Ahhh! The ultimate in coffee snobbery, this produces some of the best cups of coffee you will ever taste. The method is a bit complicated but is most definitely worth it. It involves boiling water in the bottom half, which can be made easier by buying a tabletop butane burner. You place the grinds in the top chamber while separate from the rest of the brewer, and when the water is ready you place it on top. The heat will generate a vacuum and the water will siphon to the top where the grounds are waiting for it. Once it is done brewing you remove the heat and let the coffee filter through the chambers. There is a cotton filter in between the two chambers that makes sure you don’t get any grounds in the finished product. Originally invented in Germany circa 1830, it became popular in the early 1900s and almost completely disappeared by the 1950s. Now vacuum coffee systems are making a major resurgence in Asia, and recently in the United States as well.
Step 1: Measuring
The most flexible part of coffee making, and arguably the one that affects the taste most. For a medium strength coffee, you should measure out 1.75 tablespoons per (5oz) coffee cup. If you’re using whole beans it will be about 8.75 gram. Check our calculator for more details.
Tip: The best grind for a siphon coffee would be a fine grind, with a smooth texture, it should feel like sugar between your fingers.
Step 2: Boiling
Pour the water into the lower chamber. Light the wick on the burner and place directly below the bottom chamber. Start with already boiled water for quicker results.
Tip: Use filtered spring, and freshly ground coffee for the best tasting results.
Step 3: Brewing
Spoon your freshly ground coffee into the top chamber, and wait for the water to start bubbling. Once the water is ready, insert the top chamber while pressing down lightly to seal it.
Tip: With the cover turned upside down you can use that as a base for the top chamber.
Step 4: Blooming
This is by far the most overlooked step in coffee brewing. While the water is rising into the top chamber, just give a slight stir to make sure all the grounds got wet. Once the water finishes “siphoning” to the top, wait 30 seconds. At this point you should also start lowering the flame.
Tip: The idea is to have just enough flame to keep the water up top. We don't want the top boiling, just brewing
Step 5: Brewing
After the coffee has bloomed, mix again very lightly, just to break up any clumps, and further reduce the flame on the burner.
Tip: Use our propane burner for the quickest and best results.
Step 6: Finishing up
After about a minute and a half to 2 minutes - depending on the amount of coffee and strength of the flame. You should remove the heat source and turn it off. The coffee will start the “kick down phase” in about another minute you will be done.
Tip: At the very end you will see some “turbulence” which indicates that it is done.
Step 7: Enjoy your coffee
Just pour into your favorite mug and enjoy the best tasting coffee you ever had.
Tip: Siphon coffee tastes best immediately after brewing.
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