February 26, 2013

The Best Coffee in the World

Remember these?

Stovetop percoaltor

I used to have an electric percolator, eons ago, before drip pots were all the rage. Now drip pots are the standard in coffee makers. It's hard to find anything else. I reckon it was the newness of it (why are we humans always so enamoured with the latest in gadgetry?), plus the promise of faster coffee?

There was a box of junk left here when we first moved in, and inside the box was that stovetop percolator. Finally this winter we decided to give it a try. It took a little experimenting, but oh my goodness, if you're a coffee drinker there is no better coffee in the world. The coffee is rich, hearty, and hot. My drip coffee machine doesn't do that.

And the second best coffee in the world?

French coffee press

Coffee made in a coffee press. Do they still call them French coffee presses? That's what it was called when I got my first one, eons ago, when we were preparing for Y2K.. We have two now, one that makes two or three cups, and the one above, a one cup model.

With wood heat, we almost always have a kettle on, so hot water is available. We've found 10 minutes of perking to be good for us with the percolator. Pressed coffee takes less time than that, only a couple of minutes. It's the closest thing to instant-gratification coffee we have. The press could be used for loose tea too.

We only use these in the winter, as a non-electric way to make coffee. In summer, it's back to the drip machine. We don't actually drink a lot of coffee, however. A cup in the morning and a cup after dinner usually. But it's nice to have good coffee to drink. How about you? What's your favorite cold weather beverage?

The Best Coffee in the World © February 2013 


Sylvanna said...

Any other treasures in the box of junk? I've never had coffee from a perc.

Misty Pines Homestead said...

I'm wanting a percolator too,coffee in my coffee maker is tearing my stomache up.I can drink instant and not have half the problems lol.

Dani said...

Couldn't agree with you more. We also have a small and large(r) French Coffee Press (I call it the Bodum coffee maker) The coffee is hotter, isn't it :)

m said...

A Masala chai = spiced black tea (black tea,cinnamon, ginger, cloves, black pepper and cardamom), which I tend to drink all year round.
In winter I also drink a combination of sage tea and the spiced black tea.

These are available as commercial tea bags here in England.
I have a large jug and fill that up, drinking it hot at first and then cold later on.

We don't own a cafetiere or percolator, but our filter coffee machine makes the coffee direct into a Thermos jug, so it stays hot for ages.

As a child in the 50s, my parents made coffee once a week in a percolator on a Saturday morning, but that was just for them.

We drank milk or water.

Unknown said...

My grandmother has one of those! If I remember correctly she'd put it on a grill over the fire when we were camping. Once upon a time things were made to last. Good find and I hope yours lasts you many years to come :)

The Cranky said...

I haven't seen a percolater in years, my grandmothers all had them!

Whilst the Great Scot can drink coffee all day every day my favourite warm drink has to be chamomile tea. Love it!

daisy g said...

I need to look for one of those percs next time I'm thrifting. I've heard the same thing from others. Enjoy your newfound treasure!

Kris said...

I can still find a perc easily up here: Wmt, thrift stores, hardware store, etc. We drank perc'ed coffee prolly up to the 70s. I still drink 2 large mugs (drip) every morning (mostly decaf), then teas (leaf and/or herb) later in the day. There's nothing like sittin' & sippen' leisurely and planning one's day.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if they still carry them, but our Kmart in NH had percolators for about $8. I have to get a new coffee press. I broke mine by accident as soon as we got to NC :/.

icebear said...

I keep an old style percolator too, up north here its not unusual to lose power in winter storms. Our gas grill outdoors has a side burner, so we can at least get hot coffee.
Mine is one of the enameled types, white with a circle of blue flowers in the center. I'm still not sure i'm using it right, but the coffee comes out tasty and hot- though quite strong.

Woolly Bits said...

I think most percolators already pour water over the coffee before the water is hot enough! there are some machines around though, that do the trick and only let water out of the "kettle" part once it has boiled... more expensive though. I don't own one anymore, because I don't drink more than one mug of coffee per day, not even that sometimes. and I use a hand filter, enough for one or two mugs. but that's a german thing I brought with me; over here the french "press" would be the usual. and for cold weather - nothing could be better than a simple mug of very hot irish tea:)

Rachel~At the Butterfly Ball said...

We have a stove top percolator that we always use when we go camping. It makes awesome coffee! You are right, hot and rich! At home my husband makes the coffee and we have an plain ol' electric drip model, with an alarm that he has set to start 5 minutes before he wakes up in the morning...what can I say, it's easy, and I certainly enjoy that he makes the coffee. :-)

Ed said...

I'm not a coffee drinker but if I were, I would get a perculator. There are no electronic or moving parts to break and my motto for the last half dozen years is to only buy things that will last the rest of my life. I'm tired of buying "disposable" stuff.

Unknown said...

We have a percolator, and in the winter, we put it on the open fire outside. In the summertime, we have a electric one cup that works perfectly for Texas heat.

Nothing beats coffee from the open fire!

thewovenspoke said...

We have a percolater we use for camping and it really doesm't take any longer to make than our drip. It tastes better too. We found it at wm I think.

Renee Nefe said...

grrr blogger just ate my comment!


I used to have perc coffee at church, but we now have a restaurant grade drip machine...easier to clean.

At home it is drip coffee as it doesn't make sense to fire up the stove for just coffee for me. I have tea in the evenings...zapped in the microwave.

Judy said...

I have always had a little 4 cup stove-top percolator even though I don't drink coffee, so I could make coffee for anyone who comes over. I have a large 26 cup percolator for camping to heat water in for washing up with.

I drink hot chocolate and all kinds of teas. My favorite tea is Indian Chai. I usually make Chai from scratch by the gallon and store it in the fridge; then reheat and add the cream. One of the better tasting Chai in a teabag is put out by Celestal Seasonings but I really like mine from scratch.

The Stay @ Home-Gardener said...

PG tips. Rolling boil kettle, pour over pyramid tea bag. Give it a minute. Then a scoop of raw brown sugar. Splash of silk soy creamer.

Stir, not shaken.

Yum. English Tea.

Anonymous said...

Perc coffee is the best isn't it. I found my percolator in the Lehman's catalog - still the best place to find most anything I need around here. Somewhere buried in a kitchen cupboard is my french press - once in a blue moon I remember to use it. Guess I just don't like the coffee it makes - a bit too bitter for me. Maybe I need to try a different coffee in it and try it again.

Unknown said...

I use an electric perc. I love it - no plastic, decent coffee, and HOT coffee. It also takes up very little counter space.

I love my French press, too. We call it "vacation coffee" because it reminds us of the great coffee we get on vacation in Mexico.

As I prepare to transition to my tiny house, I'm coveting a ROK manual espresso maker. Hot water, no electricity. Soy lattes hot or iced are my preferred coffee transportation device, so espresso is really what I need!

Nina said...

Nice find! Percs are hard to find up here, at least locally. I'm not a coffee drinker though but hubby is and would love to find a percolator in his quest for the best cup of coffee. The only advantage he sees in the drip coffee maker is that he can make coffee in just a couple of minutes and have a hot travel mug full as he heads out the door to work.

MTWaggin said...

Funny you almost only see the stove top coffee makers in antique stores anymore. Give me good frothy hot cocoa with maybe just a titch of coffee in it. YUM and comforting.

Leigh said...

Sylvanna, a collection of old margarine tubs. :)

Mandy, you poor thing. Instant yuk. You'd probably do okay (?) with the French press.

Dani, Bodum! That sounds familiar, a brand name I think. Love hot coffee.

Mary, good to hear from you! The Masala chai sounds delicious. I hadn't thought about a thermos jug. Good idea.

Tanya, I remember my mom had one too for camping, now that you mention it. They used to put an egg shell in it to keep down the grounds.

Jacqueline, it's a shame they went out of style!

Daisy, I see them occasionally at Walmart, usually around Christmas. Thrift stores though, are always the best bargains.

Kris, you may get a lot of folks asking you to send them one, LOL

Stephanie, I see them around Christmas, the percs. I found my new coffee press at Walmart (broke the previous one too).

Icebear, that's another good reason to keep one around. And as long as you like the result, you must be doing int right!

Bettina, I'll have to look up the German filter. The presses though are good for tea too. :)

Rachel, I confess, we use our drip pot for first thing in the morning too. :)

Ed, that is so true! And everything is disposable nowadays. I finally quit buying printers. The last 3 only last a year each, so between their cost and the outrageous cost of ink, it's cheaper to go to the library to print things off.

Jaclyn, nothing beats an open fire!

Thewovenspoke, it's true, once the fire's going it really doesn't take that long to make a good perced cup.

Renee, bad blogger! I wouldn't use our percolator if it weren't for our woodstoves. Especially since we have an electric stove for summer cooking. Why use a 220 stove when you can use a 110 drip pot.

Judy, I have to agree about Celestial Seasons. They do make tasty teas. But I like the idea of your homemade Chai even better.

Cloud, I'm assuming that's over a camp fire. :) I do love English tea for some meals.

Martha, Lehman's never fails! We've not had that problem with our pressed coffee though. Maybe it is the brand(?)

BA, hurray for no plastic, I agree. I'll have to look up the ROK. No electricity is always a selling point!

Nina, it took us awhile to figure it out. And I have to say that for that first morning cup, it's drip. :)

Sherry, my husband would aggree on the cocoa, and I can't say I'd turn it down either. :)

Michelle said...

We use an all glass percolator year round. I also have a French press for my "froo froo coffee" as Wayne calls it. :-)

Unknown said...

Wow, it even has a copper clad bottom!

Renee Nefe said...

speaking of Celestial Seasonings teas...their factory is only an hour away and our homeschool group goes up there all the time. In fact instead of going up there again, I'm getting one of my friends who is going to bring me back our favorite teas that we can't find in the stores.

2 Tramps said...

Wow - we have that exact same percolator. It was my Grandmother's from her dairy farm in Tillamook. (Yes, the cheese place) We only use it for hunting season but I think I will pull it out of the gear box and give it a try. We normally use a french press year round. We have an electric kettle that heats water very quickly. But since we heat our home with a wood cook stove, the percolator would be nice, at least on weekends when we tend to dally over our coffee a bit more.

Unknown said...

My husband bought me a stovetop perculator for Christmas of 2011. It is the only thing we use to make coffee in now. It just seems to have such a better flavor than a drip maker. Plus if the power goes out I can always use it on my woodstove and still have my morning eye opening cup.

CaliforniaGrammy said...

I'm afraid I don't belong to your group of fans today. We have our first cup of cappucino from our espresso maker and then our second cup of regular coffee by using a K-Cup in our Keurig coffee maker. But we love our system and I agree with Kris it's great sipping my coffees slowly in the morning while planning my day.

Anonymous said...

My favorite is the French Press,which is what we use on weekends. The coffee is so full bodied and hot.

Leigh said...

Michelle, "froo froo coffee" LOL. What, pray tell, is "froo froo coffee"???

Nancy, it's a good one, a Revere Ware pot. :)

Renee, that is so cool! They really do make the best teas, especially the spicy holiday ones. I'm not a big tea drinker, but I love all those flavors.

2 Tramps, easy hot water is the key! Which is why we only use our perc and press in the winter.

Roslyn, that's another good point! Coffee even if the power goes out!

Janice, the important thing is that you have a good cup of coffee made the way you like it!

Steph, it does make good coffee, doesn't it. :)

Michelle said...

LOL! Wayne is a die-hard original Folgers man. He doesn't like any other kind of coffee, no matter how nice. I, otoh, occasionally buy nicer coffees. Currently my "froo froo coffee" is a hazelnut flavored blend I received for a gift.

Leigh said...

Michelle, that's too funny. I admit Folgers is pretty good, but we're open. :) Dan loves flavored coffees, but I have to admit I'm pretty plain when it comes to that. We buy Dunkin Donuts brand for a splurge!

Michelle said...

LOL! I've never had Dunkin' Doughnuts. Maybe I'll have to give them a try.

Unknown said...

I am a coffee freak and drink way to much. I enjoy a couple cups every morning. I have a stove top peculator and agree,it's better than the drip machines. Much richer and hotter in temp

Anonymous said...

really, there isn't anything that great on your blog that you need to disable the right click - get over your self

Practical Parsimony said...

My favorite drink in the winter is a glass of iced tea, no sugar, no sweetener.

What is with disabling the right click? I read that in a comment. Just curious.

Leigh said...

Michelle, it's pretty good.

Jen, we have the worst problem with the drip machine in winter, in terms of temperature that is. The coffee is almost lukewarm! Summer isn't so bad, but then I reckon house temps make a huge difference.

Anonymous, LOL. Then why are you so miffed at not being able to do it?

Linda, disabling right click is a weak attempt to keep my photos from being stolen. I subscribe to statcounter, which records not only visits to my various blogs, but also downloads. Folks were helping themselves to dozens and dozens and dozens of my photos, even though I display my copyright. What's even worse is to find your photos on someone else's blog, without credit and without permission. I agree it's annoying; I'm a great right clicker myself. Sadly, common courtesy seems to have gone the way of the dodo these days. My pitiful compensation for the inconvenience is that left clicking will open in a new tab or window (except the sidebar links, which I can't format in that manner.)