The Coffee Gator French Press Coffee Maker Review
If you are thinking of buying a Coffee Gator French Press, you might have heard that it isn’t the cheapest French Press on the market. This is true as there are lots of cheaper French Press options available. The question we’re trying to answer with today’s review, however, is whether the Coffee Gator is worth its higher price tag?
Read on, if you want to find out.
SUMMARY: The Coffee Gator French Press
- Double-layered stainless-steel filter so your coffee stays hot for longer
- Its dual-filter screen helps keep your coffee sediment-free
- Looks sleek and stylish
Professional-grade in every way. This brewer is tough, durable and rust proof. Unlike glass it won’t break when you drop it (but your floor might need some attention).– Coffee Gator
The Coffee Gator French Press Review
Aesthetic Appeal – 4.5/5
Design is always a subjective element, and personally I love how traditional glass French presses look. However, even with my traditionalist sense of style, I can admit that the Coffee Gator stainless steel French press looks good. It comes in brushed stainless steel as well as five painted colors (green, red, orange, pink, and gray). (1)
I happen to think that our Coffee Gator packaging is a thing of beauty.
Normally I’m the kind of person who would opt for stainless steel over a painted surface, but these colors look great. If I had to pick one, the green or red (which is more of a maroon) would be my choice, but you really can’t go wrong with any of them. (Note that the painted surfaces are not dishwasher-safe.)
Ease of Use – 4.5/5
French presses come in many sizes and materials but are generally functionally identical. The Coffee Gator French Press is very similar to most of its peers, although it does have a double-layered stainless-steel filter which can be more challenging to keep clean than single-layered filters. The insulated body means that even while full of near-boiling water you can safely touch the entire surface of the press.
The Coffee Gator holds a liter of coffee – which in uninsulated models is often more than can be consumed before the coffee gets cold. However, with its double-wall stainless steel vacuum insulated design, the Coffee Gator keeps your coffee drinkable for longer.
Portability is a function of size and durability. Typically, French presses fare badly as they are bulky and fragile. The Coffee Gator French Press exchanges fragility for weight, and in doing so becomes far more portable. With its thick stainless-steel construction, the Coffee Gator can be tossed into a duffle bag or backpack without having to worry about it arriving at your destination in a thousand pieces.
Some competing models of French press use a single-walled stainless-steel design, losing the thermal insulating properties but with the added benefit of lightness. Ultimately, neither the Coffee Gator nor its single-walled competitors is an ideal choice to take on a backpacking trip where every ounce counts, so the additional weight isn’t a significant portability disadvantage.
Brew Control Ability 5/5
By their nature, French presses are versatile brewers. Capable of brewing coffee, cold brew, and tea, they are consummate multi-taskers. However, brew control is not something they are best known for. Typical French presses are not particularly forgiving when it comes to grind size, with too small a size resulting in sediment making it into your cup (1). Also, if you like your coffee piping hot then lengthy brew times aren’t ideal as the coffee tends to cool quickly in single-walled vessels.
James Hoffman… advises using medium ground coffee, stirring after four minutes, and then letting the coffee brew for a further 5 to 7 minutes.
However, the Coffee Gator comes with a double screen filter, keeping more of the sediment in the press and out of your cup. And with its vacuum insulated, double-walled design, the Coffee Gator keeps your brew hot for longer.
There is no denying that the Coffee Gator is an expensive French press. For the cost of one Gator, you can buy two French presses. And when I say you can buy two, I mean two of the same volume as the Gator in either borosilicate glass or steel (single or double-walled!).
Gator would like you to think that you are buying a product made out of superior steel, and they use all sorts of jargon to convince you of this: “military-grade,” “surgical steel,” “premium steel.”(2, 3) But at the end of the day, it is made out of 304 stainless steel, which is the most commonly used stainless-steel alloy.
There is nothing wrong with 304, it is cheap, strong, and outside of saline environments has wonderful corrosion resistance, but it is misleading to suggest that it is somehow superior to everyone else’s steel (4).
Stainless steel can rust, it just does so extremely slowly. In order to be considered stainless, steel must include at least 10.5% chromium.
So, why would you buy the Coffee Gator?
Simple, the manufacturer stands behind their build quality. If you have any problems, the people at Coffee Gator will make it right. Customer reviews for this product are generally positive, but in the rare instances where there was a problem, Coffee Gator offered to replace the product.
So, while you can buy a cheaper double-walled stainless-steel press from a dozen other companies, you can’t count on them to guarantee their product, if anything goes wrong with it. A warranty and a company willing to back it up contribute greatly to the Coffee Gator’s value.
Do Not Buy If…
If you already own a French press that you’re happy with – the Coffee Gator probably isn’t going to offer a game-changing experience if you already have a Sterling Pro French Press or a Frieling French Press. Likewise, if you have no intention of bringing it camping and are good about not dropping things, then the robust design won’t be much of a boon.
If you just need a basic French press – The Kona French Press is an option that can be had for quite a bit less. It has a borosilicate glass carafe, so you’ll need to handle it with a bit of care, and it’s uninsulated so it won’t maintain its heat for as long.
The Coffee Gator French Press is overbuilt. Does it have to be as robust as it is? Probably not. But that is part of the allure. It has gravity, both in terms of mass as well as design. The vacuum insulated double-walled stainless-steel body keeps your coffee warm for longer and means you don’t have to worry about it breaking.
Ultimately, the Coffee Gator is a pretty good French press. It does what it sets out to well and looks fantastic. If you’re looking for something eye-catching that brews excellent coffee, it’ll be worth the money you pay for it.
The Coffee Gator French Press can keep coffee hot for up to 60 minutes longer than traditional borosilicate glass carafes.
It is not recommended to put the Coffee Gator French Press in the dishwasher. The hot water and chemicals can cause the paint to begin to flake off of the press. Hand wash your press with warm, soapy water.
Yes, Coffee Gator replacement parts are available for mesh filter and plunger assemblies. However, be aware that the replacements cost a sizable portion of the unit cost.
- Phil Williams. (2017, February 21). Coffee Gator Introduces Premium French Press to Keep Coffee Hotter for Longer, as the Make-Coffee-at-Home Market Explodes. Retrieved from https://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/02/prweb14084916.htm
- Fernando. (2018, November 28). Should You Grind Finer For Better French Press Coffee? Retrieved from https://www.perfectdailygrind.com/2018/11/should-you-grind-finer-for-better-french-press-coffee/
- Amazon Stores: Coffee Gator. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.amazon.com/stores/CoffeeGator/CoffeeGator/page/7FBE8D2D-D503-49C0-8186-BBC1AB79CBC9
- French Press Coffee Maker – Less Sediment, Hotter-For-Longer Thermal Brewer – 34 ounce / 1 litre – Silver. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://coffeegator.com/collections/french-press/products/vacuum-insulated-french-press-coffee-maker-34floz-silver
- 304 Stainless Steel versus 316 Stainless Steel. (2019, June 28). Retrieved From https://www.reliance-foundry.com/blog/304-vs-316-stainless-steel