coffee per liter of water (a mass ratio between 1:16 and 1:14). This ensures a balanced and flavorful brew. Additionally, allow the coffee to steep for about four minutes before plunging to extract the optimal flavors. Perfecting your brewing technique takes some practice, but these steps will set you on the path to enjoying an amazing French press coffee experience.

Every coffee bean has a story, every aroma holds a memory, and every sip can be an adventure.
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