Thursday, October 20, 2011

French Press: A Celebrated Invention For Great Tasting Coffee

A French Press is a simple coffee brewing device with a long multi-lingual list of names: press pot, coffee plunger, caffettiera a stanfutto, cafetire piston, cafetera francesa, Melior pot, or a Bodum among many others.

In a French Press, coffee is brewed by placing the coffee and water together. The coffee and water are stirred together and allowed to brew for a few minutes. The plunger is then pressed to trap the coffee grounds at the bottom of the beaker-like container. It is for this reason that the particle size of the grind used for coffee in this coffee brewing device is coarser than what is used in other types of coffee makers. Usually, it is the coarsest setting on a coffee grinder's gauge. If the coffee grounds are too fine, they will simply seep through the plunger's mesh and into the liquid, which will deliver a distasteful cup of coffee.

French Press coffee lovers praise the rich flavor of coffee obtained using this method as a result of the coffee grounds being in direct contact with the brewing water, then filtered via a mesh instead of a paper filter. The strength of the coffee in the press pot is the result of the amount of ground coffee used each time. For stronger coffee, use more ground coffee. By serving the coffee right after pressing them (filtering) the coffee grounds, the cup is not bitter and the taste is fresh and rich.

The history of the French Press traces back to the beginning of the 20th century in Italy when a designer by the name of Attilio Calimano filed a patent for the coffee press in 1929. The original design was modified through the years and in 1958 another Italian by the name of Faliero Bondanini patented his own version of the coffee press. From the mid 1950's through the early 1990's, Socit des Anciens Etablissements Martin S.A. ("Martin") successfully distributed across Europe a French Press coffee maker branded as the Chambord. Martin's principal investor and manager was Louis-James de Viel Castel, an entrepreneur with several businesses, including the British firm Household Articles Ltd which sold a French Press coffee maker called La Cafetire.

There were many similarities between the two competing French press devices, the Chambord and La Cafetire. In 1991, Bodum Holding, the Danish tableware and kitchenware company, acquired all of Martin's assets. Louis-James de Viel Castel was interested in continuing the sales of French Press coffee makers through his company Household Articles Ltd. He negotiated an agreement with Bodum Holding that kept him from ever selling a French Press coffee maker in France, using the trade names Chambord or Melior, and distributing product through channels that Martin employed during 1990-1991. Bodum Holding, to this day, continues to sell coffee maker devices around the world that use the Chambord design and name.

French Press Coffee Makers are here to stay and will continue to introduce exciting changes for consumers to enjoy. The manufacturing materials will continue to improve with greater resistance to temperature changes and stronger glass composition that does not cloud or stain from use, as well as:

1. Ease of maintenance and cleaning.

2. Ergonomic feel.

3. Non-slip grip and cool touch coating.

4. Form that follows functionality offering scratch resistance, non-heat deformability, and brilliant surface gloss.

5. Water absorptive capacity and water vapor permeability.

All of these are considerations for a well designed coffee press.

So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and enjoy a delicious cup of Celebes Kalossi Toraja or Tanzania Peaberry North Highlands gourmet coffee!

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