HOWTO: Chemex

You’ll need:

  • whole bean coffee (see recipes below for quantity)
  • Chemex coffee pot
  • Chemex filter
  • water
  • kettle (gooseneck recommended)
  • timer
  • mug
  • grinder (burr grinder recommended)
  • scale (gram measurement recommended)

These recipes use a 17:1 ratio of water:coffee and about a (very small) 3 ½ ounce “cup.” Please use them as a starting point and adjust to your taste preference:

3-cup (10 oz/300 g/ml water): 18 g coffee
6-cup (20 oz/600 g/ml water: 36 g coffee
8-cup (30 oz/700 g/ml water): 42 g coffee

  1. Heat your water to 205 degrees: bring it to a boil, then let it rest for 30 seconds, or use a temperature-controlled electric kettle.
  2. Fold the Chemex filter and insert in the top of the brewer, making sure the 3-layered side of the filter is lined up with the pouring spout.
  3. Pre-heat your Chemex by rinsing it (through the filter) with a small amount of hot water.
  4. Weigh out your whole bean coffee (see recipes above).
  5. Grind coffee to a coarse, grainy consistency.
  6. Add coffee to the filter cone (see recipes above).
  7. Pour a small amount of hot water over the grounds to saturate them (about twice your coffee weight; for example, 72 grams of water for a 6-cup Chemex). Allow the coffee to “bloom” (bubble and expand, then settle) for 30 seconds.
  8. After the bloom settles, continuously pour more hot water in a slow, steady stream. Rotate the stream in concentric circles from the center, completely soaking the grounds while keeping the water level below the top rim. Do not pour down the sides of the filter.
  9. When you have poured the entire weight of water, wait for it all to drip through. The total brew time should be 3 ½- 4 ½ minutes. If it finishes dripping sooner, try a finer grind next time; if it takes longer, try a coarser grind.
  10. Remove the filter and spent grounds to the nearest compost bucket, pour into your favorite mug, and enjoy.

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