best method for good home-made coffee
not a connoisseur here but love a good cup so want the most economical way to achieve this whether its French press, machine of sorts( probably more than i want to spend) or whatever else, and unfortunately counter -space is a definite issue here
Everyone has a favorite, there's no one best method. If counter space is at a premium, you could use a one cup or larger pour over Melitta cone with filter, or a French press, or just a pot/saucepan of hot water into which you dump ground coffee and then strain into a cup with a fine mesh kitchen strainer. If you're heading off to work, you could get a travel style insulated cup with a built in coffee press to use at home and for commuting.
There's no "best." The French press is cheap and small and
preferred by many. If you find FP coffee a bit coarse and
bitter, you could pour it, once brewed,through a 1-cup Melitta filter and holder.
Proctor-Silex makes inexpensive automatic drip coffee makers
that work well (but note they don't have a built-in timer).
Since space is at a premium, don't get a coffee maker that uses
a carafe. Hot-plate models ruin the taste, so consider rewarming
coffee in a microwave.
We grind whole beans which we keep refrigerated. I use a combination of a good dark roast and some espresso beans which I usually get from Porto Rico in Manhattan.
The French press gives us the best flavor but it cools off too quickly. Otherwise we use an old style Copco stove top percolator which stays hot thru our lengthy breakfast meal.
I've been really happy with my Aeropress with a Coava Disk when I'm not making espresso in my 1970s La Pavoni. However, the Aeropress only makes coffee for one (so if there are other coffee drinkers in your house, you will have to get more). A french press is great, but I like my Aeropress more.
A good grinder is way more important than you think. Don't get one of those chopping blade grinders. A good electric burr grinder costs a few hundred, but a hand grinder is cheap, takes up less space, & is easy to use. The hand grinder I use is decades old, but there are some good new ones: