Brewing coffee with a paper filter–lined Chemex carafe makes light-bodied coffee with a bright flavor. Here, Michael Phillips, of Los Angeles’s Handsome Coffee Roasters, gives his instructions for this method, requiring a Chemex carafe, Chemex white paper filters, a burr grinder and a kitchen scale. Slideshow: Coffee Buzz Words 

Food & Wine
February 2013


Credit: © Chris Philpot

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10 mins


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Line a Chemex carafe with a Chemex white paper filter. In a burr grinder set to a medium-fine grind size, grind the coffee beans. Heat the water until it reaches 206° on an instant-read thermometer; alternatively, bring the water to a boil, then let stand for 1 minute.

  • Pour some of the hot water into the carafe, thoroughly soaking the filter. Discard the rinsing water (the wet filter will remain in place as you pour out the water).

  • Pour the ground coffee into the filter. Place the Chemex on a kitchen scale and set the scale to zero. Pour 80 grams of the hot water all over the coffee grounds, thoroughly saturating them. Let stand until the coffee stops bubbling, about 1 minute.

  • Pour 120 grams of the hot water onto the coffee in a thin, steady, spiral stream, working from the center of the filter to the edge, then back to the center again. Working in roughly 100-gram increments, pour the remaining 400 grams of hot water in a small circular motion in the center of the filter; maintain a water level that is just high enough that the coffee is never exposed to air. Allow all of the coffee to drain into the carafe and serve.