There are loads of great ways to brew coffee and hundreds of different kinds of coffee machines out there. You can buy machines that turn coffee beans into hot java at just the press of a button or incredibly complex ones that offer a full, hands-on, barista experience.
For many of us, simplicity can be the key to great-tasting coffee and some of the traditional coffee makers can yield incredible results if used correctly. A French press embodies this with its wonderfully simple design yet ability to make intense and delicious coffee.
Today we’re going to be looking at one of the best French press coffee makers, the Bialetti Preziosa (also known as the Cafetiere Omino Scatola). I’ll take you through all the pros and cons that come with owning this coffee press as well as a full rundown on how to get the best tasting coffee out of it.
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The Bialetti Preziosa Coffee Press
Type: French Press
Capacity: 3 Cup or 8 Cup Option
- Easy To Use
- Unique Design
- Two Size Options
- Borosilicate Glass Carafe
- Heatproof Handle
- Delicate Glass
- Microsediment in coffee is not for everyone
Why Choose A French Press?
A French press makes a rich and full-bodied brew that’s bursting with flavor. It retains all the coffee oils and a fine suspension of micro-sediment that helps create the unique balance of flavors as well as the rich texture that’s key to this brew method.
It’s really easy to use, easy to keep clean, and inexpensive to buy. These coffee makers can last a lifetime if well maintained and they don’t take up much space in your kitchen.
There are so many benefits with the french press that it’s pretty much a coffee lover’s staple.
The main downside with this model, in particular, is that the glass jug is very delicate. It will shatter if dropped or tapped against something.
The more general downsides that some people find with the French press are usually due to the coffee they brew. If you prefer a smooth cup of joe then you may find that the fine, micro sediment left by the plunger is unpleasant. Pour-over or drip coffee may be a better option if this sounds like you.
Some people are not a fan of coffee oils and there may be a link to ingesting these and high cholesterol. This analysis suggests that coffee consumption does correlate to higher total cholesterol but the results were not unanimous overall studies. This means that no firm conclusion can be drawn here but if you are concerned about your cholesterol then it may be best to enjoy french press coffee in moderation or chose to brew your coffee with a method that uses filter papers, so removes a lot of the coffee oils.
The Bialetti French Press – Coffee Press Preziosa
This model of French press comes in two sizes to suit your needs. It has a 3 cup option that can hold 350ml (11.8 ounces) and it has an 8 cup option that has a 1-liter capacity (33.8 ounces).
It’s important to note that the cup size is typically much smaller in Europe than in America. Where the size reads 8-cups, each of these cups is 125ml or around 4 ounces. If you’re used to drinking an 8-ounce or 16-ounce cup of coffee you will need to size up with your French press.
The mesh filter is made from high quality, 18/10 stainless steel. It’s well designed to fit the jug securely thanks to the coiled spring edge, so doesn’t allow coffee grounds to make their way up into the drinking portion of the brewed coffee. The filter has a dual-layer to keep sediment to a minimum, enhancing the drinking experience.
The body of this French press is made from heat-resistant borosilicate glass. This is a good choice as the glass is non-porous so doesn’t absorb stains or odors, making it easy to keep clean. The glass cylinder is removable from the outer housing and is dishwasher safe so even easier to clean.
The main body of the Bialetti Preziosa coffee maker is high-quality stainless steel with the Bialetti little Italian man with a mustache cut-out design. It has a sturdy, plastic handle that doesn’t conduct heat so is cool to touch. It’s a sleek and attractive design and a little quirky which we love!
The glass beaker is dishwasher safe so easy to keep it sparkling clean. Simply remove the housing and place it on the top shelf. You should rinse your French press thoroughly after each use and give it a thorough clean once a week or so, depending on how often you use it. This deep clean is just warm water and mild dish soap and using a soft cloth or sponge, clean away the residual coffee oils. Make sure you rinse everything thoroughly with clean water, especially the filter, to ensure no suds remain.
How To Make Perfect Coffee Using The Bialetti French Press
You need to make sure you are using a good amount of coffee for the size of the french press to ensure you’re getting an enjoyable coffee experience. A good place to start is with a 1:15 coffee to water ratio. If you’re using 900g of water (for the 8-cup french press) then you’ll want 60 grams of coffee. 300g of water requires 20g of coffee (ie the 3-cup french press).
This ratio is not a hard rule and you can adjust these amounts depending on your individual taste preferences. If you find the coffee too strong then you can try a 1:16 or 1:17 ratio etc until it tastes just right. If it’s too weak then 1:14 or 1:13 may suit you better.
Ratios can vary with the type of coffee used as well so if you’re trying a new flavor, have a play around until you get the perfect cup.
The best way to maximize the flavor of your french press coffee is to buy whole coffee beans and a coffee grinder to grind them at home. This gives the freshest and fullest flavor.
Unfortunately, not all ground coffee is created equal and you really need a conical burr grinder to ensure an even grind. If you use a blade grinder instead you’ll get powdery coffee produced that gives a bitter flavor to the french press brew. The blades can also heat up and burn the coffee which also affects flavor.
To make good coffee, you need a coarse grind, as coarse as your grinder can go. If you buy fresh from a coffee roaster they will give you the option to select a french press grind.
Using good-tasting water ensures good-tasting coffee. Filtering water removes some of the impurities that give a bitter or unpleasant taste and is a good rule of thumb for any brew method.
The water has to be the optimum temperature as boiling water can burn the coffee and water that is too cold leads to a weak, under-extracted cup of coffee.
Use water that is 195-205F (90-96C) or, if you don’t have a thermometer, then boil the kettle and let it cool for a minute or so. This should give you hot water that’s roughly this temperature.
This is an example method for the 8-cup French press coffee maker. This makes around four, 8-ounce cups of coffee or eight, 4-ounce cups.
Grind up 60g of freshly roasted coffee beans on a very coarse grind setting.
Heat up a kettle full of water to the optimum temperature range (195-205F).
Add the coffee to the french press and place it on a set of kitchen scales or coffee scales if you have these. Tare the scales to zero.
Get a timer or stopwatch ready.
Add just enough water to cover the coffee grounds and start the timer. Wait 30 seconds. The coffee should bubble and move around as it lets off CO2 and this is called the ‘blooming’ stage.
Top up the rest of the water until the scale reads 900g and give the mixture a gentle stir to ensure the coffee is submerged.
Wait until the timer reaches 4 minutes.
Gently and with even pressure, press the plunger to move any coffee grounds to the bottom of the french press.
Serve immediately and enjoy.
Other Uses For This French Press
If you’re a fan of tea then a french press can be the perfect device to add to your collection. Use it to brew loose leaf tea or herbal blends which are easily strained away by using the plunger.
Cold-brewed coffee is a brew method that uses cold water to gently extract the coffee flavor over a long period of time. Although you can buy all sorts of fancy, cold-brew coffee makers, a French press can be the perfect choice for this brew method. All you need to do is add coffee and water and leave it stewing in the fridge overnight and then simply press the plunger down the following morning.
It’s not as impressive as using a steam wand (the kind that comes with an espresso machine) but if you’re looking for a low-cost way to make frothy milk easily then consider a French press. Fill the jug to around a third full with either cold or warm milk (depending on your recipe) and press the plunger up and down vigorously for 30 seconds to a minute. As the filter moves through the liquid it introduces lots of air to the mix and causes it to expand and fill the jug. The milk won’t hold its foam as well as steaming it would, but if served immediately, can be a lovely bubbly treat.
Bodum Chambord French Press
- Classic Design
- Borosilicate Glass
- Dishwasher Safe
- Shatterproof Option
Moka Express Moka Pot
- Stovetop Espresso Maker
- Minimum Lifespan of 10 Years
- Eco-sustainable coffee maker
- Traditional Italian Design
Bodum Columbia French Press
- Double Wall Insulated
- Hygienic Stainless Steel
- Three Size Options
- Lightweight and Portable
- Makes Delicious Espresso-Like Coffee
- BPA-Free Plastic
- Non-Bitter Coffee that’s Low in Acidity
What kind of coffee do you use with a French press?
A medium to dark roast pairs very well with a french press.
Why is French press coffee bad for you?
The oils found in coffee brewed using a french press may contribute to raised cholesterol. If you’re worried about this, limit your coffee intake or switch to a brew method that uses paper filters instead.
Why is my Bialetti coffee bitter?
There are usually three reasons why the coffee made in your french press ends up bitter. The first is that it’s been left to brew for too long so is over-extracted. The second is you have used too finely ground coffee and the third reason could be the water was too hot so has burned the coffee.
How long should I let my coffee steep in a French press?
Don’t allow your coffee to steep for longer than 4 minutes.
Should you Stir French press?
It is important to stir the french press straight after adding water as this ensures the coffee is fully submerged in the liquid. Do this at the start of the brewing stage and don’t stir it again before pressing the plunger. This allows most of the sediment to settle to the bottom so you have less chance of it ending up in your cup of coffee.
The Bialetti french press is an attractive, classic design but also an easy way to brew coffee. Once you perfect the brewing routine, you’ll never look at another coffee maker again. This coffee maker is perfect for home or at work although you do need to be careful using it on the go as the glass is very delicate!