One of the simple pleasures in life is the smell of fresh brewed coffee drifting through the house. Maybe it’s part of your morning ritual, an afternoon pick-me-up or maybe it’s combined with a thick blanket and a good book on a gloomy rainy day, but no matter what, it’s hard to beat a delicious cup of coffee.
Coffee dates back to the fifteenth century in northern Africa, spreading across the Middle East and Europe during the sixteenth century. Originally, coffee was drank as part of spiritual rituals and during devotions but by the time it reached Europe it was becoming a social drink. Now, nearly all Western countries have their own “coffee culture” that reflects their cuisine and culture. In the United States, cafes have become popular places for students, writers, first dates and more. Unlike countries like Australia where coffee drinks like espresso and lattes are most popular, in the United States, drip coffee is ubiquitous. From upscale restaurants to mom and pop diners, there is an option for a simple cup of coffee.
Culture aside, the most important part of coffee is, of course, the beans! There are four main types of coffee beans: Arabica, Robusta, Liberica and Excelsa. Arabica is the most common type of coffee bean with a wonderful slightly sweet flavor with hints of chocolate, nuts and caramel. Arabica coffee plants are grown at high altitudes in areas that have steady amounts of rain and plentiful shade. With a slightly more bitter taste, Robusta coffee is second most popular. High quality Robusta coffee has a smooth texture and low acidity. Finally, Liberica and Excelsa beans are harder to find but have wonderful qualities of their own.
Whether you are a religious coffee drinker or only drink coffee when you haven’t gotten quite enough sleep to make it through the day, you always want to have a reliable coffee maker. We’ve found the best eight four-cup coffee makers for all your brewing needs!
Zojirushi Corporation has spent over one hundred years designing high-quality products to improve their customers’ quality of life, which is obvious with their Zutto Drip Coffeemaker. Its modern design and durable stainless steel body are the perfect combination of an aesthetically pleasing, yet efficient appliance.
One thing that we love about the Zutto is that it has a charcoal water filter that purifies the water before it is dripped through the coffee grounds. This prevents the any minerals or impurities in the water from changing the flavor of the coffee so you end up with the most true coffee flavor possible. The filter lasts up to two years under average use and is replaceable after that. We are also big fans of how compact the overall design is. The coffee grounds basket is cone-shaped and designed to fit inside the glass carafe, making this coffee maker shorter than many others. The water tank is removable and fits perfectly in the back of the machine. Between being able to take it out to fill it and having a see-through gage on the side if you want to pour the water directly in, you will always be able to get the perfect amount of water. The last feature is an automatic keep warm function so your coffee won’t get cold before you get to your second cup!
Overall, the Zutto EC-DAC50 coffee maker’s beautiful, compact design and its perfect results will never fail to perk up your day.
This Gevi four cup coffee maker is a great option for anyone who wants a traditional coffee maker, but just a little more upscale. The Gevi body is black with a glass carafe. The detachable filter basket is dishwasher safe, so it’s easy to fill and easy to clean! With a transparent water window on the side, you won’t have to worry about over or under-filling.
We love that this coffee maker is BPA free. This ensures that there is no chance of toxins entering your coffee, even in trace amounts over time.
The Cuisinart DCC-450BK four cup coffee maker is a streamlined machine designed to take up very little space in your kitchen. Designed with a compact black plastic body, this coffee maker will fit right in with the rest of your kitchen appliances. The carafe is stainless steel with a dripless pour spout and a knuckle guard to prevent any burns from splashing or from directly touching the carafe during brewing.
This coffee maker has a brewing pause feature so that you can pour yourself a fresh cup of coffee before the cycle is finished without coffee dripping everywhere. There is also a thirty minute automatic shut off and an “on” indicator so you know if you’ve started the cycle or if the pot has shut off. There is also a warming plate to keep your coffee warm. You can use any standard sized paper filter to brew your favorite coffee!
For those that love the smooth flavor of a perfect cup of coffee from a French press, but need more than just a couple cups, the Bodum Chambord French Press is the perfect solution! This 34 ounce French press makes a full four cups of coffee.
A French press is widely considered the way to make the best cup of coffee, surpassing even “professional” coffee at cafes. The biggest difference between a French press and a drip coffee maker is that a French press does not have a filter. Coffee filters in drip coffee filter out the natural oils in the coffee beans. In French presses, the coffee retains these oils, giving the coffee a smoother, more robust taste. Another perk of the French press is that it allows you to make the coffee as strong or as weak as you’d like by setting the grounds steep for longer or less time.
While drip coffee is a little less hands-on, if you’re a sucker for the perfect cup of coffee, the Bodum Chambord French Press is made just for you!
The Bosenkitchen 4-cup drip coffee maker is a great traditional drip coffee maker. It has a has a glass carafe and durable plastic body as well as and warming plate to keep your coffee fresh. One great addition to this coffee maker is that it has a permanent stainless steel filter so you won’t have to use normal coffee filters. The permanent filter is easily washable and lasts for two years with regular use.
This basic yet refined coffee maker will be easy to use to make a perfect cup of coffee whether you’re sleep deprived or even just in a rush!
Our second favorite Bodum coffee maker, this pour over coffee maker is perfect for those who love a more hands-on, artistic approach to their cup of coffee. Big enough to make four cups of coffee yet small enough to retain the rustic feel, it is a perfect coffee maker to impress your brunch guests or to treat yourself on a rainy afternoon.
The Bodum Pour Over coffee maker is crafted from glass and stainless steel with a cork band. The carafe is made from borosilicate glass, one of the most temperature-resistant glasses available. Inside is a stainless steel permanent filter, eliminating the need for paper filter. Unlike a paper filter, the stainless steel filter does not trap the essential oils from the coffee grounds. This leaves the coffee smoother with a full rounded flavor.
Not only will this coffee maker look beautiful in your kitchen but it will also make a wonderful cup of coffee!
As its name suggests, this is a straightforward coffee maker, for those who want a no-nonsense morning. The Mr. Coffee Simple Brew coffee maker has a black plastic body and a glass carafe with a warming plate to keep your coffee toasty! Its simple on/off button has an indicator light so you know for sure if you’ve turned it on. It has a dual water window that allows visibility as you fill up your coffee maker so you don’t under or over-fill. This coffee maker also features a removable filter basket that lifts out for easy filling and easy cleaning.
One great feature of the Mr. Coffee Simple Brew coffee maker is its Grab-A-Cup Auto Pause. This feature lets you fill up your cup before the cycle is done: it stops brewing so you can pour freely and then finishes the brewing cycle after you place the carafe back into position.
Overall, this is a great, no-fuss coffee maker for those who just want to wake up and get their caffeine fix with as little work as possible!
For those who prefer a percolator to a drip coffee machine, this Farberware Percolator is a perfect option! The difference between a percolator and drip coffee is that a percolator boils water to pass through the coffee ground whereas a drip coffee pot heats the water to just below boiling then lets the water drip through the coffee grounds. Percolators are great because they are generally easier to clean than drip coffee pots as they have fewer parts. Also, because of the way the water is circulated, they fill the air with a wonderful coffee aroma during the brewing process!
This Farberware percolator is made from premium stainless steel so it is durable and will not rust over time. Even the coffee basket inside, designed to extract the maximum flavor from your coffee grounds, is made from stainless steel. The stainless steel design also gives it a clean, finished look so that it will be a lovely addition to your kitchen. It has a plastic handle and lid so you won’t burn yourself as you go to pour a fresh cup of coffee. There is also an automatic “keep warm” function so even if you brew your coffee awhile before you’re ready to drink it, you won’t have to worry about your coffee getting cold!
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