A French Press for Every Coffee Drinker
The french press is one of those simple, yet tastefully designed products. First designed in France in the mid 1800s without a seal inside the brewing chamber, the French Press was later improved upon by the Italians and then the Swiss. This traditional brewer has stood the test of time. Even a couple decades ago the French Press was considered the best way to yield a flavorful cup, so much so that up until 2014 the coffee giant Stumptown Coffee prefered to brew their coffee in a French Press over a batch brewer in their shops. Baristas would brew coffee in the French Press then dump the coffee into the airpots. Talk about compromising efficiency for the sake of pursuing quality!
Today, use of the French Press draws varying opinions in the world of coffee snobbery, but there is no doubt that the brewing device will yield a thicker cup of coffee. Those who prefer a more syrupy mouthfeel in their mug benefit from the coffee oils that are preserved by using a mesh filter as opposed to paper filters typical in batch brewers or pour over sets. Whereas a paper filter will absorb more of the coffee oils and catch any fines from the coffee slurry, the metal filter found in the French Press will allow some of the fines and oils into the cup, yielding a more viscous coffee.
Continuing on with the French Press’s reputation of being a traditional, simple brewer, when deciding on what French Press to use, there aren’t many factors to weigh out. While this is a simple brewing device, there are some variations that might be worth considering when deciding on which brewer you will use in your morning routine. Afterall, if coffee is an everyday habit like it is for most people, it’s worth making sure you are set up with a French Press you will love using. We highlighted products based on varying criteria and provided some information on the best French Presses around.
The Simple (and Budget Friendly) French Press
The Bodum Brazil French Press Coffee and Tea Maker is a straightforward option for brewing great coffee. The glass carafe is aesthetically pleasing. The plastic handles and cap are available in many colors to match your kitchen. This is your basic French Press with a single filter plunger. We recommend this one for those of you who want the basics at a low cost, and in the end can still brew a delicious cup of coffee with the rest of them.
If you’re like me, a product that is enjoyable to look at and satisfying to use adds to the overall coffee brewing experience. Plus, if your French Press is going to sit on your counter when you’re not using it, it might as well add to the aesthetic of your kitchen. While we are highlighting the beautiful design and ergonomics of these French Presses, we wouldn’t suggest a product that makes subpar coffee either. Because design preference can be subjective we want to point out two different French Presses. One is from Hario, a Japanese, quality-focused and coffee minded company. The Hario Olivewood Cafepress combines glass with beautiful Olive wood accents. Some users have complained that the wood can warp a little, so take that into consideration. Another one worth noting is the Yield Design Ceramic French Press. The ceramic, especially when heated with hot water before brewing, will effectively contain heat as well as look fantastic on your kitchen counter.
The Best Flavor
One downside often found in coffee brewed from a French Press is the tendency to produce over extracted coffee. This happens for two reasons. The first reason is the act of plunging a filter down agitates the coffee grounds releasing much of the over extracted flavors that would otherwise be trapped in the bed of grounds. Another phenomenon is the tendency for coffee to continue brewing since the water and coffee, while separated by a filter, are still together. However, the filter patented by Espro solves this problem. While using a filter with a small chamber to contain any over extracted coffee, as well as the coffee fines, properly brewed coffee is left to be poured straight into your cup. Not only does this brew notably delicious coffee, Espro’s design on their P7 model uses vacuum insulation along with stainless steel to keep the coffee hot for hours. This device is truly remarkable.
One last French Press category is portability. The ability to brew coffee quickly in the morning then grab and go out the door is a necessity for some. Espro again has a fantastic product in this category. Their lightweight P0 model is great for biking to work, camping, or just bringing it with you to the office. Like the P7 model, it uses their patented filtration system to reduce over extraction and fines seeping into your cup. This model comes in matte black, chalk white, green and other colors.
READ MORE: Craft Coffee Brew Methods Explained.
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