Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Lab glassware makes coffee...yeaaaaaaaaaa!

This is cool, but unfortunately, it is a prototype and the designer is looking for some backing to market this unusual coffee pot.

"Coffee Maker That Looks Like It Comes From A Chemistry Lab"

The Café Bala-o is a coffee maker that'd look right at home in chemistry class, but it's simple enough for anyone to use.


John Brownlee

December 3rd, 2013

Fast Company

Perhaps it's the late nights at the lab, or just the fact that the ubiquitous glassware is so well suited for double duty brewing up a cup of joe, but chemistry and coffee have always seemed to go hand in hand. The Café Bala-o is a coffee machine that even Mendeleev (or Gale Boetticher) could have loved: a siphon-like coffeemaker that borrows its design cues not from Nespresso, but from the equipment of a science-age chemistry lab.

Designed by Portuguese design student Davide Mateus, the Café Bala-o looks very much at first glance like a modified version of the Kipp Apparatus. There are two tiers of the Bala-o, one for water and the other coffee, each of which is made with reinforced glass. Place ground coffee in the top bulb, and fill the bottom tier with with water. A submerged electric coil heats up and boils the water when the Bala-o is plugged in.

After it has boiled for however long you want it to boil, you unplug the Bala-o. As the coffee cools, it flows back into the lower chamber, leaving the spent grinds in the top container.

According to Mateus, a master's student at the ESAD.CR design school in Caldas de Rainha, the Café Bala-o's laboratory bowl setup results in a sweet, delicious cup of coffee every time, thanks to the glass construction and precise control over the length of the brew. Inspired by watching local chemists use a siphon coffee maker over a bunsen burner, Mateus set out to create a design that borrowed the mad scientist-like trappings of the siphon experience, but which did not require open flame or an external burner to make.

The Café Bala-o is not available for sale yet, although Mateus's functional prototype is being adapted to industrial production. He is currently looking for partners to make a mass-produced Café Bala-o a reality.


Kipp's apparatus [Wikipedia]

And this item is similar...

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