What kind or brand of water bottle/thermos should I buy?
January 17, 2013 9:26 AM   Subscribe

I want to buy a water bottle/thermos, but am not sure what is the best kind to buy. I'm primarily interested in using it in the winter for hot liquids (hence the new question - appears that MeFites previously had other requirements). It looks like there are stainless steel ones, glass ones, and potentially other types. Any thoughs about which material would be best, or recommendations about particular brands/bottles that have worked well for you? I would prefer something very easy to clean (wide mouth?), very portable (I'll be using it when on the road for research trips), that keeps liquid warm for as long as possible (ditto), and as reasonably priced as possible. Something available on Amazon Prime would be a plus! I've been given one of these, but I've never had a glass bottle before and I'm not sure I trust glass with hot liquids on a series of bumpy buses and in luggage. Thoughts?
posted by UniversityNomad to Shopping (22 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I always recommend the classic Thermos Stainless King if heat retention is important. They make it in different sizes to suit your needs and it is available on Amazon Prime.
posted by sgo at 9:35 AM on January 17, 2013

You want a thermos. I have several and they fit all your criteria. Most importantly, the lid completely disassembles for cleaning, including all the gaskets and stuff.

I like this one a lot.

This one is my day-to-day one.

I also have one of these.
posted by acridrabbit at 9:36 AM on January 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

A steel bottle with a proper vacuum between the layers will keep drinks hot for MANY hours. I always highly recommend this Nissan Thermos and everyone I've told about it has loved it. It's easy to clean, no nooks and crannies. It's small, though (definitely a commuter mug, not a "sip all day" kind of size) but I think they have the best construction so you could look at their other sizes and see what works for you.

By the way, don't get one that has crevices or any kind of three-dimensional pathway for liquids inside the lid. We used to have an Oxo model that looked great but it was literally impossible to clean the mouthpiece.
posted by bcwinters at 9:36 AM on January 17, 2013

This is one of the best rated ones on amazon.

I've never used it, but having used other thermos brand and am impressed at how warm they will keep liquids.
posted by royalsong at 9:36 AM on January 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

I had a steel thermos with a vacuum seal thingy that I got at the ferreteria in Spain and it was The Best Thing. So that is the kind you should get.
posted by elizardbits at 9:38 AM on January 17, 2013

I have a single-wall stainless steel Kleen Kanteen. It is not insulated at all, but... I was gifted a knit wool sleeve for it. It's an awesome solution for me at least -- keeps tea/coffee warm for hours, in a giant, durable multi-use waterbottle.
posted by wrok at 9:40 AM on January 17, 2013

Response by poster: Thanks for the help so far, everyone! I should mention that I'd love this thermos to be as big as possible, so I can stay warm on a long and drafty 20 hour train journey, for instance.
posted by UniversityNomad at 9:42 AM on January 17, 2013

Vacuum insulated Thermos, definitely. I have one that I bought as a Dunkin Donuts promo in the mid-1990's. The inner bottle is glass and the outer shell is ABS plastic. It keeps coffee hot (not just sort-of-warm) for an astonishingly long time. It's been knocking around for almost 20 years now and has help up well; something similar ought to hold up just fine on a bus or train ride.
posted by usonian at 9:47 AM on January 17, 2013

Recommendations at this Reddit BI4L question. A few more along the same line here.
posted by jmd82 at 9:49 AM on January 17, 2013

Stanley recently re-introduced their iconic thermos.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 9:56 AM on January 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: One more thing - this may be too demanding, but I'm going to put it out there. I'd love something that doesn't retain tastes/odors. For instance, I'd love to be able to fill it with coffee one day, wash it out, and put tea in there the next day without it tasting like coffee. Does any material do this?
posted by UniversityNomad at 10:00 AM on January 17, 2013

Stainless steel won't retain any odors. Usually the lids will be plastic; just wash them well and you'll be fine. If you're super-sensitive to odors, get one for coffee and one for tea; eventually any plastic that spends a lot of time in contact with coffee is going to start retaining a bit.
posted by bcwinters at 10:15 AM on January 17, 2013

Here's the big brother of the stainless steel Nissan Thermos that bcwinters recommended.
posted by pont at 10:27 AM on January 17, 2013

The insulated Kleen Kanteen is pretty great. it's a lot smaller than the Stanley bottles if that's an issue (I can fit mine in my bike water bottle cage.)
posted by vespabelle at 10:35 AM on January 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Hydro Flask. I have 3 of these babies. I'll put my coffee in it in the morning and inevitably drink only half; if I close the lid, the remaining 8-10 ounces are still piping hot when I revisit the coffee in the afternoon. (I understand this is probably not the optimal way to drink coffee, but still.)

I use another one to bring smoothies to work for breakfast. Still slushy when I get there. Stainless steel, double wall insulation, reasonably lightweight.
posted by dynamiiiite at 10:46 AM on January 17, 2013

No no no no no.

What you want, nay, NEED, is a Zojirushi Stainless Steel Mug.

I once kept coffee in it for 14 hours, after which is was still just a touch too hot to drink. It is the king of all insulated bottles and you should be ashamed to be seen with anything lesser. And everything else is lesser.
posted by InsanePenguin at 10:58 AM on January 17, 2013 [3 favorites]

I haven't tried the insulated Kleen Kanteen but I love the regular stainless steel.
posted by Silvertree at 11:32 AM on January 17, 2013

We have a Sigg Thermo bottle and it keeps hot stuff hot for a crazy amount of time. I made coffee one morning around 4:30am (for eclipse watching) and it was still drinkably hot (not tepid) around 10am.
posted by fiercekitten at 11:39 AM on January 17, 2013

A 20-ounce insulated Kleen Kanteen should be perfect. It's got a wide mouth for easy cleaning (and easy pouring-stuff-into), it fits into all water bottle pockets, holders, and receptacles I've tried it in, and it keeps liquids hot/cold for a ridiculous amount of time--I've found ice from my boyfriend's morning iced coffee intact over 24 hours later. And I've found the 20-ounce capacity to be perfect for hour-long commutes.
posted by rhiannonstone at 12:35 PM on January 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Oh, and the other thing I love about the insulated Kleen Kanteen is that the lid screws on tightly so it's virtually spillproof when closed. It's not spillproof while drinking like the (also amazing) Contigo Autoseal mugs are, but I recommended the Klean Kanteen over the Contigo Autoseal because you wanted something easy to clean, which the Autoseal is NOT, especially if you drink milk-based beverages from it.
posted by rhiannonstone at 12:42 PM on January 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Klean Kanteen insulated - I take my 16oz container to work every day - three ice cubes and fill up with water and I still have ice cubes after 14 hours. This is one thing I have found that is worth the price. Keeps things hot or cold.
posted by just asking at 5:54 PM on January 17, 2013

Nissan are the best - stainless steel, hold heat well and clean up easily. Also very durable. I've lost a couple over the years, but never put a dent in one.
posted by fixer at 6:06 PM on January 17, 2013

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