In this review, we will tackle the wonders of a percolator and the best of its kinds, may it be electrically-powered or a stovetop variant. For a coffee lover like myself, a good cup of coffee at the comfort of my home or office without having to buy from a coffee shop is a dream. If you are not there yet and are still in the process of looking for your coffee maker, you may want to look into the world of percolators.
How does a percolator work?
The percolator works by exposing your coffee ground to an extreme temperature to come up with your preferred coffee strength. It brews a rather stronger coffee than other types of coffee makers. This machine holds a risk for over-extraction, but it is not difficult to avoid it with correct usage and attention.
With that, it’s safe to say that it takes a few sessions of trial and errors before you discover your own technique to achieve your perfect cup. Although it requires attention, percolators are still in the market because of the huge demand they still carry until today. It has a reasonable price tag for its versatility, top-notch performance, and high-quality produce.
Percolators work by utilizing the bubbles formed by water that is boiling. This is incorporated together with your fairly coarse ground beans. To use it, the coffee beans are simply thrown into the upper chamber with water remaining at the bottom. The percolator is then placed over the stove where it will be heated up. Once the water heats up, the brewing process will start as it penetrates through the coffee grounds. Upon boiling, the bubbles will disappear, and this is the signal now to take the unit out of the stove. And there you have it.. your robust cup of coffee to jumpstart your day!
In this article, we will learn about the best coffee percolators in both the electric and stove-top departments.
But before that, here’s a quick history lesson
The first ever percolating pot was a brainchild of Sir Benjamin Thompson way back in 1810. The reason behind this is to satisfy his own coffee cravings. But it was not until 1819 that the first modern percolator was born through the efforts of Joseph Henry Maire Laurens. He came up with a stove-top percolator with features that were utilized by older percolators in the market.
Moreover, an inventor from Franklin, Massachusetts, James Nason, created his own version of the coffee device that utilized a downflow technique without water and steam. It was 1865 when his percolator was patented. In 1889, the percolator that housed the concepts of our percolators today was born. An Illinois-based farmer in the name of Hanson Goodrich had his stove-top coffee percolator patented. It came with a broad base to heat the water up and a perforated basket. There are many more versions of it that followed, but the main features from Goodrich’s work still remain to be present in our modern day percolators.
Back in the 1970s, the rise of coffee ground filter rings ensued. These rings have pre-set coffee ground beans sealed in a paper filter with a small hole in the middle. This is then placed in the percolator basket located either around the percolator tube or around the convection.
Prior to the birth these filter rings, coffee grounds are simply measured through a good ol’ spoon followed by pouring them into the basket. The problem with this is that this results in the leakage of some coffee grounds straight into the brew. Another drawback is that some wet coffee grounds deposit in the basket which makes it harder to clean. For this reason, the coffee ground filter ring was a blessing in its own right for it made the whole process less tedious and a lot faster.
A stove-top percolator does not need electricity to function making it the coffee maker choice of those who enjoy the outdoors.
Best percolators to date
#1 Presto 12-Cup Stainless Steel 02911 Coffee Maker
Presto 02811 12-Cup Stainless Steel Coffee Maker
Luxurious stainless steel construction for easy cleaning and lasting beauty. Made of durable stainless steel including the filter basket and perk tube; Signal light indicates when coffee is ready to serve
Let’s get straight down to business: the Presto 12-cup stainless steel coffee maker is our top pick for the best electric percolator! It can brew you 12 cups at a time, it looks great, and it does its job pretty well. Read on to see why this easily made it on top of our list.
- Virtually pleasing
One can never go wrong with a stainless steel exterior. It’s easy to have it blend beautifully on any kitchen countertop. It even fares well with hotel aesthetics because of its simple yet sophisticated feel.
- Smart features
The perk tube and the filter basket of this unit also comes in stainless steel, thus, durability is of no question. Also, this feature eliminates any strange taste that mixes in with your cup of Joe. It also houses an indicator light found in its base unit that signals you once your drink is ready to serve.
With this percolator, it only takes a quick 6 minutes to brew you 8 lovely cups of caffeine. This is perfect for bigger households or for those who alway have visitors in. Also, the unit keeps your drink hot for longer so you can enjoy your single preparation for multiple times in a day.
With a compact height of 13 inches, this percolator can easily sit in your cupboard or your counter without taking up so much space. The cord is also removable which, I think, is a thoughtful add-on.
- Tricky to clean
This percolator is not allowed to be submerged in water, thus, cleaning it may be a little tough. Before cleaning, you have to ensure that it has cooled down completely. Then, with the use of warm and soapy water, wash then dry it properly. To really get into the dirt and deposits, utilization of a pipe cleaner may be helpful.
- Delicate exterior
You can easily lose its glossy finish if you use abrasive cleaners or scrubs during the cleaning process. For best results, use a stain remover periodically to clean the interior. But remember to not overdo it to prolong the appearance.
- Not too advanced
This percolator is very simple that some may find it non-innovative. It only comes as basic as it is. There is no timer, no programming options, nor prause-brew feature.
Despite being as basic as it is, this percolator still does its job pretty well. After all, we are after the quality of our coffee which this percolator can give. And as a compromise to its lack of advanced features is its reasonable price point. If you’re on a budget, then you might want to consider this.
Farberware 12-Cup Percolator, Stainless Steel, FCP280
Robust Aroma and Flavor: Percolating is the fast and easy way to enjoy the full flavor of aroma of your favorite ground coffee.
Cup-A-Minute: The speedy percolator produces about one cup per minute of delicious coffee.
Compared to past coffee makers, Farberware 12-Cup coffee percolator boasts of some advancements while keeping the price point easy on the wallet. It also has 12-cup capacity which makes it ideal for huge households.
- Great tasting coffee
The very essence of purchasing any coffee maker is the coffee experience it provides and this percolator did not disappoint at all. It’s rich in flavor and has an aroma that one can’t just can’t get enough of. We owe it to the coffee’s brewing process. Also, the unit keeps the drink hot. The coffee this device brews is easily comparable with those that we get from coffee shops. It’s that good!>
- Quick brewing process
This percolator works at a brew speed of one cup every minute through its 1000 watts of power. It is fast and brews a delectable cup of coffee.
- Smart features
This percolator has a thoughtful auto warm feature that keeps your beverage warm for longer, thus, you can enjoy your single preparation for the most part of the day. For safety, this also has a lid knob, cool-touch handle, and rolled edges. The power cord is also detachable so it’s pretty easy to store. Also, an instruction on how to effectively clean the unit is available for you.
- Price tag
For what it does, you will surely get your money’s worth. Despite the budget-friendly price tag, you can rely on this percolator to do its job well. There’s no compromise! That’s a pretty good deal I would say.
This percolator is actually so good that we even had to settle for the visibility of fingerprints as its con. Since it’s made of stainless steel, it’s easy to leave some fingerprint marks. However, this is nothing a quick wipe off can’t fix!
If you didn’t get it yet, let me tell you now: this is worth the money! With a price tag that won’t break the bank, you can have yourself a great-looking and efficient coffee maker. It even brews fast and serves large! The verdict for this baby is pretty clear.
Farberware 50124 Classic Yosemite Stainless Steel Coffee Percolator – 8 Cup, Silver
Heavy-duty stainless steel coffee maker is polished to a mirror finish. The sturdy, clear glass knob lets you know when percolating begins
Let me start this with: the Farberware 8-Cup Yosemite classic stainless steel coffee percolator has worked its way on top of our best stove-top percolator list! The Yosemite stainless steel classic series in general offers great quality for those who are working on a budget. As the name implies, this unit can serve 4 to 8 cups within minutes and in a single preparation.
Since it is made of stainless steel, it’s a no-brainer to understand its durability. Also, it does not come with any health risks as compared to those made of aluminum and plastic. A bonus as well is that you can never go aesthetically wrong stainless steel. It’s simple, yet sleek. A lifetime may even be a long time for this unit. Of course, we may be exaggerating, but you get the point!
- Easy to operate
It has a plastic know that lets you see what happens during the brewing process. This is essentially important to avoid over-extraction. Moreover, the handle was ergonomically-designed saving you from the nightmares of touching an extremely hot handle. It also has a tight-fitting lid that maintains the heat in the carafe, thus, keeping your drink warm for a long time.
- Easy to clean
The great thing about this is that it’s dishwasher-safe! It is made to survive immersion so this truly saves you time and energy from having to hand-wash the unit. It also fortunately has a permanent filter basket that comes with it and even that is not difficult to clean either.
- Great tasting coffee
Since the interior is also made of stainless steel, you have zero problems with your coffee acquiring some weird taste and odor. Also, the brewing quality is top-notch so we assure you a delicious coffee experience with this one!
If you want yourself some dark roast, this may not be it for you. It can only brew a delicious light to medium roast coffee. But if you’re like me who loves mine lighter, then this should be considered.
With the spout’s design having a piece of metal around the hold, pouring the last few drops of your beverage may be a challenge. This is due to the top rim being curled strangely. However, this is no big deal for me.
If your budget is an issue, fret no more! This is a great alternative to the rather expensive coffee makers in the market. It has useful features and a sleek design. At the end of the day, we just want a delicious cup of coffee which this unit successfully gives.
West Bend 54159 Classic Stainless Steel Electric Coffee Percolator
Ready-to-serve indicator light, coffee level indicator on handle. Keeps coffee at the perfect serving temperature, automatically
It takes good quality coffee grounds and the right brewing process to have a satisfying cup of coffee. This goes for any type of coffee makers. And this is one of the reasons why we are in love with this West Bend percolator. You need not be a coffee expert to brew yourself some great coffee with this guy!
- Visually decent
This may look a little too ordinary compared to its competitors, but it’s not difficult to have it blend alongside other tools and appliances on your counter.
- Great tasting brew
If you have a percolator for the reason that you want no less than a percolated cup, then this brews exactly what you desire. It works on just the right temperature and an efficient brewing process.
- Saves you money
Upon purchasing this unit, it comes with a permanent filter. This means that you no longer have to keep stocking up on paper filters. Additionally, the paper filters have a distinct taste that others don’t enjoy with their coffee.
- Fuss-free serving experience
If you have yourself some visitors, or if you just simply have a huge household to brew coffee for, this unit will make the process of serving easier. Simply unplug from the outlet and take it to where the people are at, be it outdoors or in the dining room. The spout’s design also makes the process spill- and splash-free.
The lid is made of a plexiglass material that gives you a clear visual field of what’s happening inside. This will help in avoiding over-extraction.
If you’re using hard and unfiltered water, this may be a problem because that may result in discoloration and build-up of minerals. But this is not a huge problem if you’re using filtered water. Besides, the utilization of filtered water will not only prolong the lifespan of your percolator, but it’s also healthy for you. Also, should discoloration ensue, simply rinse with warm water! Doing this regularly may benefit you.
Although it’s rather simple-looking compared to others, its ability to produce a fantastic tasting coffee shouldn’t be overlooked. The unit is easy to navigate and will give you a great cup of Joe. All these without an enormous price tag.
Coleman Enamelware Percolator, 14 Cup
Camping percolator quickly brews up to 14 cups of coffee on a camping stove or grill
If you love the outdoors, such as camping, you might want to invest in this percolator. With one go, it can easily brew 14 cups of coffee goodness. Well, this is actually our top pick for the best percolator for camping activities.
This unit has a body that is made of a double-coated enamel which is known to have less chances of cracking and breaking under pressure. The lid, on the other hand, is made of stainless steel which is understandably a sturdy material too. With these features, you can trust this percolator to last you for long.
- Easy brewing
This may have simple components, but it’s all-in. It has all that you need for some perfect brew. It houses a tube, a basket, a basket lid, and a broad and stable base.
- Easy to carry around
This is great for camping because of its lightweight feature. You can easily slide it into your backpack and it will fit just right in. Don’t worry though! Despite its portability, be reminded that it has a large filling capacity so you can all enjoy your coffee in a single preparation.
The cons of this unit includes the plastic clear knob, therefore, it’s at risk for melting if exposed to high temperature. Also, the spout has holes that are too large for some coffee grounds, but you can always use a filter so the coffee grounds won’t fall into your cup.
This may not be the most advanced or smart-featured percolator, but it’s portability, size, and lightweightness makes it the best for camping activities and any activities you enjoy outdoors. Imagine waking up surrounded by nature and all it takes is a single preparation for your family to even enjoy the trip more!