French Press vs Percolator: Is a percolator or French press better? - Twisted Goat Coffee Roasters

French Press vs Percolator: Is a percolator or French press better?

Apr 20, 2023Meagan Mason

Finding the perfect cup of delicious coffee doesn't necessarily mean you need to drink coffee from morning till night, but rather experimenting with various brewing methods until you get what you believe to be the most full-flavored coffee.

We will look at the two more popular coffee-making processes to help you decide which is for you, be it a coffee press method or using a more simple approach with the percolator coffee makers.

Percolator Vs French Press?

Flavorful coffee comes in all shapes, sizes, and preferences, but to discover the perfect coffee brew takes time, and what many people may not consider, also research.

There is more to coffee than choosing between dark roast coffee beans or top-of-the-line coffee equipment, brewing methods play a big role in our daily routines.

You also want to think about how many cups of coffee you'll be making or needing which differ when it comes to choosing between a percolator vs French press.

What are the Taste Differences between a French press vs percolator?

French Press Overview

A bold coffee technique where pushing a mesh plunger into the water filled with coffee grounds is as much work as it takes to make a flavorful coffee.

This immersion method is great for extracting the most out of the coffee for a strong brew to kick-start the day.

A French press is also the cheapest coffee brewing device option so you don't need to break the bank to make decent cups of coffee.

Pros And Cons of A French Press


  • Better flavor and more affordable

  • No maintenance and easy clean up


  • Maximum 4-cup yield and you need an additional kettle

  • Requires supervision during brewing and tends to leave grounds in the cup

Percolator Overview

What you see is what you get with a percolator coffee maker. Simply put the coffee in the coffee basket, add water to the water vessel, and allow the steam to pass up and through the coffee during brewing.

You do need to keep an eye on it so you can stop the brewing process as soon as you see the coffee turning the color you like.

Pros And Cons of A Percolator


  • No additional equipment is needed and you can make large quantities at once

  • Budget-friendly with the low maintenance of regular cleaning


  • Lower on the flavor scale

  • Inconsistent results and tricky to clean

Differences In Coffee Taste

Coffee is not just about making coffee as too many people may think, but the methods, and techniques play a big role and can result in a great full-flavored cuppa or worse, a weak coffee. See why different methods work for some while others prefer to stick to what they know.

French Press

Full-bodied taste is what you'll get in a single cup of French-inspired coffee. It delivers a strong coffee packed with decadent flavor profiles with each sip and is a great choice for a cold brew during the hot summer months.


Unfortunately, a percolator is more about quantity than quality, so the flavor is not a priority in the brewing process. The electric percolators are more focused on maximizing the amount of caffeinated coffee in the shortest time, with a rich taste and texture as an afterthought.

Differences in Using This Coffee Equipment?

French Press

Needing only a handful of steps the French press is by far the easiest piece of equipment to use. Simply add your coffee grounds, boil water in a separate electric kettle, and add to the French press.

After a few minutes just press down and voila, your water chamber is now filled with delicious java.


Percolators are also easy to use, and even more so to make a large quantity of coffee in a short turnaround time.

Fill the coffee grounds chamber, top it up with water, and place it on the heat source or press the on button. And that's all there is to it.

Which Travels Better? French Press Or Percolator?

Going on vacation is always a great experience but it can quickly turn ugly if you don't have your much-needed coffee in the morning as coffee enthusiasts will confirm.

This is why you need a coffee-making tool to take with you wherever you go, and the top two choices to consider are the percolator vs French press.

The brewing process is different for both so it depends on the type of vacation you are embarking on. Let's see a few quick deciding differences

  • A French press is more compact but is usually made of glass so extra care is needed for traveling.

  • If you have access to cold water you can bring it to a boil and have pre-ground coffee grounds on hand then a French press is the better all-around option for making coffee while on the move.

  • A percolator in most cases needs some form of heat source and if you are camping it is unlikely there is an electrical outlet readily available, so you will need to make a fire.

  • When using a percolator you can use already ground coffee but the coffee grind size is recommended to be on the coarser side for a better-tasting coffee.

  • A percolator creates enough coffee to brew large batches so it makes sense to choose this if traveling in big groups, otherwise, consider a French press.

Differences In How To Clean

There is nothing worse than yearning for fresh coffee and picking up your French press coffee maker only to discover the person who used it before did not clean it.

Or perhaps you were in a rush and did not get back to it thinking it would take too long, when in fact cleaning your coffee makers is a quick and easy task.

Let's see how best to clean your coffee percolator or those scary-looking French press coffee pots.

French Presses

If you have 5 minutes to spare then you can ensure you have a clean French press for the next time you need it.

What is great about French presses is that it requires only unscrewing the filter top section and breaking down the other components and giving them a quick sponge wash with some hot water.

You want to get rid of all the leftover coffee grounds or your next cup will be a bitter coffee, no thank you.

A French press is also conveniently sized so cleaning on the go when out camping is just as easy so you always have the means to make hot coffee. Of the various coffee brewing devices the French press coffee press is not only the more popular choice but also the most convenient coffee brewing method.


Oh, how we love a good coffee percolator when it comes to creating a flavorful cup of java first thing in the morning.

If you are like me then you will know the impact of how much coffee can set the tone for a great day ahead, and the aroma of newly-made coffee brewed wafting through the house is divine.

Thus said, you want to make it a habit to always clean your coffee percolators, this is something coffee aficionados firmly believe in and can be the difference between a great cup of coffee and a bitter cup of coffee.

Sponge the parts with hot water and soap and rinse clear of any washing liquid, leaving them to air dry.

Cleaning your percolator vs French presses is a little trickier only because the thin tube where the steam travels up will need a good scrub and which needs a pipe cleaner of sorts.

The maintenance for a stovetop percolator vs French press is also higher, so taking this into account is something to note when shopping for your next piece of equipment for brewed coffee.

Does a percolator make better coffee than a French press?

At the end of the day, like with all things, choosing one thing over another comes down to personal preference. Whether you decide to use either the percolator or the French press to make your morning cup of coffee, their brewing techniques are different but both are simple.

In a nutshell, both the percolator and the French press make great-tasting cups of coffee, and you will know your personal taste once you have made and sipped both.

A percolated coffee has a smooth, creamy taste and leaves you with a delicate mouthfeel, whereas a French press coffee gives a full-bodied brew but not as strong brew compared to the stovetop or electric percolator.

Coffee brewing takes time, practice, and patience to perfect to your liking as coffee drinkers will tell you, so when making coffee be sure you brew coffee with quality ingredients and in the way you enjoy it.

Don't follow the crowd, your brewing coffee style is what makes you unique.

French Press Vs Percolator: Choose What Works For You!

A French press vs percolator discussion can go on for hours by coffee enthusiasts.

Whether you prefer ready-made grounds, grinding your own, or believe in one piece of equipment over the other, do what feels good for you, and most importantly, what tastes great.

The quality of coffee wins every time over an overly-fussy piece of equipment.

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