Forget it Starbucks, I Have Your Number

Since I can remember, I have loved a good cup of coffee. Seriously, there is nothing better than a good cup of coffee brewed at home or a trip to your local  coffee shop for a great cup of coffee! Since being married five years ago, I have taken my wife from a coffee hater (who only drinks Starbucks Frappaccinos) to a lover of all kinds of coffee. My love of coffee runs deep.

Mine is the Cappuccino. Not the one loaded with whipped cream and chocolate

I literally have tried coffee around the world; maybe not all around the world, but I have had the privilege of trying coffees in several different locals like the Virgin Islands, Columbia, and Mexico. I know what you’re thinking, the Virgin Islands is not exactly a coffee mecca, but different people in places around the world love to wake up with a cup of Joe, and these people all have their own unique spin on the Java or as my brother calls it, “Hot Bean Juices.” (Not exactly appetizing is it?) Of all the places that I have had a cup of coffee and  all the kinds and ways I have had coffee prepared, not a single cup holds up to the simple coffee I had in Columbia. Every morning, I would have about four small (a little bigger than shots) cups of their local coffee. I did not drink this coffee with cream or sugar and I never got an upset stomach or the jitters like I did in the States with the coffee I would get here. What made that coffee AMAZING and so different from ours?

For a long time, I thought that coffee was better simply based on the region roast and age. Although all of these play a major part in a coffee’s taste, I submit that the coffee maker that you use plays a much larger part than we give it credit for.

Up for your consideration are four different coffee makers. First is our faithful Bialetti Moka Express Espresso stove top unit. Although this does not make a tradition cup of coffee, it is in the same vein as the Percolators that we will cover in this post


The Bialetti  percolator does do a fine job and is quick, but the major down side is the drastic difference in tastes of expresso roasts that you buy. Other than that, it is a stand up unit that has been produced for the better part of the century!

Comet Percolator
Comet Percolator

Next up is the Comet Percolator, which I have seen produced for a number of years from around the 1940’s through the 1960’s. The Comet Percolator is a traditional coffee maker that you might have seen brewing on the stove of any number of Cary Grant or Jimmy Stewart movies.

The coffee that I used for my taste test between this and our next coffee maker is a Raspberry Truffle Godiva fine ground variety. The Comet maker has all of its original parts and made a pretty decent cup of joe. The only downside I found were that the coffee was not as strong as I would have liked; this might be due to the unit being aluminum or just needing to add more grounds next time.

Pyrex flame ware 9 cup Percolator
Pyrex flame ware 9 cup Percolator

The next coffee maker in our challenge is the Pyrex Flameware 8 cup Percolator (that was a mouthful to say). The Flameware collection was a collection of several different typse of stove top tools made of Pyrex’s patented ultra durable glass. When I say ultra durable I mean it. The percolator has its original glass straw still intact and in working order! Missing only the top of the coffee reservoir, I thought this percolator should still work and make some coffee! Man, am I glad that I tried it because it made one of the best cups of coffee I had had in a long time; the coffee reminded me of the Columbian that I had several years ago. I think one reason that this flame ware coffee percolator made such a great cup of coffee is its glass construction. Now I don’t have any science to back this up but I think something about it neutralizes the acidity of the coffee.

Keurig three size

Our comparison would not be complete without including our faithful Keurig in the mix. Although the Keurig is a convenient little machine, it cannot hold a candle to any of the three stove top units. Which brings us back to what I have talked about over and over in my Vintage Seven posts, which is there is something to be said about the craftsmanship of these old Percolators!

Lastly, I want to share this vintage Corning table top coffee warmer. I love this because it reminds me that there was a time not to long ago when we enjoyed a good cup of coffee from home with good friends and family!


Thanks for reading and stay tuned

daniel dunlop