The original Chemex was invented in 1941 and is still being manufactured in Massachusetts, United States.
The Chemex comprises of a glass container, shaped similarly to an hourglass. It is a manual pour over coffee maker. What that means is that the coffee sits within a paper filter on the top of the container, water is poured over and allowed to seep through the coffee and gather at the bottom. It's a similar system to a filter coffee machine.
There are different sizes of the Chemex available, so for ease of use we have broken the quantities of coffee and water down in this handy guide:
- 100 ml of water = 5.5gr of coffee
- 200ml of water = 11gr of coffee (1 heaped tablespoon of coffee approx.)
- 400ml of water = 22gr of coffee (2 heaped tablespoons of coffee approx.)
- 800ml of water = 44 gr of coffee (4 heaped tablespoons of coffee approx.)
- ...and so on.
An important factor to consider is that the type of grind used for a Chemex is not as fine as an Espresso grind and not as coarse as a Cafetiere grind. It should feel similar to table salt.
Here is how to brew 800ml (2 cups approx.) of our hand roasted coffee using a Chemex:
1. Prep the Chemex for use.
Before applying coffee to the Chemex place the filter in and run hot water through. Allow the water to completely drain from the filter and then dispose of the water. The reason for this it to help the filter create a seal within the Chemex and to remove any paper taste from the filter.
2. Add 44 gr of ground coffee to the filter.
Once you have added the coffee give the Chemex a little shake to level the coffee within the filter.
3. Add 1/8 of the entire water content you intend to use to the Chemex and allow it to brew for 30-45 seconds. The water should be 92°C or just off the boil.
Add 100 ml to the coffee in the Chemex and wait for 30 - 45 seconds. The coffee should rise within the filter.
4. Add 3/8 of the entire water content you intent to use and wait for 1 min. The water should be 92°C.
After the 30-45 seconds have passed add 300 ml of water to the Chemex. The water added previously should be drained from the filter by this stage. Then wait for 1 min.
5. Add the remainder of the entire water content (4/8 or 1/2) to the Chemex and allow the water to drain completely.
Allow the water to drain completely. It should take about 4 min. If the dripping process is taking longer the coffee might have been ground too fine. If it takes a very short time the coffee might have been ground to coarse.
6. Take a moment to enjoy the aromas that the coffee is producing.
The Chemex brewing process produces beautiful aromas, why not enjoy it?
8. Remove the filter from the Chemex.
There may still be a little bit of water left in the filter, if that is the case let the filter rest in the sink before putting it in the bin/recycling.
9. Swirl the coffee around in the Chemex and pour it in a cup.
Or you could drink it out of the Chemex, haha. Johnny Forty Coats certainly would!
10. And as always... Remember to enjoy.