History of the French Press Coffee Machine

‘Cafetière a piston’ is the French name for the French Press. The coffee press machine has undergone many modifications in form and design. However, as documented in historical records, it’s understood that the earliest design of the machine hit the market in the 1920s.

The first coffee press machine had a minimal and basic design. It had a steel screen and a cheese cloth. The cloth had a metal rod attached to it, which pressed every bit of liquid from the coffee beans.


9 years after the first French Coffee Press was released, a Milanese designer bought the rights to the device and applied for a patent. Attilio Calimani was a renowned designer who incorporated a handful of changes to the overall design of the machine.


He partnered with Faliero Bondanini (another professional designer). Bondanini also made his variation of the coffee press and patented the design in 1958.


After Bondanini had his variation patented, he mass produced the machine using his factory that designed clarinets. The company was Martin SA.


This is essentially where the story of the coffee press machine began it’s journey in popularity and modern culture.


Debut on the world stage

For the movie buffs among us, the well known actor Sir Michael Cain starred in a movie called ‘The Ipcress File’. This is a British spy thriller set in the 1960’s during the Cold War era. In one scene, Michael Caine made a cup of coffee using the French press coffee machine.


Experts say that this was a catalyst for the popularity of the coffee press machine that was to come, all over the western world.


All we can say is well done, and thank you to Sir Michael Cain and the production crew for introducing the French Press coffee machine into modern culture at the time and cementing it’s popularity. It’s a product that has truly stood the test of time.

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