ESPRO Ultralight Travel Press Review
Cons: Difficult to clean, relatively heavy
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ESPRO Ultralight Travel Press
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|Pros||Great flavor with minimal muddiness, easy to use, very portable||Gourmet flavor, stylish, compact, easy to clean, easy to use, made from stainless steel||Gourmet flavor, well-conceived design, ceramic version available for home use||No filter needed, tiny and light, consistently good taste||Amazing flavor, versatile, very portable, simple cleanup|
|Cons||Difficult to clean, relatively heavy||Hefty, not ideal for big groups||Special shaped filters are harder to find, expensive for a plastic dripper, heavier than other brands||Must lift filter out of most cups to avoid over-steeping, poor for large groups||Lots of little pieces to mind, heavy for backpacking|
|Bottom Line||A double-walled stainless steel travel press with an innovative double filter to reduce muddiness||A cleverly designed, compact, and easy to clean pour-over device that brews consistently great coffee||The iconic pour over model in a light plastic package, delivering a consistently great flavor||The best option for light travel and backpacking, this savvy brewer will keep you caffeinated without taking up space in your bag||This is our top scorer for taste and we love its durability, ease of use, and versatility|
|Rating Categories||ESPRO Ultralight Tr...||MiiR Pourigami||Hario V60 Plastic D...||Primula Coffee Brew...||AeroPress Coffee Maker|
|Ease of Use (25%)|
|Group Cooking (15%)|
|Specs||ESPRO Ultralight Tr...||MiiR Pourigami||Hario V60 Plastic D...||Primula Coffee Brew...||AeroPress Coffee Maker|
|Measured Weight||10 oz||Dripper alone: 4.89 oz
Dripper + case: 5.52 oz
|Dripper alone: 2.95 oz
Dripper + scoop: 3.37 oz
|1.1 oz||Press alone: 7.98 oz
Press + spoon + stirrer: 9.39 oz
|Brew Type||French Press||Pour Over||Pour Over||Pour Over||Pour Over/Press Hybrid|
|Main Material||Stainless Steel||Stainless steel with Hardshell powder coat||Hard plastic||Nylon filter||BPA-free polypropylene|
|Notable Features||Double-walled, vaccuum-insulated stainless steel mug, with a double micro filter press||Easy to clean, collapsible pour over with slim carrying case||Cone shape, large hole, ribs along side||Rests on any mug||Easy to clean, re-usable filter|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The ESPRO Ultralight is the lighter-weight version of the original ESPRO. While still not technically "ultralight" at 10 ounces (this probably won't be your pick for your next thru-hike), it's still a clean and compact all-in-one brewer/mug that will easily get a lot of use whether you're car camping or commuting to work.
The ESPRO Ultralight Travel Press features a double-walled, vacuum-insulated stainless steel mug to keep your coffee hot for hours. The press has two interlocking micro-filters that keep muddiness and residue to a minimum, and a silicone gasket creates a vacuum seal in the mug to ensure extraction will stop once you press. If you want to filter out even more residue, you can add an additional paper filter. It can be used as a French press or a pour-over, and you can even use it with loose-leaf tea. This is ESPRO's ultralight model, and at 10 ounces, it proves a worthy device for travel, car camping, or even a luxury backpacking option.
In our blind taste-test, the ESPRO Ultralight did remarkably well, especially for a French press. One of our taste-testers doesn't like French press coffee, and even they were impressed by how little muddiness got into a cup of coffee made with this press. We were impressed by the lack of bitterness and balanced flavor produced by this device.
Ease of Use
The ESPRO Ultralight performed well in this metric. Few methods of making coffee are as straightforward as using a French press. This press also has the added benefit of doubling as a travel mug. After you press your grounds, you can just start drinking; no extra cup is needed. That said, this press has the added step of joining — and then cleaning — the two microfilters. It's also more involved to remove the grinds and wash out the skinny vessel than clean a simple pour-over device.
The ESPRO Ultralight isn't really designed to make coffee for a big crew, and given the difficulty with cleaning this device, it earned below-average marks in this category.
We love how portable the ESPRO Ultralight is. It is lightweight for a travel mug and press combo and is as slim as a baguette. If you're looking for a decent option for travel, car camping, or even quick backpacking trips — you'll be impressed with how little space it requires.
At 10 ounces, the ESPRO Ultralight isn't truly ultralight, but it is light enough for car camping, less demanding backpacking trips, and travel. Remember that this weight is all-inclusive — you can sip directly from the mug/press without needing to bring a separate drinking vessel.
The ESPRO Ultralight counts among the more expensive options in our review. However, it is a well-conceived press that eliminates most muddiness and finishes extraction when you press it. If you love the simplicity of a French press but could do without a muddy mouthfeel, and you want a versatile mug that can make coffee as well as tea — then this device could be a great value for you. Additionally, most "ultralight" products lack durability, but this mug should last a long time with its stainless steel construction.
The ESPRO Ultralight Travel Press is a solid travel French press with an innovative double micro-filter that reduces muddiness and stops extraction when you press it. You can even add supplemental paper filters to clean up your brew even more. If you crave a mug that will keep your coffee hot for hours, and a press that can also handle loose leaf tea, then this just might be a match for you.
— Mary Witlacil
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