I don’t often get upset, but when I do, it usually stems from getting something that’s deliberately subpar. That is to say, whoever made the product in question not only cheated me, but they cheated themselves by settling and selling a mediocre product. Minus even more points if their marketing team then dolls it up and makes it sound like it was borne directly from the Virgin Mary’s womb when in reality it’s just a glorified piece of shit. Ah, see, there I go… getting upset.
But life’s too short to get upset. I’d much rather focus on the happier moments, like when I find myself enjoying the best damn espresso of my life at G&B Coffee, or falling instantly in love with my new Christmas present to myself: the 8-cup Bonavita drip coffee maker. (Noticing a theme here? Yes, great coffee makes me extremely happy.)
Now that I’ve ditched the 9-5 and took the (scary) leap to become a full-time freelance writer, home has become the home office, and my caffeine needs have adjusted upward accordingly. While I love my French press, I needed something that could keep my java hotter longer, which is what drew me to the thermal carafe on the Bonavita, which I’ve since found does a nice job of holding the heat for a good four hours, at least in my rigorous tests.
But the real selling point was that it got the brewing water hot—really hot—to maximize the flavor extraction from the grounds. This puppy gets the water up to around 205°F whereas temperature readings that I took from the old hunk-a-junk drip machine I’d inexplicably had for so many years before were coming in around 170°F, which does not a good cup of coffee brew.
Expensive? Yes, running around $150 to $170 at retail, but given all the extra cash I was essentially wasting by putting great beans into a shi… crummy… machine that wasn’t even beginning to get all the flavor out of them, I figure it’s an investment in my caffeinated future. With better reviews online and at around half the price of its nearest true competitor—the (way cooler sounding and little bit cooler looking) Technivorm Moccamaster—I decided to give the Bonavita a try, and after a week’s trial here at the Casa de Clemens, I’m still in love.
Make no mistake though; this is a mean no-thrills bean machine. It does one thing and one thing alone: makes great, piping hot coffee. There’s no timer function. There’s no clock. No settings. Just an on-off switch that commands it to turn out your pot of black bliss in around 3 to 4 minutes. So, if by some strange chance, you ever find a post here by yours truly that you happen to enjoy, say a little thanks to the world’s great coffee growers, roasters, and Bonavita for fueling my writing fire. I know I will.
Handsome Coffee Roasters, 582 Mateo St., Los Angeles, 213-621-4194
Intelligentsia Coffee, 1331 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, 310-399-1233, and 3922 W Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake, 323-663-6173
Portola Coffee Lab, 3313 Hyland Ave., Costa Mesa, 949-284-0596