French Press Coffee Beans: Our Recommendations

If you’re in a bit of a rush and don’t have the time to read the entire article, then we recommend getting the Java Planet Coffee Beans, or if you don’t have a grinder, Peach Coffee Roasters Ground Coffee.

So you’ve got yourself a French press, good start. It’s a great way to brew a coffee. But there are a few things you need to know in order to make that high quality cuppa.

What’s the best ground coffee for french press? In order to find that out, you need to know what you want your coffee to taste like.

We’ve put together a couple of points to help you pick the right coffee for you, and also a few tips for once you have your coffee and it’s time to brew.

Here is the list coffee beans we think are best for a french press:

french press brew being poured into a mug

 

What Do You Want From Your French Press?

We can suggest the best french press coffee in the world, but if it’s not the roast you prefer, or doesn’t have the flavours that you like, then you’re not going to enjoy it. Firstly, you need to decide what roast you want, and if you want any certain flavours in there.

Light, Dark or Medium Roast?

This is a big question, some could call it a question of biblical proportions. So choose carefully. Your type of roast is going to decide what sort of flavours your coffee is going to have, and how strong its going to taste.

If you enjoy citrus, berry or floral type flavours that leave a tang, then a light roast is probably best for you. The light roast is really good for keeping those delicate flavours you would never get in a dark roast. It often has a higher caffeine content too, so if you’re wanting a bit of a boost on a morning, then light tends to be good for that.

A dark roast brings out some darker and deeper flavours out of the bean. It’s often characterised by chocolatey or caramel notes, with a full body texture in your mouth. A favourite for espresso, but unless you like your coffee super strong then maybe not the best for french press.

A medium roast is a happy inbetween, where it can still have some tangy tastes, like berries, but also has that deeper coffee taste.

If you like to add milk to your coffee, medium roasts are probably a good choice. The flavours of the roast carry through the milk, but without being overpowering like a strong dark roast would tend to be.

A side note: You will probably see coffee beans with the label ‘french roast’ which is darker than dark. This is not to be confused with an ideal french press coffee.

Single or Blend Coffee?

It is much more common and much easier today to get single origin coffee than it has been in the past. Single origin means that every bean in the bag is from the same region or farm. A blend, is exactly that, a blend of coffee beans from different places.

There’s no right or wrong answer to which one is best. It’s more for if people want to taste coffee from a specific region that you would want to make sure you’re picking single origin. For example, if you’re wanting to taste coffee from Colombia’s Coffee Triangle, then you’re wanting a single origin coffee from there.

In the past, because single origin was expensive, roasters would blend cheap coffee with more high quality expensive coffee to throw in some more desirable tastes. Now, with it more easily accessible, it’s very common to get single origin.

It’s your personal preference. If you’re not a coffee geek and you just want a nice tasting coffee, then don’t go out of your way to find a single origin coffee.

If you want to learn more about single origin coffee, I wrote an article on CoffeeBlog.co.uk about it that you can check out.

french press brew with cup of coffee beans

 

How To Get The Best Coffee From Your French Press

Once you’ve chosen the coffee beans for your french press, you’re not in the clear just yet. The quality of the brew depends on a couple of other things you should take into consideration.

Grind Size

When looking for pre-ground coffee, you’re going to want a coarse grind. A French press needs coarse ground coffee to stop all the little bits coming up into the brewed coffee once you’ve plunged it.

When I was in New Zealand and didn’t know this, I had to finish a whole bag of coffee that was too fine for my French press, and each cup had a decent amount of grind at the bottom. Not ideal, and a waste of coffee.

If you’re grinding the coffee yourself to maximise freshness, the perfect french press grind size is around 0.75mm and 1mm. It should feel like sand in your hand.

One way to tell if you have the right grind size is how much resistance your plunger has when you’re pushing it down. Lots of resistance means it’s too fine, and no resistance means it’s too coarse. It’s a bit too late to do anything about it at that moment, but at least you’ll know for next time.

Freshness

Ideally, for the best quality, you should be grinding your coffee beans at home. But if you’re not a diehard coffee fanatic and don’t own a coffee grinder, don’t stress.

A lot of bags have a roasted date on it, so check each bag to see which one has been roasted the most recently. Also buying small quantities is often the way to go, to make sure the coffee isn’t sitting in your cupboard for a couple of months.

If you are grinding, the small and often still applies. You can even grind only the amount of coffee that you need for your brew, you won’t be getting much fresher than that. Unless you own a roaster. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

We have an entire article that looks at perfect coffee grinders for French press brewing. You can find it right here.

Coffee To Water Ratio

Alright we’re getting a little in depth here, but my job is to let you know how to get the highest quality of coffee out of your French press and I’m going to do that. So how much coffee for French press brewing?

You’re going to want about 2 tablespoons of ground coffee for every 6oz of water. So, for example, if you have a 30oz french press, then you want 10 tablespoons of coffee. Easy peasy.

Here’s a video with a barista showing you exactly how to make a french press coffee!

Our Best Coffee Beans For French Press Brews

So now you know what to look for in a coffee bean, and you know what to do with them to get a high quality french press brew.

We’ve included some whole coffee beans that are up to scratch if you have a grinder. If not, there are ground coffee versions of the same product, but we’ve also included some pre-ground coffee that is specifically for a french press.

Koffee Kult Dark Roast Coffee Beans

best coffee beans for french press
Key features:

  • Coffee beans
  • Small batch roasted
  • Colombian/Guatemala/Sumatra coffee blend
  • Dark roast
  • Heavy body
  • Cocoa and cinnamon
  • Organic
  • Fair Trade Certified

There’s no wonder that there is a cult of people following this coffee, it’s pretty good and very fresh. Even though it’s a dark roast, it’s still sweet with a strong dark chocolate finish, and a complementing underlying cinnamon tone.

A brand that pays a lot of attention to the packaging must pay twice as much attention to the beans themselves. The little things like the easy pull tab to open it with a thick resealable liner, a valve on the back of the bag to squeeze the air out, and the opening forms a spout for an easy pour.

Unlike a dark roast, these beans do not taste very bitter. With this fact, and the sweet flavours, it’s a dark roast that appeals to most people. Some people have described that the coffee isn’t as ‘dark’ as most dark roasts. If you’re normally a medium roast fan, this could be a good entry level coffee for trying a dark roast.

Check price on Amazon

Java Planet Organic Arabica Coffee Beans

best coffee beans for french press
Key features:

  • Coffee beans
  • Sumatra, Indonesia, single origin
  • Small batch roasted
  • Dark roast
  • Very smooth
  • Organic
  • Support socially and environmentally conscious farmers

Once again this coffee is organic so you’ll be looking after your health, but you’ll also be getting a smooth, full flavoured coffee without a strong bitterness. It’s got a sweet syrupy body, with notes of spice, fall leaves, and maple.

Lots of people report this coffee as being very flavourful and very consistent. With a lot of repeat customers, their roasts have got to be consistent with each other, and that’s exactly what happens.

The only negatives that come from this coffee is that some people report it tasting burnt, but these are very few and far between. The company’s customer service is spot on, and they will often replace bags that don’t satisfy.

If you grind the beans up to the right size for a french press, you’ll get a high quality, full of flavour, very smooth cup of coffee. A good way to start the day.

Check price on Amazon

Peach Coffee Roasters Ground Coffee

best coffee beans for french press
Key features:

  • Medium/Light roast
  • Ground coffee
  • Ethiopian/Colombian/Tanzanian coffee blend
  • Sustainably sourced
  • Full bodied
  • Fruity and floral notes

With this being a medium-light roast, it doesn’t have the depths of chocolate and dark sweet flavours, but instead has more floral and fruity notes. It’s got a full body which makes for a consistently smooth cup of coffee, which gives it a silky feeling in your mouth.

The owners of Peach Coffee and certified quality graders that are constantly testing themselves to prove their consistency. Their expertise allows for a coffee with great qualities and makes a great cuppa.

Upon opening the bag you’ll be greeted with a fantastic aroma that’ll make you want to brew a coffee straight away. For people that like to drink their coffee black, you will still be able to enjoy those subtle sweet notes, as their coffee isn’t super strong.

The coffee is specifically a french press grind, so you don’t have to worry about bits of coffee coming back up into the brew. We think it’s up there with the best pre-ground light roast coffee you can get for this brewing style.

Check price on Amazon

Ceremony Coffee Roasters House Blend

Best coffee beans for french press
Key features:

  • Light roast
  • Ground coffee
  • Ethiopian/Brazil/Peru coffee blend
  • Nice balanced cup
  • High quality Arabica beans
  • Caramel and vanilla notes

If you have your own coffee grinder, then there’s an option to buy the coffee beans as a whole. For those of us that do not, you can buy the coffee pre-ground for a french press style brewing.

There’s a beautiful cookie aroma coming from the bag, and has caramel, vanilla and date flavours. It’s not very bitter which is what most people like, so a lot of people can drink it black. If you’re wanting to start drinking black coffee so you can begin to really taste all the flavours, a light roast is a good choice, and Ceremony Coffee is a good brand.

Their coffee isn’t roasted to order, so the freshness may not be peak, but they do put the roasted date on the packaging so you know how fresh the bag is. 

Check price on Amazon

Trucup Stuck In The Middle Medium Roast

Best coffee beans for french press
Key features:

  • Medium roast
  • Ground coffee
  • Coffee blend
  • Small batch roasted
  • Low acid
  • Very smooth

Our final review is a roast that specialises in a gentle, low acid coffee. They use a water and steam process that removes the naturally occuring acids from each bean. This means it’s perfect for people that have a sensitive stomach to caffeine.

After the coffee beans have been artisan roasted, the beans are packaged into a vacuum sealed bag to preserve that freshness and quality, and you really smell it when you open the bag for the first time.

The coffee is ground to the perfect size to optimise surface area when brewing your coffee in a French press and so they don’t escape through the plunger and ruin your brew.

Check price on Amazon

latte art

The Conclusion

If you’re a enough coffee lover that you have your own grinder, then I’d pick the Java Planet Coffee Beans. They’re an ethical brand that produces a fine dark roast coffee.

If you don’t happen to have your own coffee grinder, then I’d suggest getting the Peach Coffee Roasters Ground Coffee. It’s a nice medium-light roasted coffee that has that citrusy tang to it, but also an undertone of sweetness.

If you don’t have a grinder but are thinking about getting one, you can have a look at some manual grinders that are perfect for French press brewing here.

Let us know which coffee you went for in the comments!

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Tom Bolland

Tom Bolland

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