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Snow Peak Titanium French Press Review

This is a classy lightweight press that has a lot of potential, but the filter is poorly designed.
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Price:  $56 List | $55.95 at REI
Pros:  Lightweight, makes a decent amount, can boil water directly in press, collapsible handle
Cons:  Filter does not work well, expensive
Manufacturer:   Snow Peak
By Penney Garrett ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Nov 20, 2018
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68
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#10 of 17
  • Taste - 40% 6
  • Ease of Use - 25% 8
  • Group Cooking - 15% 7
  • Portability - 10% 7
  • Weight - 10% 6

Our Verdict

The Snow Peak Titanium Press has a lot going for it and is very convenient for some situations. It weighs barely over 6 ounces and the base of the press can be put directly on a burner to boil water. It also makes enough (16 ounces) to give a couple of people a modest serving while you get round two going. Unfortunately, the design of the filter is where things really fall short. The diameter seems to be slightly too small for the base and therefore isn't able to create a tight seal. Despite there being both a mesh and nylon disc, grounds inevitably sneak up around the edges making the last serving a literal mouthful of grounds. We actually used the MSR MugMate in tandem with the Snow Peak as a secondary filter. Needless to say, flavor suffered because of this.

The other unfortunate issue with this press is the price — at $56 it's not a budget option. We could justify that cost (after all, titanium is expensive) if the filtering system was on point, but it is disappointingly subpar. If you want to stick with a French press and weight isn't an issue, we highly recommend the superior flavor of the Espro Travel Press, our Top Pick for a French Press. If weight is something heavily guiding your decision, the Editors' Choice V60 is lightweight and affordable. It also delivered some of the best flavor of all our brewers.


Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Top Pick Award  
Price $55.95 at REI$8.16 at Amazon$6.13 at Amazon$6.92 at Amazon$16.95 at REI
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Pros Lightweight, makes a decent amount, can boil water directly in press, collapsible handleGourmet flavor, well-conceived design, ceramic version available for home useLight, simple, affordable, design allows you to see level of coffee while brewingNo filter needed, tiny and light, consistently good tasteLightweight, easy to use and clean, durable, no waste, can use for tea
Cons Filter does not work well, expensiveSpecial shaped filters are harder to find, expensive for a plastic dripper, heavier than other brandsNot as refined of a flavor as a V60, bulkyMust lift filter out of most cups to avoid steeping, poor for large groupDidn't produce the best flavor, difficult to control extraction
Bottom Line This is a classy lightweight press that has a lot of potential, but the filter is poorly designed.The iconic pour over model in a light plastic package, delivering a consistently great flavor.The Melitta Ready Set Joe is a very light and inexpensive pour over option that provides solid taste and stellar value.The best option for light travel and backpacking, this savvy brewer will keep you caffeinated without taking up space in your bag.This simple and durable filter is easy to use, produces a decent cup of Joe, and can also be used for tea.
Rating Categories Titanium French Press Hario V60 Plastic Dripper Melitta Ready Set Joe Cone Single Serve Coffee Brew Buddy MSR MugMate
Taste (40%)
10
0
6
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
Ease Of Use (25%)
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
Group Cooking (15%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
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5
10
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5
Portability (10%)
10
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7
10
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7
10
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7
10
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9
10
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8
Weight (10%)
10
0
6
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
9
Specs Titanium French... Hario V60 Plastic... Melitta Ready Set... Single Serve... MSR MugMate
Weight 6.2 oz dripper alone: 2.95 oz, dripper + scoop: 3.37 oz 2.01 oz 1.1 oz 1.0 oz with lid/coaster, 0.7 oz for just filter portion
Brew Type French Press Pour Over Pour Over Pour Over Filter
Main Material Titanium Hard plastic Hard plastic Nylon filter Nylon/Stainless steel
Filter needed? No Yes Yes No No
Notable Features Lightweight, comes with bag Cone shape, large hole, ribs along side Can see cup without lifting dripper Rests on any mug Can be used for coffee or tea, compact
Notes Can boil water directly in press but filter lets grinds through Makes strong, smooth coffee Coffee is weaker than with the Hario dripper Filter hangs in coffee for most cups Super simple and versatile but need to have the right-sized vessel for it to rest on

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Snow Peak Titanium Press is lightweight, easy to use, and versatile, but it's expensive, and a poorly executed filtering system means you had better like chewing some of your coffee.

Performance Comparison


This lightweight press is a delight in many ways  we only wish the filter was designed better.
This lightweight press is a delight in many ways, we only wish the filter was designed better.

Brew Features


The classic French press brewing system remains the same here: just place your grounds in the base, add hot water, wait and press. The one difference with the Snow Peak is that you can, if needed, boil your water directly in the base, eliminating the need for a separate boiling vessel. This would mean adding your coffee on top of the full amount of water and stirring it in — not the optimal way to brew, but fine in a pinch.

Brewing with the Snow Peak is as simple as can be.
Brewing with the Snow Peak is as simple as can be.

Taste


The Snow Peak lost points here due to its terribly designed filter. Even our testers that love French press coffee struggled with this one because of how many grounds would sneak into the cup. We had to use very coarse grounds to help alleviate this and even then it wasn't a surefire solution. All of this lead to over-extraction and especially muddy and chewy final sips.

We used the MSR MugMate as a secondary filter for our Snow Peak brew. Just look at everything we removed from the bottom of our cup!
We used the MSR MugMate as a secondary filter for our Snow Peak brew. Just look at everything we removed from the bottom of our cup!

Ease of Use


This is definitely an easy brewer to use. French press coffee is pretty simple to make and relatively forgiving in regards to brew ratios if you're not super picky about flavor. If you have less coffee or coarser grinds, steep longer, if you have a finer grind stick to about 4 minutes. Properly cleaning the filter requires taking it all apart, but you don't have to do that every time. A simple rinse will suffice when out camping, and you can do a full proper cleaning once you're back at home.

The Snow Peak filter disassembled. Despite both a mesh and nylon piece we still had tons of grinds in our cup.
The Snow Peak filter disassembled. Despite both a mesh and nylon piece we still had tons of grinds in our cup.

Group Cooking


The Snow Peak is on the larger size for a compact traveling device. It yields a solid 16 ounces, enough for two people to get a modest amount of caffeine in their system while brewing up more.

With 8 ounces in our cup ready to drink  we still had that much again waiting for us in the press. A nice amount for sure!
With 8 ounces in our cup ready to drink, we still had that much again waiting for us in the press. A nice amount for sure!

Portability


We found the Snow Peak to be a great portable option. It's lightweight but big enough to store your coffee, a napkin, or some other small sundries inside when moving. The handles fold in against the sides for streamlined travel, and it comes with a mesh bag (though we found little value in this and feel it could easily tear).

We like the collapsible handles on this press.
We like the collapsible handles on this press.

Weight


At 6.2 ounces this is a viable option for campers needing to be conservative with weight. There are certainly lighter options available, such as the 1.1 ounce Primula Brew Buddy, our Top Pick for Backpacking, but if you want to be able to brew more at once or have a coffee maker that can double as a pot/water boiling vessel, this is a solid option.

The Snow Peak packed up in its mesh bag and ready to hit the road.
The Snow Peak packed up in its mesh bag and ready to hit the road.


Conclusion


We appreciate that the Snow Peak is lightweight, packable, and can be used as a boiling device. However, it's expensive, especially considering that the filter was a bit of a joke, leaving behind more grounds and sludge than any of our other French press contenders. When camping, most people are less picky and just happy to have fresh-brewed coffee at all, but we hope that Snow Peak realizes this shortcoming in their design and steps it up with the next version. If this press filtered properly, it would have a lot going for it.

This could be an awesome press if the filter actually filtered...
This could be an awesome press if the filter actually filtered...

A fun add-on offered by Snow Peak are their silicone Hot Lips which allow you to drink directly from a hot metal vessel. If you've ever burned your lips on a metal camp cup, you might really appreciate these.


Penney Garrett