The Hario V60 coffee maker is one of my favorite brewing devices. I love drip coffee, but I am not exactly a fan of the automatic drip machines. A manual dripper is the perfect brewing device for drip, and it has been a regular in my kitchen and work place for years. When I first saw a manual dripper in a coffee shop a few years ago, I was pleasantly surprised. I saw the barista behind the counter preparing coffee with a V60, and it looked so right. Coffee lovers were finally given the proper attention in a coffee shop.
My coworker, who accompanied me at the time, thought the dripper looked like something out of a chemistry lab. The curiosity got the better of her and she had to try it. Unlike me, she is a drip coffee lover, but when she tried this new brewing method she said that her daily coffee routine was ruined. She will always compare her morning coffee, made in an electric coffee machine, to that. She eventually bought a V60, although she is all for convenience. My point is, the V60 is cheap, easy to use, and an excellent way to introduce people, like my coworker, to pour over coffee brewing. If you think that a manual dripper is difficult to use, like my coworker did, you have to try to brew a cup. You’ll be convinced on the spot. Read our post about the perfect pour-over technique, if you want to become an expert. You can also read Blue Bottle's manual drip brewing guide, they have a nice visual guide.
Not all the pourover drippers are the same though. There are little details that might go unnoticed for the non-expert eye, but they will ensure a perfect brew. This is what we are going to show you today, why the Hario V60 dripper is so great, and why coffee lovers are raving about it.
Hario V60 Design - Attention to Details
Hario is a Japanese company, founded in 1921 and started as a with glassware manufacturing. They didn't just follow the industry, manufacturing whatever was trendy, they set the trend, coming up with great ideas and inventions. The Hario V60 cone is one of their most popular products after decades presence on the market. Here are a few characteristics of the V60 that makes it so desireable.
The V60 has ridges which spiral from the bottom to the top of the brewer. This design assists greatly in the brewing as it channels the water to effectively extract the perfect flavors from the coffee grind. The defining factor of the V60, however is its hole at the bottom. It is much larger than the hole in other cone shaped brewers. At first this seems to be a problem as the water filters through the V60 much quicker than with other pourover drippers.
This feature actually opens up lots of possibilities. It allows us to grind our coffee much finer and experience much more flavors in our cup. I personally always prefer a brew prepared with finer ground coffee and I am completely sold on this way of brewing. In order to balance out the quicker filtering process, V60 filters are much thinner than the filters for other brewers. The expert design of the V60 means that it is possible to brew a really excellent cup of coffee with only a little practice. This micro filtration process results in a much cleaner cup of coffee. The V60 coffee taste really is the benchmark taste of pour over coffee.
Hario means in Japanese the "King of Glass". Not only they are the kg of glass, they are also the king of coffee. Their coffee brewing equipment is viewed as the standard.
It is very difficult to fault the V60. Almost all the boxes are checked with Hario drippers.
- It is cheap
- user friendly and
- produces excellent coffee
- no need for a perfect brewing technique
Another reason that the V60 is such a great way to get into pour over brewing is the price. A plastic V60 can be picked up for the price of what you would spend on a few cups of coffee in your favourite coffee shop. This means it really is possible to start home brewing your coffee without breaking the bank. The plastic V60, compared to the other glass or ceramic brewers is very durable. I feel very comfortable leaving it in the kitchen without having to worry about anybody breaking it or hurting themselves.
One thing to be said about brewing with a plastic dripper is that the heat does escape more easily than with other materials. Hario have answer this problem by making V60s in ceramic or glass as well. These materials keep the heat in the brew much better than the plastic version. Because of this they are slightly more expensive and are more prone to breakages. The ceramic and glass versions are also dishwasher safe. I don’t recommend that people wash plastic in the dishwasher as, after time, chemicals can pass from the plastic into your coffee if the plastic is regularly dish washed. As with anything, it comes down to preference here and whether or not you can afford to spend a little more money on your brewer.
I initially titled this review – Hario V60 V2/3. That is because I am very impressed with the second and third versions of the V60. The third and biggest version is capable of brewing up to six cups of coffee. Being from a big family, it is always a plus when I can brew in bulk. It is very frustrating when you are making coffee for a group of people and you have to brew one cup of coffee at a time! This is in comparison to the the Aeropress, which is another way of brewing I am very fond of, that can only brew one or two cups at a time. Personally it suits me to use the Hario V60 V3 when I am making coffee for other people, which is most of the time if I am honest!
The perfect companion for the V60 pourover brewer is a Hario kettle. Not all kettles are equal, so don't just try to use your existing tea kettle, because it's not going to work. Try to replicate the pouring technique above with a big kettle without a gooseneck spout...
Hario V60 Buono Kettle was created for pourover lovers. The spout allows a smooth and precise pour, which is very important with manual drip. The perfect balance of the kettle when full, makes it very easy to handle it.
Another great option would be a variable temperature kettle. It will allow you to pour the water when the water temperature is perfect. Check our page about variable temperature kettles for a few option.
The only problem I have with the V60 is the heat retention. The V60 is brewed into a separate carafe, or cup which is not a part of the brewer, as is the case with the Chemex. This means more heat is lost as the coffee is transferred. That being said, I find nothing else wrong with the Hario V60 and rely on it heavily. I give this product a nine out of ten