6 Best Coffee Beans for Chemex: Unlocking The Flavors

Updated Nov 26, 2023 • Leigh McDonald

Our expert staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches in depth our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission.

Related

Best Pour Over Coffee Beans
Best Coffee Beans for Latte

Our Top Picks

Nostalgia Coffee - Classic
Best overall
Nostalgia Coffee - Classic
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$18 at Nostalgia
Nostalgia Coffee - Classic
Spirit Animal Coffee - Parainema Coffee
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$26 at Spirit Animal Coffee
Nostalgia Coffee - Classic
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$ at
Nostalgia Coffee - Classic
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$ at
Nostalgia Coffee - Classic
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$ at

Chemex and pour-over coffee have become increasingly popular in recent years, with coffee enthusiasts everywhere praising their unique flavors and superior taste. Chemex is a pour-over brewing method with a unique glass carafe and paper filter. Pour-over is manually pouring hot water over ground coffee to extract the flavors. Whether you are a seasoned barista or a coffee beginner, understanding the best coffee for Chemex and pour-over can make a significant difference in the taste of your coffee.

What kind of coffee do you use for Chemex?

When it comes to Chemex coffee, the type of coffee you use is just as important as the brewing method itself. For Chemex, it is best to use a medium to medium-light roast coffee that is well-balanced and has a bright acidity. This coffee will bring out the best flavors and aromas in the Chemex, creating a smooth and well-rounded cup of coffee. When choosing coffee for Chemex, factors include origin, roast level, and flavor profile. Recommendations for coffee types suitable for Chemex include Ethiopian Yirgacheffe, Colombian Supremo, and Kenyan AA.

Our Picks In Detail

Spirit Animal Coffee - Parainema Coffee

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4.8 out of 5 • Buy it for $26 at Spirit Animal Coffee • Price last checked May 02, 2024

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4.8 out of 5 • No price available, check stock on Spirit Animal Coffee • Price last checked May 02, 2024

Spirit Animal Coffee - Parainema CoffeeSpirit Animal Coffee - Parainema Coffee

Features

  • 12oz Whole Bean Coffee
  • Medium Roast Coffee
  • Non-GMO
  • Low Acid
  • Honduras Coffee with Peach, Honey, and Raspberry Tasting Notes
Nothing tastes better than the balanced flavors and soothing aromas of medium roasted coffee beans in a cup. Savor the luxurious taste of Spirit Animal Coffee and satisfy your palate while helping sustain our planet and our small-scale farmers. Our fresh roasted coffee beans are the chosen top 1% of beans and are hand-picked, dried, and washed in microbatches. Enjoy the rich, creamy taste with notes of peach, honey, and raspberry and help support fair trading in the coffee industry.

Pros

  • Full-bodied Coffee
  • Low Acid Coffee
  • 100% Pure-bred Honduran Coffee Beans
  • Fresh from Crop to Cup
  • Specially Cultivated

Cons

Nostalgia Coffee - Classic

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5 out of 5 • Buy it for $18 at Nostalgia • Price last checked Jul 11, 2023

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5 out of 5 • No price available, check stock on Nostalgia • Price last checked Jul 11, 2023

Nostalgia Coffee - ClassicNostalgia Coffee - Classic

Features

Nostalgia Classic is a medium roast coffee offered by Nostalgia Coffee Roasters. It is a classic blend with a smooth and balanced flavor profile. The coffee exhibits medium body, pleasant acidity, and notes of caramel, chocolate, or other nuanced flavors.

Nostalgia Classic is a thoughtfully crafted blend inspired by classic diner coffee. It captures the essence of 20th-century American culture and offers a delightful flavor experience. This blend combines two exceptional coffees that harmoniously create a sweet, balanced, and slightly toasty cup of coffee. It is made with 100% direct relationship coffee, ensuring fair compensation for our origin partners. By brewing Nostalgia Classic, you will contribute to a sustainable and mutually beneficial coffee experience.

Pros

  • Amazing flavors
  • Sustainable
  • Fair-Trade
  • Perfect for Pour-Over

Cons

  • Not available on Amazon yet

Lotus Arabica

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5 out of 5 • Buy it for $12 at Art De Vivre • Price last checked May 23, 2023

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5 out of 5 • No price available, check stock on Art De Vivre • Price last checked May 23, 2023

Lotus ArabicaLotus Arabica

Features

Lotus Arabica is a medium-roast single-origin coffee. It is made from 100% Arabica beans sourced from the Son La region in Vietnam. The flavor profile of this coffee includes notes of chocolate, floral, and wood. It is available in a 250g (8.8oz) package. Additionally, the product offers a 100% money-back guarantee if the customer is not satisfied with the coffee.

Pros

  • 100% Arabica beans
  • Affordable price
  • 100% money-back guarantee
  • Great Taste

Cons

Nguyen Coffee Supply - Moxy Arabica

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3.9 out of 5 • Buy it for $18 at Nguyen Coffee • Price last checked May 02, 2024

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3.9 out of 5 • No price available, check stock on Nguyen Coffee • Price last checked May 02, 2024

Nguyen Coffee Supply - Moxy ArabicaNguyen Coffee Supply - Moxy Arabica

Features

Our Moxy Arabica blend is super smooth and fruity without the high acidic sour coffee vibe. It is grown in Vietnam and roasted in Brooklyn using no additives, flavorings, or oils to allow the distinct flavor of the beans to shine. Our Moxy coffee beans are ground finely for brewing with a Vietnamese Phin filter and are also suitable for making espresso or cold brew, or using a French press. Grown in Vietnam, roasted in Brooklyn and partnered directly with 4th generation farmer in Vietnam’s Central Highlands.

Pros

  • Smooth & fruity coffee
  • No additives, flavorings, or oils used
  • 100% Arabica beans
  • Finley ground for brewing with a Vietnamese Phin filter

Cons

  • High acidic sour coffee vibe
  • Low caffeine content

Death Wish Coffee Medium Roast

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4.6 out of 5 • Buy it for $20 at Amazon • Price last checked May 02, 2024

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4.6 out of 5 • No price available, check stock on Amazon • Price last checked May 02, 2024

Death Wish Coffee Medium Roast Death Wish Coffee Medium Roast

Features

Death Wish Coffee's medium roast ground coffee is smooth and full of flavor. The lighter roast of the arabica and robusta beans gives it a less acidic taste and a strong caffeine kick. Made with organic and fair trade beans, this coffee is the perfect way to start your day. Made with arabica & robusta beans and roasted to a lighter shade of bold.

Pros

  • Smooth and flavorful
  • Less acidic taste
  • Strong caffeine kick
  • Organic and fair trade beans

Cons

  • Slightly more expensive than other coffees

Bolivia Caranavi Coffee

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4.4 out of 5 • Buy it for $24 at Volcanica • Price last checked May 02, 2024

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4.4 out of 5 • No price available, check stock on Volcanica • Price last checked May 02, 2024

Bolivia Caranavi CoffeeBolivia Caranavi Coffee

Features

The Bolivia Caranavi Coffee is a unique, flavorful, and fascinating coffee. From the Andes Mountains of Bolivia at high altitudes of 1600-1700m above sea level, this particular coffee is grown on various farms in the region. These farms are part of the APCERL (Asociación de Productores de Café Ecológico Regional de Larecaja), which is a coffee collective board that works to ensure positive social responsibilities related to safe, eco-friendly, and fair trade growing practices directly related to the crops being produced. This coffee has profoundly rich aromas and flavors that any coffee lover would enjoy and is proudly 100% Arabica Typica Coffee. It received the APCERL (Asociación de Productores de Café Ecológico Regional de Larecaja) and 100% Customer Satisfaction Guaranteed.

Pros

  • Sweet-toned and soft aroma
  • Very pronounced sweet cocoa tones
  • Outstanding flavor that is long, sweet and cocoa-laced
  • Kosher Certified
  • Fresh roasted then immediately packed and sealed to assure freshness

Cons

What kind of coffee is best for pour-over?

Just like Chemex, the type of coffee you use for pour-over is crucial to the taste of the final product. A medium to light roast coffee with a bright and fruity acidity is best for pour-over. This coffee will enhance the flavors and aromas of the pour-over, creating a delicious and refreshing cup of coffee. When choosing coffee for pour-over, factors include origin, roast level, and flavor profile. Recommendations for coffee types suitable for pour-over include Colombian Supremo, Ethiopian Yirgacheffe, and Kenyan AA.

Can you use ground coffee in a Chemex?

Yes, you can use ground coffee in a Chemex. However, the type of grind you use can significantly affect the taste of your coffee. This grind will ensure the water flows through the coffee and filter smoothly, creating a well-balanced and flavorful cup of coffee. 

Pros

  • The convenience and ease of use

Cons

  • It has a greater risk of over-extraction and a more bitter taste

How do you make the best Chemex coffee?

Making the best Chemex coffee is a simple process that requires a few key steps. 

  1. First, heat water to 200°F and grind your coffee to a medium to coarse grind.
  2. Next, fold and place the Chemex paper filter in the carafe, and rinse the filter with hot water to remove any paper taste.
  3. Add the ground coffee to the Chemex, and pour a small amount of water over the coffee to bloom it.
  4. Wait 30-45 seconds, then pour the rest of the water slowly and evenly over the coffee.
  5. Finally, remove the filter and serve your delicious Chemex coffee.

Why does my Chemex coffee taste bitter?

There are several common causes of bitter coffee in Chemex, including over-extraction, using too hot water, and too finely ground coffee. To avoid bitter coffee in Chemex, use water at the correct temperature (200°F), use a medium to coarse grind, and pour the water slowly and evenly over the coffee. Experimenting with different types of coffee and brewing methods is also recommended to find what works best for you.

Why does coffee taste better in a Chemex?

There are several reasons why coffee tastes better in a Chemex:

  1. The unique design of the Chemex carafe and paper filter allows for a cleaner and purer extraction of coffee flavors.
  2. The Chemex paper filter is thicker and more porous than traditional filters, which helps to remove impurities and sediment from the coffee.
  3. The Chemex brewing process allows precise control over the water temperature, flow rate, and extraction time, resulting in a well-balanced and flavorful cup of coffee.
  4. Chemex is a non-porous glass that ensures that your coffee stays hot and fresh for longer.

Can you use espresso beans in Chemex?

You can use espresso beans in Chemex, but not recommended. Espresso beans are roasted darker and have a much stronger flavor profile, which may need to be better suited for the Chemex brewing method. 

Additionally, espresso beans are typically ground much finer than coffee for Chemex, which can result in over-extraction and a bitter taste. It is best to use a medium to light roast coffee with a bright and fruity acidity for the best Chemex coffee.

Can you use regular ground coffee for Pour over?

Yes, you can use regular ground coffee for pour-over. However, choosing a well-balanced coffee with bright acidity is vital, as this will enhance the flavors and aromas of the pour-over. A medium to light roast coffee for pour-over will also create a smooth and well-rounded cup of coffee.

Is Lavazza good for pour over?

Lavazza is a well-known and respected brand in the coffee industry for pour-over. However, choosing a Lavazza coffee with a bright and fruity acidity is essential, as this will enhance the flavors and aromas of the pour-over. As mentioned, use a medium to light roast Lavazza coffee for pour-over, creating a smooth and well-rounded cup of coffee.

Conclusion

In conclusion, choosing the best coffee for Chemex and pour over can significantly affect the taste and enjoyment of your coffee. When selecting a coffee for Chemex, choosing a medium to light roast coffee with a bright and fruity acidity is best. The Chemex brewing process allows precise control over the water temperature, flow rate, and extraction time, resulting in a well-balanced and flavorful cup of coffee. When selecting a coffee for pour-over, choosing a well-balanced coffee with bright acidity is essential, as this will enhance the flavors and aromas of the pour-over. No matter what coffee you prefer, experimenting with different ratios and grind sizes can help you find the perfect combination for a delicious cup of coffee.

Meet the expert

My coffee journey spans 15 years of diverse experiences. Starting from those first sips, my passion for the industry has grown steadily. I've enjoyed working at a local coffee shop, exploring cultures worldwide, meeting incredible farmers on plantation tours, and helping launch a family member's coffee roasting venture. Throughout this journey, discovering and buying coffee from local roasters to support community businesses has been a pleasure. Through Roast Love, I aim to create content that informs, raises awareness, and helps you, the reader, buy and brew that perfect cup of coffee.

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