History of Coffeemakers

How It All Started

Ever wondered how we have arrived today at the place where the number of coffeemaker choices is nothing short of mind-blowing and the number of gadgets and timers and magical milk-whipping accessories is enough to make you obsessive about how and what your own personal coffeemaker features?  The claim to the very first coffee maker is up in the air between the Turkish, circa 575 A.D. and the Yemen.  Either way, it's most likely that the world's very first coffeemaker was really nothing more than a basic pot.  It was, however, the Turkish who developed the Ibrik, a brass coffeemaker in the shape of a small pot with a round bottom half and very narrow, slender body.  The spout at the top was rather lengthy and the pot usually usually featured a metal handle, C-shaped, on the side.  It worked just like you would imagine: coarsely ground beans were put in the bottom and hot water poured over the top.  They let the whole thing boil for a couple hours until the liquid was deemed "coffee." When the Arabs were traveling through the desert, they actually put the entire Ibrik into hot sand and it was the heat from the sand that brewed the mixture! turkish-ibrik/

Coffeemakers Spread Across the Globe

globe/ The first reported commercial coffeemakers stem, once again, from the land of Turkey, this time in Istanbul.  Coffee houses began springing up around 1554, and from the land of Turkey, the fascination soon spread to Persia, to the Ottoman Empire and to Africa next.  It finally spread to Europe thanks to Dutch sailors, but it was not until 1607, that the British brought coffee to America.  Meanwhile, most coffeemakers were fairly generic pots.  They typically featured a spout on one side and a basic wooden handle on the other. After the Boston Tea Party in 1773, the inspiration to drink more coffee really took hold and the Americans became intrigued with developing a better coffeemaker.

The Changing Face of Coffeemakers 

By 1770, the first two-chamber coffeemakers came into existence.  The coffee grounds sat in the upper chamber along with hot water that slowly filtered through to the bottom chamber, leaving the grounds behind.  Thanks to the efforts of James Nason of Massachusetts, the percolator hit the market in 1865, a method still popular for many today.  It was followed closely thereafter by the French press.  The year 1901, marked the first patented espresso machine, fully steam powered and invented by an Italian man named Luigi Bezzera.  To this day, the Italians are still considered the leaders in espresso and espresso machines.  The most popular coffeemaker of all, the electric pour-over coffee maker, was not invented until the early 1970s by Mr. Coffee.

Coffeemakers Today

The number of coffeemakers in existence today is beyond imagination.  And, not only is the number vastly overwhelming, so are the variations including percolators of all styles, moka pots, French presses, automatic single cups, pod coffee makers, super automated espresso machines, Chemex pourovers, unique products like Clever Coffee Drippers, and space-style machines like those featured below.  You'll want to stay tuned, the future of coffeemakers is exciting and completely unpredictable. 

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Concept Spherical Coffeemaker Balancing Syphon Coffeemaker Coffee Gizmo Coffeemaker