I purchased a Syphon aka Vacuum Pot coffee-maker. Currently, I have a few ways to make coffee at home and work:
- Espresso – Home
- Chemex – Work
- French Press – Home
- Aero Press – Work
- Syphon – Work/Home, undecided
Here’s what I purchased:
- Hario NXA-5 “Next” 5-Cup Syphon Coffee Maker
- Yama Mini Butane Burner
- Hario Siphon Bamboo
- Paper Filter for Hario Siphon Exposed
- 1 X (50 Pcs Filter Paper) Mn Filter for Hario Siphon
You’re going to need these:
The only complaint / imperfection of my current coffee making setups is that I only have 1 grinder that’s for non-espresso and 2 kettles (one stove-top and one electric). This translates to me bringing my grinder home on the weekends in a box along with my stove-top kettle, coffee cup and the brewing apparatus I want to use @ home that weekend. I swear every Friday afternoon it looks like I was fired because of how much stuff I pack up and take home with me.
Why add a Syphon to this setup? Well, I like the French Press for ease of brew. Immersion brewing is very simple. Chemex is a 10 minute commitment and while Syphon brewing is equal in overall time spent, it’s less engaged-time. I can do work at my desk while various Syphon tasks take place and despite the challenge of walking 100 yards to the kitchen to clean my grounds and kettle, it’s a pretty painless task. Most importantly, French Press’ melter filter leaves a lot of sediment in the cup and AeroPress portions are way too small. Syphon gives me a full 600ML of coffee with the advantage of a paper filter and simplicity of a French Press. It really is quite awesome.
My standard Chemex coffee batch is 700ML so 600 is manageable compared to AeroPress and the whole process looks cool as well not that anyone watches me brew coffee while I’m tucked away at my desk.
I created a video of the Unboxing:
And here’s a video on how to brew with the Hario Syphon:
Why did I choose this equipment? Hario glass is great. You can put it on a direct flame and it doesn’t crack. It’s pretty easy to clean, has easy to read ML indicators and works well with a metal and paper filter. Most syphons in the $75-$150 range come with Denatured Alcohol burners which don’t allow BTU control and don’t have a strong burn so I bought a Yama Mini Butane burger to go with my setup.
I’m still not convinced that I’m going to take the Syphon out of my home now that I have a few weeks of experience. I find the quality of the cup of coffee to be superior to Chemex and that’s saying a lot because Chemex was my favorite brew method in volume, low acidity and taste. The Syphon also bests any other method outside of espresso on overall aroma potency which is also a big deal in coffee. Still, Chemex does get me out of my desk and force me to go to the kitchen because of the amount of water I need to make the whole thing work which is probably a confusing statement to anyone that doesn’t use one.
The biggest problem with Syphon is the cleanup. The bamboo gets dirty, the upper part of the Syphon requires soap to clean and doesn’t just rinse clean and coffee oils pretty much stick to it.
I have 2 of almost everything (even a duo of Hario scales) but I think a 2nd Grinder for home-use is probably in my future to make @ work coffee much easier for me. For now, I really love the Syphon method. Quick, easy, more cleanup but better tasting with not a significant drop in volume over Chemex. I made a Syphon today (Sunday) and sipped it while reading the paper and thinking “damn, this might be my favorite cup of coffee in a very long time).
Looking forward to perfecting the method going forward.