Am I ruining my drip machine?
August 15, 2010 7:57 PM   Subscribe

I make my morning coffee in a French press, but then I keep it hot by pouring it into the carafe of my drip machine while it's switched on. Is this somehow going to damage my coffee maker if I don't have any water in the reservoir? I just want the hot plate to keep it warm. Relevant info: I have the Michael Graves coffee maker from Target.
posted by extramundane to Food & Drink (14 answers total)
Best answer: No. The water in the reservoir is only needed if you want to brew coffee. When it is done brewing, you are in exactly the same condition you are now.
posted by gjc at 8:00 PM on August 15, 2010

Best answer: Nope, you're safe. The machine is designed to sit switched on for a long time after the reservoir has dried up. Switching the machine on with a dry reservoir is really no different.

On preview: what gjc said
posted by Capa at 8:04 PM on August 15, 2010

Response by poster: Great! Thanks, guys.
posted by extramundane at 8:07 PM on August 15, 2010

Best answer: Putting brewed coffee on a hot plate is burning the coffee. Do not steep for more than four minutes and then either drink (all) of it or transfer to a thermal container. Never use hot plates- they are an abomination and you're ruining coffee that you've taken care to make properly in a press.
posted by ethnomethodologist at 8:55 PM on August 15, 2010

Yes: You're pining for a thermos bottle. Off to the thrift store with you!
posted by gum at 9:00 PM on August 15, 2010

Thirding what was already said - putting that nice french-press coffee on a hot plate will continue to cook it and thus change the flavor, eventually "burning" it. Keep it hot in a thermos.
posted by bizwank at 9:11 PM on August 15, 2010

Response by poster: ethnomethodologist, that's a good point. I brew mine for 4 minutes in the press, but I didn't think about burning it by putting it on the hot plate. Now I have an excuse to get a nice vacuum flask!
posted by extramundane at 9:25 PM on August 15, 2010

Consider an insulated French Press...I have one, and it keeps it hot for at least an great!
posted by kskiivv at 9:41 PM on August 15, 2010

Best answer: I have a stainles steel coffee plunger (aka French press) which is also a vaccuum flask. If you're after plunger coffee without it going cold, this is what you want. It keeps the coffee hot for hours without burning it.

(crappy link here, but at least shows you a picture of the thing)
posted by pompomtom at 9:41 PM on August 15, 2010

The problem with insulated press pots is that you're supposed to pour the coffee after no more than 4 mins of brewing (in fact only 2 or 3 mins with small pots).

So to use the insulated pot effectively, you'd have to pour out the coffee after the 4-min brew, rinse the grinds out, and pour the coffee back into the pot. Seems like that's more trouble than it's worth, and a simple thermos would be better.
posted by randomstriker at 10:12 PM on August 15, 2010

Yes: You're pining for a thermos bottle.

And if you want to be a true coffee baller, you'll pour a little hot water into your thermos to warm it up while your coffee's steeping in the french press. Otherwise, your coffee will expend some of its heat warming up the inside of the thermos.
posted by joshuaconner at 10:55 PM on August 15, 2010

Preheat glass beaker with hot water.
Pour water into mug.
Grounds into beaker.
Moisten with a little water and swirl round to start swelling.
Top up with water
Insert plunger / lid
Wrap with tea towel (I really need to get a proper cozy)
Wait 4 mins
Discard water in mug and fill with coffee
Discard coffee after 20 mins
posted by i_cola at 2:45 AM on August 16, 2010

Yes, a coffee cozy will help you out; keeps the coffee insulated and warmer for longer without heating it up too much. Do put it on right from the beginning, as i_cola says above.

If you're sewing-inclined, you can make one by yourself with some nice flannel, cotton batten and velcro - just take a couple of pieces of paper and put them around the press, cut so it fits, then add some seam allowances for cutting your fabric, sew together and put on some velcro; if not, there are sellers on Etsy who make and sell them.
posted by urbanlenny at 7:05 AM on August 16, 2010

We have Zojirushi thermal carafe for our coffee. It keeps the coffee hot well into the dinner hour.
posted by crush-onastick at 8:57 AM on August 16, 2010

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