Last Updated on February 23, 2023 by Pinpoint 250
The siphon coffee maker is the most exciting method for making coffee. The excitement of siphon brewing comes from using a fire or halogen beam heater, a vacuum effect, and lab equipment that looks cool. Start brewing.
People have been brewing excellent coffee with a siphon (also known as a vacuum or vac pot) for over a century. In 1830, the device was patented by S. Loeff of Berlin, but it didn’t become popular until the 1840s, when a French woman named Marie Fanny Amelne Massot changed the design and patented it under the moniker “Mme.” Vassieux.
Her design paid particular attention to how it looked. It had a metal frame with two glass globes suspended vertically, with a crown on the top globe.
The siphon’s design has evolved, but its fundamentals have remained unchanged. Even now, making coffee looks like it was made to be a show (or at least a science experiment).
The siphon was meant to be shown off, perhaps to entertain guests in a Victorian parlor. Even though it wasn’t as attractive as it once was by 1910, when it was first made and sold in the United States (under the brand name Silex), the siphon has always been exciting and fun.
This is why the siphon has become popular again in coffee in the past few years.
Bodum, a well-known coffee brand, and the Japanese companies Hario and Yama, which sell a variety of coffee tools, all sell a lot of siphons these days. Models with capacities of three, five, and eight cups are available.
Siphons Need A Heat Source
Sometimes, the siphon is sold separately if you don’t choose a model with a built-in cooktop.
The ones with butane burners are cheaper, but heat sources for the siphon that don’t use flames can be bought for several hundred dollars or more. If you choose one that goes on a stovetop, you’ll also need to buy a heat distribution plate between the device and the burner.
The Bodum brand is sold at high-end stores like Crate and Barrel, while the Japanese brands are probably only sold online. The siphon’s high price is, in fact, a significant negative. But it’s so enjoyable to use! The entire device should be handled carefully, so if you need to be more clumsy, there may be a better device for you.
Even though the siphon isn’t the most helpful tool, it’s one of the most reliable ways to make coffee because most of the process is automated, and all you have to do is choose a dose and read a thermometer. Although KitchenAid’s automatic siphon is not a manual brewing method, it is nonetheless intriguing.
We use small, circular cloth siphon filters are for both Hario and Yama siphons. The Bodum model includes an integrated plastic filter. Even though you can use the cloth filter more than once, you need to handle it with great care for it to work well and last for a long time. Before using a cloth filter for the first time, boil it for several minutes.
After use, rinse it well and put it in clean water in the refrigerator. Then, before each use, set the filter in clean, warm water for about five minutes. You should also periodically boil your cotton filter to keep it fresh. Caution: if you do not adequately care for your coffee, it will taste like a filthy sock.
How Does It Work?
The siphon employs an immersion technique, although it differs significantly from others. The water in the lower globe heats up by a heat source. Eventually, the pressure differential pulls the water up through a glass stem and into the hopper, the uppermost chamber.
Once the temperature in the hopper has stabilized (about 202°F), it is time to add the coffee grounds. It looks like the water is boiling, but all that is happening is that air is being sucked through the stem and into the hopper, and the water is agitating.
This is the water that pulls the coffee out of the grounds. When you remove the heat source from the coffee, the pressure changes again, and pushes the coffee back into the bottom vessel. The hopper has a filter that keeps coffee grounds from going down into the lower chamber. The outcome is a smooth, creamy coffee with minimal sediment.
Three-Cup Siphon Procedure
This method is based on the siphon method used by Blue Bottle, a coffee company in San Francisco.
Essential: this method is the ability to measure temperature, so you will need a thermometer.
To aid in visualizing the essential components of the process.
Grind: medium fine (15 on Baratza Virtuoso)
Brew Ratio: ~1:14
Water temperature: 202°F
Total time spent brewing: 1 minute and 55 seconds
Make 300 grams (10 fluid ounces)
22 grams (3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons) of whole, fresh coffee
300 grams (10.1 fluid ounces)
water, plus extra as required
1. If using a brand-new filter, boil it for 5 minutes.
Soak a filter in warm water for five minutes if it was in water in the refrigerator.
While preparing the filter, coarsely grind the coffee and set it aside.
Place the siphon stand (with bulb) on a kitchen scale, zero out the scale, and fill the bulb with water until the scale reads 300 grams.
At this point, you don’t need the scale any longer.
2. Put the ready filter in the hopper by gently lowering it until the ball chain is hanging through the stem.
Pull the ball chain down and attach the hook to the stem’s side.
Attach the hopper loosely to the bulb.
It should be slightly asymmetrical; wait to seal it
3. Activate the heat source
Adjust the hopper, so it is upright and securely sealed when the water begins to boil.
The stem does not reach the bottom of the bulb, so water will remain at the bottom
4. Diminish the heat source (if using a butane burner, it should be on the lowest possible setting).
When a thermometer in the water registers 202 degrees Fahrenheit, add the coffee grounds and begin a stopwatch
Utilize a butter knife to swiftly press the dry grounds into the slurry.
When the stopwatch reaches 0:30, stir the slurry with the butter knife three times.
5. When the stopwatch reads 1:20, turn off the heat source and stir the slurry 10 times as the water drains from the hopper into the bulb below; there will be bubbles in the bulb.
The coffee has drained completely by the time the stopwatch reads 1:55.
6. Remove the hopper from the device with care.
As the bulb can spin, you may need to hold it steady to accomplish this.
It will be hot, so hold it steady with a kitchen towel as you gently twist off the hopper.
Reserve it to cool (if your device comes with a lid, it usually doubles as a hopper stand).
Serve the coffee directly from the bulb.
This method is more efficient if you boil the water before pouring it into the bulb.
Your heat source will eventually bring it to a boil, but it will take much longer, and you will need to actively monitor it.
You use the device for a much shorter time when you use hot water.
The coffee will be served at a higher temperature than usual because the light bulb was placed over direct heat.
Allow the coffee to cool longer than usual before consuming it.