New Product: Bonavita's Variable Temperature Kettles - A First Look
How Bonavita's Electric Kettle Just Got Better
As we observed in a previous post, the 21st century is witnessing a remarkable truce between all things artisan and all things automatic. Two movements – the “do-it-yourself” and the “already-done” – progress rapidly toward the same goal: an excellent brew. State-of-the-art machines continue to wow the world of coffee, but manual brewing hasn’t seemed to take a hit. It’s actually picking up speed.
Recently, the folks at Bonavita have led the charge for innovative and affordable brewing solutions, and their latest development continues to impress. Infusing robotic precision with human discretion, Bonavita’s new variable temperature electric kettle adds a measure of convenience to the highly involved process of manual brewing. To the barista’s delight, temperature control just got a lot easier.
Track Your Temp
Like Bonavita’s original electric pouring kettle, the variable temperature model heats water quickly: one liter in the gooseneck kettle comes to a boil in less than five minutes. But unlike its predecessor this version allows the user to select a target temperature, either by viewing a list of presets or making a specific choice themselves. Once reached, the temperature is maintained for up to an hour. A digital control panel and cordless design made this kettle a useful and welcomed addition to our lineup.
To get acquainted with the variable temperature kettle, we ran a series of tests with the 1.7-liter small-spouted model. While varying in size and spout style, it sits on the same base and contains the same electronics as the 1.0-liter gooseneck kettle, so we expect similar results between the two.
- How long does it take to heat?
- Starting temperature: 65°F
- Target temperature: 200°F
- Time: 8:16
- How long does it hold heat without activating the hold feature?
- Starting temperature: 200°F
- After 1 minute: 200°F
- 2 minutes:198°F
- 3 minutes: 196°F
- 4 minutes: 195°F
- 5 minutes: 194°F
- By how much does it miss the target temperature when heating?
- Starting temperature: 65°F
- Target temperature: 200°F
- Overshot: 1°F
- While holding, by how much does the actual temperature vary with the target temperature?
- Variance while holding: -2°F and +1°F
Filled to maximum capacity with 65°F water, the 1.7-liter kettle took just over eight minutes to heat its contents to 200°F. Once the water was within 10° of our selected temperature, the element began turning off and back on in regular intervals – heard with audible clicks – to avoid overshooting. This offers a dramatic improvement over other variable temperature kettles that we’ve used, in which the element stays on right up to the target temperature and the water is way overheated.
The real magic happened once the desired temperature had been achieved. When the hold feature was activated, the heating element automatically toggled on and off to maintain our target temperature within 1-2 degrees. (The variance while holding was hardly significant: -2° and +1°.) Even without the hold activated, the kettle sufficiently insulated its contents during our tests: water temperature dropped at a slow rate of 1-2° per minute for the first five minutes.
" Bonavita’s variable temperature kettle offers a lot to the coffee-lover who is anxious to simplify his or her routine. "
Calculated heating intervals attain the target temperature quickly without overshooting, so there’s no need to wait for scalding water to cool down. The essential hold feature ensures that the busy barista won’t miss their desired temperature or lose much heat during rests in a long brewing process. Different size and spout options (1.0-liter gooseneck or 1.7-liter short spout) make these kettles suitable for a variety of uses, including pour-over brewing and cupping.
Thanks to the inventive and economical folks at Bonavita, manual brew enthusiasts can be relieved of one of their primary concerns: temperature control. Whether by man or machine, coffee can continue to be made with excellence, and Bonavita is committed to fueling that tradition.
Bonavita’s Variable Temperature Electric Pouring Kettle (1.0-liter) is available online for $89.99 and is shipped for free. The small-spouted Variable Temperature Electric Kettle (1.7-liter) can be pre-ordered and is expected to ship in December.
Like this post? Then Subscribe to the Prima Coffee blog by email and get slick articles delivered right to your inbox. No web surfing required.
$1,687.00(For a guest barista review, click here.) Anfim's Super Caimano espresso grinder, upon its initial release, was a solid addition to any high-end coffee house. It featured a 75mm flat burr set that helped to give a very consistent grind, allowing baristas to rely upon it for excellent shot-to-shot uniformity. When dialing in a coffee, the Super Caimano had 70 holes in its adjustment collar to allow for tinkering between shots. Now, however, Anfim has added an additional 20 spots for a total of 90 holes in the adjustment collar. The benefit of this? When dialing in and finding the sweet spot for any coffee being used to pull shots of espresso, a key factor the barista must take into consideration is the size of the grind particles. Yes, uniformity and consistency of those grind particles is also key, but the ability to make tiny, incremental adjustments is always helpful when striving to find the right balance of all a coffee's characteristics when pulled as espresso.
As the interest in specialty coffee continues to increase, so does the interest in brewing methods that best compliment the quality and ideals of specialty coffee. Up until this point there have been limited options when it comes to pour over brewing devices that offer both a small learning curve as well as excellent results. Garnering praise for both their calculated design and ease of use, the Kalita line of pour over brewers are helping that small list of brewers grow. The Kalita Wave Dripper is being offered in both small (1-2 people) and large (1-4 people). The small size is offered in both glass and stainless steel while the large size is offered in glass, stainless steel, and ceramic. For an overview of the unique style the Kalita Wave Dripper brings to the pour over method, a feature chart that overviews the design, technique, and advantage can be found below.
$2,865.00When it comes to serving freshly brewed coffee in a commercial setting, one key dilemma has continually arisen. How can a commercial, high volume coffee shop make quick, fresh coffee without sacrificing quality? The solution has been either (1) to slightly sacrifice quality by making a large amount of drip coffee every hour or so, or (2) to preserve quality but to slow down production and possibly lose a potential profit with single-cup brewing (V60, Chemex, French Press, etc.). The brewing process that the Bunn Trifecta is built upon could be the answer to this significant dilemma.
The Trifecta has been anxiously awaited by the coffee community since Starbucks bought the rights to the Clover brewing system and took it off the market. At a fraction of the price of the Clover, the Trifecta could be the next-generation coffee system. The process is incredibly simple and efficient without sacrificing quality. It can be compared to a Syphon Brewer in its use of total immersion, constant temperature, and agitation of the grounds.
First, the hot water completely saturates the freshly ground beans resulting in a French Press like immersion. This takes advantage of the total extraction of beans that can only take place in full immersion brewing systems.
Second, Air is injected into the pressurized chamber which agitates the grounds. This further enhances extraction by exciting the grounds and water as they interact with each other.
Third, at just the right time (before over-extraction can take place), the pressurized air presses the coffee through a metal filter into the waiting cup. Similar to the Aeropress, this added pressure further enhances the extraction process and ensures a full-bodied flavor in the coffee. To read a full, hands-on review of the Bunn Trifecta by our coffee team, click here: Bunn Trifecta First Impression.