Ah, French press, a good old timeless classic coffee-making machine. Nothing beats the quality of the cup of coffee this machine produces. Coffee drinkers who really love their daily routine of morning coffee rituals love their french press machine, along with the amazing coffee it produces. But there’s more to the French press than just the machine itself. Let’s take a look into both glass french press vs metal french press and help you pick an option before picking up a fancy French press for your morning brewing process.
Why Choose French Press At All?
Are you the person with an artistic mindset, who thinks of a cup of coffee as a fine artwork that you produce every morning? French press is the right type of coffee brewing machine for you.
You place your favored coffee grounds at the bottom of the reservoir and steep them in hot water for a few minutes. After doing so, you push down the plunger to filter the grounds out, leaving you a fresh cup of coffee.
But you already knew the whole process. Then why am I reminding it all once again?
This hands-on, do-it-yourself method brings out a more natural, fresh taste of the coffee you are brewing that provides you fresh coffee with all its flavors and aromas intact, along with the natural qualities.
French press coffee is also stronger than coffee produced in a drip coffee maker.
Pros Of Glass French Presses (Glass Vs Metal French Press)
To start off the discussion, let’s look at the pros of the glass french press.
Classic Feel And Function
Glass French press is the way to go if you want the classic coffee press experience. Asides from coffee making, it also produces great photos with the right backdrop setting and camera.
The glossy charm of the glass carafe gives you a nostalgic and aesthetic feel.
If you are one of those who took apart toys to see how they work on the inside, you will find the French press fascinating. Because you can see what’s going on inside without taking it apart.
When you see the ground coffee being brewed inside the glass carafe, the sensation you get from the fascinating view makes you feel as if the world has slowed down to a halt. There is only you and the coffee maker. Call it “coffee time” if you will (get it?)
Easy To Replace Glass Carafe
As long as it’s made with borosilicate glass that is heat-proof, the carafe won’t break easily.
But nothing in this world is indestructible, and that applies to your glass carafe as well. But thankfully, this part, along with other French press parts, makes it quite easy to remove and replace. So if you’re getting a glass brewer for once, you can bet your children will be making fresh hot coffee with the same machine.
Immediate Heat Retention
Glass versions of this coffee machine are well-known for heat retention, and you want that to happen when you’re brewing coffee. Can’t have your coffee go cold after a few minutes, right?
You can check our French Press Vs Percolator article.
Cons of Glass French Presses
The Glass Carafe May Overheat And Break
Watch out that you don’t overheat or let your coffee steep for too long in a glass brewer because that WILL cause your carafe to catch a crack or break entirely. This is a common complaint from all glass carafe users.
Avoid cheaply made and sold french presses. If you find one for a reasonable $18 or lower price, it’s not what you want to get. This version is easily available, but the glass is pretty thin, the filters fall apart, and the frames break almost all the time. Trust me, you won’t be using that same french press five years down the road.
- Classic feel and function
- Visual experience
- Easily replaceable glass carafe
- Immediate heat retention
- Buy-it-for-life brewer
- Glass does break, and accidents happen
- Yeah, there’s just one con.
Pros Of The Metal French Press (Glass Vs Metal French Press)
The most durable among french press machines, or any coffee machines, for that fact. Metal french press is a total powerhouse for brewing dozens of cups of coffee every day. And that’s just a usual scenario for coffee shops and professional baristas.
Metal French press is a more viable option for coffee shop owners since no one would like a coffee maker to break apart from continuous heat and pressure every hour.
Metal French presses can last a lifetime if you take good care of them. But once they get dented, getting them un-dented is nearly impossible. You can get top service out of them for decades, but there’s no promise of them staying in prime condition forever.
Great Heat Retention
The metal carafe can hold the heat for a longer period once it’s preheated. So it gives you a little wiggle room while brewing by keeping your coffee warm, so you don’t have to rush it all before the water gets cold.
Want to enjoy your French press on the go? You can do that! The detachable parts ensure portability, and you can take your favorite French press machine with you wherever you go.
The metal French press is the perfect choice for camping or traveling since you don’t have to panic every time you set your luggage down a bit too hard.
Have you wonder to know about french coffee? Check our What Is French Roast Coffee article.
Cons Of The Metal French Press
No Visual Experience
In a coffee shop, a customer only wants the coffee cup, and the baristas don’t have the free time to appreciate the view of coffee being brewed inside a French press.
But if you’re using it at home, you can’t take in the view of coffee grounds swirling and brewing inside the carafe. You don’t get to see the rise and fall of coffee grounds as they release their flavors into the brewing liquid.
This is an inconvenience that is mildly annoying at best. Stainless steel can retain temperature better than glass, but you need to preheat the machine beforehand to ensure it.
If you don’t preheat your stainless steel carafe, you can have a cup of coffee in your hand that is unbalanced, cold, and stale.
- Extreme Durability
- Buy-it-for-life brewer
- Great heat retention for a long period
- Higher portability
- No visual experience
- Requires preheating
5 Things To Consider When Getting A French Press (Glass Vs Metal French Press)
I’m sure you’ve made up your mind about getting your first French press. But there are a few more common factors to look out for, no matter if you’re picking up either a glass french press or a metal one.
While I do admit that bigger is better, what I’m about to discuss is not what you are thinking about at the moment.
Some French presses display their capacity in liters or fluid ounces. But many French presses show their capacity in terms of cups, which can be confusing. Allow me to explain why.
Cup measurement in the French press is different from the US. 1 US cup holds up to 8 fluid ounces of coffee(237ml), while a French press cup holds 4.2 fluid ounces(125ml).
Luckily for you, you don’t need to be a math professor to calculate the size of the French press you need. Divide the number of cup sizes by two, and you can find out the number of cups of brewed coffee your French press can serve.
The cheap French press coffee makers in the market include a double filter with two fixed parts. A standard French press filter has 3 parts.
- A Spiral plate
- A mesh filter screen
- A cross plate
Also, all these parts are fully detachable and replaceable.
You want them to be that way because that’s the best bet for you if you wish to keep the coffee machine clean. Coffee grounds get stuck between the filters frequently, and the only way you can clean it all out is by taking them apart.
If you don’t clean up the filters regularly, coffee residues stuck in your filter will cause the cup of coffee to taste bitter and even sour at points since you’re technically brewing the same ground twice. A removable filter is necessary to maintain your coffee taste and make the cleaning process easier.
If you decide to cheap out on your French press, you are also losing the advantage of replaceable parts. Manufacturers of these coffee machines don’t supply replacements if your machine breaks or wears out.
One of the most important parts that you need to keep replacing frequently is the filter. Mesh filters become tainted by the oils present in the coffee. If the filters aren’t replaced, your coffee can taste harsh and bitter.
Cheap French presses have a bad habit of sealing the glass carafe with glue on the plastic frame, so in case you need to replace it, you have to buy a whole new coffee machine altogether. Always make sure that the glass carafe is replaceable.
Glass Carafe Quality
If you have read the article this far, you already know that glass french press carafes have a tendency to crack or break from the heat. The workaround is to buy from a manufacturer that produces a high-quality glass carafe.
As we mentioned here earlier, make sure the carafe is made out of heat-resistant borosilicate glass and has enough thickness. The thickness protects it from cracking in case it gets knocked.
In short: don’t cheap out on your French Press. Pick your glass options wisely.
As you can already tell, the build material of the French press plays a vital role in the overall quality of the coffee machine itself.
We are discussing glass and stainless steel models here, and these are the 2 materials you should focus on primarily to ensure the best possible coffee experience.
Had fun reading glass vs metal french press? You’ll love to read our piece on best tips for french press users.
Aside from a few durability and experience differences, both the glass french presses and stainless steel french presses function similarly. But which one should you choose?
Based on the data we provided, it’s easy to choose for yourself based on your personal preference and everyday needs for delicious coffee.
Want to match the shiny new kitchen decor and the aesthetics? Get the glass french press. Want to travel around the world while enjoying your favorite cup? Get the metal french press. As always. . .
The French press method uses a classic coffee brewing machine with a plunger to extract the coffee from the grounds.
The recommended ratio for a French press is a 1:12 coffee to water ratio.
French press filters don’t soak up the added flavors of coffee oil from your coffee. It also introduces small grounds in your coffee that percolates the flavor, offering you delicious, fresh coffee.
Though stainless steel presses are a more durable choice, I prefer the glass french press made by a well-reputed manufacturer. The glass body fits the aesthetic and is a very durable coffee machine.
French press is a coffee brewer with the most classic design still being used today. If you want an authentic and classic coffee experience, the French press is the way to go.