Santos Stovetop Vacuum Coffee Maker 1208-01
My parents introduced us to the Bodum Santos Electric Vacuum Coffee Maker years ago. Not only was it aesthetically pleasing to have on our countertop and to watch as it make coffee, but the coffee itself was very rich and full bodied, compared to the drip coffeemakers we had been using.
However, the electronic version of Bodum's vaccuum coffeemaker had some problems. First of all, the acrylic pot and reservoir deteriorated pretty quickly, cracking and dulling. Also, their shapes had crevasses that were hard to reach through the small holes. So, we decided to switch to a stovetop (non-electric) vacuum coffeemaker that was made of glass, with round curves. The biggest factor was that we live at high altitude, so the stovetop version allowed us to set our own timing for when to cut the heat and allow the coffee to return back to the pot after steeping with the grounds.
On the whole we love the coffee that we can make with this setup. The only significant drawback is that we find that from time to time, the brewed coffee won't return back down to the pot. We can't figure out whether it's because we over/under boiled, or because the top isn't seated just right, or because the filter just gets clogged sometimes. My husband seems to have more problems than I do. Otherwise, it's a perfect little coffeemaker for us -- a couple that likes a big mug of coffee in the morning on the way to work.
Pros: Durable glass, easy to clean by hand, dishwasher safe, precise timing control over brewing process, great-tasting coffee
Cons: Small size (only 2 16-oz mugs), no keep-warm feature (but good coffee should be consumed immediately), breakable glass, some brewing quirks