Skip to main content

Digital Trends may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site. Why trust us?

The Fellow Duo coffee maker takes a crack at the French press — with a twist

I have a French press that I never use, because that darn mesh filter is a royal pain to clean. The $99 Fellow Duo aims to get rid of that hassle with its conical filter and a glass carafe that’s reminiscent of a Chemex.

The Duo is five times the price of my all-plastic French press but is made up of glass, silicone, and stainless steel. Though there are eight parts to the Duo, you can put it all together in about 30 seconds. It involves a lot of twisting in parts to make a seal, which can feel a bit flimsy. Considering you’re working with hot liquids, you definitely want to make sure you’re getting it right.

Related Videos

The stainless steel brew chamber fits inside another container, and the cone filter goes inside the brew chamber. The filter rests in place, but you lock the two containers together to ensure the contents of the brew chamber don’t go spilling out just yet. A silicone belt fits around the bottom of the stainless steel outside piece, which then twists into the glass carafe and forms a seal thanks to a silicone ring inside the carafe. Another piece of silicone fits around the glass bottom to protect your countertop.

Once you have the two stainless steel pieces fitted together and the filter in place, you can dump 40 ounces of coarsely ground coffee into the Duo. This is anywhere between five and eight tablespoons, depending on where you’re getting your instructions for the coffee maker. (The included instructions say five; a video on the company’s website says seven to eight.)

You’ll need a kettle or some other way to get your water almost boiling: Duo says — and the National Coffee Association agrees — your water should be between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit (about 90 to 96 degrees Celsius). Then you fill the brew chamber halfway up with water, give it a gentle stir, then add more water until the filter tip is just covered. Don’t stir too vigorously; I realized the hard way this can dislodge the filter and result in grounds-y coffee.

You then wait four minutes, grip the carafe around its siliconed section, and twist the brew chamber to “unlock” it. It’s quite fun to watch the coffee gush into the glass chamber. Now you should have enough for two cups of coffee; I measured between 17 and 20 ounces when I made mine.

The Duo makes a good French press-style cup (or two) of coffee. It manages to hold back the grounds very well with its setup, though there was a tad bit of leakage. It’s easy to assemble and disassemble, which is important for cleaning. It’s even dishwasher-safe, as long as you load everything onto the top rack — although there are a lot of parts you’ll have to fit in there.

While I found it easier to use than my French press, it also made a lot less coffee. That’s fine on normal days, but because you can also use the Duo to make cold press coffee, that means you’ll need to use it every day — and wait the required 12 to 24 hours — if that’s your preferred type of brew.

I didn’t have any disasters with the Duo, but there is some finger-crossing involved the first few times, hoping you’re doing everything right. Though it can be a bit awkward to pour and the silicone still gets fairly warm, all the pieces held together for me. It has a great aesthetic, but it is over a foot tall, so hopefully it can fit under or in your cabinets.

Editors' Recommendations

Brew, drip, or press a fresh cup of joe with today’s best deals on coffee makers
DeLonghi BC0430 review

Knowing that coffee is good for you may be froth on the brew, but it matters -- plus you can now refute anyone who says you drink too much coffee. According to the Mayo Clinic, studies show that in addition to coffee's potential protection against Parkinson's disease, type 2 diabetes, and liver disease, including liver cancer, "Coffee also appears to improve cognitive function and decrease the risk of depression."

So in the interest of good health for coffee lovers everywhere, we located today's best deals for coffee makers. The variety and styles of coffee machines can be a bit much to navigate, especially if your old coffeemaker just died. We made it simple and found two excellent choices each for conventional drip coffee brewers, espresso machines, and single-serving coffee makers. We found the best discounts from Amazon and Walmart and put them all in one place. Whether you're buying Christmas gifts or adding to your kitchen's countertop arsenal, these six deals can help you save up to $60.
Drip Coffee Brewers
Just brew it. Hot, tasty, and more of it is the call for large-capacity coffee makers. We chose the two drip coffee makers below not just because of the deal prices, but also because they can brew pot after pot of coffee just the way you like it.
Braun KF7170SI BrewSense Drip Coffeemaker, 12 Cup, Stainless Steel --- $26 off

Read more
Where have you bean all my life? I finally found the perfect coffee maker
pouring cream in coffee

There’s nothing quite like that first cup of coffee in the morning. The rich flavor and the right amount of jolt can set the tone for an entire day. Similarly, a terrible first cup can leave you off-kilter and not quite ready for that 9 a.m. meeting. That’s why, whether you spend $20 or more than $1,000 on a coffee machine for your home, you want it to make the perfect cup every time. But how do you know which model to buy? I recently faced such a dilemma that was only compounded by the fact that I’ve been reviewing coffee machines for the past few years.

It was time to find a new morning caffeine buddy.

Read more
Make a pour-over, French press, and cold brew all with the Coffeemaker No. 3
Manual Coffeemaker No. 3

Any coffee connoisseur will tell you that there are different times and different needs for a pot of pour-over, French press, or cold brew, but up until now, they would've also told you to use different tools for each varietal. No longer is that the case, however, thanks to the latest coffeemaker from Manual. Meet the Manual Coffeemaker No. 3, the third iteration of the company's ever-popular Kickstarter-funded caffeine creators.

The understated glass pitcher (hand-blown and featuring a double-walled design) is capable of creating either pour-over, French press, or cold brew coffee, all with a single coffeemaker. The large format of the No. 3 allows you to make handcrafted coffee in bulk without sacrificing quality, and of course, the flexibility of the maker means that no matter what you're craving, you can find a solution. The No. 3 is also insulated to keep your coffee hotter (or cooler) for longer periods of time. And because good coffee doesn't have to cost you a fortune, this particular coffeemaker allows you to use auto-drip filters that are available (for cheap) at just about any grocery store.

Read more