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espro press pouring into cup on minimalist table background

Voilà! Finding the Best French Press for Connoisseurs

It’s time to look at the coffee press: a classic brewing device. Here are some of the best French presses on the market.

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Asser Christensen

Licensed Q Arabica Grader, M.A. Journalism

The French press existed long before the specialty coffee trend took off. It’s undeniably old-school at its core.

Like its close (but less fancy) cousin, Cowboy Coffee, this brewing method relies entirely on the extraction method coffee geeks know as immersion.

Fortunately, recent years have ushered in a few innovative companies reshaping this space with intriguing designs.

While the classic French press can craft exceptional coffee (given the right technique and recipe), today’s innovative models have raised the bar.

So, which stands out? Here are some of my favorites on the market.

Bodum 1928-16US4 Chambord...Bodum ChambordMultiple
Classic design, borosilicate glass, steel frame.
ESPRO - P7 French Press -...The Espro Press0.5 l & 1 LDual micromesh, stainless steel, retains heat.
TIMEMORE Original Design Small...Timemore U French Press450 mlMinimalist, unique filter, compact design.
Secura French Press Coffee...Secura French Press1 LBudget-friendly, 30k+ reviews, retains heat.

The Best French Press of 2023

1: The Classic: Bodum Chambord

Bodum 1928-16US4 Chambord...

Bodum is renowned for its exquisite coffee and tea glassware. But the Chambord? That’s the archetype—the first image that pops up when someone says “French press.”

Over the years, they’ve enhanced its design. Now it features a safety lid to avoid coffee spills and materials that are dishwasher-safe for effortless cleaning.

The glass part boasts high-quality borosilicate, ensuring your brew remains warm for longer. And the frame? Sleek stainless steel.

Its longevity speaks volumes— a blend of top-notch craftsmanship and timeless design.

Perfect for a lazy Sunday brunch or an afternoon pick-me-up. It’s not built for adventures, but for the cozy corners of homes and offices, it’s unmatched.

The main downsides to the Chambord are apparent: The glass is very exposed! And your coffee will not stay warm for long.

But as the French say: tant pis 🤷

See more reviews

2: The Espro Press

espro press holding in hand white background

I’ll always have a soft spot for Bodum— it’s in the Danish DNA. However, when it comes to sheer performance, the Espro Press is a cut above.

Its dual micromesh screen and unique gasket give it a filtration edge. The result? A noticeably cleaner sip. For those who crave a pour over feel, just add a paper filter for a smoother experience.

Its build quality is commendable. Crafted from robust stainless steel, it can handle its fair share of bumps. What’s more, its double-wall design ensures your coffee stays warm, outlasting most glass rivals.

Having savored its brews, I vouch for the Espro as the most innovative French press out there.

PS: You can also get cheaper glass versions of the Espro that still offer the unique filter plunger.

See more reviews

3: Timemore U French Press

TIMEMORE Original Design Small...

I’m pretty taken with Timemore’s compact, minimalist French press.

Its sleek, modern design shines in either low-key matte black or crisp white.

While its filter diverges from the traditional mesh screen we usually see on French presses, it doesn’t entirely revolutionize the game like Espro’s double-screen version.

However, Timemore’s ingenuity is evident in the ease of extracting the glass vessel from its plastic casing.

Secured by a rubber ring at the top and accessible via a hole below, it’s safeguarding the glass while making it easy to get out.

Its 450 ml capacity is aptly sized for one or two coffee enthusiasts.

Timemore labels it a ‘travel French press,’ but I probably wouldn’t use a device made of glass on the road. Nonetheless, their cute spin on a timeless coffee brewer is worthy of applause.

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4: Secura French Press

Secura French Press Coffee...

The Secura French Press, boasting over 30,000 positive Amazon reviews, is a budget-friendly gem for those craving a metal press.

It’s tailored for those who love their coffee warm for extended periods. While that’s not my preference, coffee habits vary, and it’s a feature many value.

The filter mechanism mirrors most traditional presses, and it thoughtfully includes two extra mesh screens for when wear and tear hit.

Besides its generous size, disassembling and cleaning it is a breeze. And, while it’s dishwasher-friendly, a hand wash does the trick just fine.

Constructed with 18/10 stainless steel inside and out, it outshines rivals that compromise on quality. Its double-wall build promises unparalleled heat retention.

See more reviews

French Press History and Developments:

Despite its name, the French press isn’t innately French. The design, in fact, was patented by an Italian in 1929.

In France, the device is known as a ‘cafetière. ‘ I lived in France for almost a year and rarely saw it used. Most Frenchmen seem to prefer espresso.

However, the renowned ‘Melior’ French press is credited to the French firm Martin SA. But in 1991, the Danish company Bodum acquired the rights to the design and launched it as the “Chambord.”

Today, the design is almost as iconic as the striped French sailor shirt and a beret.

Through the years, French presses shared a standard design: a glass vessel with a mesh-filtered plunger. But the modern era brought fresh interpretations, like the innovative Espro Press.

Espro Press Vs Bodum Chambord
The classic Bodum vs the new kid in class, the Espro Press

Choosing the Right French Press

While most French presses may appear similar, they’re not all cut from the same cloth. Here’s a quick guide to finding the perfect one:

  • Stick to metal or glass models? If you opt for glass, ensure replacements are readily available. Accidents are inevitable.
  • A snug plunger and a finely woven mesh filter are crucial. Bargain models tend to skimp here, using subpar materials.
  • Lastly, consider aesthetics. You’ll spend countless mornings with it, so choose a looker.

Even if you’re a seasoned French presser, I’d encourage you to check out this little video, where I share some key concepts and mistakes that you want to avoid when it comes to brewing technique 👇

Design: Aesthetics or Utility?

Though I appreciate a stylish French press, my foremost question remains: “How functional is it?”

I’d lean towards glass models for a home kitchen. But can it handle a rugged camping trip? Likely not.

Double filter espro on table
Espro’s double-mesh filter is more fine meshed than regular French presses.

Filter: Traditional Mesh or Contemporary?

While the discussion could revolve around mesh filter intricacies, we shouldn’t disregard innovations in filtering. Do you require minimal residue? Ensure the mesh is fine-tuned for clarity.

Yet, modern alternatives are edging in. The Espro Press, for instance, embraces a dual system—a paper filter alongside its mesh—for a pristine, pour-over-esque brew.

Looking for a suitable alternative to the French press? Check out my Review of the Hario Switch