There are few coffee brewing devices on the market quite as revered or celebrated as the percolator. A household staple in hundreds of millions of homes worldwide, coffee percolators are easy to use, inexpensive to buy and capable of producing consistently outstanding coffee.
So, in the spirit of celebrating one of the world’s most iconic and treasured coffee brewing contraptions, we thought we take a look at a few interesting facts about the coffee percolator. Some of which are more useful than others, but in all cases could change the way you look at the humble appliance sitting in your kitchen right now:
Incredibly, there’s evidence to suggest that coffee percolators in one form or another have been around since at least 1810. By 1820, the first commercial coffee percolators had already appeared on the market, though at the time were aimed exclusively at the more affluent household.
Along with the classic electric percolator, there are various alternative devices available for use in different environments. Examples of which include microwave percolators, stove-top percolators, battery powered percolators and even percolators that can be heated over a campfire.
It’s a contentious claim to say the least, but some aficionados insist that the method used to heat the water in a percolator has a direct impact on the fragrance and flavor of the resulting cup. Some claim stove-top percolators are superior, while others will tell you the precisely controlled heat of an electric percolator is better.
With mass production ramping up and prices plummeting year by year, coffee percolators hit peak popularity during the 40s and 50s. The difference being that back in the day, the stainless steel and aluminium percolators purchased by most households were built to last (not like a lot of today’s!) Hence, there are still millions of classic percolators from 70/80 years ago still doing the rounds today and still in perfect working order.
It’s often wrongly assumed that you have no control over the brewing strength when using a percolator. In reality, the strength of the coffee brewed is one influenced by the number of times the liquid in the device is allowed to filter through the coffee grounds. Shorter times produce weaker coffee, longer brewing times produce stronger coffee.
Last but not least, it’s not uncommon for connoisseurs and aficionados to rate percolator coffee above any other type of coffee you can brew. All of whom have their own unique motivations and arguments, though tend to favor the uncomplicated method by which the percolator gets the job done. There will always be those who prefer complex and elaborate gadgets, but simplicity wins the day for just as many coffee-lovers worldwide.
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