The Top 10 Best Roast For French Press Coffee

The Top 10 Best Roast For French Press Coffee

Last updated on October 25th, 2023 at 13:34

There is no doubt that the French press is an amazing brewing method when you have fresh coffee beans. To make a truly magnificent cup of coffee using your French press, you need great beans and use the best roast for French press coffee.

You will learn how the roast level affects French press brewing and what roast type to use for the best coffee and flavor notes.

If you are in a rush, let’s not beat about the bush and let you know what the best roast is for this brewing technique are medium, medium-dark and dark roasts. You can use any roast profile and make great coffee with a French press. Just avoid light roasts as you will do those beans more justice when using a pour over or drip brewing method.

Koa Estate 100% Kona Coffee is a tremendous coffee, a dark roast with notes of tropical fruits and hints of coconut.

Keep reading as we dig down and detail this topic in more detail.

What Is The Best Roast For French Press?

The best roast for your French press coffee maker will be fully dependent on your own personal preference and taste. The temperature and duration that your coffee beans are roasted at largely impact the flavor profile.

If you have a preference for milder tasting coffee or a much stronger cup of coffee, you will need to select the roast of coffee that is most suited to what you enjoy. Medium-dark and dark roasts are, generally speaking, more suitable for the French press brewing method due to having a greater oil content, and the oil being easier to extract due to coating the surface of the coffee beans themselves.

The different roast levels and what to expect from them are listed below:

  • Light Roast: These are light brown and have a very dry surface with no oil. They produce a grainy, light bodied taste. It’s an acidic coffee. Light-roasted coffee beans are not ideal for a French press. You can use it, but you will be better with other brewing techniques.
  • Medium Roast: Similar to light-roasted coffee beans, medium-roasted beans are dry and have no oil on their surface. The flavor is not grainy like lighter roasts. They have more body and the resulting cup of coffee is more balanced and smoother. You can use this roast with a French press and get a good cup of coffee, and you can also get great coffee with a pour over and a drip brewer. It’s a roast level where it will depend largely on your own preference and the beans you are using.
  • Medium-Dark Roast: These coffee beans are notably darker than a medium roast and if you need further confirmation, look for some oil on the exterior of the beans. They tend to have a slight spicy flavor and taste balanced and smooth and less acidity.
  • Dark Roast: This is the highest roast level and looks notably darker than a medium-dark roast and has an almost black color. They have a shiny exterior and low acidity. Dark roasted beans produce a bitter, smoky, full-bodied coffee. The darkest roast in the dark roast profile is an Italian roast which is perfect for an espresso. The second darkest is the French roast.
What Is The Best Roast For French Press
Medium-Dark And Dark Roasts Are Best

Read: Best type of coffee for French press.

Is French Roast For French Press?

A French press makes a great coffee and one of the darker roasts in the dark roast level is a French roast. It can be a very bold coffee, and a really strong one.

You can use a French roast for French press if you so want, but it is a very bitter and dark tasting coffee that is very bold and full-bodied. If this is not your ideal coffee taste, then avoid a French roast and stick to full city or Vienna roasts and, of course, medium-dark roasts.

When you are looking for the best coffee beans and the best roast for French press, focus on the tasting notes that are on the bag of coffee.

Focus on the flavors that you will enjoy, like hazelnut, chocolate and perhaps fruity flavors or whatever may be your own personal taste. French press coffee lovers have a tendency to gravitate towards those flavors.

Coffee beans from South America and Central America tend to have sweeter, nutty flavors. Sumatran and Java coffee from Indonesia also tend to have similar flavors.

Is French Roast For French Press
A French Roast Will Depend On Your Own Personal Taste

Read: What is the best coffee for French press.

Our Top 10 Best Roasted Coffee For French Press

Let’s now talk about what we consider to be the roasted coffee beans for making delicious, tasty French press coffee.

#1 Koa Estate 100% Kona Coffee

Roast Profile: Dark Roasted

Flavor Notes: Chocolate, Tropical fruit, and nuts, even hints coconut.

Pre-Ground Or Whole Bean: Whole Bean

Origin(s): Big Island, Hawaii, USA

Kona coffee has its rightful place at the top of this list of the best roast for French press. This is an expensive coffee, but it is absolutely worth it and is a 100% American coffee, grown and cultivated on Hawaii’s big Island.

When buying Kona coffee, always look for 100% Kona coffee as to simply get this label legally, there only has to be 10% of Kona coffee in a blend. Grown in a the unique microclimate of plenty of sunshine and rain in the Mid-Pacific. Kona coffee, all Kona coffee, is Volcanic coffee and 100% Arabica beans. Koa sell only 100% Kona coffee beans and are sourced from the same coffee estate.

They have all the flavors that French press coffee enthusiasts love with chocolate and coconut tastes and a complex flavor profile that you would expect from a dark roast.

If, as a coffee enthusiast, you have not yet tried a Kona coffee. Now is a good time to try.

Koa Coffee 100% Kona Coffee
Koa Estate 100% Kona Coffee

#2 Peet’s Coffee, Major Dickason’s Blend – Runner Up!

Roast Profile: Dark Roast.

Flavor Notes: Nutty, velvet-like, bittersweet chocolate and smoky bold flavors.

Pre-ground Or Whole Bean: Both Whole Beans And Pre-ground.

Origin(s): Americas, Indo-Pacific (Specific nations not mentioned).

Like Starbucks, Peet’s is a huge player in the coffee industry. Major Dickason’s blend is a blend of great coffee growing regions and has notes of nuts and velvet like texture and bittersweet chocolate undertones.

A French press will extract all these delicious and complex and rich notes and produce a rather enjoyable coffee.

Peet’s Coffee, Major Dickason’s Blend
Peet’s Coffee, Major Dickason’s Blend

#3. Volcanica Bolivia Peaberry – Best Medium Roast

Roast Level: Medium Roast.

Tasting Profile:  Sweet and smooth with cocoa notes.

Whole Bean Or Pre-Ground: Both

Origin(s): Bolivia

This coffee has all that you love from a medium roast. It has a very rich cocoa flavor and is sweet and smooth. Think of this as more like a hot chocolate than a coffee and even more if you enjoy your Volcanic Bolivia Peaberry coffee with sugar and cream.

French press brewing really enhances the body and texture.

A peaberry coffee is a rare genetic mutation in only 5% of coffee cherries on average. Instead of two coffee beans growing, one single bean grows. This single coffee bean gets all the flavor compounds, and nutrients instead of it being shared.

This makes for an intense coffee. It must be hand-harvested and is an incredibly tasty coffee.

The result is a more flavorful, more intense coffee. Peaberry is more expensive due to this type of coffee needing to be hand-harvested.

Volcanica Bolivia Peaberry - Best Medium Roast
Volcanica Bolivia Peaberry

#4 Huckleberry Roasters Flores Belas

Roast Profile: Medium Roast

Flavor Notes: Sweet vanilla, smooth with nutty tastes and with milk chocolate tones.

Pre-Ground Or Whole Bean: Whole Bean

Origin(s): Latin America, (exact country not specified).

These coffee beans are 100% naturally processed and roasted to perfection by the 2019 US coffee roasting champion.

This coffee is one that is absolutely fantastic with touches of sweet vanilla, nuts, milk chocolate and a certain caramel taste that lingers on your tongue.

The name is even beautiful, it translates to beautiful flowers.

Huckleberry Roasters Flores Belas
Huckleberry Roasters Flores Belas

#5 Lifeboost Medium Roast – Best Organic Option!

Roast Level: Medium Roast

Flavor Notes: Nutty, smooth, and very balanced.

Pre-ground or Whole Bean: Both pre-ground and whole beans are available.

Origin(s): Nicaragua.

The mountains of Central America are well known amongst coffee enthusiasts for being a location that is ripe with world class Arabica coffee. Lifeboost grows their coffee beans high in the Nicaragua mountains and in a very organic and meticulous manner, ensuring they are free from pesticides, insecticides and herbicides.

This is a great, healthy coffee from a region that is known for having the ideal climate and high quality soil that is high in nutrients.

The beans are hand washed to ensure the highest quality. The coffee that you will make will be nutty, chocolate with low acidity and an earthy body.

Lifeboost Medium Roast - Best Organic Option
Lifeboost Medium Roast

#6 Volcanica Coffee Ethiopia Yirgacheffe – Best Volcanic Coffee!

Roast Profile: Light-Medium Roast

Flavor Profile: Blackberry and Blueberry with Citrusy Lemon notes.

Whole Bean or Pre-Ground: Both

Origin(s): Ethiopia

Yirgacheffe is a coffee that I love. It is one of my favorites and this has nothing to do with coffee enthusiast romanticism due to the connection to the region Yirgacheffe and the birthplace of coffee.

It is an absolutely fabulous coffee with floral notes, berry flavors and undertones of citrus and lemon like notes. It’s a coffee with a bright acidity; really it is one of those coffees that tastes like no other. Brewed well, you will experience the juiciness and creamy texture. These beans work excellent as a hot water brewing technique or the French press or as a very enjoyable cold brew.

Volcanica Coffee Ethiopia Yirgacheffe – Best Volcanic Coffee
Volcanica Coffee Ethiopia Yirgacheffe – Best Volcanic Coffee

#7 Coffee Cold Brew Coarsely Ground Coffee By Stone Street – The Best Ground Coffee For A French Press

Roast Level: Dark-Roasted

Flavor Notes: Bold, smooth, chocolate and low acidity

Pre-Ground Or Whole Bean: Both

Origin(s): Colombia

Despite these beans being marked as for use with cold brew coffee. It is a coffee that you can use to hot brew in your French press coffee maker to brew a low acidity and bright coffee that is washed processed. It’s bold, full-bodied and with great and enjoyable tones of chocolate. It is a great single origin coffee from one of the better regions in the coffee world – Colombia.

Coffee Cold Brew Coarsely Ground Coffee By Stone Street
Coffee Cold Brew Coarsely Ground Coffee By Stone Street

#8 Cocarive Onda Origins

Roast Level: Medium Roast.

Flavor Notes: Peach fruit cup, pecan pie and flan.

Pre-ground Or Whole: Whole bean Or Pre-ground.

Country Of Origin(s): Brazil.

This coffee comes from a very well-organized and highly ethical coffee co-operative that pulled their resources to get a warehouse facility and high-end equipment. This smart move helped them to produce a top quality coffee with fruity peach-like tastes with flan and pecan pie notes. Tones of chocolate are there too.

It’s a great medium roast and not as intense as a medium-dark or dark roast and absolutely perfect for a summer morning brew, or a fruity lunchtime coffee.

Cocarive Onda Origins
Cocarive Onda Origins

#9 Kenya AA Nyeri Ichamara Coffee Beans

Roast Level: Medium-Dark Roast

Flavor Notes: Fruity peach blossom, with notes of Orange Zest and Black Tea

Pre-Ground Whole Bean: Whole Bean

Origin(s): Kenya.

A single origin coffee from East Africa and medium-dark roast rich in flavors, it will rock your French press with the hints of orange zest, peaches and notes of black tea. It’s bold and full-bodied and very rich in flavor.

This is a coffee that you will keep coming back to.

Kenya AA Nyeri Ichamara Coffee Beans
Kenya AA Nyeri Ichamara

#10 Ivonne Herrera Onda Origins – Best Light Roast!

Roast Level: Light-Medium.

Flavor Notes: Red apple, almonds, and ginger snap with hints of chocolate.

Whole Bean or Pre-ground: Both Pre-ground and Whole Bean.

Origin(s): Guatemala

Occasionally you come across coffee hero’s and Ivonne Herrera is one of them. A hard-working single mom and one who worked hard to help her seasonal staff to get bank accounts in her native country of Guatemala.

This is a very peculiar coffee that has hints of red apple, ginger snap, and almonds with light notes of milk chocolate. It’s a light-medium roast that works well with your French press and will produce a great coffee, provided you know your way around French press brewing.

Ivonne Herrera Onda Origins
Ivonne Herrera Onda Origins

Best Coarse Ground Coffee For French Press

I personally consider #7 above, the Cold Coffee Brew By Stone Street to be the best coarse ground coffee for French press coffee brewing. It’s a dark-roasted single origin Arabica coffee from Latin America, concretely speaking – Colombia.

It is naturally processed with the beans being wash processed as is typical for all Colombian coffee. These beans will produce a coffee that is bold, smooth and with notable and highly enjoyable chocolate tones.

Frequently Asked Questions About Best Roast For French Press

Is Light Medium Or Dark Roast Better For French Press?

The best roast for French press is a medium or dark roast, as these will extract the oils and flavor compounds better than light roasts. Light roasts are much better used with a drip coffee machine as this machine will extract the coffee oils and compounds better than what a French press will result in a better tasting coffee.

What Coffee Do You Need For A French Press?

The coffee that you need for a French press is, in all honesty, the best quality that you can afford. The French press brew method is one that is the best for extracting all the nuances and flavors from your specialty grade coffee beans.

Ensure they are of a medium or dark roast. Unground whole beans are better than Pre-ground coffee. If you must buy pre-ground coffee, coarse ground is best.

Is Dark Roast Good For French Press?


a dark roasted coffee is ideal for French press coffee brewing. Medium,  medium-dark and dark roasts are the roast profiles that are the best roasts for French press coffee brewing. A dark roast will be oily and the full immersion brewing technique and the hot water will draw out all the coffee oils and flavors from the beans.

Is Light Or Dark Roast More Bitter?

A light roast coffee bean is less bitter than a darker roasted coffee bean. However, there are other factors that influence the extraction of the bitter compounds from the coffee beans, including over extraction and too high a brewing temperature.

What Roast Is Best For French Press?

Medium roasts and dark roast coffee bean work best for a French press coffee. The bold intense flavor from darker roasts compliment the full immersion extraction method better. The deep, chocolatey, nutty and earthy flavors extracted make it a great cup of coffee.

What Is The Best Coffee Flavor For A French Press?

The best coffee flavor that works best in a French press are the chocolate nutty flavors of a dark roast. Although light roast works well too, there are other brewing methods that are better than French presses for light roast coffee.

Why Is Dark Roast Better For French Press?

Dark roasted coffee beans like an Italian roast or a French roast, which are the darkest and second-darkest roast profile work very well with this brewing method due to the intense, bold flavor and heavy body.

Is Light Or Dark Roast Better For French Press?

Dark roasts are better for a French press. Light roast work much better with the pour over method due this brewing methods ability to extract the delicate and intricate lighter notes from the beans.

Frappé-Ing It All Up – Best Roast For French Press?

The best roast for French press is a medium-dark or dark roast but above all, have a good look at the tasting notes for the beans that you are interested in as coffee brewing and, particularly French press brewing, it is a personal choice, a personal thing.

A medium roast, more certainly you can use, but it is not the best roast profile due to a lack of oil and slightly grainy taste.

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Derek Marshall, a certified barista by the Specialty Coffee Association possesses over two decades of experience in specialty coffee shops. He holds professional certifications for coffee brewing and barista skills. Derek is also an author with authoritative books covering various coffee topics including specialty coffee, sustainability and coffee, coffee brewing, coffee recipes, coffee cocktails and books focusing on Brazilian coffee, Vietnamese coffee, Indonesian coffee and Malaysian coffee. As a barista for over two decades, Derek Marshall has worked in specialty coffee shops across the United Kingdom, Spain, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Vietnam. His expertise extends to the distinct coffee cultures, specialty beverages, and brewing techniques of each nation. Functioning as a coffee consultant, Derek charges US$50 per hour. To learn more about Derek Marshall and Latte Love Brew, visit his About Me Page. For coffee inquiries, contact him at +34-639-410-375 or, mentioning your name and location

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