In the brew battle of a French press Vs Drip it is important to look at these two brewing methods from all angles before deciding which is best for you.
A fine example is easy of use and time to make a cup of coffee, which I detail below. If you are in a rush in the morning, for sure a drip is much better since you can set it up and jump in the shower while it does its thing.
But is a Drip better over all for you?
There are a lot more thing to consider.
Keep reading for a detailed analysis and comparison of these two brewing methods.
French Press Vs Drip – Let’s Talk About The French Press
A French press coffee maker is one of the most recognizable coffee brewing devices, it’s a classic and goes by a few other names, including coffee plunger, coffee press, press pot and Cafetière are the most common and popular ones.
French press coffee is a method that a coffee brewing newbie can master very quickly.
Coffee lovers and coffee enthusiasts consider a coffee press as brewing a coffee that is almost comparable to a home espresso machine due to the bold, rich flavor.
The design is very simple and straight forward, with a cylindrical carafe where you add your coffee and hot water, give it a quick stir and then let it extract the grounds for 3 to 4 minutes with the lid on.
When ready, push down the plunger and pour your coffee.
Read: Pour over vs French press
French Press Vs Drip – Let’s Talk About Drip Coffee Makers
Like a French press coffee device a drip coffee makers are very familiar and most homes, hotels and quite possibly your place of work has one. They are a fully automated way of brewing coffee.
All that is required is that you put ground coffee in your filter and switch your machine on, wait a little, and you will have with no effort a fully brewed cup of coffee.
Over the years the drip machine has gone through technological advances and can be preset and preprogrammed with timers to brew you a cup of coffee while your alarm clock goes off in the morning.
With my drip coffee machine I program it to make me a cup 2 min before my alarm goes off and viola! I have a cup of coffee ready by the time I get out of bed. If I want a second cup when I get out of the shower, that too is possible thanks to their ability to keep coffee hot for extended periods of time as it sits on the hot plate.
The Taste Test – French Press And Drip Coffee
If you are a budding coffee connoisseur, how your final brew tastes is a very important factor.
The control that you have over all the variables that you have with a French press coffee maker ensures that you can adjust the brewing process and the variable to the delight of your taste buds.
A large degree of the flavor in your coffee is from the oils and drip machine and its paper filter prevent most of the oils from getting into your cup of coffee. You can use a metal filter and bare fine mesh filter holder as your filter if you want a bolder tasting coffee.
A French press uses the stainless steel filter that forms part of the plunger and ensures maximum flavor in your cup of coffee.
As a coffee geek, one of my dislikes about the drip method is the inability to make adjustments and alter the flavor to suit my individual preference and get my drip coffee tasting exactly as I love my coffee.
It’s also worth noting that a drip coffee makers heat your coffee on an ongoing basis which, if left too long, will eventually stew your coffee and start to taste off.
not all automatic drip coffee machines heat the drip coffee pot. Some use a thermal carafe which is, in my opinion, better as it achieves the same result of keeping your coffee warm, and is a much better choice.
The taste test winner here is clearly the French press method as it creates a much better and fuller tasting coffee that is bold, aromatic and rich in flavor.
Drip Vs French Press Coffee – Brew Capacity, How Many Cups Can Be Brewed?
This is a pretty big factor to take into consideration and varies depending on the type of person that you are.
Coffee brewing systems come in all sizes, even home and professional espresso machines have various sizes and the number of portafilters that can be attached.
If you are the type of person that is very social and holds frequent dinner parties you might need a second and larger French press for this purpose. A particularly large French press is not so great at making a cup or two of French press coffee in my opinion. You can do it; it’s up to you.
The size options for French press coffee brewing range from single cup to 10 cups.
A drip machine and drip makers start at 4 cups and go as large as 12 with some brands having 14 cups.
There is, unfortunately, no standard way of defining a cup size, all brands are guilty of “bigging it up” by using a 4 oz (120ml) cup size to define how large their capacity is.
Some brands use a 6 oz (180 ml) cup size as the standard way of defining how many cups of coffee can be brewed.
Try to look at the total capacity in ounces or ml to get a better idea of how many cups of coffee that you really can make with a French press or drip coffee maker.
Personally, I assume half as much, when I see 10 cups, I assume it will make 5 ounce cups, if I get more out of it bonus!
Something to consider and look for is a thermal press if you are looking for a larger press as you don’t want your coffee to get cold while it’s extracting. The result is much better coffee. If you’re making coffee for a lot of people, a thermos of some kind is good to keep your coffee hot, while you may want or require a top-up or second cup.
There’s no winner here as a French press or Drip coffee does not make more coffee or have a greater capacity than the other.
Brewing Time – How Long Does It Take To Brew Dripped And French Press Coffee?
Morning has broken and coffee has spoken.
When you are exhausted and rushing to get out of the door, the brew time and total amount of time that it takes you to get a fresh brew is important.
The brewing time for the French press method is on average 6 to 8 minutes from start to finish.
A drip machine takes approximately 6 to 10 minutes, slightly longer. It does vary between machines as there are a few automatic drip machines that can brew coffee as quickly as 3 minutes.
If you are in a rush, the winner is a drip, even if it takes a little longer as you can just set up, switch it on, jump in the shower, put on your makeup or do something else while your coffee is brewing and know that you will have a hot coffee ready for you, and kept hot via the thermal carafe or hot plate.
Cleaning up and the time taken is the same for both methods A simple rinse with clean water and rinse the stainless steel filter (or coffee basket).
There’s no articular winner here; I certainly edge towards and personally use a drip coffee maker when I am busy. It depends on your situation.
Read: Pour over Vs French press
Skill Level Required And Ease Of Use Of French Press And Drip Coffee
Brewing coffee is a daily habit for most of us, so why not perfect your brewing and turn it into a quest to make the perfect cup of coffee.
The question is, which of the two French press of drip coffee is easier to use?
There’s a lot at play here: The water temperature, coffee grind size, brew time and even the push rate of the plunger.
Getting the brew time spot on is critical for brewing a great cup of coffee. With all brewing methods, it’s a matter of using a process and following it to the letter every single time. Take a note of all the variables and stick to them, and you will get predictably great coffee every single time.
With an automatic drip coffee maker it’s hard to make bad coffee. All that is required of you is to use the correct grind size and use the right amount of ground coffee for your machine.
There are few adjustments that you have to make or be aware of. Just remember to use a new filter every time.
The winner in this category is unquestionable and is clearly drip makers as no effort is required at all with any automatic drip brewer.
Frequently Asked Questions About French Press Vs Drip
Is A French Press Better Than Drip?
Yes, particularly if and when you enjoy a full-bodied, rich tasting coffee, a French press is the better brewing method for you and well worth putting in the time and effort to brew it and get that coffee that much more enjoyable.
This is not to discard drip coffee completely as they do serve their purpose when you are busy and in a rush, set up and switch it on and the machine will do the job for you.
Is French Press Same As Drip Coffee?
No, these two brewing methods are very different, completely different. Drip coffee uses a constant flow of fresh hot water and gravity to extract the flavors from the coffee grounds. A French press uses the full immersion method where the grounds are immersed in hot water for 3 to 4 minutes or an extended period of time.
The result of the different ways in which the coffee is made is two very different tasting coffees where a drip coffee is clean and very crisp and a French press coffee is bold, strong, aromatic and flavorful.
Does French Press Taste Like Drip?
No, these two coffee beverages and brewing processes produce two very different tasting cups of coffee, drip coffee makers produce a very clean and crisp tasking cup of coffee while a coffee press produces a rich tasting bold coffee.
Does A French Press Make Stronger Coffee?
No, a French press does not have coffee that has more caffeine than a drip coffee; it has a stronger and more prominent tasting and bolder coffee though. It is stronger only in flavor.
Is French Press Coffee Stronger Than Espresso?
In terms of flavor and taste, a shot of espresso is notably bolder and much stronger than French press coffee.
A French press has more caffeine as an espresso shot has on average 65 mg to 75 mg of caffeine while a French press has more due to the greater volume, typically 100 mg to 120 mg per 8 Oz (240 ml) serving.
Why Does My Drip Coffee Taste weak?
If you drip coffee is tasting weak, there can be a few reasons for this.
- Reusing coffee grounds.
- Wrong coffee to water ratio.
- Water temperature was too low.
- Your water was not in contact with your ground for long enough.
Coffee brewing is easy: make one change at a time and focus on the water temperature. If it’s not within the perfect 195F to 205F (92C to 96C) and nearer to the higher end. If this is the error you may need to service your drip coffee machine.
Final Thoughts – French Press Vs Drip
In the French press Vs drip coffee, it is clear that for me that the winner is a French press. I love this brewing technique for the deep, bold and very tasty cup of coffee it produces.
It would be rather arrogant of me to tell you which of the two wins out for you personally and which best meets your own personal tastes.
Join our online coffee community on Facebook/Meta and tell us which is better for you and why. Share your coffee creations, images, recipes and coffee morning selfies!