Difference Between Filter Coffee and Cafetiere Coffee 1


In my last vs. coffee post I covered the difference between espresso and drip filter, and in that post I mentioned drip filter and cafetiere / french press pot coffee not being the same. Some people think of cafetiere coffee being the same as filter coffee, but it’s different in many ways, so I wanted to write this post just for anyone who wasn’t quite sure of the difference and wanted to become enlightened.

Cafetiere also known as french press or press pot, works by mixing water at just under boiling with ground coffee, and in this way it is similar to drip filter, but this is where the similarity ends. The grind is more course for cafetiere than filter, and the coffee drips through a fine mesh paper filter with filter, whereas with cafetiere it’s a much more course mesh metal filter usually.

When you plunge with a cafetiere you’re separating the grounds from the coffee, pushing them down to the bottom so you can then pour out your coffee, but the coffee hasn’t dripped through the filter, and the resulting coffee isn’t anywhere near as finely filtered.

The main difference when it comes to taste is that cafetiere coffee is heavier and has a more dense mouth feel than filter which is much lighter and cleaner by comparison. Far more of the coffee oils and coffee solids get through into the coffee with cafetiere, which is what gives it a heavier taste and mouthfeel.

You don’t have to just use one brew method, in fact I use filter, cafetiere, Aeropress and Espresso all at home, depending on what mood I’m in. There are times when nothing but cafetiere will do, and there are times when nothing but filter will do, it just depends on what I feel like at the time.

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One thought on “Difference Between Filter Coffee and Cafetiere Coffee

  • Maria boyd

    What are the appropriate grind levels for the different methods and if I am buying coffee already ground how can I tell how finely ground it is
    I have a packet which says fine Italian roasted, does fine refer to the quality of coffee or the level of grind.
    If you give me grind measurements, how does this translate to labels e.g. Fine or filter
    I hope this makes sense, I have just bought a pour over machine, the instructions say use ‘filter’ coffee, would my fine Italian be OK or is it too fine and block the filter