Comparing the Different Types of Coffee Maker

Wed, Jan 21, 2015

Coffee Maker Guide

Let’s look at how the different types of coffee makers fare when it comes to taste and ease of use, and I’ve included some tips on how to choose the coffee makers.

Drip Coffee Machine


The most common coffee maker you will see in most offices or homes are drip coffee makers. A drip coffee maker is very easy to operate and hassle free, which is what most people like for their morning brews.

All you need to do with a drip coffee machine is to put ground coffee into a filter and fill the water tank with the right amount of water. As you turn it on the water will be heated and drip through a cone filter into a carafe.

Drip coffee makers may not be the best appliances to brew delicious coffee as there is no temperature or brew time control, usually producing a weak brew with a clean taste because all the coffee oils get filtered out, but it is the easiest way to brew coffee.

Carafe Type: Glass Or Thermal Carafe
A thermal carafe is great if you need to keep the coffee warm without burning it or getting a bitter taste in it. Glass carafes are usually heated on the hot plate, if it is left too long it will get a bitter taste. Some people like the glass carafe drip coffee maker because it allows them to see how much coffee is in it.

Capacity
The capacity usually ranges from 1 cup to 12 cups. There are also personal size carafes that you can take and go. One-cup coffee makers are also called single serve coffee machines, but some high end single serve machines can brew other types of beverages and some can brew from pods.

French Press


A French press is a convenient device to use for traditional style brewing without making a mess. To make coffee with a French press, you need to boil water and then pour the hot water into the French press with coffee grounds in it. After brewing for the right amount of time, simply plunge the strainer or screen into the coffee (slowly) to push the grounds to the bottom, then you may pour the strained coffee into your mug and serve.

Water temperature and brewing time may be controlled to produce coffee the way you like it. The best thing about using a French press is that it makes reasonably strong coffee with the coffee oils intact, compared to a drip coffee maker which filters all the oils through its paper or mesh filter.

The downside is that grounds tend to leak from the strainer into the coffee, and the coffee may be sludgy with fine coffee powder that didn’t get filtered.

Carafe Type: Glass Or Stainless Steel Carafe
Glass needs more handling care but gives you a view into the carafe. Stainless steel French presses are more durable and cost decidedly more than glass ones.

Vacuum Coffee Makers & Siphon Coffee Makers

Vacuum coffee makers use air pressure to brew coffee. There are two main types of vacuum coffee makers: the aeropress and the glass siphon. The aeropress works like a syringe; you press the plunger down a tube with coffee grounds and hot water in it, and coffee will drip through the filter into your coffee mug. It’s a very simple and fast way to brew coffee.

The glass siphon coffee maker uses a narrow tube between two glass chambers to make a showy performance out of coffee brewing. The learning curve for siphon coffee makers is much higher.

Both types of vacuum coffee makers make very good regular coffee that is rich and smooth but without the coffee oils as they both use paper filters. The result is a clean taste.

Moka Pot


The moka pot  is easy to use and you can have a cup of good coffee as long as you have a fire, so I bring this to campgrounds all the time.

Moka pot makes the best coffee out of all types of coffee makers, almost similar to espresso. The strong coffee retains its rich crema and has a subtle chocolatey taste, giving it the name ‘moka’. You’ll have to buy a smaller moka pot to achieve this taste. I myself prefer 1-cup to 3-cup size.

Now you know which type of coffee maker to buy, go to my Best Coffee Maker guide for more coffee maker reviews and top picks.

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