What is this vintage coffee device? Can I get one?
March 19, 2014 8:03 AM   Subscribe

What is the vintage kitchen device in the corner in this picture? It looks like a chrome football standing on three thin columns, with a spigot at the bottom. It appears to come apart into separate compartments, like a coffee maker. It says "Jet" near the spigot. I assume it is either a basket coffee maker or a percolator, but it doesn't appear to have an electric plug like I would expect for a stand percolator. I am unable to locate any information about this device on the internet. Is it possible to find one of my very own?

I have seen the device in person, at the Kohler Design Center in Kohler, WI, but this is not my photo.
posted by stopgap to Food & Drink (10 answers total)
It looks like a coffee urn. You may have had sterno or some other heat source underneath it to keep the coffee hot.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 8:07 AM on March 19, 2014

I assumed it was just a fancy cafeterier?
posted by DarlingBri at 8:25 AM on March 19, 2014

Looks a lot like an 'atomic' era style coffee maker like e.g. this one - are you sure it doesn't have a cable hidden out of sight?
posted by AFII at 8:32 AM on March 19, 2014

Another possibility is that the plug has been removed for staging purposes. See this ebay listing for a similar item, and note the spot for a cord to plug in on the back side.
posted by misterbrandt at 8:32 AM on March 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

Unless you looked at it carefully in person and know that it's cordless, I'd assume that there's a cord that's just not shown; note that the toaster in that beautifully staged photo is also cordless.
posted by aimedwander at 8:42 AM on March 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Yes, I looked at it in person. I have found those percolators on eBay. As I said, this doesn't have a cord, and it doesn't appear it could be used on a stovetop. I hadn't considered sterno. But because it appears to come apart into three compartments (top, middle, bottom), my assumption is that it is used for brewing, with hot water poured under the lid and a filter in the middle.
posted by stopgap at 8:58 AM on March 19, 2014

Best answer: Call or email the design center?
posted by enfa at 9:16 AM on March 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

I questioned the eBay seller who replied: "It works on normal household current 110 volts".
posted by lungtaworld at 11:06 AM on March 19, 2014

I definitely think it should come with a cord like this one does. When you checked it personally, did you also check the very bottom of the percolator?
posted by misha at 7:35 PM on March 19, 2014

Response by poster: Yes, I picked it up and turned it around. Again, I'm not sure it was a percolator because of the way it is constructed, but I didn't open it up to check out the insides — that seemed a little too nosy. I contacted the design center as suggested, and they told me the name of the designer. The designer just told me it was "a vintage piece." So I think this search can't really go any farther unless someone recognizes that exact item.
posted by stopgap at 8:45 PM on March 19, 2014

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