Snow Peak Titanium French Press Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Lightweight, makes a decent amount, can boil water directly in press, collapsible handle
Cons: Filter does not work well, expensive
Manufacturer: Snow Peak
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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.
The classic French press brewing system remains the same here: 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.
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 led to over-extraction and especially muddy and chewy final sips.
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 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.
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).
At 6.2 ounces, this is a viable option for campers needing to be conservative with weight. There are certainly lighter options available, but if you want to be able to brew more at once and also have a coffee maker that can double as a pot/water boiling vessel, this is a solid option.
This is not a cheap press, and while we like the fact that it's very lightweight and the base can be used directly on a stovetop, the overall performance doesn't justify the price point. We could justify the cost (after all, titanium is expensive) if the filtering system was on point, or if it was an ultralight option, but on both fronts, it is disappointingly subpar. The plunger filter is so poorly designed that coffee — no matter how it's ground — will get through into your cup. We ended up using another device to give our brew a second filtering — not something you should have to do after dropping this much money.
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 is a bit of a joke. It left behind far 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.
— Mary Witlacil and Penney Garrett