Master the Art of Chemex Coffee with this Simple Guide

Matty Victor

If you’re a coffee lover who wants to elevate their brewing game, making pour over coffee with a Chemex might just be the perfect technique for you. Known for its sleek design and ability to produce a clean and flavorful cup of joe, the Chemex is a manual brewing method that allows you to have full control over your coffee’s taste and strength. In this article, we’ll break down the step-by-step process of making pour over coffee with a Chemex, so you can enjoy a deliciously brewed cup of coffee, rich in aroma and flavor, all in the comfort of your own home.


In this article, we will explore the art of making pour over coffee using a Chemex. Pour over coffee is a brewing method that allows for a rich, flavorful cup of coffee by carefully pouring hot water over freshly ground coffee beans. The Chemex, with its iconic hourglass shape and thick paper filter, has become a popular choice among coffee enthusiasts for its ability to produce a clean and well-extracted cup of coffee.

What is Pour Over Coffee?

Pour over coffee is a brewing method that involves pouring hot water over coffee grounds, allowing the water to extract the flavors and aromas as it passes through the grounds and drips into a container below. This method allows for full control over the brewing process, resulting in a cup of coffee with rich flavors and complexities.

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Why Choose Chemex?

Chemex is a popular choice among coffee lovers for its unique design and brewing capabilities. It is made from high-quality borosilicate glass, which not only makes it durable but also allows for better heat retention. The thick paper filters used in Chemex ensure that the coffee is free from sediments and oils, resulting in a clean and crisp cup of coffee.

How to Make Pour Over Coffee with Chemex

Step 1: Preparing Equipment

Before you begin the brewing process, gather all the necessary equipment. You will need a Chemex brewer, Chemex paper filters, freshly roasted coffee beans, a grinder, a kettle for boiling water, and a timer.

Step 2: Grind Your Coffee

The grind size plays a crucial role in the extraction process. For Chemex, a medium-coarse grind is recommended. This allows for optimal extraction and prevents over-extraction or bitterness. Use a burr grinder to achieve a consistent grind size.

Step 3: Rinse the Paper Filter

Place the Chemex paper filter in the brewer, making sure that the multiple layers are aligned. Rinse the filter with hot water to remove any paper residues and preheat the brewer. Discard the rinse water.

Step 4: Add Coffee Grounds

Measure the appropriate amount of coffee grounds based on the desired coffee-to-water ratio. A general starting point is a ratio of 1:16, with 1 part coffee to 16 parts water. Place the coffee grounds in the Chemex filter.

Step 5: Bloom the Coffee

Pour a small amount of hot water, just enough to saturate the coffee grounds. This is called the bloom, and it allows the coffee to degas. Allow the bloom to sit for about 30 seconds to release the trapped carbon dioxide.

Step 6: Pour the Remaining Water

Start pouring hot water in a circular motion, starting from the center and working your way outwards. Pour in a slow and controlled manner to ensure even saturation of the coffee grounds. Maintain a steady pour, adding more water as needed.

Step 7: Let It Drip

Allow the water to drip through the coffee grounds and into the Chemex. Take your time and do not rush the process. The entire brewing process should take around 3-4 minutes, depending on the desired strength of the coffee.

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Step 8: Serve and Enjoy

Once the coffee has finished dripping, carefully remove the Chemex from the brewer. Serve the freshly brewed coffee in your favorite mug or cup and enjoy the flavors and aromas of a perfectly brewed pour over coffee.

Tips for Making the Perfect Chemex Pour Over Coffee

Tip 1: Use Freshly Roasted Beans

The freshness of the coffee beans greatly impacts the flavor of the final cup. Opt for freshly roasted beans and grind them just before brewing for the best results. The aroma and taste of freshly ground coffee are unparalleled.

Tip 2: Experiment with Grind Size

Play around with different grind sizes to find your preferred balance. The grind size affects the rate of water flow and ultimately the flavor extraction. While a medium-coarse grind is recommended for Chemex, you can adjust it according to your taste preferences.

Tip 3: Maintain Consistent Water Temperature

Consistency in water temperature is crucial for a well-extracted cup of coffee. Aim for a water temperature between 195°F and 205°F (90°C and 96°C). Use a thermometer or an electric kettle with temperature control to ensure accuracy.

Tip 4: Practice the Pouring Technique

Pouring technique plays a vital role in achieving an even extraction. Pour the water in a slow and circular motion, avoiding pouring directly onto the filter. This ensures that all the coffee grounds are evenly saturated.

Tip 5: Take Notes

Keep a record of your brewing parameters, such as the coffee-to-water ratio, grind size, and brewing time. This will help you replicate your favorite cup of coffee consistently and make adjustments as needed.

Difference between Pour Over Coffee and Other Brewing Methods

Pour Over Coffee French Press Espresso
Uses a paper filter for a cleaner cup Uses a metal mesh filter for a fuller-bodied cup Uses high pressure to extract coffee flavors
Requires a slower brewing process Has a shorter brewing time Has a much shorter brewing time
Provides more control over the brewing process Offers less control over the brewing process Requires specialized equipment and skills

Each brewing method has its own merits and caters to different preferences. Pour over coffee with Chemex offers a clean and nuanced cup, allowing the flavors of the coffee to shine through.

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Making pour over coffee with a Chemex is a delightful and rewarding experience. The process requires attention to detail, but the outcome is a cup of coffee that is worth the effort. By following the steps outlined in this article, experimenting with different variables, and exploring the various tips provided, you can become a master at brewing a perfect pour over coffee with Chemex.

Always remember to use high-quality coffee beans, maintain consistency in your brewing parameters, and enjoy the journey of discovering the incredible flavors and aromas that pour over coffee has to offer.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. How do I choose the right coffee beans for pour over coffee?

When it comes to choosing coffee beans for your Chemex pour over coffee, it’s important to consider your personal preferences. However, certain characteristics can enhance your coffee experience. Look for freshly roasted beans with a medium to medium-dark roast level, as they tend to bring out the best flavors in pour over coffee. Additionally, single-origin beans are recommended for their distinct taste profiles. Experimenting with different coffee beans and origins will help you find the perfect match for your palate.

2. Is there a specific grind size that works best for pour over coffee?

Yes, the grind size plays a crucial role in the flavor extraction process when making pour over coffee with a Chemex. For this method, a medium-coarse grind is ideal. It should be coarser than espresso but finer than what you would use for a French press. The medium-coarse grind allows for a balanced extraction, ensuring you achieve the desired strength and flavor in your cup of coffee.

3. How should I adjust the pour over technique to control the strength of the coffee?

To control the strength of your pour over coffee, you can make a few adjustments to the pour over technique. If you prefer a stronger cup, you can use a higher coffee-to-water ratio by increasing the amount of coffee grounds while keeping the same water volume. Alternatively, if you prefer a milder cup, you can decrease the coffee-to-water ratio by using fewer coffee grounds. Additionally, adjusting the speed and frequency of the pour can also affect the strength of the coffee. Experimenting with these adjustments will help you find the perfect balance according to your taste preferences.

4. What is the recommended water temperature for pour over coffee?

For pour over coffee, the water temperature is essential for achieving optimal extraction. It’s recommended to use water that is between 195°F (90°C) and 205°F (96°C). This temperature range is hot enough to extract the flavors from the coffee grounds but not too hot to cause over-extraction or bitterness. Using a kettle with a built-in thermometer or an electric kettle with variable temperature control can help you maintain the desired water temperature.

5. Can I reuse the Chemex coffee filter?

No, the Chemex coffee filters are designed for single-use only. They are made of thick paper, which provides excellent filtration and ensures a clean cup of coffee. Reusing the filter can lead to clogging and affect the extraction process. It’s recommended to use a fresh filter for each brew to maintain optimal quality and flavor in your pour over coffee experience.

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Matty Victor

An expert in tasting the nuances of coffee. often talks about the different flavors of coffee from different regions of the world "The taste of coffee is an endless journey."


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