The Bodum cold brew coffee maker is an adaptation of a French press. It uses a similar fast and convenient plunge filter. Since it’s only meant for cold brewing, the entire body is made from plastic. This makes it light, convenient, and affordable. There’s a lid with a plunger attached for decanting and filtering, and a simple lid for brewing.
Overall, the Toddy Cold Brew System is a high-quality product. It’s well thought out from eco-friendliness to aesthetic appeal to the practicalities of brewing and storage. The only feature we found lacking was the temperamental filter.
The Bodum doesn’t come with any ‘easy-to-use’ instructions. This means you have to decide your own brew ratio. We chose a 1:5 ratio of grounds to water, and everything else was straightforward. Decanting, however, can be a bit involved.
Making cold brew coffee can be messy. The purpose of a cold brew coffee maker is to make brewing and decanting as easy as possible. There are more steps to the Toddy system than you’ll find in a simple immersion filter brewer. However, it produced superior results and the whole process can be made easier if you use a paper filter bag.
Taking the brew method into account, the Bodum produces a high-quality, strong cold brew coffee concentrate. It’s beautifully smooth to drink and full-bodied, however, it didn’t capture the complexity that our leading brewer was capable of. The filtration method, however, was one of the best.
The test of any cold brew coffee maker is ultimately the coffee it produces. Our repeated testing found that the Toddy makes the best cold brew coffee. Specifically, it’s the most rounded, full-bodied, and complex brew with a balance towards sweeter flavors. Its filtration system, although not the most convenient, is highly effective.
Pros & Cons
- Light and durable
- Open/close spout
- Perfectly airtight
- Comfortable handle
- Freestyle brewing
- Made in Portugal
- Minimal parts
- No over-packaging
- Ergonomic components
- Attractive carafe
- Included paper filter bags
- Cold or hot brewing
- Decanting can be tricky
- No measuring guides
- Felt filter tends to clog
- No brew vessel markings
The Bodum French Press and the Toddy System are our two top contenders for the best cold brew coffee maker. The Toddy produces a more complex and flavorful brew, and it’s also the larger of the two brewers.
The Toddy also decants into a very stylish carafe that can be stored in the door of your refrigerator. The Bodum, however, does not have a separate decanter. The manufacturer intends you to leave the grounds compressed in the container until you have used up all the coffee.
Apart from the inconvenience of not having a separate decanter, the Bodum is actually much faster at decanting and filtering. The Toddy filtration is finer since it uses a felt filter whereas the Bodum uses a stainless steel plunge filter. Both brewers use a similar brew ratio which you can adjust as you please. Both brewers can also be used for brewing cold teas.
Behind the Comparison
Roger Shitaki is a writer, author, and editor. His niches are household appliances, health & wellness, and travel. He’s a freelance contributor to a Tokyo lifestyle website and a leading ophthalmology magazine in Asia.