The beauty of the French press is that it isn’t just limited to brewing up the ultimate cup of coffee – you can use the same mechanism for an indulgent cup of tea as well. Slow-steeping loose leaf tea isn’t much more time consuming to brew than boiling up a kettle and dunking in a teabag in your mug – if anything, getting the right volume of liquid to brew the right quantity of tea leaves and steeping for just the right amount of time harkens back to how tea has traditionally been made, for a careful balance of strength and flavor.
And fear not – the precision required to get your French press tea just right isn’t so rigid that you feel you’re conducting an experiment in a science lab. Just figure out the right water temperature for your black, red, white, green or herbal teas, and pour it over the right ratio of tea leaves, letting it steep the recommended amount of time before you slowly press out the flavor-infused liquid to give your tastebuds a treat. Once you’ve figured out the equation, you’ll find yourself nailing the perfect cup of tea every single time, properly heated water avoiding burning your tea leaves or leaving your brew too bland, instead extracting just the right depth and richness of flavor to give your tea that decadent oomph. So which French press should you be using for your loose leaf tea? Here are our top picks.
Kitchen Supreme French Press Coffee & Tea Maker
One of the most common problems we run into when it comes to French presses with glass carafes is the risk of them breaking, either because of our carelessness or because the glass simply could not withstand the sudden shock of scalding water poured into it. This French press addresses this problem, and then some, with thermal shock resistant, shatter-proof borosilicate glass to let the carafe withstand the steaming water you’ll be pouring in to let your tea leaves steep. The sturdy, double stainless steel encapsulated lid is a massive improvement over the plastic variations we’ve seen in other French press units, typically flimsy and likely to break under the pressure applied to the plunger. The lid of this press, though, not only withstands the pressure but also helps resist heat loss and holds your tea or coffee’s aroma, locking it all in with a twist of the lid.
The stainless steel and glass combination makes this French press an attractive, 34-ounce unit with personality, going great with your breakfast table or your kitchen counter, as well as making it a highly durable press to invest in. The metal components are designed to be rust-resistant, including the filter screen, which, thanks to its stainless steel construction, can easily be removed, washed out and re-used multiple times without getting damaged. With 3 replacement filters included alongside the one attached to your plunger, you’ll find this French press lasting you a very long time. The plunger plate itself is a rugged, well-designed piece guaranteed to wring out every last drop of delectable goodness from your tea leaves, the filter catching the lumps while leaving you with a perfectly caffeinated brew to accompany breakfast, or an evening snack. The set comes with a tea/coffee scoop as well as a stainless steel spoon for stirring in sugar or honey.
KEN’S BUDGET PICK
SterlingPro French Press Coffee & Tea Maker
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At a capacity of 34 ounces and with temperature resistant borosilicate glass to keep your French press from shattering from thermal shock, this pocket-friendly French press promises the best bang for your buck. With a unique double-screening system, the primary filter hugs the inner glass wall of the carafe while the plunger pushes down, while the secondary filter catches your tea leaves or coffee grounds to leave you with minimal, if any, sediment or residue in the cup you decant. The stainless steel filters are reusable and more enduring, with two replacement steel screens included so you can keep using this French press for a long, long time.
Idylc Homes KONA French Press
Extra thick shatter-proof borosilicate glass and an insulated outer wall make this not just an attractive French press to show off to your guests, with its clear glass and matte black design, but also a highly durable one, capable of withstanding innumerable French press sessions for coffee and tea. Though the press does come with synthetic elements, such as the rubberized plunger knob, all plastic elements are guaranteed to be BPA-free, the press itself designed in such a way that synthetic elements never come into contact with your steeping tea or coffee. Instead, the plunger favors a stainless steel filter and infuser system, so you can rest assured that your tea or coffee isn’t going to be brewing in plastic or acquiring that odd taste one often encounters when using a non-glass French press. The 3-piece filter screen can be removed and washed separately, with the French press itself dishwasher-safe.
Bodum Chambord Coffee & Tea Maker
With a classic, beautiful design, this French press is a combination of thermal shock-proof borosilicate glass and stainless steel, both elegant and efficient in its uses. The chrome-plated steel of the press gives it an air of sophistication and durability, designed to last, while the matte black Chambord Polypropylene handle enhances the press’ looks while giving you a comfortable grip as you pour yourself a cup of tea. A 3-part, stainless steel screen with a fine mesh filter traps the leaves of your tea, as well as fine coffee sediment, as you push the plunger down to extract all of that delicious goodness. The filter is removable and washable for multiple uses. The lid, meanwhile, is designed to let you twist and close the spout to prevent any accidental spills and splashes as you push down the plunger. With a 34-ounce capacity, this is one of the most popular and enduring French presses around, and for good reason.