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If you want superior coffee brewing equipment you might find that Chemex is one of the best products on the market. Not only are they aesthetically pleasing but they were designed to brew coffee without imparting flavors of its own.
If you’re a coffee enthusiast, you’ll know that almost anything can affect the flavor of your brew. Making a decadent cup of joe takes time and patience but your coffee will only taste as good as the brewer you use.
Many coffee brewers are made with low grade materials that can destroy the quality of your coffee. Because of the time it takes to brew coffee you don’t want anything affecting the excellence of your beverage.
So what makes Chemex a superior coffee maker? Let’s find out! In this guide, we’ll be giving you a short overview of each Chemex range and how these products can enhance the flavors of your brew & simplify your brewing methods.
If you are in a rush, check out right away to the Chemex Coffee Makers we have reviewed.
Jump to the Chemex Reviews
The Chemex coffee maker was invented in the year 1941. It’s a pour over style coffee maker that’s popular among coffee connoisseurs due to its aesthetics and because of the decadent coffee it brews.
Chemex coffee makers are made with borosilicate glass because it’s extremely resistant to shock, cracks and chipping. The borosilicate glass has low coefficients of thermal expansion which makes it resistant to thermal shock.
Borosilicate glass resists acid degradation and chemicals so it won’t affect the taste of your coffee.
All Classic series Chemex pour over coffee makers have an hourglass shape with a wooden collar and a leather tie for secure handling. Recent designs include an elegant glass handle so you have more control over pouring your coffee.
Chemex coffee makers have a bowl shaped bottom and a flask fashioned rim for aesthetic appeal. The wide brim also makes it easier to evenly saturate coffee grounds without touching the sides of the filter.
Because of the classy Chemex design, it’s one of the only coffee makers to be featured in New York’s Museum of Modern Art.
There are four types of Chemex coffee makers:
Each Chemex series has a coffee maker that comes in various sizes depending on the volume of coffee you want to make. The Chemex Classic and Glass handle come in the following sizes:
The Handblown Chemex coffee makers come in three, five, eight and 13 cup sizes.
Chemex is designed for avid coffee lovers who enjoy the process of brewing the best quality coffee. It takes time to brew a pleasant cup of joe so it’s safe to say that the Chemex coffee makers aren’t for people looking for a quick fix of caffeine.
But Chemex does have an automatic coffee dripper that’s suitable for beginner coffee makers. This is because the automatic Chemex coffee maker adjusts the temperature of the water and times the brewing process for optimal blooming (gas release from the coffee beans).
However, some coffee makers prefer not to use automatic devices as the water can be contaminated by the plastic and metal components found inside the coffee maker. It may affect the taste of your coffee, especially if you have sensitive taste buds.
So the best option is to use a manual pourer where the water is not exposed to the plastic and metal components found in espresso machines & low-quality drippers.
Because there are so many factors that can affect the tasting profile of coffee, the Chemex brand makes patented filters that are not bleached. This ensures that there are no bitter or chemical based undertones in your coffee.
If you’re serious about how you brew your coffee then the Chemex range is for you. If you prefer something quicker, then you better go for an automatic coffee maker.
But how do you brew coffee using a Chemex coffee maker? Read the following brewing guide below.
For the purpose of this guide, we’ll be showing you how to brew coffee in the Chemex Glass Handle six cup coffee maker. Brewing time is approximately four minutes. You’ll need the following items to start brewing your cup of joe:
For the best results, it’s advised that you ensure your Chemex coffee maker is exceptionally clean. You don’t want contaminants, soap or old coffee affecting the taste of your brew. Rise your Chemex coffee maker and dry it thoroughly before brewing your beverage.
You can use any type of coffee but freshly ground beans will always be the superior choice for quality flavor and delightful aromas. You will need to measure the beans according to the capacity of your coffee maker.
Heat 600ml of water in a pouring kettle at 205° until the water starts to boil. After boiling the water, let it sit for at least 25 seconds.
Unfold your Chemex square coffee filter and place it inside the Chemex brewer. Ensure that the three layered sides are lined up with the spout of the Chemex coffee maker. The filter should protrude out of the Chemex coffee maker like a funnel.
Pour a small amount of hot water around the inside of the filter. Hold the filter in place and discard the rinsing water. It’s important to rinse your coffee filter before brewing as it seals it into the dripper and removes any papery undertones.
If you’re using pre-ground coffee you can skip to the next step. But since we’re using whole beans we are going to weigh them using a scale. For this size brewer use 36g of coffee beans and place them in a grinder. The coarseness of the beans should be a medium grind.
Pour your ground coffee beans into the filter and level them out.
Start your timer and then slowly pour a small amount of your hot water over the beans enough to wet them. Let this sit for 40 seconds. This step is called blooming as hot water forces the coffee beans to release gases that are trapped.
After the blooming process, begin pouring hot water in circular motions over the ground coffee. Avoid pouring the water directly in the center or edges of the filter.
Once you’ve poured all the water over your ground coffee allow the water to drain through the coffee and filter. Remove the filter from the Chemex coffee maker and discard the grounds. You now have a perfectly Chemex brewed pot of coffee.
Do you find the Chemex coffee makers appealing? They certainly are designed well and they really allow you to brew fine quality cups of coffee. Let’s take a look at some of the features of each style of coffee maker in the product reviews below.
The Ottomatic Coffee Maker 2.0 is essentially a dripper combined with a carafe. This elegant streamlined design is an automatic brewing system that allows you to make hot and cold coffee. Use the patented Chemex filters to make the perfect cup of joe without a bitter aftertaste.
Chemex Ottomatic Coffee Maker 2.0 has a system that automatically manages your brewing variables such as precise water heating, pre-infusion and water to coffee contact time.
The Chemex Ottomatic has an integrated Greedy Cup technology that produces a staged brewing cycle. The pulsing water bath ensures complete saturation of your coffee grounds and it keeps a consistent temperature so you can extract all the flavors from your coffee.
To keep your brew hot, the Chemex installed a hot plate onto the Ottomatic design using the correct temperatures so it doesn’t burn your coffee.
The Ottomatic Coffee Maker 2.0 is compatible with all the sizes of Chemex carafes.
Chemex Ottomatic comes with a six-cup Classic Series brewer of 30oz and a pack of patented filters. You’ll also receive a glass coffee maker cover and cleaner to maintain the hygiene of your application.
Because the Chemex Ottomatic Coffee Maker 2.0 is an automatic electronic device it will be extremely easy to use. The entire coffee brewing method is automated so it’s perfect for those who don’t have time to brew coffee manually.
The Chemex Ottomatic Coffee Maker 2.0 is quite streamlined and it’s versatile. Because the carafe is not a fixed device you’re able to use it as a manual pourer. This makes it perfect for traveling because you don’t have to take the entire Ottomatic dripper with you.
The Hario Woodneck looks almost the same as the Chemex but its design is not as streamlined. It resembles a small jug with a round base and a bowl shaped top. The Hario Woodneck uses a large organic cloth filter that’s attached to a handle. The filter is known to create a clean full bodied coffee.
Hario’s Woodneck coffee maker is easier to use than the Chemex Classic Series and you don’t have to buy disposable filters. However, it might be difficult to maintain the cloth filter as you’ll need to clean it in a special way so it doesn’t compromise the flavor of your coffee.
So if you have intermediate coffee making skills the Hario Woodneck will be the best alternative to the Chemex Classic Series.
The Glass Handle Chemex series is made with the same high end materials and has the same aesthetics as the Classic Series but with a few differences in design. This Chemex range doesn’t come with a wooden collar or rawhide tie but it does come with an elegant thick glass handle.
This Chemex Glass Handle coffee maker is a six cup application that has a 30oz capacity. It’s a light compact pour over styled coffee maker that can be easily handled using the sturdy glass grip.
It’s made with porous borosilicate glass that doesn’t absorb toxins or chemical residue so you’re guaranteed a clean cup of coffee.
The Chemex Glass Handle six cup coffee maker is slightly bigger than the three cup Classic pourer. This means you can use standard size filters effortlessly with the design. The handle allows you to have a sturdier and controlled grip on your coffee maker.
Chemex Glass Handle series is not as streamlined as the Classic Series because of the handle and the wider rim. But it’s still a portable application so you can take it with you on your travels.
As mentioned in the Classic Series overview, it’s extremely fragile so ensure you cover it with protective bubble wrap when you travel.
The Hario V60 comes in two parts: the bottom is in the shape of a jug with a pourer styled brim, but the filter section is separate from the application. The filter holder resembles a teacup that you place on top of the Hario jug to brew your coffee.
Both the jug and the filter holder have grip handles so you can have better control over your applications.
One advantage of the two-piece Hario V60 design is that the filter holder can be placed over any sized mug so you can brew coffee directly into a cup. It will decrease your coffee wastage if you don’t finish an entire pot of coffee as you can brew one cup at a time.
Although the Hario V60 isn’t as aesthetically pleasing as the Chemex, it’s a smaller product so it’s easier to store and travel with.
Handblown Chemex coffee makers have the same aesthetic design as the Classic Series but the difference is in the weight and durability.
The Classic Chemex series coffee makers are fragile because the glass is thin and it’s more susceptible to shattering if it’s dropped. Handblown Chemex coffee makers are heavier because the glass is thicker and exceptionally durable so it’s less likely to shatter if it’s dropped.
Because of the thick density of the Handblown Chemex series, it will keep your coffee hotter for longer as it retains the heat of your brew.
The Chemex Handblown is essentially handcrafted so there may be slight variations in size and structure but it will still brew the same smooth coffee that’s full of flavor.
It comes with the same wooden collar so you’re able to have a safe and sturdy grip around the neck of the coffee maker without burning your hand. The rawhide tie that loops around the neck comes in a variety of colors for style.
The Handblown series comes in three, five, eight and 13 cup sizes.
The eight cup Handblown coffee maker has a wider brim than the smaller capacity three cup Classic design. This design makes it easier to pour water over your coffee grounds without hitting the sides of the filter.
Chemex Handblown glass coffee maker is denser and has the same streamlined structure as the Classic series making it easier to travel with. It won’t crack or break but it’s still advised that you cover it with a protective cloth to keep your Chemex Handblown coffee maker clean.
The Godinger is another superior handblown glass coffee maker that has a well formed design.
On the side of the Godinger coffee maker, you’ll find measurements that will help you with coffee to water ratios. It has a large open glass handle, so you have better pouring control. And it comes with a cork lid to keep your coffee fresh and safe from contaminants.
The Godinger coffee maker is made with glass that doesn’t absorb toxins or chemicals from grounds or filters so you can have a clean, smooth and flavorful cup of coffee with no bitter aftertaste.
It’s a beautifully handcrafted carafe that’s ergonomically designed for both beginner and experienced coffee makers. It comes with a double layered stainless steel filter so it doesn’t trap the coffee grounds essential oils.
Because the Godinger coffee maker is handblown the glass is denser which means it’s shock proof so it won’t shatter when it’s dropped. The thicker glass also retains the heat of the coffee so it stays warmer for longer.
The only drawback of the Godinger coffee maker is that is has a smaller capacity than the Chemex Handblown application. But the remarkable quality of the Godinger structure puts in on par with the Chemex range.
Each Chemex range boasts a different structure and ergonomics but if we were to pick one of the designs it would be the Handblown series. The Chemex Handblown series has the sleek design of the Classic series but with a more durable formation.
Even though the Handblown Chemex pour over coffee makers are heavier they have a small footprint so they won’t take up space on your counter.
The Handblown series is the only range of the Chemex brand that comes in a 13 cup capacity. This makes it perfect for the coffee connoisseur that wants to make large amounts of coffee at a time.
Chemex offers its customers a wide range of accessories to go with your style of coffee maker. You can purchase coffee maker cleaners, filters, leather coasters and standing racks for your Chemex Coffee maker.
Another feature you might like about Chemex is that they create custom designed coffee makers. You can add engravings to the glass or the wooden collar with names, images or patterns. Personalized Chemex coffee pour overs make excellent gifts for fellow coffee lovers.
Now that you know more about Chemex products and how to use them, are you ready to make delicious cups of coffee that even baristas can’t match? Use a Chemex coffee maker to have the full coffee flavor experience that you deserve.