Travel mug that DOESN'T keep things megahot but still keeps a good seal?
October 10, 2019 5:59 AM   Subscribe

I know this might be a contradiction in terms, but I would like a durable (not glass) travel mug, preferably 16oz, that won't leak but also allows me to drink my darn coffee a little more quickly. Does this exist?

I have read through a bunch of old AskMes and have found lots of "stays hot forever!!" which, well. Thanks!
posted by wellred to Food & Drink (23 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
If this is for use in your car, have you thought of just taking the lid off, after you've sipped the liquid level down an inch or so? I've found that if you do that, the coffee cools a bit more quickly, you can drink it a bit faster, but the big benefit is that it tastes better because you'll get both the aroma and the taste. In full travel-mug mode, you don't really get any aroma which is an important part of the experience. Unless you're driving on corduroy roads, you're not going to spill anything once the liquid level is down a bit.
posted by beagle at 6:05 AM on October 10, 2019

I use these metal beans when I use a thermos. They bring the temp down a bit by absorbing heat, but then return it when the coffee gets too cold.
posted by dame at 6:11 AM on October 10, 2019 [8 favorites]

I also leave the lid off for a little before I leave the house if I can.
posted by dame at 6:13 AM on October 10, 2019

It's for work mainly, and I'm afraid of spilling on mah keyboard.
posted by wellred at 6:14 AM on October 10, 2019

At work, I arrive with my travel mug, which fits in the cup holder, but is tippy on a desk, I use a roll of duck tape. Just put a roll of duck tape on the desk, put the travel mug in the donuthole.
posted by theora55 at 6:35 AM on October 10, 2019 [2 favorites]

Travel mugs don’t keep liquids hot, they keep the temperature stable. Have you considered tossing in an ice cube before closing it up?
posted by jon1270 at 6:43 AM on October 10, 2019 [10 favorites]

How well do you need it to seal? This is what the Joeveo does passively or the Ember does actively.

The Joeveo is not a great seal; will keep coffee from going everywhere if tipped but can’t be thrown in a bag. Can’t speak to the Ember’s seal but I have the open version that I really like for quick drinkability and temp stability.
posted by supercres at 7:08 AM on October 10, 2019

So I've often put hot water in a thermos before adding hot coffee to keep it nice and hot...

Perhaps putting some ice water in before to cool it before adding hot could help the temperature...

This would add stress on the material - so probably better for metal than say ceramic.

Good luck (I've also been known to add an ice cube)
posted by PistachioRoux at 7:08 AM on October 10, 2019

My Tervises do this. They are not super great at keeping things scalding hot forever, which I've found makes them perfect for travel tea.
posted by fiercecupcake at 7:09 AM on October 10, 2019

I'm a huge promoter of Contigo mugs. I've never noticed a too-hot problem, and they're super leakproof.
posted by Miko at 7:12 AM on October 10, 2019 [3 favorites]

I use a (plastic, non-insulated) KeepCup. I wouldn't trust the seal in a backpack or purse, but it works fine for commuting and prevents keyboard disasters.
posted by specialagentwebb at 7:14 AM on October 10, 2019

I have found that 4 ice cubes from the work ice maker tempers their scalding-hot coffee to an instantly-drinkable temperature. This is using a 20 ounce vacuum-insulated stainless tumbler (Yeti).

we had the opportunity to get some thermally-molded earplugs recently, and they used a thermos with integrated sous vide style temperature control to heat the water for them. the brand they used was Cauldryn.
posted by ArgentCorvid at 7:28 AM on October 10, 2019

I have an REI branded Stanley insulated mug that cools to room temp in an hour. I use it when commuting for this reason. I use the hydro flask when I need 4-8 hours of hot or cold.
posted by MillMan at 7:46 AM on October 10, 2019

I also love my Contigo but I would also prefer my coffee just a little bit cooler for drinking. And I have been known to add chilled milk, a bit of cold water or an ice cube to great effect. If I manage to be organised making my coffee and leaving the lid off whilst I shower and get ready seems to do the trick as well.
posted by koahiatamadl at 7:47 AM on October 10, 2019 [2 favorites]

You're asking for a bad travel mug. You don't want that. Get a good travel mug that maintains the temperature (e.g.), and drop 1-2 ice cubes in.
posted by caek at 10:37 AM on October 10, 2019 [1 favorite]

I don't want watered-down coffee, I want coffee that cools a bit. Thanks for all the responses, I have some really good possibilities here!
posted by wellred at 11:17 AM on October 10, 2019 [2 favorites]

Coffee ice cubes. Seriously - you don't water down your coffee, you bring it just the right temperature, then your awesomely-insulated travel mug keeps it there.
posted by epanalepsis at 12:15 PM on October 10, 2019 [5 favorites]

I have the same problem with my Klean Kanteen. My coffee maker makes the coffee very hot and when I get to my coworking space the coffee is still too hot to drink from the container.

Ceramic coffee mugs started showing up in stores last year. (Example) They look like a generic Starbucks cup but are made of stoneware, which may not meet your need for "durable." But, they fit cup holders everywhere and act as a thermal sink to cool the coffee to a drinkable temperature.
posted by revgeorge at 12:19 PM on October 10, 2019

Contigo Autoseal mugs are leakproof, but have a fair bit of heat-loss through the plastic lid. I have never found my coffee to be too hot in mine.

The added bonus: the seal is on when the mug is sitting around - you have to press to drink. So if you knock over your mug, it doesn't spill. It locks for when you want to put the mug in a bag.
posted by jb at 12:42 PM on October 10, 2019 [1 favorite]

Thirding the Contigo. Family members that are sick have used them in bed and even if you fall asleep holding it, there is no leakage. Any of the cool-down hacks will help. I’ll offer another—leave the lid off while you brush your teeth/comb your hair/sharpen your fangs/whatever and maybe it will be the perfect temp when you put the lid on?
posted by Gilgamesh's Chauffeur at 6:25 PM on October 10, 2019

I have this Yeti camp mug. Yeti products are generally very good at retaining heat, but I mention it because its shape means it's harder to knock over than your average travel mug. I find that if I leave the lid off while the tea brews and then add milk, the tea is a good temperature for drinking.
posted by hoyland at 3:04 AM on October 11, 2019

Re watering down - I tend to start with an espresso base that requires watering down to get a ‘coffee’ strength beverage as a matter of course. Instead of adding hot liquids I just also add cold or frozen.
posted by koahiatamadl at 5:08 AM on October 11, 2019

Also recommending the Contigo Autoseal. In fact, what I have noticed is that it keeps the coffee at a decently hot drinkable temperature for a long time as opposed to keeping it at the temperature I initially made it at - I can start drinking in about 30 minutes to an hour if I leave the lid on, sooner if I leave it off for a bit. (I make my coffee at home and drink it at work, so it's cooling during my commute.)
posted by sm1tten at 10:11 AM on October 11, 2019

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