This year my Christmas list includes a Chemex coffee maker, a replacement for the inexpensive drip coffee maker I've been using for years. I was excited about making the move to better home-brewed coffee — until I read Frank Bruni's New York Times article bemoaning the recent trend in fancy home coffee brewing methods and wondering if they're worth the effort.
Could Mr. Coffee be the way to go?
I can certainly sympathize with Bruni's shameful feelings about using a drip machine "long after any self-respecting epicure was supposed to." Once when buying locally roasted, Fair Trade coffee beans from the coffee bar down the street, I was asked by the barista which method I would be using to brew my coffee. Her scorn was thick as the sludge at the bottom of a french press pot when she heard I was using an electric drip machine.
Let's be clear: I don't think that drip makers make the best coffee and neither does Bruni. He contends that fancier home-brewing tools like the Chemex and the single-cup drip cone produce a superior cup of coffee, but one which — at least to him — is not worth the extra time and effort spent boiling, soaking, blooming and pouring. First thing in the morning, a cup of coffee magically brewed moments before by a pre-programmed machine may taste just as good as that carefully made cup that took ten minutes to make.
• Read the article: Loving Coffee Without Being a Drip
What do you think? Are non-drip coffee brewing methods worth the extra time and effort? Or do people need to stop looking down on the humble drip machine?