Green Girl Favors French Press

Coffee. Though I have already stated my love for tea (which is undying), there is something to be said for coffee. I understand that many people just cannot make the switch from coffee to tea, and I understand that. Though I do drink mostly tea, there are some days when I am just so tired that I cannot survive without coffee.

But here’s the thing: When I do get coffee, I want it to be good. I am not going to settle for the grimy water that the dining hall tries to pass off as “coffee.” And we do have Brown and Brew (which has great coffee) on campus, but that costs money, and I’m pretty sure that I would be broke if I relied solely upon them for my caffeine fix.

So what is a girl to do? No dining hall, no bought coffee, yet there are just times when it seems absolutely impossible to stay awake and do all of the work you have to do without coffee. And I am not a soda lover. So, here’s the alternative: The French press.

The French press, which is basically a coffee press, is incredibly handy for college students, and anyone else looking for a cheap alternative to buying coffee or for an energy efficient way to make coffee. And, it makes spectacular coffee.

It’s easy: Just boil water (I use a stainless steel electric water heater), put coffee grounds in the French press, pour in the water, and let seep. After a couple of minutes, press down the coffee grounds and enjoy a rich cup of wonderful coffee.

The great part is that the electric water heater is incredibly energy efficient and also very useful. In addition to coffee, it’s great for making tea and soup. Now, it is important that you use a stainless steel water heater, because you don’t want polycarbonate from a plastic one seeping into the water. It has been suggested that polycarbonate adds to the risk for breast and prostate cancer, obesity, brain damage, infertility, and diabetes. The French press is made of glass, so you don’t have to worry about polycarbonates once you transfer the water to your press.

Note to self: The best coffee can be made right in your dorm room.

Lily Berthold-Bond grew up in a chemical-free zone and has struggled her whole life to understand and accept this non-commercial lifestyle. Now a freshman at Tufts University, she has embraced her green life and hopes to share its possibilities with the rest of her generation.

By Lily Berthold-Bond


Ashley Pepe
Ashley Pepe6 years ago

Most coffee experts agree, the french press makes the best tasting cup. I believe this is the only way to steep coffee like tea, other brewing methods just have the water 'passing through', losing the chance to maximize on flavour and oils. I bought my stainless steel press from starbucks, best $40 I ever spent!

Kay O.
Kay O7 years ago

use a neopolitan coffee maker.

Trish H.
Anne H7 years ago

Back when credit cards gave you gifts to lure you to love them I was given a Bodum French Press with glasses. I still have it. 13 years ago I married a man who owned a model of the first Gaggia machine imported to the US with mounting stand and grinder, lots of counter space. The man held classes on that machine and the coffees it produced. He also had the standard type that goes on the counter. I think I've seen five come and go.

Today we have and use daily that same coffee press. All others have been put out of our space one way or another.

Another brewing method I enjoy totally lacks electricity is called "cold brewed". Usually done in a device called a Toddy (also a DIY project) it can also be done in a French Press.

I also struggle to stay green among my consummerism friends, hang in there, it is doable.

Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W7 years ago

I don't think a French press would be available in Poland. :-(

gail d.
gail dair8 years ago


Abo Ahmed r.
Abo r8 years ago


Frederica P.
Frederica P9 years ago

Coffee ground are also great to deodorize garbage cans/bags. They really absorb any noxious odours.

Sage White Owl
Past Member 9 years ago

I agree with all the comments. I too love my french press and will not go back to the coffee pot. I also found that by using the french press you do not need to buy "expensive" coffee for a great taste. The press makes great coffee from any beans and also leaves no acidity taste either. Also you do not need an "expensive" priced press either to make wonderful coffee. You gotta try it!

Robyn E.
Robyn E9 years ago

Once I started using a French Press, I found it hard to go back to drip. In addition to being energy efficient and free of paper filters, my morning coffee simply tastes better.

Katya Robledo
Katya Robledo9 years ago

You can use the coffe grinds to fertilize your plants or clean your sink drain! Put the coffee grinds right on top of the dirt in your planter or garden and you'll see your plant healthier. Dump the grinds through the sink and the pipes will stay unclogged longer. =)