In-Room Coffee Makers

Old Dec 1, 11, 9:33 am
  #46  
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This all sounds like an awful lot of work when you can go to Starbucks just about anywhere and get a strong cup of dark roast coffee for $2.
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Old Dec 1, 11, 3:04 pm
  #47  
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Originally Posted by gfunkdave View Post
This all sounds like an awful lot of work when you can go to Starbucks just about anywhere and get a strong cup of dark roast coffee for $2.
It is a lot of work when I can no longer use the coffee makers that the hotels I stay in are providing now. But perhaps you missed the early part of the movie. The point of having coffee in the room is that I can brew and drink it before I get dressed, like I do at home. I'm retired. I don't jump out of bed, hit the shower, get dressed, and go off to work, stopping at a Starbuck's drive thru on the way.
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Old Dec 1, 11, 3:19 pm
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Originally Posted by gfunkdave View Post
This all sounds like an awful lot of work when you can go to Starbucks just about anywhere and get a strong cup of dark roast coffee for $2.
Frankly, they often burn their coffee, and it's much weaker than I prefer.
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Old Dec 1, 11, 3:38 pm
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Originally Posted by gfunkdave View Post
Starbucks ... coffee
Is an oxymoron.
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Old Dec 1, 11, 5:03 pm
  #50  
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I have a Zelco Brisk Brew Travel Coffeemaker. It's pretty light, packs up to 6.5 x 3.5 x 2.5", and makes a single cup of good drip coffee. It's a little bit of a pain to clean out for each additional cup, but does the trick when I'm staying somewhere with no coffeepot or an inferior system.

Video review here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGJJFroxQ7k
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Old Dec 1, 11, 7:41 pm
  #51  
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Originally Posted by Mike Rivers View Post
It is a lot of work when I can no longer use the coffee makers that the hotels I stay in are providing now. But perhaps you missed the early part of the movie. The point of having coffee in the room is that I can brew and drink it before I get dressed, like I do at home. I'm retired. I don't jump out of bed, hit the shower, get dressed, and go off to work, stopping at a Starbuck's drive thru on the way.
Originally Posted by deirdre View Post
Frankly, they often burn their coffee, and it's much weaker than I prefer.
Sure, fair enough. If it's that important to you, enjoy. The few times I've bothered with the in-room coffee maker it's been about like the coffee in a diner: hot brown water. So I understand the desire for a decent in-room solution.

Originally Posted by willyroo View Post
Is an oxymoron.
I think that's a tad harsh. It's certainly no connoisseur's coffee but it's head and shoulders above the crap that you get in most restaurants and "coffee shops". I think of it as a lowest common denominator of acceptable coffee.
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Old Dec 1, 11, 9:36 pm
  #52  
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Originally Posted by swag View Post
I have a Zelco Brisk Brew Travel Coffeemaker. It's pretty light, packs up to 6.5 x 3.5 x 2.5"
That's much too big for me to carry. My bag is already pretty full. I could carry an Aeropress only because it's hollow and I can stuff a pair of socks in it.
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Old Dec 4, 11, 4:46 pm
  #53  
 
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Originally Posted by Mike Rivers View Post
It is a lot of work when I can no longer use the coffee makers that the hotels I stay in are providing now. But perhaps you missed the early part of the movie. The point of having coffee in the room is that I can brew and drink it before I get dressed, like I do at home. I'm retired. I don't jump out of bed, hit the shower, get dressed, and go off to work, stopping at a Starbuck's drive thru on the way.


I like a mug before shower and a mug while watching the morning new in my bathrobe.
For those who are wondering, I have a filter brewing station in the dressing area along with water filter for that tap.
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Old Dec 4, 11, 5:07 pm
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Check out the Areopress sold at Seattle Coffee Grear.com....have one love it....
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Old Dec 5, 11, 6:34 am
  #55  
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Originally Posted by satman40 View Post
Check out the Areopress sold at Seattle Coffee Grear.com....have one love it....
There have been several recommendations for the Aeorpress here, so I bougut one at my local Sur La Table store to try. After about 10 cups to give it a fair chance, I'm returning it today. Here's the scoop:

The good:
  • It indeed makes a pretty decent cup of coffee. It's not the best I've ever had, but plenty good enough for morning in a hotel room and better than most in-room coffee makers that actually work (though "better than " wasn't a goal here, just "no worse than.")
  • It's not too big and clumsy to pack. If I stuff a pair of socks inside, it hardly takes up any additional space in the suitcase.
  • Since the are grounds as a fairly solid lump, I don't feel guilty about making a mess in the trash can for the housekeeper nor worry about clogging a drain with grounds. It's not difficult to clean up.

The meh:
  • It's busy. Parts to assemble, water to heat, water to pour. I have to pay attention to making making coffee throughout the whole process. I can't just load in the coffee and water, flip the switch, and come back to it a few minutes later and have coffee ready.
  • If the water isn't hot enough, it doesn't make very good coffee. This isn't unique to the Aeropress but is true with any coffee maker. The problem is that with the Aeropreess, the hot water needs to be transported to it from somewhere else and can lose heat fairly quickly.
  • Depending on the existing in-room coffee maker, I may need an additional vessel for heating and/or carrying the water to the Aeropress. Many of the cheap hotels where I stay have only 6 oz styrofoam cups along with the coffee "service.," I carry a real cup to drive from, but if I have to heat two styrofoam cups in the microwave, that exceeds the quotient of monkey business,
  • The scoop is 50% larger than a standard coffee scoop, Maybe one reason why it makes better coffee than more plebeian coffee makers is simply that it makes it stronger. There's additional cost involved, plus I get fewer cups out of the container of coffee that I normally carry and I don't want to carry a bigger container.

So I explored the option I really wanted to avoid, and that's to use instant coffee. The Starbucks Via free samples that I tried when they were introducing it made perfectly acceptable coffee, but it's pretty expensive. I don't count the cost of the coffee maker, but I was hoping for a solution that was comparable to what my present system costs on a daily basis.

I'd heard good things about Nescafe Classico instant, and a stop at my local Latino market turned up a small travel-friendly sized jar for a little over $2. The Safeway had Folgers Classic in single-serve packets (like the Via) for 88 cents for a pack of 7, so I did a shootout. The Nescafe was different, but as good as a fair-to-middlin' cup from a working hotel room coffee maker. The Folger's wasn't horrible, but let's just say I could tell if the restaurant replaced their coffee with Folger's for the day.

So the interim solution is to continue bringing my ground coffee and flat bottom filters and also pack the small jar of Necafe Classico instant for hotels where I can't get a working coffee maker. That should cover most bases, though I may need to use a "doesn't make a good cup of coffee" coffee maker or styrofoam cups in the microwave oven to heat the water.

I'll report progress after my next 2 week multiple hotel trip coming up in January.
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Old Dec 5, 11, 12:40 pm
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Originally Posted by Mike Rivers View Post
The scoop is 50% larger than a standard coffee scoop, Maybe one reason why it makes better coffee than more plebeian coffee makers is simply that it makes it stronger. There's additional cost involved, plus I get fewer cups out of the container of coffee that I normally carry and I don't want to carry a bigger container.
I actually don't use the Aeropress scoop when I travel for two reasons:
  • I prefer more coffee, so I use a slightly larger scoop
  • The overall size of the scoop is larger than the one I use (which I think is from Trader Joe's).

My mom likes Medaglia D'Oro Instant Espresso, which is what she usually has in the morning. It has the advantage of coming in small jars, but it can be difficult to find in some areas.
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Old Dec 8, 11, 8:39 am
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I know some people lament the loss of the old coffee carafes, buts trust me for cleanliness they needed to go! I've also heard one to many horror stories of what people have used those old coffee pots for. Ugh!!!!!!
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Old Dec 8, 11, 9:34 am
  #58  
 
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Portable dual voltage coffee maker review

http://www.voltagevalet.com/prod_dvapp/QC2.html

I bought this unit as I needed travel to many area where hotel in room coffee is not in the local vocabulary.

I have had 3 mornings of my favourite blend brewed fresh using bottled drinking water in both 110v and 240V locations.
The water is hot enough for a good brew. It is small enough to fit on the night stand where I plug it in when my alarm goes off and is ready after the first alarm snooze delay.

What I might try doing is rig up a way of folding filter paper instead of using the reusable one.
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Old Dec 8, 11, 10:09 am
  #59  
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Having lost my dual voltage travel kettle a few moves ago, I dug up my old Zelco Brisk Brew and use that as a water heater. Instead of using the filter basket, I bring disposable finum-brand filters that I can fill with either coffee or tea and drop that into the cup and let the grounds/leaves steep as the water is dropped over it. Cleanup is as easy as squeezing the excess liquid out of the bags and tossing the remains into the trash.

The coffee made from this method is sort of a cross between French press (where you let the grounds steep) and strong drip (where the paper filter absorbs some of the oils).

I'm thinking of buying a new travel kettle though as it does take a while for the safety-thermostat to reset itself in the Brisk Brew and I'm always wanting a second cup before it's ready to go again.

I tried the Aeropress, but sometimes I'm too tired, jet-lagged and uncoordinated and upend the mug I'm pressing onto myself Besides, most of the time the problem is having access to hot water to make the beverage.
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Old Dec 8, 11, 2:06 pm
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Originally Posted by tcl View Post
I tried the Aeropress, but sometimes I'm too tired, jet-lagged and uncoordinated and upend the mug I'm pressing onto myself Besides, most of the time the problem is having access to hot water to make the beverage.
I have to confess to also packing a Peet's coffee cup with me as they don't upend and are the right size for me in the morning.

Hilo Hatties mugs also work. Most cups that have slanted sides are prone to upending due to the pressing, so I try to make life simple for myself.
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