Looking For Japanese Coffee Maker (me Too!)
Q: I'm interested, too! Specifically, I'm curious about the odd variety of coffeemaker that I consistently see in anime such as Kimagure Orange Road and City Hunter .. it appears to have a large bulb of percolating water on top, that filters down through where I presume the grind lies, into a second bulb below. Does anybody out there have a clue what I'm talking about?
A: I've seen Japanese glass vacuum coffee makers at the Yaohan Japanese import department store in suburban Chicago (I think Arlington Heights). The store also has a branch in northern New Jersey. The cost was slightly under $100. Yes, we call it the "siphon"-style coffee maker, and it is pretty popular in Japan. You can buy it at any department store in Tokyo. Sorry, I have no idea where you can find it in US. BTW, I bet it's not originally Japanese; it's from some Europian country. You put water in the lower bulb, coffee in the upper, and heat the lower with a small flame. When the water boils, the vapor pressure pushes the hot water up to the upper bulb through a connecting tube. Then you stop heating, and as the air cools down in the lower bulb, the coffee goes back from the upper to lower through a cotton filter. A good thing with this maker is that the process is very elegant, you really enjoy watching it. A bad thing is that you have to wash the filter carefully every time; it is not disposable (better for your environment, huh?) I have seen two types in a Montreal coffe shop (two versions of the same japanese vacuum coffee maker). _La Brulerie St-Denis_ sells them for around 100$ to 200$. I think ( ireally cannot be sure from the description, and I apologize that I am responding without reading previous psots on this subject) that you are talking about a vacuum coffee maker. They are widely available in the US. First, the water is put in the bottom bulb, then it is heated and rises to the top one, then it is sucked back to the bottom one, when it colls off. Yes! Now I know what you're talking about...actually I think that it is European. My parents had one given to them for their wedding present, but it broke one time when we were moving across the Atlantic (again). I've been looking for one for years, but I haven't been very successful. I don't think they're generally available in North America; mind you, I haven't seen one in Europe either. I guess you just have to go to a specialty shop where somebody knows what you're talking about (everytime I ask about it I get these wierd looks, like I've had too much caffeine and I'm hallucinating it or something) and order it specially.