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How to Improve Your Brew: Chemex


The Chemex Coffeemaker is a classic pour over brewer that remains a staple in every coffee enthusiast’s arsenal. Brilliantly crafted, the Chemex comes in various shapes and sizes but the design has remained unchanged since its inception back in the 1940s. Even more impressive than the design is Chemex’s ease of use. All you need are a few basic necessities, a Chemex, some fresh RD Coffee and a reliable brew guide to perfect your pour. Below is our tried-and-true method to help you improve your next brew using the Chemex.

Supplies needed for a Chemex brew

Supplies Needed

Step 1: Heat water

Fill water kettle and place on heat, bringing it just below boiling. The ideal brewing temperature is between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Step 2: Prepare and rinse filter

As you wait for the water to warm up, create a cone using your special Chemex bonded filter and insert it in the top part of the brewer. Place the 3-layered side of the filter lined up with the pouring spout. Pour hot water through the filter to rinse and help it stick to the side of the Chemex. The hot water will also serve to preheat the Chemex so your brew will stay warmer longer. Dispose of the rinse water once it has all drained through the filter. 

Step 3: Weigh and grind your beans

The next step in the process is one of the most important. Get out the grinder and scale, then weigh your desired amount of coffee. You’ll find several different recommended ratios online, but we recommend 1:16 (1 part coffee to 16 parts water). In this example, we are using 30 grams (approximately 5 tablespoons) of medium-coarse RD Coffee in the Six Cup Classic Chemex, but you can adjust the ratio to your desired taste. Using this ratio, 30 grams will brew about two 8 ounce cups of coffee. 

Next, grind your favorite RD Coffee beans to a medium-coarse grind. A consistency similar to breadcrumbs will work. 

RD Coffee ready to be brewed with the Chemex

Step 4: Zero out the scale and distribute coffee

Add coffee grounds to the Chemex and gently shake the brewer to evenly distribute the grounds in the filter, then place the Chemex on your scale and zero it out. 

Step 5: Start the bloom

The next step is to begin your timer and pour enough hot water (approximately 60-70 grams) over the grounds to wet them. Allow the coffee to “bloom” - when the coffee grounds bubble and expand as they release gas - for 30 seconds. Remember to take a moment and enjoy the wonderful aromas released during this process.  

Step 6: Add more water

After 30 seconds, slowly begin pouring more water over the grounds in a circular motion. Allow the water level to fall before adding more water, but always keep the grounds fully submerged. As the water levels out, keep an eye on your timer as you continue to slowly saturate all the grounds. Aim to have the brew time last about three and half minutes.

Step 7: Finish brewing and discard filter 

After you’ve poured the remaining amount of water over the grounds, allow all of the water to finish filtering through to the bottom of the Chemex before discarding the filter in the trash. 

Step 8: Stir and enjoy

Give the Chemex a quick swirl, pour into your favorite RD Coffee mug and enjoy! When done correctly, the result is a delicious cup of fresh coffee.

The perfect cup of RD Coffee, brewed with the Chemex