Moka Pot vs. French Press: Which is Better for the Outdoors?

Moka Pot vs. French Press: Which is Better for the Outdoors?

Ah, the great outdoors! The perfect setting for heart-pounding adventures and... coffee? Absolutely! For many outdoor enthusiasts, a day of exploration isn’t complete without that warming, rejuvenating brew. But how you make that coffee matters. Enter: the Moka Pot and the French Press, two classic brewing methods, each bringing its own flavor to the campfire. Let's dive into their distinctions and determine which might be the right companion for your next adventure.

mechanism & design

The Moka Pot, often referred to as the stovetop espresso maker, boasts a two-chambered design. Water in the bottom chamber is heated, and as steam pressure builds, it pushes the water through the coffee grounds in the middle chamber, sending a strong brew into the top chamber. Learn more about how to use a Moka Pot here

The French Press, on the other hand, is a manual immersion brewing method. Coffee grounds mingle freely with hot water in a cylindrical glass or stainless steel container. After steeping, a plunger with a mesh filter is pressed down, separating the grounds from the liquid. Learn more about how to use a French Press here.

flavor profile

Moka Pots produce a bold and robust coffee, often compared to espresso in strength but without the crema on top. Its brew can sometimes have a slightly metallic or burnt taste if not done just right.

The French Press delivers a rich and full-bodied cup. The oils and fine particles that pass through the mesh filter give the coffee a unique texture and depth of flavor, enhancing the aromatic compounds.

portability & outdoor compatibility

Both devices have a place in the backpacker’s toolkit. Moka Pots, made primarily from metal, are durable and can be used over a camp stove or fire, but they require a heat source.

The French Press, especially those made of stainless steel, is equally rugged. It requires only hot water, making it ideal if you're carrying a thermal flask or if boiling water is readily available.

Your choice between a Moka Pot and a French Press boils down to personal preference in taste and the nature of your adventure. Both methods have proven their worthiness as outdoor companions, ensuring that wherever you roam, a delicious cup of coffee isn't far behind.

What can really make a difference in your camp coffee is the beans you choose. Head over to our field notes on how to choose the perfect coffee for the outdoors.