According to Handy, every coffee lover — from college students to work-from-home professionals — has their preferred coffee brewing method that delivers heaven to their taste buds. The French press and pour-over are two of the most popular coffee brewing tools utilized by people at home. If you are just getting started exploring the world of coffee brewing, it can be difficult to make a choice between these two methods.
Here are a few factors that will help you decide whether pour-over coffee or French press would be better for you:
- How it works and the brewing method – The French press was first designed in the 1920s and it is also known as a cafetière or coffee press. It is essentially composed of three components — the carafe (an open-topped cylindrical glass), a filter, and the plunger. It uses a brewing method known as immersion.
To use the French press, you just have to fill the carafe with some coffee grounds, add some hot water to it, allow the coffee grounds to soak for the required time, and then push the plunger down to separate the grounds from the coffee.
Pour over coffee is also known as filter coffee or drip coffee. This elegant brewing method requires you to saturate the coffee grounds with new, fresh water and thus, it is different from immersion brewing.
First, you have to place the filter in the cylindrical component and add the coffee ground over it. Next, you have to pour hot water in a circular motion to allow the coffee grounds to get wet. Ultimately, the hot water will pass through the filter and settle down at the bottom.
- Control of the brew – A French press can hold up to 48 oz and serve up to 6 people. However, you can also produce only a single or two cups of coffee since you can vary the amount of water and coffee grounds you put in.
On the other hand, pour overs are suitable for making a single cup of coffee since it is time-consuming to create multiple cups of coffee using that method.
- The brewing time – Generally, the total time it takes to make a great cup of coffee with a French press can take anywhere from 3-8 minutes. So, about 1 minute to measure, 4-5 minutes to steep the mixture, and the remaining time to press.
Pour overs take longer to prepare coffee since they utilize the drip method. Usually, it takes between 8-15 minutes to make a great cup of coffee with pour overs.
- The taste and flavor – The flavor of coffee made using French press is affected by the extraction time. Generally, a brewing time of 3 minutes is enough to offer a strong, bold, and rich taste but you can increase the brewing time by up to eight minutes to increase the bitterness and the boldness of the taste. Pour over coffee tastes smooth and is free of grit. It is noticeable but not overpowering.
Handy suggests you start making coffee at home using a French press since it is easier to use and offers a lot more convenience in terms of brewing time and coffee quantity. However, you can use pour overs if you like to enjoy a smooth and light coffee.