There are some people who live and die by their French press; there are others who swear by their Hario V60 or other pour-over devices. These two methods produce radically different cups of coffee, but both of them definitely have their merits and come highly recommended from A Table in the Corner of the Cafe.

Imagine a device, though, that combines the very best features of both methods in one compact unit, while also eliminating the drawbacks of each. That’s where the Clever dripper comes in.

With French press brewing, you can control steeping or infusion time. However, heat loss can be a bit of a problem, not to the mention the fact that there are some people who, even though they like a strong cup of coffee, don’t necessarily enjoy the dregs and sediment that will inevitably come along with a French press brew. Brewing with a paper filter in a Hario V60 is easy and convenient; the problem is lack of control over steeping time (in that coffee begins to drain immediately), so more effort has to be put into the grind setting.

By adding a stopper to a filter cone, the Clever dripper combines control over steeping time with a sediment-free cup.

how it works:

This video comes to us courtesy of Augie’s Coffee Roasters in Redlands, California:

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the pros:

  • control over steeping time – brew as long or short as you like!
  • sediment free coffee, while still retaining the fuller flavors that French presses provide
  • with one plastic unit, there’s very quick and easy cleanup
  • the Clever is about the same size as any other pour-over cone, so it fits atop anything from which you drink your coffee
  • at $16, this thing is a bargain at twice the price

the cons:

  • unlike a French press, the Clever doesn’t come in sizes up to 8 cups – like the Hario V60, it’s only capable of brewing a cup or (at the most) two at a time
  • not dishwasher or microwave safe
  • it’s made of plastic, which isn’t the best conductor of heat – plastic retains heat, and can crack easily