French Press VS Drip Coffee Maker

French press and Drip coffee makers are two among some of the most popular methods of making coffee. But which one is better to follow? My clear comparison today will draw you a clear picture about the two great methods. Let’ start!


1. The French Press vs Drip Coffee Maker

The French Press

A French press, or ‘coffee plunger’ is a popular item in kitchen cabinets and hotel rooms. Its special humble but sleek little design has made it different from other categories and quickly become favorite choice of many coffee drinkers since it was first parented by an Italian designer in 1929. So is it exactly Italian or French? Yeah, it was first developed by Italian and then widely used among French most. However, that is not a big concern. What we should focus most is that what it can do to give us nice-tasting coffee in the end.

French has a simple design in almost parts. It is like a cylindrical container. To have it worked, simply add into it a proper amount of ground coffee, and then some hot (not boiled) water, stick the content to have a liquid, put the lid on the top and wait a few minutes to have it brewed, press the plunger-filter down, at the slowest rate, and finally, as the grounds are compressed to the bottom, the nice brewed coffee is available on top for you to enjoy.

Drip Coffee Machines

A bit more popular than French press, Drip Coffee makers can be found in homes, offices, and even on the set of cop-shows. They are special as they can keep the coffee always hot enough to serves you whenever you want.

Like French presses, Drip coffee machines have experienced dozen modifications before becoming as perfect as it is now.

Drip coffee makers now are completely automated. What you need to do is to add the ground coffee beans into the filter, and then press the turn it on. Then the machine will do the rest, including extracting the tastiness and getting a nice cup of coffee ready for you whenever you want.

Yeah, so what more are these two great machines similar and different? Let’s move onto the next parts of the article.

2. How Are French Press And Drip Coffee Maker Different From Each Other?


versatilityThe good news here is that both French press and drip machines can deal with coffee beans. So do not worry about having to grind process or buying coffee powder. The matter here lies on bean selection. It is important as it affects the final coffee flavor. And how to grind is also important because the two categories require different grinds.

While French press needs  coarse grinds, Drip maker requires medium grinds. The reason of that difference is the consistency. If your grinds are either too coarse or too fine, the consistency is not guaranteed and and the final result is poor.

Brewing Time

brewing-timeYeah, you always want a fine cup of coffee to be ready every early morning after you get up. So which one is faster to do this?

It is estimated that a French press needs between 5 and 8 minutes to complete a brew and give you a nice cup. Among the range between 5 and 8 minutes, just 2 to 3 minutes is for brewing, the rest is for boiling the water. The drip machine is a bit longer, with 5 to 10 minutes to complete the process. During the periods of 5 to 10 minutes, the machine warms it up, brew the content with the recommended time, keep the coffee pot warm and give several cups.

About cleaning up, the two machines require the same amount of time. Just a simple rinse and swish for French press and a fast filter change and rinse for Drip machine pot. Of course, the cleaning here is that done after each brewing batch, not period cleaning to maintain and protect the machine. ​

The Ease Of Use

The Ease Of UseBrewing coffee is a habit and perfecting is art. So which one is easier for you to gain perfectness?

To be honest, French press requires more consideration than Drip machine does when it comes to making coffee. The common things that the two devices require you to take into accounts include coffee grind, water temperature, brew time, and the rate you choose with the plunger-filter. But the step of getting your brew time is important when using the French press. Your coffee can be over-break or too weak due to too long or too short brew time. In addition, French presses pose a challenge to new users. However, as you get used to the machine, things will be much simpler as the process and the requirements of paying attention to brew time stay the same with every brew.

Such issues don’t happen to the drip machine. Just add a proper amount of ground coffee (following the producer’s guides), pour proper amount of water, and press the start button for the machine to run. Some models introduce small adjustments, but they are not much compared to those of the French press. The only matter here lies on the grind. Too coarse or too fine grind can result in poor coffee. So remember to alter the filter after each brew.


CapacityHow many cups of coffee do you want to be ready every morning? Luckily, both French press and Drip machine offer various coffee sizes for you to select. A standard French press can serve you between one to around ten cups a brew. And a typical Drip starts at a few cups and give the maximum sizes of ten cups at once. So if it is not a very crowd for you to serve at once, both of the categories can work fine for you. Just consider the number of people you are about to serve and choose a proper cup-size.

But note that unlike drip machines, French presses do not include a heat plate for you to keep your coffee warm for a long time. So if you are not about to drink coffee immediately, do not make a brew or it will be a waste. Fortunately, the issue doesn’t end like this; you can still keep your French press coffee hot longer by using a thermos. It’s not really perfect but it is a choice if you are a busy person who love French press coffee.

The Resulting Coffee

The Resulting Coffee Resulting coffee in the end is the most concerned thing before deciding what brewer to invest in, right?
The varied control you can do with a French press somewhat claims that you yourself can perfect your brew to your preference. We may get impatient with some complexity, but with the better result, it deserves.

What about Drips machines? The paper filter in Drip machines catches most the oils of the coffee and they do not let it mix in contact with your cup. On the other hand, a French press doesn’t have a paper filter, so it promises the maximum flavor potential.

Some serious coffee drinkers have difficult in adjusting the taste of drip machine coffee and they express their dissatisfaction about weaker and lighter taste. But this is just individual issue, if you like weak and light coffee; you enjoy drip machine coffee, don’t you?

Another issue to discuss is that auto-drip coffee makers seem to repeatedly boil coffee (for the aim of hot coffee), which make your beans effectively fried. And that is not good.

In short, in your opinion, French press and Drip coffee maker machine, who is winner? The answers maybe varied among different users. Each of them has its own pros and cons. The question that which brewer is the winner depends on your own coffee drinking habit and preference as well. 

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