Product Review:
Cold Drip Coffee Maker

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CocoaJava Product Review: Cold Drip Coffee Maker

Okay, I will admit that perhaps there are bits of this coffee maker that I would have designed differently... but then again, I'm not the motivated person who actually got off their hinder and created it, now am I? I give big points for actually bringing this idea to reality.

And, besides, look at it. No, really, look at it. This coffee maker is gorgeous. It's an homage to the Victorian era - can't you just see Jules Verne with one of these aboard the Nautilus? The glass pieces are beautifully shaped, the metal bits add detail and sparkle, and the wood framework is as warm and rich as the cup of coffee you're anticipating... which will be in about 6-10 hours, depending on how fast the ice melts. With cold drip coffee, patience is indeed a virtue.

When you first set up the coffee maker, it's a bit daunting. But the instructions are very clear, and after your first run, you'll realize this device is really very simple to use. Basically, you fill the top carafe with ice cubes . The center bit holds filters and packed-down coffee of your own choice. And the bottom carafe just sits there looking pretty, collecting your cold drip coffee as it finishes its journey.

So far I have cold dripped two batches of coffee concentrate, and based upon my experience, I would like to offer a few suggestions. I've learned that the more tightly you can pack the ice cubes in the ice/water jar, the better, so take a bit of time to actually drop them into position betwixt each other, as if filling in a puzzle.

Also, the paper filters are oversized and I believe that the factory should be cutting them smaller. They still work well if you take the time to tamp them carefully into place.

Most importantly though, you will need to check on the drip valve from time to time after the brewing process starts. I carefully set the valve to release one drop per second, as the instructions indicated, but when I came back later to check it's progress, the water drip had always either slowed or stopped, even though there was water waiting to drip. Quite a few 'fine tuning' adjustments were needed throughout the brew. I believe this is due to the thermal expansion/contraction that the metal valve goes through as it warms and cools. The valve is very well built, but this problem does require that you check and adjust your machine often for optimum water flow.

Although what you are brewing is described as being a coffee concentrate, you will need to experiment with how much concentrate your ideal cup of coffee will require. Per the instructions, I started with 1/3 cold drip and 2/3 water, but found that ratio to be much too weak for my taste. For me, 2/3 cold drip and 1/3 water is more satisfying. Being a serious coffee drinker, I think I might even be very happy with a straight cup of cold-brew coffee with no water added whatsoever!

The cold drip concentrate is very mild, and should be great for those who have trouble drinking regular coffee. Also, don't hesitate to use your flavored coffees with this system! My first batch was a good World Market Italian Roast, as I wanted the machine to prove itself on a basic coffee. On the second batch though, I tried chocolate-flavored coffee and both my husband and I felt that the flavoring survived the cold-brew process quite nicely.

All in all, I feel this device is a fun addition to a coffee aficionados kitchen. It's a wonderful conversation piece, and it will brew a decent cup of coffee... so why not put some fun and creativity into your coffee habit?