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Test Kitchen: Coffee

We perked more than 100 caffeinated cups to find the best trail-brew technique. Here’s how to choose your method, gear, and grounds.

2. French press
Best for: Weekend-warrior connoisseurs
Convenience: 2 out of 5 stars Taste: 5 out of 5 stars
Grind: Coarse; finer grinds clog the filter (and muddy the finished brew).
Brew it: Measure coffee into a French press carafe. Add hot water and cover the pitcher loosely to preserve heat (don’t depress the filter). Wait four minutes, then remove the lid and stir briskly three to six times before replacing it. Firmly grasp the carafe with one hand and slowly push the filter to the bottom.
Tip: Decant all of the coffee into mugs immediately; it will turn bitter if it continues steeping with the spent grounds.
Tasting notes: Complex aromatics and robust flavor in a smooth-drinking cup.

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