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Best cafetière 2021: The very best classic and modern French presses to buy


Take the plunge and make a better cup of coffee with these stylish and convenient cafetières

If you want a simple way to make a decent cup of coffee, then you need a good cafetière in your life. Also known as a French press, a cafetière merely requires you to spoon in your ground coffee, top up with boiled water, then place the filter lid on top and leave for a few minutes before plunging it to take the grounds to the bottom. The coffee is then ready to pour and drink.

The best cafetiéres will have a sturdy plunger and base. They should leave you with pure, ground-free coffee, and they should be easy to pour from. Different models will come in different sizes and materials, and more expensive versions will even have double-insulated walls so your coffee stays hot for a really long time.

With so many cafetières available, which one should you choose? That’s where we come in. Our round-up brings you the best cafetières on the market, to cater for all tastes and all budgets. Don’t forget to take a look at our buying guide as well, to find out what to look for before splashing out.

Best cafetière: At a glance:

  • Best cheap cafetière: La cafetière Pisa 8-cup cafetière | Buy now
  • Best classic cafetière: Bodum Chambord 8 Cup French Press | Buy now
  • Best doubled walled cafetière: John Lewis Double Wall Stainless Steel cafetière | Buy now
  • Most stylish ceramic cafetière: Le Creuset Stoneware cafetière | Buy now
  • Best sustainable cafetiere: Barista & Co. Plastic Free cafetiere | Buy now

How to choose the best cafetière for you

What types of cafetière are there?

Most cafetières have two main parts: a cylinder or beaker and a filter that fits tightly inside the cylinder, which is attached to the lid by a pole running through, with a plunger at the top. Push down when the coffee is ready to drink, and the filter pushes down on the coffee grounds, leaving you with grounds-free, tasty coffee. The filter is usually stainless-steel wire or nylon mesh although more traditional ones can be made of cheesecloth (though this is rare these days).

What features should I look for?

Consider what you want the cylinder to be made of, with options including plastic (good for the clumsy), glass (the most common) stoneware (good for modernists) or stainless steel (keeps coffee hotter, longer). Double walls are great if you want your coffee to stay hot for much longer periods or, if you want your coffee on the go, consider a travel version with a sealable lid – a bit like a Thermos with added coffee making powers. Don’t forget washing up – many of today’s cafetières have dishwasher-friendly parts.

What size should I buy?

Cafetières come in different sizes and they can be measured in litre size or by cup size. The 350ml version makes one large mug, two smaller mugs or three cups. You can also buy ones that make six cups, which are usually 650ml in size. The one-litre versions are a good family size or for entertaining as it makes about eight cups. Nowadays, you can get everything in between too – four cup, right up to 12 cups. We'd always suggest going for slightly bigger than that you need, as most of us are used to big coffees and you might be surprised at just how small one cup is in the cafetiére world.

What kind of coffee should I use and how much?

Most people prefer a coarser grind for a cafetière as finer grounds brewed in a cafetière can taste a bit bitter. That’s because cafetières bring out the strong and intense flavour of coffee. If you prefer fragrant coffee, look for African coffee which is fruity and light – but doesn’t tend to be mixed with milk. South American coffee is darker and nuttier and if you like your coffee with a serious kick, go for dark roast coffee – the cafetière will bring out the bitter intensity.

As for how much you use, it will depend on the strength of coffee and the strength you personally like your drink. But again, as a rough guide, use 60g (about three tablespoons) of coffee per 100ml. If you’re a real coffee lover, be prepared to try different coffees, grinds and brew times to work out your favourite blend.

READ NEXT: The best kitchen knives to buy right now

The best cafetières to buy from £21

1. La cafetière Pisa 8-cup cafetière: The best cheap cafetière

Price: £21 | Buy now from Amazon

Copper cafetières are all the rage. As are copper toasters, copper fact, you name it, and we’ll find you a kitchen accessory in copper. This French-designed eight cup cafetière, then, is in vogue but also highly practical. Made with heat-resistant glass and a stainless steel frame, it’s robust and reliable and works well, as well as being easy to wash.

There’s a set of copper glass cups to match and even a matching copper grinder. A great coffee maker that marries contemporary aesthetics with a classic design.

Key features - Sizes available: 3 cup, 8 cup; Cylinder: borosilicate glass; Double-wall: no; Guarantee: 30 days

2. Bodum Chambord 8 Cup French Press: The best classic cafetière

Price: £27 | Buy now from Amazon

When you think of cafetières, you probably think of Bodum, and with good reason. The company has been making French presses for decades since it created the original Chambord in the 1950s. Several design tweaks later, but exhibiting the same craftsmanship as was evident in the original, the modern Chambord is a thing of beauty. The steel frame and lid are plated several times over so it stays shiny through intense use, while its brewing system remains reliably simple and secure.

This latest incarnation has a hinged lid and a spill-resistant silicone seal that holds the coffee in the pot if you accidentally knock it over. It presses using an efficient three-part stainless-steel mesh filter, is dishwasher-safe, and will keep your freshly-brewed coffee hot for at least 10 minutes.

Key features - Sizes available: 3 cup, 4 cup, 8 cup, 12 cup; Cylinder: borosilicate glass; Double-wall: no; Guarantee: none

3. John Lewis Double Wall Stainless Steel cafetière: Best doubled walled cafetière

Price: £20 (3 cup) | Buy now from John Lewis

A double walled cafetiere such as this one is a good investment for two reasons. Firstly, it’ll keep your coffee hot for longer (perfect for lazy mornings) and secondly, it’s made from a sturdy stainless steel which, compared to glass, is much less likely to crack or break. The thickset handle also feels sturdy when in use and the entire thing is dishwasher safe too.

This cafetière comes in two sizes: the standard 3 cup (350ml) pictured above or an 8 cup (1 litre) version, which will set you back an extra £15. If you often share a cafetière with friends and family or just drink a lot of coffee, we’d definitely recommend going for the 8 cup version.

Key features - Sizes available: 3 cups, 8 cups; Cylinder: stainless steel; Double-wall: yes

Buy now from John Lewis

4. Le Creuset Stoneware cafetière: The most stylish ceramic cafetière

Price: From £43 | Buy now from Amazon

The Le Creuset option is a handsome one. The thick-walled, ceramic coffee pot insulates beautifully to keep coffee hot for lingering debates around the dinner table and has a durable stainless steel filter and plunger, along with chrome detailing. It’s a shame it’s only available in only one size – 4-cup (750ml) – but the range of colours is vast and you can match against other pieces in the Le Creuset range of kitchenware.

Your choices include pastel pink, almond, flint and the more traditional volcanic orange – just to name a few – and like all Le Creuset stoneware, it’s scratch resistant and a breeze to clean.

Key features - Sizes available: 4 cup; Cylinder: stoneware; Double-wall: no; Guarantee: ten years

5. Stelton Theo French Press: The best stoneware cafetière

Price: £65 | Buy now from Amazon

Minimalist and modern Scandinavian designs lend themselves well to cafetières. This one is designed by Francis Cayouette for the Danish label Stelton and makes a nice change from the usual glass and steel. There’s more than a hint of Asian influences going on here, particularly with the stoneware and bamboo, making it one to display with pride in your kitchen - and there are handle-less cups, plus a sugar bowl and jug to match if you fancy having a set.

Don’t panic about the bamboo lid getting ruined – there is a plastic barrier between the lid and coffee, but whatever you do don’t immerse it in water to wash up as it is as absorbent as it looks.

Key features - Sizes available: 6 cup; Cylinder: stone; Double-wall: no; Guarantee: none

6. Stellar Matt Double Wall Insulated cafetière: The most striking and shiny cafetière

Price: £57 | Buy now from Amazon

This Stellar cafetière has a gorgeous polished stainless steel finish and is available in a huge range of sizes, from three cups right up to a whopping 12 cup. It’s more durable than glass-carafe French presses and we love the smooth-action plunger.

You can buy replacements for the filter in the unlikely event that it ever wears out. The double wall works a treat for keeping the coffee hot, which is fabulous if you want a cup to last you through reading the newspapers. The design is simple, striking and shiny and will go with all manner of kitchen decors.

Key features - Sizes available: 3, 8, 10 and 12 cup; Cylinder: stainless steel; Double-wall: yes; Guarantee: lifetime

7. Barista & Co. Plastic Free cafetière: Best sustainable cafetière

Price: From £28 | Buy now from Amazon

The plastic-free design of this cafetière from Barista & Co. makes it a great sustainable choice for a guilt-free brew. It’s made primarily from glass with steel components and looks very stylish indeed. What’s more, it’s available in a wide choice of colours including natural steel, black, copper and teal.

Prior to reviewing, we were a little sceptical about the glass beaker handle but in testing, found it very sturdy and easy to pour with. A few other handy features include ml measurements on the side of the beaker and a 360 degree cylinder filter, meaning you don’t have to align it with the spout. The only tiny niggle worth mentioning is that the lid has a rather loose fit on the beaker but this doesn’t impair plunging or pouring in a huge way.

Key features - Sizes available: 3 cup, 8 cup; Cylinder: Glass, stainless steel; Double-wall: no; Guarantee: 1 year (when bought directly from Barista & Co.)

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