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f you’re looking to get back to basics and brew fresh coffee at home without investing in an expensive machine or being restricted by push-button brewing, a French press is the obvious choice.
All you need is some fresh coffee and you’ll have a robust and lip-smacking drink in 4 minutes flat.
In today’s best French press reviews, we’ll explore some of the most effective cafetières on the market so you can find the right coffee maker whatever your budget.
We’ll also give you a brief guide on what to look for when you’re on the buying trail so you can get what you need without wasting countless hours mulling over substandard models.
We’ll dive directly into those French press reviews right now…
Materials polarize opinion with French presses and there’s a strong case for glass carafes offering the best experience. For many, though, stainless steel wins out.
It’s obviously less fragile, more rugged and insulating so read on if you want a modern twist on the classic French press…
Choose between the regular 34oz carafe or a supersize 50-ouncer if you have a big family crying out for coffee every morning.
The stainless steel cafetière is double-walled so you’ll enjoy your coffee staying hotter for longer. With cool-touch handles and knobs, you won’t end up suffering for that piping hot coffee.
There are 3 layers to the filter meaning you’ll get the finest and sediment-free coffee in your cup every time in just 4 minutes. Brewing gourmet coffee doesn’t get much easier.
Aside from being something of a grind to clean, the Secura French press gives you that perfect golden cup of coffee without any of the hassle or expense of a more involved machine.
If you’re hunting for a traditional carafe with a little added strength, the legendary Bodum produce the Chambord in borosilicate glass which is not only highly durable but also wonderfully heat-resistant.
While this premium material is a total winner, the lid is lined with plastic which will upset some purists so be aware of this before purchase.
The reusable mesh filter not only sidesteps the need for replacement but also returns a superior coffee with all the oils and flavor locked in.
Not everyone wants high volumes of coffee, so you can opt for a dinky 12oz carafe if you live alone and fancy the occasional cup. For those with heavier appetites there’s a 51oz beasts with 3 sizes in between these extremes.
As with all cafetières, disassembly and cleaning is tasky and tedious but that’s where you maintenance starts and ends.
If you want a conventional carafe with a little extra longevity built in, you can’t go wrong with the Bodum Chambord. If you want up to 12 cups of steaming primo coffee, check out this cost-effective classic.
If you’ve been searching for a quick and affordable way to get great coffee at home, the striking, modernist KONA French press is the obvious choice
You’ll get all the benefits of a glass carafe with the added bonus of a protective plastic shell snaking around the extra-thick borosilicate glass.
The lack of insulation means your coffee will only stay warm for a half-hour so the 12oz model makes more sense if you’re a casual coffee drinker, the 34oz ideal for anyone with a heavier appetite.
This French press is so lightweight and portable it makes the ideal travel companion. Why deprive yourself of fresh coffee on the go when you can pop the KONA in your case?
Although there’s plenty of plastic in evidence, it’s all BPA-free and the carafe is dishwasher-safe for your convenience. No plastic comes into contact with your coffee in any case.
Get first-rate coffee on a budget with the hard-hitting KONA French press. Enjoy all the advantages of a glass carafe without the fragility.
Although the majority of coffee aficionados prefer glass cafetières, if you fancy one of the best stainless steel presses instead, the Coffee Gator is a beast.
Whether you want the stealthy matte gray or a vibrant orange, the pro-grade stainless steel means you’ll get a French press built to last for years and tailor-made for keeping your coffee hot for an hour longer than a glass alternative.
There’s a storage container chucked in that’s perfect for keeping your fresh coffee close by and a genuinely instructive e-book packed with hints and guidance to help you achieve that golden cup at home.
The double filter comes spring loaded and efficiently stops sediment from marring your morning pick-me-up.
The insulating properties of the Coffee Gator are undeniably the strongest selling point. The surgical-grade stainless is not just built to withstand heavy punishment, it will keep your coffee piping hot for 90 minutes or more.
If you’re still in any doubt, there’s a full money back guarantee in place if you’re not completely satisfied with your Coffee Gator so what have you got to lose?
As we round out our best French press reviews, we’ve got something for the design-conscious coffee fiend looking for a contemporary cafetière.
If you’re looking for the cheapest French press, check out one of the other options. If, however, you have a flexible budget and you want a stainless steel beauty that will last for years, read on…
We’re not going to pretend stainless steel carafes make the best bet for French press brewing but if you prefer the durability offered, the Frieling is a superb example. The steel extends to the plunger mechanism giving you reliability and longevity while still being very easy on the eye.
If you’re serving up drinks for guests, the carafe serves double duty as a pitcher so whether you’re dispensing scalding coffee or an iced alternative, the Frieling has your back.
The class-leading 5-year warranty should remove any lingering doubts you might have.
Now we’ve wrapped up our French press reviews, we’ll briefly explore why you should consider opting for this brewing method before highlighting what you need to think about if you want the best French press.
Why Use a French Press?
The market is glutted with all manner of tech-led machines from a super-automatic machine dedicated to the finest espresso through a host of single serve coffee makers epitomizing push-button convenience.
While these coffee machines are all well and good, if you want to revert to a more hands-on approach to brewing, the best French press comes with a shower of advantages…
- Simplicity of Brewing: Brewing up a consistently excellent cup of coffee couldn’t be easier. Pour hot water over your grounds then pour 4 minutes later
- Temperature Control: The speed and simplicity of the brewing process and the fact the water is heated separately mean you can retain full control and dial in the temperature to the optimum 200 degrees
- Permanent Filter: Paper filters have several drawbacks. You’ll need to keep replacing them and avoid running out. This cost mounts over time. Also, paper filters deprive your coffee of essential oils and you’ll get a more diluted brew. The best French press has a permanent filters which is best for your pocket and your palate
- Strength: Since you can directly influence the brewing time, get your coffee exactly the way you want through experimenting until you find the strength of your dreams
- Low Maintenance: Aside from emptying out the grounds after brewing and regularly cleaning the carafe by hand or in the dishwasher, the best French press is blissfully maintenance-free
What To Look For In The Best French Press
If you’re looking for the best French press, it’s a pretty basic premise and product so there’s not too much to concern yourself with.
Focus on the following elements…
With a regular single-serve French press, you’ll be able to enjoy a full, large mug from a single pour.
If you’ve got a larger family or you want to serve guests, plenty of carafes come in much larger sizes capable of yielding up to 12 coffees from one fill.
Bear in mind that most French press models don’t come particularly well-insulated. If you’ll use a larger amount of coffee before it cools down, great. Don’t choose size for the sake of size.
You’ll generally find French presses come in glass, stainless steel and, less commonly, ceramic.
Glass keeps the visual act of brewing intact and you’ll get a crisp, clean drink.
Stainless steel is the best move for durability and heat retention.
Ceramic carafes hold their temperature well but tend to be more expensive.
There’s no right or wrong answer, no objective “best” material. We can say, though, that glass carafes offer the most complete package.
Ease of Use
While a French press has no complicated electronics to go wrong, there are some pretty dainty parts to factor in.
Make sure that you look for a cafetière with a smooth plunging mechanism and a well-constructed filter.
Look for any reports of difficulty pouring and avoid those carafes. User reviews generally give you a pretty accurate idea with plenty of honest feedback to monitor.
If you use a dishwasher, look for a French press that won’t chip or crack.
Pretty much any decent French press will have a double or triple filter to keep even fine particles out of your drink.
Check, too, that the filter and plunger integrate nicely and are solidly built.
Most of the best French presses come with at least some form of warranty in place.
The superior carafes we reviewed offer up to 5 years coverage and in some instances a money back guarantee.
Shoot for a carafe offering the level of coverage that makes you feel comfortable related to its price…
While price is always a factor in any buying decision, it should never be the prevailing factor.
Although the French press is a simple brewer, the cheaper models will simply not stand the test of time. Even a more upscale cafetière doesn’t cost the earth so there’s no point trying to save a few bucks if you need a replacement a matter of months later.
With minimal ongoing running costs and an eminently affordable price tag, get the best French press you can afford without overextending yourself.
A Final Word
We trust you’ve found these French press reviews useful and informative.
Drop us a line any time with any queries or feedback. We’re highly responsive to messages and we’ll get back to your promptly.