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Showing 1-10 of 42 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 48 reviews
on February 9, 2009
I think it is a shame there are no reviews for this little gem.

Since I'm the first reviewer I wanted to list a few bullet points you should know:

1) This press makes about 1 standard (USA) sized cup of coffee.
2) This is not a heavy-duty press and will not travel well.
3) All the parts that touch the coffee are either steel or glass

I added #3 because it was particularly important that plastic never come in contact with my coffee.

The quality of this press is pretty good for the price. The glass is thin as is the chrome holder. The plunger itself is well made and I'm very impressed with that part. Overall it has the feel of an item you'll need to be careful with (you won't be throwing it in your backpack) but it isn't flimsy either.

My main concern with this lower priced item was that the plunger would be of inferior quality. That turned out not to be the case. The plunger slides down the sides of the glass smoothly and catches all the floating grinds. Of course it leaves a bit of "mud" at the bottom of your cup but all presses do that unless you want to attach a paper filter. Besides, most of the benefit of a press is leaving behind more of the tastes and smells that are filtered out in standard drip machines.

To minimize "mud" I recommend getting a burr grinder and grinding your own coffee. To get to the highest levels of coffee nirvana you'll also need to roast your own beans. But you can start here for a reasonable price and see if you want to try other more advanced coffee-making methods.
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on July 18, 2009
This French press has no plastic components that contact the hot water. The only plastic is in the handle and the little ball at the top of the plunger. This is an important feature. This French press is a better choice for health conscious consumers than the Bodum French press. The Bodum press has a plastic top.

Polycarbonate plastics release endocrine disruptors into water when you heat them. Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical of special concern as it binds to estrogen receptors. This action changes your gene expression. Additional research identified some other chemicals in polycarbonate plastics that can cause chromosomal error in cell division.

Update for 2015:
I bought this press in 2009. After long years of service, the carafe cracked. I was my fault for using a metal spoon. I bought a replacement carafe (Bodum Spare Glass Carafe for French Press Coffee Maker, 3-Cup, 12-Ounce). The Bodum carafe is thicker. The replacement carafe fit perfectly. This is a good solution for folks who have cracked carafes. (The Bodum press has a better carafe, but the press has plastic parts.) I still think that this press is the best choice. I bought one for a friend as well.

[...]

Nalgene brand bottles contained these chemicals in the past. When scientists discovered the problem, Nalgene switched to different materials that had no know risks. When people discovered that baby bottles and other cookware contained BPA, governments began to regulate the use of the chemical in cookware.

How can you tell if a plastic component in cookware contains potentially harmful chemicals such as BPA? Look at the triangular recycling symbol on the plastic component. If the recycling symbol has the numbers 7 or 3 in it, then the plastic might contain BPA.

After learning of the hazards of plastics in cooking, I looked at the bottom of the plastic top of my Bodum French press. It was marked as a category 7 plastic. I discarded it and got the LaCafetiere press.

Now I am trying to find an electric teakettle that has no plastic components.

Unfortunately, not all cookware manufacturers label the plastic components of cooking appliances with recycling symbols. Therefore, it is hard for people to know if the plastic contains harmful chemicals. The safest path is to avoid using any plastics in cooking.

This press is well made. I have no complaints about the quality of the construction or the design.
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on August 29, 2009
This is a nice little coffee press. It does what I expect it to, and it's easy to clean. The only thing that threw me off a little was that the instructions say to use a coarse grind, but I found the coffee was better with a medium grind, since I don't mind a little sludge and I like my coffee really dark.
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on October 14, 2010
LaCafetiere Optima 3 Cup Coffee Press, Chrome

This little coffee press makes slightly less than 12 ounces of coffee, or two regulation size cups of coffee. The cup is not 8 ounces, that would be too simple.

At first it was confusing because the description, 3 cup, is based on 4 ounce cups, and the directions as to how much coffee to use are lame.

Here is what works. Boil 12 ounces of good water, a pyrex measuring cup in the microwave is good, while that is heating, put two level measuring scoops (14 grams) of medium grind coffee in the press. Pour the water into the press when it is off boil, when it comes up to the top of the metal band about an inch below the top of the beaker, you have the right amount of water. Start a 3 minute countdown timer. Stir with a plastic spoon, less likely to cause an eruption if the water is too hot. Put the lid on with the plunger sitting on top of the liquid. When the timer goes off, slowly press the plunger down until it bottoms out. Pour the coffee. It will taste great, smooth, rich, good. Want it a little stronger go towards 3 minutes and 30 seconds, but it will get a bitter taste the longer you steep it. 4 minutes is too long.

Of course you can use a little more or less coffee to suit your taste, but this is a good starting point.

Rinse it out then wash with one drop of dish liquid and hot water and pump the plunger up and down a time or two to keep the coffee oils from building up.

The flavor is as good as you can get out of whatever beans you grind, consistent every time if you time it and measure the water and coffee properly. Enjoy. Just right for one or two people eating breakfast, or enjoying a cup in the morning. The whole process is a little prissy, but it does taste good.
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on February 17, 2011
Got this after my wife accidentally dropped my Bodum in the sink and shattered the glass. It's not as nice as the Bodum, but it's less expensive, and works just as well. It's missing the plastic strainer that the Bodum has, but I found this doesn't matter- anything small enough to fit through the screen would have gone right through that strainer anyway. There's no cover for the spout, either, so remember to push the screen down slowly to prevent hot coffee from squirting out.

As mentioned in other reviews, nothing made of plastic touches the hot water or coffee (unlike my older Bodum model), so no worries at all about BPA.

The beaker is glass, so like any coffee pot, it's subject to breakage if accidentally dropped. Also, be careful of thermal shock- wait for everything to cool off before washing it out. Putting cold water in hot glass is a sure way to shatter it. The directions make it clear that the beaker in this unit is machine washable (only their thermal presses are not.) It slides out of the frame and goes onto the top shelf of your dish washer. Remember to disassemble the press and screen periodically as well to clean it.

All in all, a good press that functions well for its cost.
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on March 7, 2012
I bought this coffee press because it has no plastic parts that come in contact with hot water. The only plastic parts are the handle and the knob on the top. I bought the 3 cup version which fills up a 12 oz mug. Works great so far! I keep it on my desk at work, and I'm considering another for home. I'd definitely recommend this coffee press for anyone concerned about plastics in food.
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on October 6, 2010
Great coffee press for a single serving. Grind should be fairly coarse. All parts are easily removable for cleaning and replacement, if necessary. It's quite stylist, too. Note that 3-cups is the entire beaker, and you'll likely not fill it up with water all the way to the top because of the spout. It's enough for a medium/large coffee cup. We've had a Bodum french press before, and it wasn't nearly as nice. This one was also less expensive than the Bonjour, and I don't feel like I've sacrificed quality.
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on January 7, 2014
I use this little Press almost every day for green tea. It is more of a two cup or 1.5 cup rather than the 3 cup advertised. Maybe I can stretch it for three little tea cups but that is not a problem for me. I wanted a size that was small and for one. It is perfect for that. It rinses easy just be careful not to be rough with it or you will break it. The glass does slid out of the silver handle for cleaning but I just wash it as it is to avoid breakage.
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on March 3, 2014
Product is functional, press operates smoothly, separates coffee grits from the coffee solution very well. Coffee does not have any foreign smells from steel or plastic. Cleaning is easy. However the cup broke as a result of a small impact after few months of usage; cap replacement is quite costly - $18.43, amounting to almost 2/3 of the price for the entire press. Assuming that you break & buy replacement cup every 6 months, the cost of 5 years ownership becomes equal to $250, while similar product from Bodum - assuming their cup is as fragile as this one, will cost you $210. Clearly it is better to bite the bullet and get something else - too expensive to own.

Update: Oct 21, 2014. Since my first review I purchased Bodum product, the same size, and realized that its quality was poorer compared to La Cafetiere! The spring on the Bodum press leaves the gap between the press and the glass, as a result it does not filter coffee as good as La Cafetiere. Meanwhile, owning both products, I determined that Bodum cup fits perfectly for La Cafetiere press, therefore cost of ownership advantage for Bodum no longer stands. At the end I returned Bodum and decided to change my rating to 5 stars for this product - it wins!
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on November 26, 2012
You purchased this item on August 31, 2012.

This review is for the TWELVE CUP version. I do not know if the glass is different for the smaller carafes.

I was expecting this glass carafe to be fragile and break within the first month. It has held up well and I've even clanked it into a few other objects by accident and it clearly doesn't show any signs of stress from heat (otherwise it would've cracked by now.)

This is the perfect french press for someone looking to purchase a low cost press that can provide coffee for more than one person. It's large and great for coffee-requiring moments when you have family or friends over, or are serving breakfast for more than two people.

I consider it a back burner item. I wouldn't want this to be my only french press. While I think you would need to deliberately break it -- like literally test its limits and throw it at a wall -- you can never be too sure when an accident might happen and it actually breaks. It is made out of glass, after all.

The only downside to this press is the basket itself. It is horrible. The screen isn't held tightly enough to the basket and it is a total chore to clean. I grind my beans extremely coarse and somehow they still end up under the screen where they're very difficult to remove. The technique that I use to clean the grinds out of the basket is filling the carafe with water and very rapidly plunging the press until I think all of the grinds are out. You'll have to drain the water and refill it with clean water a few times. By the way, I do NOT use a dishwasher. I had a Frieling (don't get one) that would get two or three grinds caught under the screen but it was never this bad. It might simply be a matter of the screen/basket size.

I just don't like the screen/basket at all and feel like it is the major flaw to this product, especially since the other day my grinds somehow made it past the basket where they should never have access to. It resulted in coffee chaos and the inability to properly plunge due to grinds scraping against the carafe.

I plan to buy a Hario french press or drip whenever I have the extra money. Until then, this will suffice and once I get my Hario I will only use the La Cafetiere when I need to produce extra coffee. I have a Hario loose leaf tea pot and absolutely love it, so I'm feeling confident about purchasing another Hario product.

Five stars for the carafe because I thought the glass would give, but it surprised me.

But that basket/screen gets a 3.
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