Last week, I put together a coffee gift guide for beginners. This week, we'll be looking at some great coffee gifts for the enthusiast.
Who/what is a coffee enthusiast?
To me, the coffee enthusiast is the type of coffee drinker who owns multiple coffee makers, likes to experiment with different brew parameters, and spends more than the bare minimum amount of time required to make their coffee better.
I consider myself a coffee enthusiasts, so this is definitely the easiest gift guide for me to put together.
1. Brazen Plus
The Brazen Plus is my go-to auto drip coffee maker recommendation for coffee enthusiasts. It's also my recommendation for those who live at higher altitudes because of the ability to calibrate the coffee maker's boiling point.
With the Brazen Plus, you can customize everything from brew temperature to pre-infusion/bloom duration.
It's SCAA Certified, has a stainless steel water reservoir, and very large showerhead for even coffee grounds saturation. You can also use manual brewing devices like the Chemex or Hario V60 in conjunction with the Brazen Plus if you're looking to automate your manual coffee makers without having to use a kettle.
You can read my full review of the Brazen Plus here.
2. Kalita Wave
The Kalita Wave is one of my favorite pour over coffee makers, primarily because of its slower extraction process, thick filters, and stainless steel body.
If you were to ask me whether to buy the Hario V60, Chemex, or Kalita Wave, I'd frankly say that I think the difference between each of them is negligible, because your results will mostly depend on your pour over technique and brewing parameters (grind, water temperature, etc.).
You can read my full review of the Kalita Wave here.
3. Hario V60
The Hario V60 is quite possibly the most popular pour over coffee maker in the world right now. It's hard to find a specialty coffee shop that doesn't use the V60, and for good reason.
The V60 is a conical pour over dripper that features a larger hole than its competitors. While it's not necessarily the easiest of the pour over drippers to master, it will definitely teach you to control your pour and dial in your grind given the quicker extraction times.
I think the V60 should be a part of every enthusiast's collection. Just make sure you have a good grinder and kettle before taking the plunge, as it will be less forgiving than the Kalita Wave and Chemex without a gooseneck kettle and sufficiently fine grind size.
You can read my full review of the Hario V60 here.
4. Acaia Pearl Coffee Scale
The acaia Pearl is one of the few products on this list that I have regretfully not used yet, but I do plan to add it to my collection as my go-to scale in the very near future. This is a pretty bold prediction considering I've never used it.
Why I want this scale so bad is that it eliminates a lot of the manual data collection that I do when I make pour over coffee.
For example, I keep an eye on my timer to help me pour at a consistent flow rate. The only problem with this is that it takes my attention away from the brew process itself, which often results in an inconsistent brew.
In contrast, the acaia tracks the flow rate, brew time, and water weight so everything follows a consistent schedule from brew to brew. The data is also collected in the accompanying app for your smart phone so you can keep track of the adjustments you need to make from brew to brew.
It's also extremely convenient to have a timer AND coffee-water ratio calculator built-in so you can put your calculator and separate timer away.
The acaia pearl is towards the top of my coffee wish list right now, right behind the Behmor 1600 coffee roaster.
You can order and learn more about the acaia on their website.
5. Bonavita Variable Temperature Kettle
The Bonavita Variable Temperature Gooseneck Kettle is probably my most-used coffee tool in my kitchen.
It's most-appealing feature is that you can set the exact temperature of your water (in both fahrenheit and celsius). In addition to this, you can “hold” the temperature so it will continue to re-heat the water to your target temperature as long as the kettle is attached to its base. This is a particularly great feature if you don't want to hover over your kettle waiting for it to reach temperature.
The gooseneck element allows you to pour at a more controlled rate, and the kettle also has a built-in timer!
For the 3+ years I've owned this kettle, really the only issue I've had is some slight rust build-up on the lid. This is the only downside to this brilliant kettle as far as I'm concerned.
You can read my full review here.
6. Lido 2/3 Hand Grinder
The Lido 2 and Lido 3 are two of the most-frequently cited hand grinders on the coffee subreddit for their consistency and speed. In fact, their popularity reminds me a lot of the cult-like following of the AeroPress.
The grinders are made by a very mom-and-pop-esque company (Orphan Espresso), and their website looks like something that was made in 1995 (no offense, guys).
Don't judge the book by the cover though, this is yet another coffee product that I would confidently recommend despite the fact that I've never used it. It's also towards the top of my wishlist, but since it costs almost as much as a decent electric burr grinder I haven't taken the plunge yet.
You can check out the Lido 2 and Lido 3 at Orphan Espresso's site here.
You can read what others have said about the Lido here.
7. MyPressi Twist
It may not be particularly helpful to recommend a product that is no longer made, but I can't help myself, because this has been my go-to espresso maker for the past 3 years. AND, if you're lucky (yes, lucky) you can find one on eBay.
The portable, handheld espresso maker runs on nitrous oxide cartridges and makes real espresso (read: not moka pot, AeroPress, or Nespresso espresso).
At around $150, this is hands-down the best value espresso maker in existence. I'm still totally confused why this company fell off the face of the earth and stopped making this brilliant device.
Here's a quick link to a “MyPressi” search on eBay.
You can read my full review of the MyPressi Twist here.
8. Cold Bruer
While making cold brew coffee certainly doesn't require any special brewer, the cold bruer is still a fun and elegant way to make slow drip cold brew coffee.
In the last year they've improved the design to be less fragile and address many of the concerns in the first version (which I still own).
You can read my full review of the Bruer (version 1) here.
This is the only solution (literally) you need for getting coffee stains and residues out of your equipment, particular your carafes and brewing devices.
Have a funked up coffee maker or espresso machine? Get this, seriously.
10. Breville Smart Grinder Pro
I have a love-hate relationship with this grinder because of some issues I've had. Still, I've found it to be pretty reliable if I don't stretch its limits too much.
It can handle my espresso. It can handle my drip. But it can't handle my French Press.
Still, I think this is a great value electric burr grinder and I will cautiously recommend it for those who make drip and pull the occasional espresso shot. Not ideal for really light roasts though.
You can read my full review here.