The French Press Coffee Maker Guide 

 February 8, 2022

By  Margaret Gulley

When you talk about making coffee, one of the best and most popular ways of doing that is using a quality French press coffee machine.

There is no rocket science involved in making coffee in this brilliant apparatus – and the take and quality of the coffee made in the machine are entirely heavenly. The French press method of making coffee is for true coffee aficionados, especially for those that are always on the go.

In This Artice You Will Learn About French Press Coffee Maker …

But First, What Is A French Press Coffee Maker?

If you are going to be late for a run and need a quick jolt of energy or if you’ve slept in late and have to wake up early in the morning – no problem. A cup of freshly brewed French press coffee is going to wonders for you.


Plus, it just takes a couple of minutes to prepare coffee in the press machine. You can take a shower and leave the brew on, and the coffee will be ready before you get out of the shower.

Once you have a taste of French press coffee, you won’t be able to wait to try it again. The best thing about preparing coffee using the machine is that it is pretty minimalistic. You don’t require a hefty list of components or accessories – just the machine and some quality coffee beans.

The French Press – What Is it?

People often refer to the French press coffee technique as Melior or Cafetiere. The coffee apparatus is a low-tech, glass or stainless steel beaker that is designed to have a cylindrical shape.

The cylinder is also typically made of glass, stainless steel or aluminum. There is a plunger fitted directly into the beaker that you will use to push the coffee brew gently through the steel mesh.

The plunger features a filtration mesh that is designed to effectively allow only the liquid to pass through once you squeeze it, blocking small granules of coffee.

History Of The French Press Coffee Machine

The French name for the machine is cafetière a piston. The coffee press machine has undergone several alterations in form and design. However, as per historical references, it is said that the earliest design of the machine hit the market in the 1920s.

The first coffee press machine had a minimal and basic design. It featured a steel screen and a cheese cloth. The cloth had a metal rod attached to it, which pressed every bit of liquid from the coffee beans.

Nine years after the first French coffee press released, a Milanese designer bought the rights to the device and applied for a patent. Attilio Calimani was a renowned designed that incorporated a handful of changes the overall design of the machine.

He partnered with Faliero Bondanini (another professional designed). Bondanini also made his variation of the coffee press and patented the design in 1958.


After Bondanini has his variation patented, he mass produced the machine using his factory that designed clarinets. The company was Martin SA. This is essentially where the coffee press machine began to flourish in popularity.

Moreover, the great Sir Michael Cain starred in a movie called ‘The Ipcress File’ where there was a scene where he made a cup of coffee using the French press coffee machine.

Experts say that this was a powerful catalyst for enhancing the popularity of the coffee press machine all over the western world.

Variations In The Overall Design Of The French Press Machine

The best thing about the apparatus to make genuine coffee is the fact you have a lot of design options. The machine comes in different variations, for example, some versions are primarily designed for portability.

There are machines made for travelers and campers and so and so forth. Because of simplicity of the coffee press machine, a slew of brands offer several different types of machines.

Travel mugs, for instance, are manufactured using commercial-grade plastic and have steel lids. They are easy to pack and use, and it is quite convenient for campers and hikers to make coffee right then and there.

Then there are French press coffee mugs for outdoorsy individuals that come with powerful insulation to keep the coffee nice and warm for long periods of time.

Another design comes inbuilt with a pulling device. All you have to do is place some fresh coffee grounds in the steel basket mesh below. Just pour some hot water on top, let it the water absorb the richness of the coffee grounds and then just give a nice squeeze.

On the other hands, there are some variations of the device that also enable you to make a couple of servings of cold brew coffee too.

The Bodum French press coffee machine, for example, comes with a stainless-steel structure and can help brew a delicious cup of coffee in under 4 minutes.

The product is also integrated with a spill-proof lid to keep the liquid from tipping out no matter how you use it. Similarly, the Secura French press coffee machine also comes with a stainless steel body and has a capacity of 1000 ml.


Compared to the French press, other brewing techniques, many coffee beans you use along with their size will always affect the time it takes the water to absorb the richness and flow through the beans, which inadvertently means that the total times it takes to brew a single cup of coffee will be affected.

This part goes for the famous pour over method to make espresso. On the flip side, it is important to remember that the total time it takes to brew coffee and the size and quantity of coffee grounds is not always intertwined.

So, when it comes to making French press coffee, you should make a single cup or a large batch of coffee. Another reason why the French press is so desirable is that you can grind the coffee beans in any manner you like.

Plus, you are at liberty to steep the coffee for as long as you want to. However, the amount of time you let it steep will affect the overall goodness and taste of the coffee. Steep it for a minute, and it might not be as strong as you hoped; steep it for too long, and the coffee will become a tad too bitter.

But the machine offers complete freedom for you to prepare coffee however you please. It is ideal for coffee lovers who like to experiment and formulate different flavors. You can play with water to coffee ratio and test different steep times.

French Press Coffee Machine Parts And Important Components

French press machines allow you to brew coffee independently, without the use of a pot. Plus, the machines also go well with a variety of different types of loose-teas. You can easily brew a batch of your favorite tea. The plunger is the most integral part of the French press machine. In light of this, mentioned below are some important components of the coffee press device:


A majority of French press machines come with glass carafes. But you can also go for carafes made from plastic and stainless steel, and metal. The carafe or body of the machine comes in a variety of sizes. You can opt for a French press machine that can make a single cup of coffee to brewing four cups at the same time.

Plus, there are different shapes and designs available today. You can buy products that come in a cylindrical shape or go for ones shaped like kettles. The carafes also incorporate a heatproof handle and a spout for easy pouring and handling.

Lid And Plunger


The machine is inbuilt with a plunger that you can use to strain the coffee grounds completely and squeeze the rich and aromatic oils and taste in the beans.

The rod of the plunger has a handle that you use at the top of the machine.

You have to use the plunger when you close the lid. So, you pull the plunger up first, and after steeping the water, you gently push it down.

The bottom of the plunger features a filtration device, which is a steel mesh designed to let only the liquid content to pass through.

The Screen Of The Filter

The filter comes with a stainless-steel mesh that effectively strains the coffee grounds before you serve it. However, it is important to clean the filter screen each time you use the machine.

If you don’t, the coffee grounds will cling to the bottom of the mesh. And when this happens, you will not be able to strain or plunge a fresh batch of coffee properly.

There are French press coffee machines that come fitted with two different type of filtration screen, both of which vary in size. Two steel meshes completely remove the grounds leaving the way for fresh, aromatic and tasty coffee.

When it comes to replacing parts, the steel mesh screen is the only components you will have to replace in after consistent usage.

The Structure Disc

The machine also comes fitted with a structured disc. You can see at the bottom, stuck on the plunger. The disc is what keeps the steel mesh in place.

The circumference of the coiled wire effectively keeps the entire mesh in place and allows for efficient straining – leaving little to no coffee grounds stuck on the mesh. You can easily remove the structure disc to clean the mesh.

French Press Machine Vs. Drip Coffee Machine

For more information, please see below.

The French Press

There are obvious differences between French press style coffee and a drip brew. But the fact that the latter offers more freedom regarding how you can make your coffee outweighs anything else. French press devices are not automatic; you have to manually use the plunger to strain the aromatic oils and strong flavor of the coffee.

Drip brew machines are typical, automated machines that you see at your office. Most American households use drip brew machines to make a standard batch of coffee.

The French press machine is perhaps the only device that enables the individual to prepare a truly personalized cup of coffee. You can alter every variable that goes into coffee making and is necessary to prepare an excellent batch of coffee.


The most important factors that go into making coffee include steep time, water temperature, the quality of the coffee grounds and the total ratios between coffee grounds and brew time. With a French press machine, you have the power to control and alter all these factors and come up with your unique type of coffee, which you can then maintain.

You can change the amount of pressure you exert on the plunger as per your taste. If you want a stronger taste, leave the coffee steeping for a while and then give it a good strain. For a mild, yet solid taste, leave it to steep for 10 minutes and gently strain the coffee beans to extract all the oils and richness of the coffee.

Drip Brewing

While the French press method is the most ultimate form of coffee making, it is a fact that it may take you a bit more time to prepare your morning coffee.

While drip brews machines are famous for the quick coffee making process they offer, they do not come anywhere near the French press regarding taste and quality. Drip brew machines are best for people that just want their daily fix of caffeine and nothing else.

Important Steps To Using A French Press Coffee Machine

Beginners need to learn the ins and outs of the machine before they can start experimenting. In light of this, mentioned below are some pretty important tips you must implement to understand how to use the machine to prepare a delicious batch of coffee from the get-go.

Coffee Bean Grinding For French Press

One of the most common factors that are often ignored by coffee lovers when they’re preparing coffee is adequately ground coffee. It hasn’t been long since home coffee baristas have started grinding fresh coffee to prepare a truly aromatic and strong coffee.

This factor is important for making French press coffee. Even though it will take a bit of time, the quality and grind of your coffee beans will determine the taste and richness of the end product.

So, after you get your French coffee press machine, the next thing you should do is get a batch of quality coffee and a good coffee bean grinder. Wake up 20 minutes early if you have to, put the coffee beans in the grinder or do it manually.


You can get a local coffee grinder in under $90. But remember, you can grind and store the powder. That is because the beans will start losing their flavor as well as the aroma a few seconds after you start grinding them. So, grind a batch and immediately put it in the French press machine.

The type of grind depends on your preference. If you’re looking for a smooth and silky cup of coffee, the grind can be a bit powdery. However, true French press coffee lovers prefer their grind to be coarse. But you can experiment with the size of the grind as well. The beans can be a bit big or small, but they have to be coarse.

Preparing The French Press

Water Temperature for the Best Cup of French Press Coffee.

The rule of thumb with coffee preparation in any coffee machine is the fact that the temperature of the water should always be slightly below boiling point. For example, espresso machines operate at about 194 to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.

However, if the temperature is really low, you can expect a more tepid cup of coffee. Going overboard with the temperature will burn the beans, resulting in bitter coffee.

For the best results, it is better to preheat the French press coffee machine before you pour in hot water. If you’re making coffee in it for the first time, avoid bringing the water to a boil. The water should just be steamy, as soon as you see some steam rising, get the pot off the stove and pour the coffee into the machine. Here is a list of instructions you should stick to:

  • Boil the water first and let cool a bit
  • Be sure to measure the temperature of the water in the first 3 minutes and make a mental note of any change in the temperature
  • You will now know the ideal temperature of the water

Maintaining the Right Water Temperature for a Longer Period

You can experiment first. Immerse the machine in hot water first for the whole brewing process, which will help you maintain the temperature of the water for an extended period. You can enjoy several cups of coffee without having to worry about the coffee getting cold. However, doing this on a daily basis can be a hassle, and you might just quit the French press coffee process.

Recipe For Getting The Right Water To Coffee Ratio In A French Press Machine

As a rule of thumb to preparing the best cup of coffee in a French press coffee maker, you need to be on-point with the coffee to water ratio, which should ideally be 2.3 oz of fresh coffee beans to 8.8 oz of water.

However, measuring this ratio will always be a problem every morning, not to mention you will grow tired of everything and make a simple cup of coffee. It isn’t easy to measure a cup of coffee ground and some water but after you do it a couple of time, you can kind of get a good idea about everything.


To not have to go through measuring your ingredients every day and still make a good cup of French press coffee, take a full tablespoon of your favorite coffee grounds and a single cup of water for a good ratio.

But French pressed coffee is drunk a bit stronger than this so you can increase the amount of coffee as per your taste and preference. For example, there are coffee lovers who would take a full tablespoon of coffee grounds and just half a cup of water for a strong and rich taste.

Steeping The Coffee And Then Blooming It

The next step that most home baristas neglect or just simply ignore is steeping the coffee and letting it bloom. It doesn’t take more than 5 minutes, but our busy schedules do not allow us even that!

But if you are a coffee lover and need that power boost in the morning, you will get up 5 minutes earlier. It is well worth it. Listed below is what you have to do:

  • The total steeping time for a great cup of coffee in the French press machine in 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Let the coffee bloom before fusing. You can do this by first pouring some water over the coffee ground and stir if firmly for around 20 seconds, which will help absorb all that aromatic oil, improving the extraction process.
  • After you do this, pour rest of the water and stir it gently.
  • Shut the lid and prepare the plunger handle at the top of the lid – don’t plunge the liquid yet!
  • After you close the lid, let the coffee steep for another 5 minutes. Then give it a gently plunge, nice and easy. Press the plunge sideways as it allows the screen to lift, allowing the coffee to pass through effectively.
  • Now just pour it and enjoy!

Bottom Line

All in all, here is everything you need to know about a French press coffee machine and why it is so popular. However, it is also strongly recommended that you invest in the best of the best machines for a hearty and tasty cup of coffee every morning.

Margaret Gulley

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