Giant 12-cup French press for a bargain

The giant 12-cup French press

The giant 12-cup French press

The family happened to be in Cagayan de Oro City yesterday, Saturday. While Miyam and Arkay were at the Lim Ket Kai mall, I drove to nearby Gaisano. It’s been some time since I visited their kitchen section, where I found some bargain coffee toys, like China-made French presses.

Lo and behold! There’s another bargain I found — a giant, 12-cup French press! At only 799 pesos (around $16), wow! I bought it right away. It’s not 12 cups for our regular cup of joe alright. That’s 12 cups only if you use those small espresso-sized cups. But for a regular-sized 6-ounce coffee cup, that’s enough for 6 coffee addicts. Still a lot!

Placed beside my big Bodums (what they call the 8-cup plungers), my new find is BIG. Perfect for parties!

The Pyrex is BIG!

The Pyrex is BIG!

The gold-plated metal frame has no markings, but the glass carafe has “Pyrex” on it. At first I thought this could just be a fake. But after some googling, there indeed are Pyrex plungers! And the 12-cup model is priced at over US$50. Whoa!!!

I knew a few friends would like this. Unfortunately, it was the only one available. It’s not available in Gaisano-Iligan. A fellow home roaster in Davao said it’s not available at the Gaisano branch there, too.

What I like about this plunger, it comes with a fine sediment nylon filter. That translates to lesser sludge at the bottom of the cup coz of the fine grinds. The Bodums don’t come with that extra layer of filter, but you can buy those from third-party manufacturers.

The build is nice, too.  Looks solid. Unlike those cheap China-made plungers. (But, um, this could very well be made in China, too, like the iPods and the laptops we’re using.)

Bonus -- extra fine sediment filter (3rd from left)

Bonus -- extra fine sediment filter (3rd from left)

Can’t wait for the next party!


13 Responses to “Giant 12-cup French press for a bargain”

  1. Mindanao Bob on May 24th, 2009 7:44 pm

    Yeah, I want one of these. The looks is nice, and the functionality of a big plunger like this would be great too. I’m still gonna check Gaisano Illustre, but none at GMall Davao.

  2. Steve A on May 29th, 2009 11:25 pm

    I really appreciate your site! I’ve never been much of a coffee drinker but found your site fascinating. My wife drinks coffee a few times a week so I picked up a grinder and Aeropress for her on mothers day. I have used it more than she has so far though. I’ve been looking online at how to roast beans now and I’m looking to find a hot air popcorn popper at the local thrift stores. I have a question if you don’t mind. I see you have used both the french press and the Aeropress. Is there a big difference in taste or is the french press just producing more? The Aeropress instructions indicate that it is imperative to completely press the plunger in no more than 20 seconds as to not extract any bitterness. I would value the opinion of someone that has tried both methods. Thanks

  3. Bobby on May 30th, 2009 12:52 am

    Hi Steve!
    Your gift’s like the Simpsons’ bowling ball, eh? ;-) The French press, IMHO, produces stronger coffee. But others don’t like the sludge at the bottom of the cup, coz there will be sediments no matter how good your grinder is. The AP gives a smooth clean cup, but others don’t like their coffee that clean. Me, I’m vacillating between the two. And I’m glad I have both. :-) I also use the inverted method in the AP (you can google that for more details). But now I tend to use it as the inventor intended. There’s a long discussion on the AP at

  4. Steve A on May 30th, 2009 2:25 am

    ha. ha, yeah, you are as perceptive as my wife is. I didn’t really drink coffee before but it didn’t go unnoticed that I have been using it more than her. I guess she will be getting something for father’s day also now. ; )
    Thanks for the tip on the inverted method. I looked it up and will definitely be giving it a try once I get some of the polyester filter material. At least Mcmaster-Carr carries the filter material. I order from them frequently for work and they usually get stuff to me the next day without any additional charge. I saw some of the air poppers last week at the thrift store and I’m hoping they will still be there tomorrow. Have a good weekend.

  5. Mindanao Bob on May 30th, 2009 1:09 pm

    For me, I have never used an Aeropress, only tried Aeropress coffee that Bobby made. I use a French Press, and have been ever since I got into specialty coffee a few months ago. I really prefer the taste of coffee brewed in a French Press. I didn’t find the Aeropress coffee that enjoyable. Perhaps if I tried it more, I might come to enjoy it, though.

  6. Bobby on May 31st, 2009 8:04 am

    Steve, I’d love that filter material! Can you be so kind to get a little extra and mail to me? I’ll Paypal you the money beforehand as to cost. Only if it’s convenient for you. Otherwise, I’m ok with that cloth I get from the textile shops here.

  7. Steve A on June 3rd, 2009 9:36 am

    No problem, I will send you some. Don’t worry about the paypal. We are shipping a balikbayan box to Davao soon and I’ll include it in there and get my sister in law to send it up to you. I love the aeropress so far because it’s so easy to clean up and I only drink a cup every day or two. I’ve been checking out GCBC since I saw it on your site and hope to try it out soon also.

  8. Bobby on June 3rd, 2009 10:08 pm

    Hey, Steve, thanks! But lemme pay for the cost of the filter then. I don’t wanna abuse your generosity. :-)

  9. Steve A on June 4th, 2009 4:48 am

    Just consider it my thanks for your site. I already ordered them and
    they cost practically nothing. I should get them tomorrow or the next day, but I’ll let you know when we ship the balikbayan box. It usually takes a while for the box to get to Davao since we are on the east coast. Just curious, have you ever tried any Honduran beans? I’ve read mixed reviews based on where they are from but I ordered some last night… my fingers crossed.

  10. Bobby on June 4th, 2009 7:02 am

    Nothing! Wow, then let me have a thousand nothings! Hahaha … :-) Honduran, I’ve tried only once, maybe just a pound of it when I was starting out. Everything tasted the same for me back then. :D As long as it’s specialty grade and tried by the cuppers, then it should be okay. From what shop did you get them? No offering in GCBC afaik.

  11. Steve A on June 4th, 2009 9:34 am

    I picked it up from these folks:
    70% of the money they take in goes to missionary work in Honduras. To be
    honest, that is why I initially purchased it…not really because I thought it
    would be a quality bean….not that I would know the difference at this starting point anyway.

  12. Steve A on June 5th, 2009 5:58 am

    Just got the polyester filter media in today. I had to file a small chamfer on the 4 locking lugs on the cap edges to get the cap to fit with the filter I cut out. I will tell you the truth in the middle of making it for the first time I was telling myself “I’m not doing this again…it’s to much work for just a cup of coffee….I might as well make it in a press as it will be as difficult to clean as this filter will be” Well, cleaning the filter was a pain but the coffee was the best I’ve had yet. I read on another site that the filter can be cleaned and stored in the freezer, so I have it in the freezer now. I back flushed the filter about 4 or 5 times but it’s still a little brown on the in-flow side. I’ll see how it goes over the next few days.

  13. Bobby on June 5th, 2009 6:37 pm

    Steve, I can live with the additional work. After getting this far, a little more work to do should be okay. Or, umm … , we’ll see if it’s worth it. :D I just have to try how the brew compares against the stock filter, and my own improvised filter. Thanks for the feedback!!!

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