French Press vs Pour-Over Coffee – Are They The Same?

Getting a fresh cup of coffee when you start your morning is amazing, isn’t it? That aroma of freshly brewed coffee tickling your nose and a sip of the hot mess splashing you with the much-needed dose of freshness can give you the caffeine boost you’re looking for.

A mug of hot coffee is something that you can have at any time, and I must say, it can increase the activities of your brain and nervous system and make you feel refreshed within a fraction of seconds. 

As a coffee lover, I’ve seen people who like different types of coffee. But the two most common categories are lovers of pour-over coffee and french press coffee.

For me, both of them are absolute delights, to see people debating over the brewing method made me curious to dive deeper into this thing and solve the dilemma. 

Key differences between a French press and a Pour Over

A french press coffee is where you brew your coffee by letting the coffee beans rest in water and then use a wire metal mesh to filter out the coffee with a small residue of coffee granules.

This immersion method makes the beverage a little heavy, fuller, and bolder in taste. So, if you like a strong cup of coffee that can hit you with a truckload of freshness and want your coffee intense, this one is for you. 

A classic pour-over coffee starts with ground coffee, a filter, and a filter holder. You pour hot water over your grounded coffee, and this hot water ensures it takes the flavor and gives you a smooth beverage that can surge your cravings. By using filter paper, you get a cleaner coffee and light taste compared to the french press method. 

Also read: Automatic pour over coffee makers – Buyer’s guide

So, no. French press and pour-over coffees are different and have different properties. 

The Basic Differentiation

Whether you’re a working professional with a 9-5 job or a college student, everyone is in a hurry and on the clock to get things done.

For coffee lovers, coffee is something with which they start their day, and brewing that perfect cuppa to get the dose of refreshment while managing their daily schedule is a top priority.

Let’s understand the basic difference between a french press and a pour-over coffee.

Brewing time:  If you’re a person who’s in a rush and want a cup of coffee asap, you should go for the french press method. The french press method takes around 6-8 minutes and is convenient for many people. 

Pour-over is more of a dripping method. Here, you measure your coffee, put it over a filter, boil the water, let it cool for a while and pour the water all over the coffee grains so that it can extract the flavors. Doing all these steps takes about 8-15 minutes. 

The taste: Since the french press method requires coffee beans immersed in water, it has a rich taste of natural coffee oils.

Pour-over coffee is different. It has limited coffee oils and is light in taste

Coffee type: French press coffee requires medium or dark roast coffee beans, whereas pour-over coffee needs light or medium roast coffee beans.

Coffee-to-water ratio: For a light cup of french press coffee, the coffee-to-water ratio should be 1:17, and a hard cup should go like 1:11

A light pour-over cup of coffee should go for a 1:17 ratio and 1:15 for a strong cup

Pros of french press coffee

Brewing a french press coffee is super easy and gives a surreal taste to the beverage. However, it is not for someone who’s not a fan of the pungent bean extract, but the heavenly aroma and the rich taste can surely elevate your mood and mark a beautiful experience. 

Things I love about french press coffee:

  • Convenient and easy to make: For brewing a perfect cup of french press coffee, all you need is a little patience and the right skills. It does not require much of your time, and you don’t need to babysit each step. 
  • Customize your drink as per your choice: Starting from the size of the grind to the brewing time, everything can be customized in the french press technique. It gives you the liberty to experiment with your drink and then understand your preference.
  • The delicious taste: Since the coffee granules are in direct contact with the water, it pulls out the oil and gives a rich flavor to the beverage.

Pros of a pour-over coffee:

Pour over is one of the most traditional ways of brewing coffee, and it gained popularity because of its practicality. Here, you have to manually pour the water over the coffee and let it garb whatever it can from the coffee granules. 

Here are the advantages of pour-over coffee:

  • Smooth in taste: Pour-over coffee is silky in taste and is less bitter than a french press coffee. It is ideal for someone who prefers light taste.
  • Pocket-friendly: You don’t need heavy equipment to brew a pour-over coffee. Get a packet of top-quality coffee and filter paper. Voila, you’re good to go.
  • A convenient way of brewing: When you want to make just one or two cups of coffee in a day, the pour-over method is the best. Take out the coffee as per your wish and brew it whenever and wherever you want. Washing a pour-over coffee maker is much easier and hassle-free compared to a french press coffee maker. Apart from this, it also eradicates the grittiness and gives a tender taste to the beverage.

A recap!

There are tons of ways to brew your cup of delight and enjoy it, but it can get confusing sometimes to decide which one to go for. To sort this out, understand your taste buds. Try what all you can and let your palette decide what you prefer. It is one of the proven ways to savor coffee and go for that one perfect cup you’ve always wanted. And who knows, you’ll like different brewing approaches, and you will try them all as per your mood, preference, the time you have, and other various parameters? 

So, what are you waiting for?

Get to your kitchen and try your hands on different techniques. Coffee is a language itself, and you should not leave a chance to hop on and enjoy this god’s gift to us.

Brew and enjoy your drink!

I'm a coffee lover, foodie, and blogger - passionate about coffee and all the things that go with it. I write about coffee, and news, learn about new coffees from across the world, do some home roasting, and share my thoughts on various other topics.

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