Coffee brewing is easy but choosing which coffee maker makes the best coffee is complicated. In the search for the best at-home manual coffee maker, Google probably recommends you Aeropress and French Presses. But which brewing methods can help you make the delicious java you crave? Aeropress vs French Press? We’ve got the answer.
After hours of searching, we put together the good, the bad and the nuances of French Press and Aeropress that are worth considering. Read on to get an informed buying decision.
What is an AeroPress?
An AeroPress is a coffee brewing device invented in 2005 by Alan Adler. The device is made up of two nesting cylinders. One of the cylinders has a flexible airtight seal (the plunger) which is fitted in another larger cylinder (brewing chamber), thus resembling the structure of a syringe.
To operate, you press down the plunger fitted in the brewing chamber to push the water and add pressure to optimize coffee extraction. The process might not be as simple as drip brewing. Yet the technique guarantees a good coffee.
AeroPress: The Good
If you’re wondering why many prefer AeroPress, here are some good things about it that we found on the internet.
Gives full control over the brewing
With AeroPress, you have complete control over how you want to brew your favorite beans. You can tweak all the variables essential in making a delicious coffee. These variables include temperature, pressure, time, water volume, the quantity of coffee grounds and the ratios.
Although AeroPress and French Press utilize pressure to extract aroma and flavors from the coffee beans, the use of pressure in AeroPress is much better than French Presses. With AeroPress, you can change the pressure depending on how you like your coffee.
The pressure might not be comparable to that of a coffee maker, but the strength you can use with Aeropress allows you to make espresso which a French pot cannot. Yet, if you will be making a lot of espressos, it will take you a lot of brewing cycles to serve everyone.
Best of all, the pressure you can apply with AeroPress enables you to complete extraction with more soluble solids and coffee oils that can pass to your coffee.
Allows shorter brewing time
One of the reasons why AeroPress is a to-go caffeine fix is that it doesn’t require too much of a coffee brewing ritual. If it takes you 5 to 7 minutes to brew coffee with French Press, you can make coffee with AeroPress with a little more than a minute. It’s like a manual version of a one-touch brewing coffee machine. The difference is that AeroPress can’t make milk foams.
Easy to clean and maintain
The AeroPress is a no-brainer to clean. You remove the basket and pop out the coffee grounds and the filter. Then pour hot water to the rubber plunger to clean it. Afterwards, you can leave it to air dry.
To ensure that there’ll be no oil build-up in the device, some Aeropress coffee drinkers recommend using liquid soap and water when you wash the equipment. Instead of using a metal filter, a paper filter is much preferred to use for AeroPress because it can absorb oil. Thus, it makes AeroPress cleaning easier.
Handy brewing device
If you travel often and want to bring your favorite beans with you anywhere you go, the AeroPress is the best coffee brewing device you can carry. This coffee brewing device usually measures about a 16 oz beer can. The device is compact and can fit in your backpack or luggage.
It uses paper filters to remove diterpenes
When you buy an AeroPress, it usually comes with 350 paper filters. Between metal and paper filters, the latter is the most recommended as it is effective in removing diterpenes from brewed coffee. Diterpenes are oily substances that can raise your cholesterol.
AeroPress: The Bad
There’s no perfect device for coffee brewing, to give you a heads up what setbacks you might encounter with AeroPress, below are some of its cons.
Making coffee can be messy
When you use AeroPress to brew coffee, it can be messy depending on the way you’ll use it. There are two unique methods that you can use Aeropress to brew coffee.
The first one is called the standard method, where it involves placing the brewing device on top of your cup. After filling it with water and coffee, you insert the plunger and press it. The coffee will go directly to your cup.
The second method is inverted, which was discovered by coffee lovers who are AeroPress users. Coffee brewing by the inverted way starts with putting the AeroPress in an upside-down position on the top of the plunger. The brewing chamber is filled with coffee grounds and water.
If you don’t seal it correctly with the cap that contains a paper filter, you’ll surely have a messy situation once you invert it. Afterwards, the device is flipped onto your cup and pressed the plunger down until you hear the air hissing. In 30 seconds, you’ll be enjoying an excellent warm and delicious coffee.
Brews only one cup of coffee
Aero coffee press can only brew one single serving. If you are serving brewed coffee, it will take you a lot of brewing cycles to serve coffee to everybody because you have to clean it after each use. Also, consistency in brewing a delicious coffee cannot be guaranteed.
Need to use filters
Although we explained the goodness of using filters on AeroPress, it also has setbacks. Aside from diterpenes, the filters also absorb excellent coffee flavor and compounds that make the coffee you brew with AeroPress weaker than French Press coffee.
What is the French Press?
The French Press is a manual coffee maker that uses pressure to make coffee. It consists of a tall and sleek carafe and a metal mesh filter fastened to the long stem. To make a flavorful coffee, you fill the carafe with hot water and coffee grounds. Afterwards, you let it steep for several minutes.
When you push the plunger down, it forces the coffee grounds to the bottom of the pot. In its purest and concentrated form, the coffee rises. The result is a full-body coffee with strong taste and appealing aroma.
When you brew coffee with the French Press, it is vital to pay close attention to each step. That is to ensure that there’ll be no signs of coffee grounds in your mug. More importantly, it involves freshly boiled water, so be very cautious when handling it.
French Press: The Good
If you prefer the traditional way of manually brewing coffee, here are some excellent points about French Press worth considering.
Gives coffee more aroma and flavor
When you brew coffee using French Press, you steep the coffee beans. Steeping allows the water to break down parts of the soaked coffee beans to extract oils and flavors. After a few minutes, you push down the plunger to force the ground beans to the bottom as the coffee rich in flavor and aroma rises.
AeroPress, on the other hand, can’t provide the pureness of flavor that French Press can give with paper filters attached in the device. These filters often take out the character and oils. It absorbs much of the oils that make AeroPress coffee not as tasty as French Press coffee.
Can brew more coffee
If you need big servings of coffee, the French Press is the device you can count on. For a 12-cup French Press and 48 oz of coffee grounds, you can already brew coffee for eight people in one cycle or have lots of refills of your favorite beans for a busy day.
No need for filters
French Press is a favorite brewing method because it doesn’t require any fancy accessories to make a delicious coffee. You no longer need to buy a long neck kettle or a stash of paper filters because you only need to steep the coffee grounds to extract flavor.
To brew a delicious cup of coffee, you only need to press the metal mesh filter to the bottom to separate the grounds from the coffee that you’ll pour later in your mug. This metal mesh allows the coffee oils and other compounds to pass through, thus giving you a roast with a creamy body.
French Press is inexpensive
Brewing your favorite beans with French Press is inexpensive. You don’t need to buy brewing accessories to prepare a delicious morning roast. You can boil water in any cooking tools you have at home. A matter of fact, you can buy French presses according to your needs.
If you travel often, there are all-in-one French Press travel mugs that fit cozily in your car’s drink holder. There are French Presses made from BPA-free plastics with insulated sleeves for campers. Some French presses go with the usual glass carafe for a perfect office coffee break while others are made of stainless steel that can retain heat and won’t shatter.
Aside from the French Press itself, the only non-negotiable you might need to buy is a coffee grinder. Before you can make a press coffee, you need to grind your beans to a grind size that is recommended for French Press.
French Press: The Bad
French Press is one of the favorite brewing methods, but it also has some imperfections, such as:
Brews coffee more than a minute
If you don’t have the luxury of time to wait for your coffee to reach its full potential, the French Press is not for you. Brewing coffee with French Press is an art. It requires great attention because one mistake can result in a bad tasting coffee.
You have to boil water separately
To ensure that you’ll extract the flavor and aroma that coffee beans contain, the water used for French Press has to be maintained. It has to be boiled separately to ensure that you’ll get the right temperature.
The temperature of the water allows the coffee’s solubility to extract the flavors in an appropriate time. When you use water that is too hot, it results in over extracting the coffee beans which equates to an unpleasant bitter tasting coffee. Yet if you use water that is too cold, it will result in a water-down coffee with a bland taste.
French Press is less safe than other brewing methods
When you brew French Press coffee, you must understand the whole process of coffee brewing with this method. Lack of attention and disregarding details of brewing like measurement and timing can result in a bad coffee experience and a scalded body part.
AeroPress vs French Press
AeroPress and French Press are popular brewing devices that guarantee a tasty coffee at the comforts of your home. These devices are much preferred than drip coffee as both allow control of the brewing process. With the pros and cons discussed, you’re probably confused which one to choose.
To get a better view of this French Press vs AeroPress review, we sum up the essential details of the brewing devices you’ll need to come up with a sound buying decision.
AeroPress and French Press are among the most popular manual brewing devices available today. They guarantee a freshly brewed cup of coffee anytime you need a caffeine fix. Creating this AeroPress vs French Press review, we’ve learned that no matter how similar the designs the end product is drastically different. Finding the right brew method for you is a process and it should yield a ritual that helps you enjoy every cup of coffee you brew.
Aeropress is a great coffee brewing tool for people who love to drink their favorite coffee beans anywhere they go. The Aeropress coffee press is a recommended coffee brewing method for people who want to drink coffee that is not too strong but is full of flavors. For a person who doesn’t like to go through a lot of processes to make a cup of coffee, the AeroPress is the right device for you.
For people who see long brew time as an essential coffee ritual to make a delectable coffee, the French Press is the rightful brewing device for you. It’s for coffee lovers who love their roast full-bodied and strong. It’s for people who can’t get enough with only one serving of coffee. Likewise, it’s a coffee brewing device for people who love to share their favorite beans with a partner, roommate, or the family.
So what type of a coffee drinker are you based on our AeroPress vs French Press review? Have you tried an AeroPress coffee? Do you like the taste of a French Press coffee? Please share with us your AeroPress French Press thoughts at the comments below.