If you are like most people, you have probably sipped on coffee from an automatic drip coffee maker for the better part of your life. But, did you know that there are several other ways to prepare your morning drink? One of the most popular methods is to use a device called a French Press. A French Press differs from an automatic drip coffee maker in several important ways. So, how are they different?
French press or Drip coffee maker? These are among the common coffee machines in the market. Of course, there are other coffee makers such as AeroPress used by millions of people across the globe to prepare delicious cups of coffee every day.
Now, the question of whether to use a French press or a drip coffee machine is largely determined by the person using the device. Some will tell you the French Press is king and others will praise drip coffee maker. Paying attention to everything you hear can be confusing. You may even find yourself unable to make a sound decision after paying keen attention to the various debate about best coffee makers.
We understand how frustrating it can be to be slapped with confusing information, and that is why this piece is here to guide you. Below you will find useful information about French press and drip coffee maker you can use to reach a decision. So, if not sure whether to budget for a drip coffee maker or French press, then keep reading to learn more.
The French Press Coffee Maker
The French Press, first patented in 1929 is also commonly known as a press pot, cafetière à piston, cafeteria, coffee plunger, and coffee press. Since it was patented, the initial design has gone through many changes resulting in modern machines that are very simple and easy to use.
Basically, a French press consists of a plunger with an attached filter screen (metal mesh), a carafe (stainless steel container) and a lid. You place coffee in the carafe, then pour in hot water and allow coffee ground too steep for at least three minutes. Finally, you press the plunger gently down, and the finished coffee can be enjoyed with any accompaniment you prefer.
Why A French Press
There are many reasons why the French Press has been around for all those years. Below are some of the reasons why coffee lovers still use this coffee maker:
- It allows users to make a cup of coffee according to their taste: There is no limitation; coffee lovers have the freedom to prepare the best coffee in their own way. This is because users have the liberty to alter various variables such as the temperature of the water, ground size, and steeping time.
- Another reason why the French press is an excellent maker is that it brews delicious and robust coffee. This is because it allows soluble solids and aromatic oils in your cup of coffee hence ensuring you get the delicious and rich flavor in every cup you prepare.
- The size of the French press is the other reason why you will love it. It is big enough, but not as big as a drip maker to prepare enough coffee for your family. So, if looking for a coffee maker suitable for your family, the French press will not disappoint.
- Again, French press is portable. For example, it can fit well in hiker’s bag.
The Drip Coffee Maker
A drip coffee maker is yet another simple device that has continued to be honed over the years. Thanks to its manufacturers for working all those years tirelessly to give coffee lovers the best machine. In fact, it is a perfect option if you want a hot cup of coffee.
The Drip maker requires you to place a paper filter into the machine, add your chosen grounds, and then fill the reservoir with water. The water flows through into an aluminum tube contained inside the heating element. Once you have clicked the “on” switch, the heating elements heat the tube, bringing the water to boiling point.
As the water boils, the bubbles created rise up a second tube. Small bubbles of boiling water flow into the drip area where the water is dispersed to drip evenly onto the grounds. The hot water passes over and through the coffee grounds, creating the delicious coffee, which then drips down into the waiting coffee pot that sits on a hotplate beneath.
Why Drip Coffee Maker
- A perfect option if you always thirst for a hot cup of coffee: Unlike the French press, Drip maker will always guarantee you a hot cup of coffee every morning.
- Drip coffee maker is an excellent option if you love clean coffee. Its filter makes sure you get a cleaner drink.
French press and coffee maker comparison
Now that you have some tangible information about the two coffee makers, let’s now compare them.
- Capacity: When it comes to capacity, drip coffee maker is the undisputed winner. An average drip coffee maker will yield up to 12 cups of coffee in just one cycle. While an average French press will yield between 2-4 cups although there are a few versions that will make eight cups.
- Hot and cold coffee: Again, when it comes to keeping your coffee hot, drip coffee maker is still the winner. This maker is designed to keep your coffee hotter compared to the French press. Any leftover coffee in a French press will quickly go cold, and you may be forced to reheat to enjoy. Alternatively, you can decant your coffee into a thermal carafe or decanter.
- Bean selection: You can use any coffee beans with these machines, but it is crucial to pay keen attention to the grind you use on each. You make a mistake on the type of grind to use on both machines; the extracted drink will be a totally different beverage. Often, the drip machine needs a medium grind while the French Press requires a coarse grind.
- Brewing Speed: Need coffee within the shortest time possible? The French press is the ideal option if really need to grab your cup of coffee within the shortest time possible. On overage, a French press takes anywhere from 5-8 minutes to brew coffee. On the other hand, you are looking from 5-10 minutes when using a drip coffee maker.
The drip coffee maker takes a bit longer because you have to wait for the machine to heat up, brew the coffee, and allow it to drip down into the coffee pot.
- Ease of use: Making a perfect cup of coffee requires one to unleash his or her full potential. A French press gives every coffee lover the freedom to brew coffee. This is the case with drip automatic coffee maker. Once you press the button, everything else happens as you watch. In other words, a drip coffee maker is easy to use but may not give you enough time to use and perfect your skills.
- Reliability: Both devices are very reliable. You can use them comfortably, but there are few things that make one machine more reliable than the other. In case of an interrupted power supply, a drip maker will not function. Whether there is power or not, your French press will continue to operate unless you break the glass container.
- Coffee taste: By a French press giving you total control of the final drink, you have the freedom to make a drink that you genuinely love. Besides, a French maker does allow oils and soluble solids to your cup of coffee hence enjoying a delicious and robust coffee. When it comes to drip maker, its filtering technique leaves you with a weak coffee which many coffee aficionados don’t like.
What About Cost?
There can be quite a difference in cost between auto coffee makers and French Press devices. However, as with anything else in life, you get what you pay for. A higher quality drip coffee maker may cost more than a cheaper French Press model. On the other hand, there are many rather expensive French pressed coffee makers that cost more than the average automatic drip machine.
It might be said that there are more inexpensive drip coffee maker models available right now and the majority of French Presses are a bit more expensive. That’s not to say that you cannot find a French Press for less than around $30.
Conclusion: Who wins?
So, French press vs. an automated coffee drip machine–is there a winner? No, not because it’s up to you at the end of the day.
The French press offers you the most power over all possible variables and a better tasting coffee. While not ideal for keeping your coffee hot all day, cleaning and preparing your French press will not take much effort to make your next batch when you need it.
If you don’t want to think about making coffee for each single cup, drip machines are great. Most people prefer them for ease of use and the ability for long periods of time to keep a pot of coffee warm.
But before you leave…
Each home barista now knows the importance of selecting beans. Instead of buying ready-ground coffee, most of us tend to roast our beans.
In addition to selecting your favorite beans, making your own grinding allows you to choose the texture you like, and this is crucial when using both French press and drip machines.
The French press requires a coarse grind, but a medium grind is required for the drip machine. In both cases, the outcome will be disappointing if the finished coffee grounds are too coarse or too fine. This is due to the filter design in both tools, which requires clear and even coffee grounds to remove from each ground bean an equivalent coffee ratio.