Chemex Brew Guide

With form and function in equally large volumes, the Chemex is the iconic pour-over coffee brewer. So iconic in fact, that it’s a permanent fixture in the museum of modern art, and a regular one on many an Instagram grid. 

The hourglass-shaped flask - made from tapered, non-porous borosilicate glass that doesn’t absorb odors - is fastened by a wooden collar and tie. A design that’s remained largely unchanged since its invention by Dr. Peter Schlumbohm in 1941.

The Chemex produces a clean, medium-to-light bodied cup and can handle a lot of coffee, so it’s perfect for group brewing.

Key Facts

  • Dose to water ratio: 15g coffee per 250ml of water
  • Medium grind (like table salt)
  • Water temperature: 92 - 96°C
  • Brew time: 2-4 minutes

What you'll need

  • Freshly ground coffee beans 
  • Chemex brewer and filter paper
  • Kettle (ideally gooseneck)
  • Weighing scale and timer
  • Coffee mug
Construct and prepare

Step oneConstruct and prepare

Fold the filter into a cone shape and place it in the Chemex brewer with the 3-folded side facing the spout. Rinse it with water just off the boil (about 92 - 96°C) to eliminate paper flavour from the filter and to heat up the brewing chamber. Pour away the rinse water afterwards.

Add your coffee

Step twoAdd your coffee

Place the Chemex on the weighing scale. Tare the scale, then add the amount of ground coffee you want (we recommend 15g of coffee per 250ml of water used). Tare it again, then give it a shake or a tap on the table to level out your coffee bed, which will help ensure you get an even extraction.

Coat and bloom

Step threeCoat and bloom

Gently pour hot water onto the coffee grounds - just enough to cover it all evenly (we aim for 3 times the weight of the coffee dose). Give it a good stir to make sure the grounds are saturated, before letting the grounds bloom for 30-45 seconds. The coffee bed should raise up and bubble a bit, which is the trapped CO2 gas departing.

The pour

Step fourThe pour

Pour the remaining water in a gentle, spiral motion, working your way from the outer edge of the bed inwards to make sure the grounds are soaked evenly. If you can, try to pour slowly and continuously, stopping when the scales show the water quantity you’re aiming for. Your total brew time should be 2-3 minutes


Step fiveServe

When the bed of coffee is dry, remove the filter paper from the Chemex and put it in the bin. Give it a quick swirl to aerate the coffee before serving, then pour your coffee into a warm mug

The right beans for your Chemex

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