Coffee lids: new book on the elegant design of a modern scourge

Coffee Lids: Peel, Pinch, Pucker, Puncture is a beautifully-shot new book showcasing the world's largest collection of plastic coffee lids. Read the rest

Aeropress coffee maker just $22 right now

$22 is the lowest price I've seen for an Aeropress coffee maker. (Just click the the little coupon checkbox on the Amazon page.) It's a lot of fun to make coffee with the Aeropress -- you pour a little water in the piston and put it in the microwave for about 40 seconds. Then you put a microfilter in the cylinder (you get a "years supply" with the Aeropress) and a scoop of ground coffee. The you put the cylinder on top of a cup (the company recommends using a clear mug to make the process even more fun), pour the heated (not boiling -- it'll make the coffee bitter and sour, they say) water, stir for 10 seconds, and press the piston down. A few seconds later, you have a wonderful cup of silky smooth coffee.

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Coffee expert asked to guess difference between cheap and expensive coffee

From Epicurious: "Epicurious challenges coffee expert Dillon Edwards to guess which coffee is more expensive. Edwards breaks down roasts (dark roast vs light roast), processing, freshness, varietals, and source. For each element, the connoisseur looks at and tests each coffee before guessing which coffee costs more. Once the prices are revealed, Edwards explains why a specific coffee costs more and dives into specifics on how each coffee is made."

Image: YouTube screenshot/Epicurious Read the rest

Making an espresso machine from a (thoroughly scrubbed) motorbike piston

Rulof Maker used a salvaged motorcycle piston and cylinder, mounted in an Ikea lamp, to create a homebrew espresso machine, using a lever to pressurize water at temperature through a puck of coffee grounds. Read the rest

How the appearance of the Aeropress coffee maker has changed over time

Aeropress has an article that shows the evolution of its coffee maker over time.

Even though no BPA was leaching from the polycarbonate, we switched to copolyester in August 2009 so that we could assure people that the AeroPress was BPA free. Initially the copolyester was crystal clear. In September 2010 we added a smoky grey tint because our market research indicated that consumers liked the appearance.

It's a lot of fun to make coffee with the Aeropress -- you pour a little water in the piston and put it in the microwave for about 40 seconds. Then you put a microfilter in the cylinder (you get a "years supply" with the Aeropress) and a scoop of ground coffee. The you put the cylinder on top of a cup (the company recommends using a clear mug to make the process even more fun), pour the heated (not boiling -- it'll make the coffee bitter and sour, they say) water, stir for 10 seconds, and press the piston down. A few seconds later, you have a wonderful cup of silky smooth coffee.

Here's a video I shot in 2006 that shows how to use an Aeropress:

Read the rest

Power tool company Makita sells a coffee machine

Once again, the future has been unevenly distributed: Makita's coffee machine was available in Japan years ago. I can't wait to have one of these in my kitchen. Asahi Shimbun writes:

Makita's first coffee maker went on sale in 2015. It gained in popularity because the same types of batteries as its power tools also work in the coffee machine.

The new model can make a maximum of 5.3 cups of coffee on one charge, from a dedicated coffee pack as well as instant coffee. It weighs 1.5 kilograms.

The new coffee maker is sold at home center and other locations, costing 11,900 yen ($111.40) excluding tax. The battery charger and battery are sold separately.

MAKITA Rechargeable Coffee Maker CM501DZ [Amazon] Read the rest

A LaTeX mod to draw coffee cup rings on your technical papers

LaTeX is the venerable, gold-standard layout package favored for scholarly papers, especially technical papers; back in 2009, Hanno Rein released LaTeX Coffee Stains, an extension to draw a variety of coffee-cup rings on your paper; the code has been improved by community contributions over the years and is very robust and full-featured! (via Evil Mad Scientist Labs) Read the rest

California coffee cups to get cancer warning

The National Coffee Association failed to demonstrate that a known-carcinogen produced during the coffee brewing process is not harmful. A judge in the Bear Republic ruled coffee cups need to carry a warning.

Via the NYT:

The ruling stems from a lawsuit filed in 2010 by the Council for Education and Research on Toxics, a nonprofit group based in Long Beach. The group charged that Starbucks and other companies — a group that eventually included 91 defendants — did not warn consumers that ingesting coffee would expose them to acrylamide, a chemical formed when coffee beans are roasted.

California keeps a list of chemicals it considers to cause cancer or reproductive harm, and acrylamide has been included since 1990. The state’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act, known as Proposition 65 after it was passed in 1986, requires businesses to provide warning labels when exposing consumers to any of the hundreds of chemicals listed.

Judge Elihu M. Berle, in Los Angeles County Superior Court, wrote in a proposed decision on Wednesday that the companies failed to show that acrylamide does not pose a significant risk when produced during the coffee roasting process.

“Since defendants failed to prove that coffee confers any human health benefits, defendants have failed to satisfy their burden of proving that sound considerations of public health support an alternate risk level for acrylamide in coffee,” the judge wrote.

Barry's Gold Blend tea merely invokes an existential crisis. Drink Barry's. Read the rest

Make your Keurig as messy as a French press and as tasty as motel drip coffee with this reusable plastic k-cup

After several attempts to get something drinkable out of the Ekobrew Classic Reusable Filter, I figured it out: just grind it finer than the normal stuff in a k-cup and tamp it down a bit. The results were everything I dreamed of and was promised: a k-cup that must be laboriously cleaned after every use, a return to the messy and time-consuming rituals of coffee production that Keurig machines otherwise obviate, and a brew that somehow makes a $20-a-bag Kona blend taste like Maxwell House.

I'd say it's the worst of every world, but the the resulting coffee is still better than a lot of k-cup brews. I suppose the appeal is that I'm not putting k-cups into the trash every day. But that seems a trifling greenwashy thing to begin with that surely has no impact on the general environmental failings associated with coffee consumption. I admit this is a half-brewed thought but in any case I'm going to suggest you just get an Aeropress [Amazon].

BEFORE: I found the worst K-Cup coffee Read the rest

Pantone coffee mugs to match how you take it

Here's a little something for artsy wired types. Pantone has a number of colorful mugs, some of which may match how you take your favorite hot beverage. Note: they do not seem to have any dark enough for how many of our dear readers prefer. Read the rest

Latte artist takes it to the next colorful level

Most latte art is a monochromatic palette of rich browns and creams. Korean art professor Kangbin Lee has taken his Creamart works into the rest of the spectrum. Read the rest

Gwyneth Paltrow wants you to squirt coffee up your asshole using this $135 glass jar

Goop is Gwyneth Paltrow's life-threatening, wallet-flensing empire of woo, home to smoothie dust, vulva steaming, rocks you keep in your vagina, and a raft of rebadged products that are literally identical to the garbage Alex Jones sells to low-information preppers. Read the rest

Massachusetts state senator busted for kickbacks including Dunkin’ Donuts coffee

Brian Joyce, former Democratic assistant majority leader in the Massachusetts State House, was incited for running a "criminal enterprise" that included "racketeering, extortion, honest services fraud, money laundering, conspiracy to defraud the IRS and other charges," according to Newsweek. Part of Joyce's $1 million worth of dirty money and kickbacks included a free jeep given to him by an insurance company along with “hundreds of pounds” of Dunkin’ Donuts from a franchise owner seeking permits. Read the rest

Good deal on the Aeropress coffee and espresso maker

I've had an Aeropress coffee and espresso maker for many years, and it works as well now as the day I bought it. It makes delicious coffee and it's a lot of fun to use. Right now Amazon is selling it for $24, the lowest price I've seen.

Filmmaker and photographer David Friedman profiled the inventor of the Aeropress, Alan Adler. He is also the inventor of the Aeorobie Flying Ring. Here's a video of Friedman using the Aeropress: Read the rest

Beloved local restauranteur can't sell coffee or tea because Starbucks strongarmed the landlord

The Arepa Lady started as a food-cart in Jackson Heights, Queens, owned by Maria Cano, whose son and daughter-in-law have continued the family business, moving into permanent digs, with seating for 30. Read the rest

This concrete espresso machine is countertop Brutalism

The stark concrete style known as Brutalism is instantly recognizable in architecture, just as it is with this espresso machine by design studio Montaag of Berkeley, California. Not content with the current aesthetic offerings of espresso machines, they decided to create their own. Bare concrete became the machine's outer shell after the studio's team went on material-discovering expeditions through local salvage yards.

The result of their efforts is the AnZa (which is also available in slick white Corian):

The AnZa is not your typical appliance, collecting dust on your countertop. Concrete. Corian. Wood. Steel. Brass. Glass. These largely ordinary materials are not often found on espresso machines. But their application shows you don’t need to look far to find design elements that create a dramatically new experience—emotional, practical, or otherwise. The result is a spectacular espresso machine, and an unparalleled conversation piece.

After a successful Kickstarter campaign, this high-end coffee maker can now be pre-ordered through Indiegogo for $799 plus shipping.

(Curbed) Read the rest

How to make a goth frappucino

It's Black Friday mixes us a DIY Black Frappucino, which is a blend of bottled sugary "latte," ice, black gel food dye and activated charcoal (warning, don't use this if you're on any kind of important meds, eg birth control, mood stabilizers, chemo drugs, etc). It looks pretty great, even if it's a giant calorie whose key ingredients are terrible "coffee" and a food additive that can lead to accidental pregnancies. (via The Everyday Goth) Read the rest

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