If you are a coffee lover, but you don’t want to spend a lot of money on a traditional coffee maker, or you don’t have the space to accommodate one, a French press is an option that you should seriously consider. The French press is much smaller than a traditional coffee maker, which means it takes up less space. It’s also much easier to use your French press where you like. Other benefits of a French press include fast brewing time, better control of brewing temperatures, and it is also much easier to clean than a traditional coffee maker. Plus, many people say that they make a much better quality of coffee.
Find the best French press for your needs can be a bit challenging. There are so many different options available, which can make it difficult to determine which one you should purchase. To help you on your quest for finding the best French press, we have put together this handy buyer’s guide. This guide highlights the different types of French presses, the factors you should consider when purchasing one, the different features they can offer and the best French press brands. With the information presented in this buyer’s guide, you will be able to find the best French press for your needs so that you can enjoy a truly delicious cup of coffee.
Types of French Presses
French presses are constructed out of polycarbonate plastic, stainless steel or glass. They also differ in the mechanisms they use to press the coffee. There are five main types of French presses, which include:
- The traditional French press
- The electric French press
- The thermal French press
- The travel French press
- The Aero French press
To find the best one that will suit your specific needs, the first thing you need to do is have a firm understanding of the different types of French presses.
The Traditional French Press
The traditional French press is comprised of a carafe, which holds the water and the coffee that it is turned into. It also has a filter, which is slowly pressed down after hot water has been added to the carafe to brew the coffee. Traditional French presses come in a variety of sizes and styles and they are very straightforward and easy to operate.
The Electric French Press
With an electric French press, the water does not have to be heated up before placing it into the carafe. Instead, the water is boiled in the carafe itself. This saves you the hassle of having to boil the water before making your coffee.
The Thermal French Press
The thermal French press is ideal for those who enjoy having a fresh cup of coffee when they are on the go. The carafe of this type of French press is thermally lined, which keeps the coffee inside the carafe hotter for a longer period of time.
The Travel French Press
The travel French press does not have a carafe; instead, it has a plunger that is attached to a lid. The lid is attached to a travel mug, which hot water is placed in, and the plunger is pressed down to brew the coffee.
The Aero French Press
This type of French press has the ability to make both coffee and espresso. It boasts a unique pressing and filtering system, which allows it to make a delicious cup of coffee or espresso.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a French Press
There are a number of factors that you should take into consideration when choosing a French press. By taking these factors into a consideration, you will be able to find the best French press for your needs. Some of the most important factors that you should take into consideration when shopping for a French press include the type of material the French press is made out of, the durability of the product and the ease of use, among other things.
Here’s a more detailed look at some of the factors that we think are the most important to take into consideration when shopping for a French press.
The first factor you should take into consideration when choosing a French press is the material that it is constructed out of. There are three types of materials that are used, which include glass, stainless steel and polycarbonate plastic.
Many users say that the flavor of the coffee that is pressed into a glass carafe is cleaner; however, other users report that there is no difference in the taste with any of the materials. Some say that stainless steel is more difficult to clean than glass or plastic, which can ultimately have an impact on the flavor. The downside of glass is that there is a risk of breaking it. The downside of stainless steel is that it is heavier. The third option, polycarbonate plastic, is lightweight and virtually unbreakable. If you do opt for a plastic carafe, make sure you choose one that is constructed of BPA free plastic. Generally, the type of material that will work best for you depends on personal preference.
The Insulation Properties
Another factor that you should take into consideration is the insulation properties of the French press. The type of material, the thickness and the construction – either single or double walled – of the carafe will determine the insulating abilities of the French press. If you want to keep your coffee warmer longer, look for one that is specifically manufactured to do so.
The capacity of the French press is determined by cup size. Typically, the reference cup is four ounces. An eight cup press is the average size; however, there are other options available, including three, four and six cup capacities. To determine what capacity is best for you, consider the amount of coffee you will drink in a single setting, or how many people you will be serving.
Another important factor to take into consideration is the durability of the French press. Generally, all glass is fragile; however, not all glass is made the same. Some is made thinner, and some is made thicker. Those French presses that are constructed of thicker glass are more durable. Stainless steel is unbreakable, which may be a good option for you if you tend to be clumsy. Polycarbonate plastic is very durable and virtually indestructible; however, there is a chance that it will break.
Ease of Cleaning
You should also consider how easy it will be to clean your French press. Generally, French presses that are easy to clean receive the highest ratings. A press that can be removed from its frame or that is dishwasher safe will be the easiest to clean.
Lastly, you should factor the price into consideration when you are shopping for a French press. These devices can vary significantly in price. Generally, presses that have a larger capacity and offer more features have higher price tags. Make sure you know how much you want to spend before you start shopping so that you don’t spend more than you are comfortable with.
Available Features for French Presses
French presses can come equipped with a few different features. These features are intended to make the press easier to use, and the aim to make a better tasting cup of coffee. As mentioned above, the more features that a French press offers, the higher the price tag will be. To determine whether or not you want or need certain features, it is important to understand what the features are intended to do.
Here’s a look at some of the most popular features that French presses can offer.
A Coffee Grinder
For the best and freshest tasting cup of coffee, look for a French press that features a built in coffee grinder. With this feature, the beans will be ground right before you make your coffee, which means fresher, tastier coffee.
A Water Thermometer
A water thermometer will allow you to achieve the perfect temperature for your water, which means a better quality of coffee. The best thermometers are easy to read and easy to use.
Filtration plays an important part in brewing a great pot of coffee. Many French presses feature a reusable filter that you can wash and reuse. To get the best tasting cup of coffee, look for a reusable filter that has a fine mesh, as it will ensure the coffee is smooth and tastes great.
You will need to measure out the coffee grounds or coffee beans to make your coffee. A French press that comes with its own measuring cups will allow you to ensure that you can get the perfect measurement.
Some French presses can be used to make a variety of beverages. As mentioned in the ‘types’ section of this buyer’s guide, there are French presses that can make both coffee and espresso; however, there are also French presses that can make other beverages, too, such as tea, iced tea, frothed milk, hot chocolate, different types of milks, lemonades and even fruit infusions.
The best French presses come equipped with a warranty. A warranty will protect your investment in your French press. Should something happen to the French press during the span of the warranty, you could have the French press repaired or replaced, or you could even have your money refunded. Do make sure you read the details of your warranty so that you know exactly what it covers.
The Best French Press Brands
There are several manufacturers that make French presses. While it’s great to have a lot of options, having too many can make it difficult to determine who makes the best product. To help you find the best French press, we have tested out several products ourselves. We have also compared user reviews. Our findings indicate that the following French press brands are the best of the best.
Sterling Pro manufactures very high quality and durable French presses. They are constructed of the highest quality materials and offer a range of features. We found that they were very easy to use, that they were easy to clean and that they made coffee very quickly.
Camica is another manufacturer that makes high quality French presses. We liked how easy they were to use, their durability and their insulation qualities. Users also reported that they found the coffee Camica French presses made was very smooth and tasty.
We also found that Bodum Brazil manufactures high quality French presses. They are constructed of durable materials and they offer several features.
Frieling French presses offer a diverse range of French presses. They use the most cutting edge approaches to produce very high quality French presses that brew incredibly delicious coffee.