Best Milk Frother for Flat White

So you have a bit of a flat white “obsession”?

It is not a surprise as the combination of deep and rich shot of espresso (or two) with a soft and velvet like portion of hot milk is highly addictive.

Besides, we have all been there

And our demand for gourmet coffees has gone through the roof.

It is a very, very expensive habit and so it is not hard to see why you are interested in learning how to make gourmet coffee at home.

So let me help you.

One of the first things that you will need is a milk frother and the chart below shows six of the best models available.

And yes, that is an espresso machine in there!

But before we focus on those models individually, let’s find out more about flat white. 

Flat White, Milk and Foam

Any milk based coffee has a very specific ratio between two or three of the following elements;

  • coffee
  • steamed milk
  • foam

A flat white coffee is  espresso and ⅔ frothed milk (or microfoam as it is called.)

As a contrast, a cappuccino is  espresso,   steamed milk and ⅓  frothed milk. 

If you want to know more about the different ratios in other espresso based drinks between steamed and frothed milk then please read this.   

Microfoam has two essential qualities;

  • The Right Temperature: Microfoam should be between 150 °F and 170 °F.
  • Consistency: The foam should be full of tiny bubbles…

The most recommended way of creating microfoam is to use a steam wand- which are built into espresso and cappuccino machines.

To be blunt, if you want to be able to create the best flat white, regardless of cost, you need to buy an espresso machine with a steam frother.

So let’s have a look at one of the best models. 

Mr Coffee Barista Espresso

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 13 (D)  x 5.9 (W) x 13 (H) 
  • Pressure (bar): 15
  • Compatibility: 3 in 1 Portafilter
  • Frother: Manual 
  • Water Reservoir (oz | L): 35 | 1 
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen
  • Auto Off: Yes
  • Interested? Find Out More

Features

This machine has very good reviews about the quality of espresso that it makes and the quality of foam that it creates.

It is easy to create the perfect microfoam with a steam wand.

And here is a video to show you how.

The video is meant to start part way in!

Multi talented– This coffee maker will make espressos cappuccinos and lattes.

Pump Power– 15 bars of pressure help to make your espressos taste great.

Bubbles Please– An automatic frother creates the perfect topping for your lattes or cappuccinos.

Touchy Feely– buttons allow you to choose between brew sizes and types of coffee.

Easy Access-the water and milk reservoirs can be removed, making them easy to refill and clean

Understandably, if buying an espresso machine sounds too expensive, then there are two other methods to create the perfect microfoam on your flat white. 

  • Electric Jug Milk Frothers
  • Handheld Milk Frothers

Electric Jug Milk Frothers Buying Guide

Jug milk frothers tend to look like hot water kettles. The main qualities that you should look for are;

  • Stainless Steel: Find a milk frother that is made from food grade stainless steel. This makes it easy to clean and will keep it rust free. 
  • Cordless: They have a separate jug and base so that once the heating or frothing is complete, the milk in the jug can be easily moved around without having to unplug the electrical cord!
  • Capacity: A jug milk frother will normally be able to heat double the amount of milk that it can froth. 
  • Heat and Froth: A milk frother should be able to heat and froth milk or just froth cold milk.  
  • Rapid: An electric jug frother should be able to heat and froth milk in about 80 seconds. 
  • Insulated: It should be able to keep the milk warm.
  • Choice of blades: The jug frother should come with two different blades to create different types of foam- a cappuccino and a latte blade.
  • Adjustable Temperature: The best electric jug milk frother has a unique feature that allows you to choose the temperature that you want the milk heated to. 

Pros

  • Flexible: They can froth different amounts of milk
  • Insulated: They can keep the milk warm 
  • Simple: They are easy to use. Add your milk, press a button and wait.  

Cons

  • Cost: They are relatively expensive. 
  • Power: These machines need to be “plugged in.”

Souvia Automatic Milk Frother

Details

  • Dimensions (in.):  10.2″(H)  x 6″ (W) x 6″ (D)
  • Power: 500W
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Frothing Capacity: 17 oz. | 500 ml
  • Hot Froth: Yes
  • Cold Froth: Yes
  • Froth Modes: Cappucino & Latte
  • Adjustable Temperature: Yes
  • Interested? Find Out More

This Souvia (Formerly Breville) is the King of milk frothers.

If you already have a means of making great espressos and you just want to create fantastic microfoam, then seriously consider buying this.

In a market where most automatic milk frothers look much like hot water kettles, Breville offer something a little different.

But this milk frother has much more than good looks going for it.

I think that its best feature is that you can control the temperature that the milk is heated to- which is an incredibly important part of creating microfoam.

A second impressive feature is that it comes will two blades- one for creating perfect cappucinos and another for lattes.

It also has a big capacity and can froth up to half a liter of milk.

And you know what? Users rave about its ability to create a lovely microfoam.

And if all of that fails to impress, use the BMF600 to make a delicious hot chocolate instead!

Chef’s Star MF-2 Premier Automatic Milk Frother

Details

  • Dimensions (in.):  8 (H)  x 6.5 (W)  x 5 (D)
  • Power: Not Specified
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Frothing Capacity: 4.25 oz. | 125 ml
  • Heating Capacity: Yes
  • Froth Time: 80 seconds
  • Adjustable Temperature: No
  • Interested? Find Out More

Features

If the Souvia sounds great but way out of your (price) league there are other great performing milk frothers that you don’t need a bank loan to buy!

One of these is the Chef’s Star MS2.

To keep it real, let me tell you what you won’t be getting with this model!

1. Temperature Control

Like many milk frothers, the Chef’s Star is totally automatic.

You press a button and it then heats the milk (to a fixed temperature of about 150 °F.)

You have no control over this.

2. Huge Capacity

Whereas the Breville will froth up to 17 oz (or 500 ml) of milk, the Chef’s Star only froths a fraction of that- 4.25 oz (125 ml.)

But, don’t worry as there is lots to get excited about.

My favorite feature is that it has a froth density function.

Choose between hot airy foam and hot denser foam.

The hot airy foam sounds perfect for a flat white aficionado!

If you just want hot milk, this model will heat up 8.5 oz (250 ml) of it.

And the Chef’s Star will turn cold milk into hot milk in about 80 seconds- meaning that you won’t have to wait.

Gourmia GMF225 Milk Frother

Details

  • Dimensions (in.):  7.2 (H) x 6.5 (W) x 4.5 (D)
  • Power: Not Specified
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Frothing Capacity: 4.25 oz. | 125 ml
  • Heating Capacity: 8.5 oz | 250 ml
  • Froth Time: 60 seconds
  • Adjustable Temperature: No
  • Interested? Find Out More

Looking much like the Chef’s Star and offering the same kind of features, the Gourmia Frother is another model that you might want to consider.

It is a very popular product with its users and judging by the feedback, it creates a great microfoam.

Key differences between the Gourmia and the Chef’s Star are that;

  • The Gourmia has no froth density function.
  • The Gourmia has a one year warranty, not two.
  • The Gourmia is ETL certified (an electrical safety standard.)

Now, let’s move onto a selection of a different sort of milk frothers- handheld models.

Handheld Milk Frothers Buyer’s Guide

Handheld frothers are the cheapest type of frother. They look and behave like small whisks.

The main qualities that you need to look out for, are;

  • Stainless Steel: A handheld frother needs to be made with food grade stainless steel. After all you are dipping this in your cup of milk!
  • Power: Your frother needs to have an RPM (Revolutions Per Second) of 19,000 to make sure that you can create the best quality foam. 
  • Time: Your milk should be frothed within 20 seconds. 
  • Stand: Your frother needs to come with a stand that will store it neatly on your worktop. 

Pros

  • Cost: These devices are cheap
  • Portable: These devices are light and because they are battery powered they can be used anywhere. 

Cons

  • Limited: These devices can only froth or whisk small amounts of milk.
  • Cold: These devices cannot heat or insulate the milk. 
  • One Blade: They only come with one sort of blade. 
  • Difficult: In order to create a good milk froth, you must learn how to use one of these correctly. 

To help you, I have included a video below that will teach you the basics for using a handheld milk frother. 

Bean Envy Electric Milk Frother

Details

  • Dimensions: 8.7 (H) x 3.6 (W) x 1.3 (D)
  • Power: x2 AA batteries
  • RPMs: 19000
  • Material: 304 Stainless Steel
  • Froth Time: 15 Seconds
  • Handle: Silicone Rubber
  • Stand: Yes
  • Warranty: Lifetime
  • Interested? Find Out More

Features

Powered by x2 AA batteries, the Bean Envy reaches speeds of 19,000 RPM which will create the perfect cup of foam in about 15 seconds. 

Its users are divided about its ability to create a decent foam.

Many reviews are incredibly positive about the quality of foam that the Bean Envy creates.

Other people are disappointed that the foam “dissolves” so quickly.

Made from rust resistant stainless steel, the Bean Envy is built to last and it offers a satisfaction guarantee and lifetime warranty- which is very popular with its users.

304 grade stainless steel is the same as 18/10 stainless steel- which is the grade which is used for all tools used for food preparation. 

The handle is made from easy to hold silicone rubber.

The “start/ stop” button is positioned on the top which makes this frother comfortable to hold and easy to use.

Finally this model comes with a stainless steel stand, which makes storing the frother so easy and it adds to look of a very good looking product.

PowerLix Milk Frother

Details

  • Dimensions: 10 (H) x 3 (W) x 3 (D)
  • Power: x2 AA batteries
  • RPMs: 19,000
  • Material: 18/10 Stainless Steel
  • Froth Time: 15-20 Seconds
  • Handle:  Soft Touch
  • Stand: Yes
  • Warranty: 3 Month Money Back Guarantee
  • Interested? Find Out More

Features

The similarities between Powerlix and Bean Envy handheld frothers are obvious to see.

But where are the differences?

I think that there is only one main difference.

The Bean Envy offers a lifetime warranty, whereas the PowerLix only has a three month warranty!

Oh yes and the PowerLix comes with free recipe e-book.

For those of you who want more advice about buying milk frothers look at my guide below. 

Milk Frother Buying Guide

Best Single Serve Espresso Machine

Espresso is a very popular coffee drink and to prove it let’s have a look at some figures…

In a 2016 survey, 22% of 18- 24 year olds in the U.S. said that they drink espresso.

50% of Americans (150 million) drink speciality coffees, including espressos with the average coffee shop selling two to three hundred of these speciality coffees daily.

And do you want to know the one fact that should make you go out and buy your own espresso machine, now?

In the USA, the average cost of an espresso based drink is $3.45!

One of those a day is burning quite a considerable hole in your pocket.

So let me help you find the best single serve machine for you.

I have chosen five and put them in a comparison chart below.

Delonghi EC680M DEDICA 15-Bar Pump Espresso Machine, Stainless Steel
Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker, Silver
Nespresso Essenza Mini Original Espresso Machine Bundle with Aeroccino Milk Frother by Breville, Piano Black
Hamilton Beach 40725 Espresso Maker, Red
Caffé Brio, Nespresso OriginalLine Capsule Compatible Espresso Maker Machine, STX International Model STX-6000-CB with VTC Dispensing, Auto-Eject Capsule Design, 30 second Brew Time & Eco-Energy Mode
Model
Delonghi DEDICA Espresso Machine (EC680M)
Mr Coffee Espresso & Cappuccino Maker
Nespresso Essenza Mini Original Espresso Bundle
Hamilton Beach Espresso Maker (40725)
Caffe Brio Espresso Maker (Nespresso OriginalLine)
Dimensions
13 x 5.9 x 13 in
11.22 x 8.86 x 12.6 in
12.9 x 3.3 x 8 in
12.9 x 3.3 x 8 in
13 x 3.8 x 9 in
Pressure
15 Bar
15 Bar
19 Bar
19 Bar
20 Bar
Power
1450 Watts
1040 Watts
1100- 1450 Watts
1350 Watts
1200 Watts
Filter
1 shot | 2 Shot | Pod
1 shot | 2 Shot |
Nesspresso Capsules
Nesspresso Capsules
Nespresso Capsules
Water Reservoir
35 oz. | 1 L
54 oz. | 1.5 L
29 oz. |.6 L
?
20 oz. |.6 L
$206.23
from $39.99
from $101.59
$97.46
$89.80
Delonghi EC680M DEDICA 15-Bar Pump Espresso Machine, Stainless Steel
Model
Delonghi DEDICA Espresso Machine (EC680M)
Dimensions
13 x 5.9 x 13 in
Pressure
15 Bar
Power
1450 Watts
Filter
1 shot | 2 Shot | Pod
Water Reservoir
35 oz. | 1 L
$206.23
Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker, Silver
Model
Mr Coffee Espresso & Cappuccino Maker
Dimensions
11.22 x 8.86 x 12.6 in
Pressure
15 Bar
Power
1040 Watts
Filter
1 shot | 2 Shot |
Water Reservoir
54 oz. | 1.5 L
from $39.99
Nespresso Essenza Mini Original Espresso Machine Bundle with Aeroccino Milk Frother by Breville, Piano Black
Model
Nespresso Essenza Mini Original Espresso Bundle
Dimensions
12.9 x 3.3 x 8 in
Pressure
19 Bar
Power
1100- 1450 Watts
Filter
Nesspresso Capsules
Water Reservoir
29 oz. |.6 L
from $101.59
Hamilton Beach 40725 Espresso Maker, Red
Model
Hamilton Beach Espresso Maker (40725)
Dimensions
12.9 x 3.3 x 8 in
Pressure
19 Bar
Power
1350 Watts
Filter
Nesspresso Capsules
Water Reservoir
?
$97.46
Caffé Brio, Nespresso OriginalLine Capsule Compatible Espresso Maker Machine, STX International Model STX-6000-CB with VTC Dispensing, Auto-Eject Capsule Design, 30 second Brew Time & Eco-Energy Mode
Model
Caffe Brio Espresso Maker (Nespresso OriginalLine)
Dimensions
13 x 3.8 x 9 in
Pressure
20 Bar
Power
1200 Watts
Filter
Nespresso Capsules
Water Reservoir
20 oz. |.6 L
$89.80

But what features should you be looking to consider?

Pressure

A good espresso is made when hot water is injected into ground coffee at high speed.

And so the speed (or pressure) that the water is forced through at, is an important feature.

It is measured in bars. 

This is because in order to get as much flavor out of the coffee grinds as possible

And in my selection, there is a even spread of “different” pressures.

15 Bar The Delonghi and the Mr Coffee machines have 15 bar of pressure.

19 Bar The Essenza Mini and the Hamilton Beach produce 19 bars of pressure.

20 Bar The Caffe Brio produces 20 bars of pressure.

Now, here’s the thing.

A perfect espresso is made when water is forced through the coffee grinds at 9 bar of pressure.

But the pressure must be consistent as it passes through the coffee. It cannot drop.

To guarantee this consistency, manufacturers have designed machines that are capable of producing much more pressure. 

And this makes sense up to about 15 bar of pressure.

Anything greater is a “complete” nonsense.

If you don’t believe me, watch this snippet of video in which a very  experienced barista says as much. 

Well, OK. She called it “superfluous” but it means the same thing.

Filter

The next feature to think about is the type of filtering.

Although you are primarily after a single serve machine, do you want it to be capable of making 1 shot of espresso or 2 shots?

Ground Coffee vs Coffee Pods

And do you want a device that uses ground coffee or coffee pods?

Nespresso Capsules There are three machines that are purely single serve and that use Nespresso capsules.

These are; Essenza Mini, Hamilton Beach and Caffe Brio

Ground Espresso There are two machines in my comparison that use ground coffee.

They are; the DeLonghi and the Mr Coffee models.

Water Reservoirs

Reservoirs are convenient because they stop us having to refill our coffee makers after every cup of espresso.

However, they are not popular with everyone.

Some people think that water reservoirs can be a source of mould and bacteria.

The largest water reservoir is in the Mr Coffee Espresso maker and its capacity is 54 oz. or 1.5 liters.

The Caffe Brio has the smallest reservoir at only 20 oz or 0.6 liters.

Dimensions

I think that the most important dimension is the width of the machine.

Most of us have limited space on our kitchen counters and so slimline machines (that can still pack a punch) are becoming more popular.

The Essenza Mini and the Hamilton Beach espresso machines are the slimmest at 3.3 inches wide.

The coffee maker with the widest body is Mr Coffee.

Just Espresso

The final feature of an espresso machine to consider is simply, do you want it to only make espressos or to have a milk frother so that it can cappuccinos and lattes as well?

Two models in this comparison have a built- in frother and another comes with a milk frother as part of a bundle.

The two models with a built- in frother are the DeLonghi and Mr Coffee.

The Essenza Mini bundle includes a separate frother.

DeLonghi Espresso Machine EC680M

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 13 (D)  x 5.9 (W) x 13 (H) 
  • Pressure (bar): 15
  • Compatibility: 3 in 1 Portafilter
  • Frother: Manual 
  • Water Reservoir (oz | L): 35 | 1 
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen
  • Power (watts): 1450

Features

With its rounded stainless edges, manual frother and filter holder with a elegant black handle, the DeLonghi Dedica EC680 looks like a scale model of a professional espresso machine.

Coffee shop at Home Create your own espressos, cappuccinos or lattes as if they are shop bought.

Pressure? What pressure? Awesome coffee needs a little bit of pressure and this machine delivers 15 bars…

Triple EspressoThe filter holder comes with three cartridges; single shot, double shot and Easy Serve Espresso (ESE) pod.

Your choice of milk, as you like it: the manual frother gives you total control over the milk of your choice- soy, almond or skimmed

Coffee Grande Please If you want a larger cup of coffee, then the bottom tray can be adjusted.

Slim Good Looks At just 6 inches wide this model is perfect for a kitchen counter that is short on space.

Mr Coffee Cafe Barista Espresso and Capuccino Maker

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 8.86 (D) x 11.22 (W) x 12.6 (H)
  • Pressure (bar): 15
  • Compatibility: 2 in 1 Portafilter
  • Frother: Automatic 
  • Water Reservoir (oz | L): 54 | 1.5
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen
  • Power (watts): 1040

Features

Starting in 1970, Mr Coffee has developed into a highly respected coffee machine making company.

Multi talented– This coffee maker will make espressos cappuccinos and lattes.

Pump Power– 15 bars of pressure help to make your espressos taste great.

Bubbles Please An automatic frother creates the perfect topping for your lattes or cappuccinos.

Touchy Feely– buttons allow you to choose between brew sizes and types of coffee.

Easy Access-the water and milk reservoirs can be removed, making them easy to refill and clean

Nespresso Essenza Mini

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 12.9 (D) x 3.3 (W) x 8 (H) 
  • Pressure (bar): 19
  • Compatibility: Nespresso Capsules
  • Frother: Automatic 
  • Water Reservoir (oz | L): 29 | .6
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen
  • Power (watts): 1100- 1450

Features

Capsule Heaven This model uses Nespresso OriginalLine capsules- making great tasting coffee has never been so easy.

Spoilt for Choice With dozens of different roast varieties and blends to choose from, your perfect espresso is here.

Small and Elegant At just over 3 inches wide, this machine is seriously small. But is still makes delicious espressos.

Espresso Injection This tiny marvel delivers about 19 bar of pressure

Hot & Efficient It takes just 25 seconds to get the water to temperature and it will automatically turn off after 9 minutes.

For Me? Each Essenza Mini includes an OriginalLine welcome pack of 14 different capsules

Espresso+ This product comes with the Aeroccino 3 milk frother so that you can make lattes and cappucinos.

Hamilton Beach 40792 Espresso & Cappuccino Maker

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 16.5 (D) x 6.41 (W) x 11.75 (H) 
  • Pressure (bar): 19
  • Compatibility: Nespresso Capsules
  • Frother: No 
  • Water Reservoir (oz | L): 22 | .6
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen
  • Power (watts): 1350

Features

Espressos are synonymous with Italy- they are the most popular form of coffee.

The Hamilton Beach is a shade of red that also has a strong link to Italy…

Ferrari red.

Italian Power a pump that delivers 15 bar to help create a perfect crema.

This Espresso or That– Use ground coffee or ESE (Easy Serving Espresso) pods

Totally Secure– the filter holder slides and locks into place. You know that it is ready to go.

Take Away The drip tray and the water reservoir are both removable.

Caffé Brio Nespresso Espresso Maker

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 13 (D) x 3.8 (W) x 9 (H) 
  • Pressure (bar): 20 
  • Compatibility: Nespresso Original Line Capsules
  • Frother: No 
  • Water Reservoir (oz | L): 20 | .6
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen
  • Power (watts): 1200

Features

One Shot or Two? Decide how many shots of espresso you want using the Variable Timer Control

Quick of the Mark The Brio has a 30 second brew time.

Capsule Espressos This model is designed to work with Nespresso OriginalLine capsules. 

Tidy Storage– Up to 12 used capsules are automatically ejected and stored.

Up and Down The cup platform has two height settings for different sized cups

Smart Energy– The machine goes into standby after 15 minutes of inactivity.

No Brainer The Brio comes with a 30 day free money back guarantee and a 3 year warranty.

Best Vacuum Flask for Keeping Liquids Hot

As a keen walker, I know how important it is to have a good quality vacuum flask as part of my kit.

A nice hot cup of tea or coffee whilst I am out could be the difference between a great walk and…

returning home early!

Related Post: Best Thermos for Keeping Coffee Hot

In my chart below I highlight five of the best vacuum flasks for keeping liquids hot.

Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle
YETI Rambler 36oz Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Bottle with Cap
CamelBak Chute Vacuum-Insulated Stainless Water Bottle, 40oz
Thermos Stainless Steel King 40 Ounce Beverage Bottle
Corkcicle Triple Insulated Water Bottle and Thermos
Model
Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle
Yeti Rambler
CamelBak Chute
Thermos Stainless Steel King
Corkcicle Triple Insulated
Capacity
1.1 QT (1.25 L)
36 oz | 1 L
40 oz. (1.1 L)
40 oz. (1.1 L)
25 oz. | .75 L
Hot | Cold
32 | 32
? | ?
6 | 24
24 | 24
12 | 25
Dimensions
14.25 " (H) | 3.9" (W)
10.75" (H) | 3.75" (W)
11 " (H) | 3.8" (W)
12.1" (H) | 3.7" (W)
7" (H) | 4" (W)
Material
18/ 8 Steel
18/ 8 Steel
18/8 Steel
18/8 Steel
18/8 Steel
Leakproof
Price
from $19.82
from $49.98
from $32.99
from $19.29
from $19.95
Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle
Model
Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle
Capacity
1.1 QT (1.25 L)
Hot | Cold
32 | 32
Dimensions
14.25 " (H) | 3.9" (W)
Material
18/ 8 Steel
Leakproof
Price
from $19.82
Details
YETI Rambler 36oz Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Bottle with Cap
Model
Yeti Rambler
Capacity
36 oz | 1 L
Hot | Cold
? | ?
Dimensions
10.75" (H) | 3.75" (W)
Material
18/ 8 Steel
Leakproof
Price
from $49.98
Details
CamelBak Chute Vacuum-Insulated Stainless Water Bottle, 40oz
Model
CamelBak Chute
Capacity
40 oz. (1.1 L)
Hot | Cold
6 | 24
Dimensions
11 " (H) | 3.8" (W)
Material
18/8 Steel
Leakproof
Price
from $32.99
Details
Thermos Stainless Steel King 40 Ounce Beverage Bottle
Model
Thermos Stainless Steel King
Capacity
40 oz. (1.1 L)
Hot | Cold
24 | 24
Dimensions
12.1" (H) | 3.7" (W)
Material
18/8 Steel
Leakproof
Price
from $19.29
Details
Corkcicle Triple Insulated Water Bottle and Thermos
Model
Corkcicle Triple Insulated
Capacity
25 oz. | .75 L
Hot | Cold
12 | 25
Dimensions
7" (H) | 4" (W)
Material
18/8 Steel
Leakproof
Price
from $19.95
Details

Before we look at those individual flasks in lots of detail, let me just highlight some of issue relating to vacuum flasks. 

History

Vacuum flasks were invented by a Scot named James Dewar in 1892, which is why sometimes they are called Dewar bottles.

Made of brass, his flasks were designed to keep the temperature of chemicals constant.

In a sad twist to the story, Dewar refused to get his design patented, which he would regret 12 years later.

In 1904 two Germans realised the potential the design had for keeping drinks hot or cold and they designed and patented the Thermos flask.

They are actually two separate flasks placed inside one another and joined at the neck.

The gap between the two flasks is a vacuum which stops heat being transferred.

But before I start to look at each of these flasks individually, I will quickly list some of the features that make a vacuum flask great.

Insulation

Any flask that you are looking at must have at least a double wall vacuum insulation. Most flasks will quantify the number of number of hours that a drink can be kept hot or cold for.

Most flasks can keep drinks colder for longer periods than they can keep drinks hot.

The vacuum insulation means that no matter if your drink is piping hot or ice cold, the outer case of the flask will not burn or freeze your hand.

In this post, the flask with the longest insulation times is the Stanley Classic.

It promises to keep drinks cold or hot for a staggering 32 hours.

Stainless Steel

The next quality that you are looking for in a vacuum flask is that it is made from 18/8 stainless steel.

To keep things simple, 18 refers to the percentage of chromium that the steel is made from.

So 18 steel contains 18% chromium.

8 refers to the percentage of nickel in it, which is 8%.

The chromium makes steel rust proof.

The nickel makes it shiny and more resistant to corrosion.

18/ 8 stainless steel is food grade as it is used in most food preparation and dining contexts.

Insulated Cup

Some buyers want a vacuum flask to come with a cup, which is traditionally how they have been designed.

But as the designs and the markets have changed, fewer flasks now come with cups.

In the past people wanted to drink their coffee in a cup, whereas now people are happier to drink straight from a (well designed) flask.

Perhaps it could also be that vacuum flasks were often used in group or family outings.

In these settings, you would have wanted more than one cup.

Nowadays, flasks are used solely by individuals and so cups are not quite so necessary.

Besides, a cup makes a flask taller and heavier- which might be a disadvantage.

Leak proof

Any flask needs to be leak proof so that it does not create a mess.

If it is being carried in a bag, you need to know that it will not leak on any of the other things that you have in the bag.

You don’t want other items spoiled but also you don’t want to lose any of the drink that you have made.

Lifetime warranty

Some of the best flasks in my comparison have got a limited lifetime warranty.

This means that if they are any defects in how the product was made, you should be able to claim for a new item.

Other flasks have five year warranties.

You do need to be careful however.

Because of the rise of fake goods, some manufacturers will only honour their warranties if you buy from their Amazon shop.

Cleaning

A flask needs to be as easy as possible to clean otherwise people just might stop using them.

In an ideal world all flasks would be dishwasher safe.

But very few of them are and in my comparison only one of them is.

Most flasks just the lid is dishwasher safe as the body needs to be hand washed.

Carrying

How will you carry your flask?

Will it spend most of its time in a backpack or will you be carrying it separately?

The Stanley Classic and the Stainless King both have old fashioned handles.

The CamelBak and the Yeti can be carried with your fingers.

So, now that we have looked at some ideal features, let’s have a look at each flask in turn.

Stanley Classic Bottle

Details

  • Capacity 44 oz | 1.25 L
  • Hot 32 Hours Cold 32 Hours
  • Dimensions 14.25″ (H) x 3.9″ (W)
  • Lid Screw top
  • Clean Handwash
  • Cup Yes
  • Warranty Lifetime

Features

This is a timeless classic, a little changed mainstay of campsites across the country.

The details speak for themselves.

Claiming to offer outstanding levels of insulation- 32 hours for hot and cold and 160 hours for iced drinks, this flask is the real deal.

And guess what?

Looking at the reviews, those claims are fairly accurate.

The Stanley classic is built to take a few knocks and it’s lifetime warranty backs up the claim.

It is BPA free and rust proof.

Using food grade 18/8 stainless steel, this bottle comes with an insulated 8 oz cup.

Yeti Rambler

Details

  • Capacity 36 oz | 1 L
  • Hot Cold ?
  • Dimensions 10.75″ (H) x 3.75″ (W)
  • Lid Screw top
  • Clean Dishwasher
  • Cup No
  • Warranty 5 Years

Features

This bottle comes in seven different colors including olive green and seafoam!

Using DuraCoat these colors won’t fade, peel or crack however much the bottles are used.

Yeti do not quantify the number of hours that your drink will stay hot and cold for which is a bit of a stupid omission in my opinion. 

This bottle uses double wall vacuum insulation which promises to keep drinks ice cold or piping hot “until the last sip”.

However, the reviews are impressive and they back up the claim that drinks will be keep cold or hot all day long.

Using kitchen grade 18/8 stainless steel, all parts of this bottle can be happily put in the dishwasher.

The cap is designed so that the bottle can be carried with three fingers, looped through the cap.

Whilst it doesn’t come with an insulated cup, the bottle uses “over- the- nose” technology so that the bottle can be drunk from directly or can poured easily into a cup.

The yeti comes with a 5 year warranty but it is designed to be “virtually indestructible”.

CamelBak Chute

Details

  • Capacity 40 oz | 1.1 L
  • Hot 6 Hours Cold 24 Hours
  • Dimensions 11″ (H) x 3.8″ (W)
  • Lid Screw top
  • Clean Handwash
  • Cup No
  • Warranty Lifetime

Features

CamelBak are most famous for their hydration packs- small rucksacks with drink pouches and a tube attached.

But the Chute is a thermos bottle which promises to keep drinks hot for 6 hours and cold for 24 courtesy of its vacuum seal technology.

It comes in 9 different powder coated color choices, including Fig and Violet and a limited lifetime warranty.

Using 18/8 grade stainless steel and BPA free plastic, in order to keep your CamelBak bottle pristine, make sure that you hand wash it. The lid can be placed in the top rack of the dishwasher.

This model doesn’t include an insulated cup but it has a rapid hydration, angled spout built into the lid.

The Chute doesn’t have a handle but the lid includes a hook so that you can carry it with one finger.

Thermos Stainless King

Details

  • Capacity 40 oz | 1.1 L
  • Hot 24 Hours Cold 24 Hours
  • Dimensions 12.1″ (H) x 3.7″ (W)
  • Lid Screw top
  • Clean Handwash
  • Cup Yes
  • Warranty 5 Years

Features

The Thermos Stainless King comes from another insulated bottle giant.

A company that is respected so highly that the brand name describes a whole range of products.

The 40 oz. Stainless King only comes in one color which is Cranberry.

This thermos flask is built using 18/ 8 grade stainless steel and using its famous vacuum insulation, it will keep drinks cold for 24 hours and hot for 24 hours.


Insulation- wise, that places it second only to the the Stanley Classic.

Also, like the Stanley flask, this Thermos model comes with an insulated cup.

Another similarity is that both models have a handle on the side.

Its impressive 5 year warranty helps to make the Stainless King a very popular thermos flask.

Corkcicle Triple Insulated

Details

  • Capacity 25 oz | 0.7 L
  • Hot 12 Hours Cold 25 Hours
  • Dimensions 7″ (H) x 4″ (W)
  • Lid Screw top
  • Clean Handwash
  • Cup No
  • Warranty 1 Year

Features

And now for something completely different.

In so many different ways…

Most other vacuum flasks (and all of the ones in my comparison) make a lot of their “double insulated” properties.

Well, the Corkcicle goes above and beyond with its triple insulated system which allow it to keep drinks cold for 25 hours and hot for 12 hours.

And unique because of its gorgeous design.

Forget your powder coated colors, the Corkcicle is available in up to 26 different colors, including copper.

Also this model isn’t a plain cylindrical shape- it has a “corrugated” design which helps make the bottle easier to hold.

Most other thermos flasks appeal to campers, hikers or people who work outdoors by how their flasks perform.

The Corkcicle is a solid but luxury product that wants to be bought by people who care about how their flask looks more than how it performs…

Intrigued? Find out more here

Best Single Serve Coffee Maker for Dorm

Are you just off to College and you have realised that you can no longer afford your Starbuck’s habit?

Or have you been at College for a while and you have just met the love of your life? 

Coffee!

Either way, you are probably on the hunt for a new piece of kit.

A single serve brewer.

But what is the best single serve coffee machine for your dorm?

In the chart below, I have my top six picks.

Keurig K-Mini K15 Single-Serve K-Cup Pod Coffee Maker, Black
CHULUX Single Serve Coffee Maker Brewer for Single Cup Capsule with 12 Ounce Reservoir,Black
Hamilton Beach 49981A Coffee Maker, Single Serve, Silver
Nespresso VertuoLine Coffee and Espresso Maker with Aeroccino Plus Milk Frother, Black (Discontinued Model)
BLACK+DECKER Single Serve Coffeemaker, Black, CM618
AdirChef Grab N' Go Personal Coffee Maker with 15 oz. Travel Mug, Black/Stainless Steel
Model
Keurig K- Mini K15
Chulux Single Serve Coffee Maker
Hamilton Beach Single Serve
Nespresso VertuoLine Coffee and Espresso Maker
Black and Decker Single Serve Coffee Maker (CM 618)
AdirChef Grab and Go
Dimensions
7.5 W x 10.5 D x 11.1 H in
4.3 W x 7.5 D x 9.8 H in
9.8 W x 7.6 D x 13.5 H in
9.8 W x 7.6 D x 13.5 H in
7.4 W x 5.9 D x 12.1 H in
6.7 W x 5.1 D x 10.1 H in
Brew Size
Up to 10 oz.
Up to 12 oz.
Up to 14 oz.
Up to 14 oz.
Up to 14 oz.
Up to 15 oz.
Pod Compatibility
K Cup
K Cup
Ground Coffee
VertuoLine Only
Ground Coffee | Soft Pods
Ground Coffee
Removable Drip Tray
Travel Mug Friendly
If Drip Tray Removed
Included
Included
Auto Off
Keurig K-Mini K15 Single-Serve K-Cup Pod Coffee Maker, Black
Model
Keurig K- Mini K15
Dimensions
7.5 W x 10.5 D x 11.1 H in
Brew Size
Up to 10 oz.
Pod Compatibility
K Cup
Removable Drip Tray
Travel Mug Friendly
Auto Off
CHULUX Single Serve Coffee Maker Brewer for Single Cup Capsule with 12 Ounce Reservoir,Black
Model
Chulux Single Serve Coffee Maker
Dimensions
4.3 W x 7.5 D x 9.8 H in
Brew Size
Up to 12 oz.
Pod Compatibility
K Cup
Removable Drip Tray
Travel Mug Friendly
If Drip Tray Removed
Auto Off
Hamilton Beach 49981A Coffee Maker, Single Serve, Silver
Model
Hamilton Beach Single Serve
Dimensions
9.8 W x 7.6 D x 13.5 H in
Brew Size
Up to 14 oz.
Pod Compatibility
Ground Coffee
Removable Drip Tray
Travel Mug Friendly
Auto Off
Nespresso VertuoLine Coffee and Espresso Maker with Aeroccino Plus Milk Frother, Black (Discontinued Model)
Model
Nespresso VertuoLine Coffee and Espresso Maker
Dimensions
9.8 W x 7.6 D x 13.5 H in
Brew Size
Up to 14 oz.
Pod Compatibility
VertuoLine Only
Removable Drip Tray
Travel Mug Friendly
Auto Off
BLACK+DECKER Single Serve Coffeemaker, Black, CM618
Model
Black and Decker Single Serve Coffee Maker (CM 618)
Dimensions
7.4 W x 5.9 D x 12.1 H in
Brew Size
Up to 14 oz.
Pod Compatibility
Ground Coffee | Soft Pods
Removable Drip Tray
Travel Mug Friendly
Included
Auto Off
AdirChef Grab N' Go Personal Coffee Maker with 15 oz. Travel Mug, Black/Stainless Steel
Model
AdirChef Grab and Go
Dimensions
6.7 W x 5.1 D x 10.1 H in
Brew Size
Up to 15 oz.
Pod Compatibility
Ground Coffee
Removable Drip Tray
Travel Mug Friendly
Included
Auto Off

And if your still undecided about the need to buy a coffee maker, consider this.

If you spend an average of $3-$4 a day in your local coffee shop, then over a year you will spend close to $1300.

Realising that this is an absurd amount of money, this student bought himself a coffee maker and saved himself a stack of cash.

Now, before we take a look in depth at these six different models, I want to think about the types of features that a student might be looking forward in a single serve coffee maker for their dorm.

And I can think of seven- quality, small, cheap, quick and easy, robust and reliable, safe and finally portable

Quality

The coffee maker that you buy must make a decent cup of Joe, otherwise you will just head back to your local coffee shop.

And what a waste of money that will have been.

Small

Most dorms are short on space partly because they are fairly small rooms but also because there will be lots of mess everywhere.

Your coffee maker needs to take up as little space as possible.

Quick and Easy

As a student, mornings are difficult enough.

Your coffee maker must make great coffee quickly and simply.

Safe

As a student, mornings are difficult enough without having to make a cup of coffee…

…and remember to turn the machine off.

Buy a coffee make that has an “auto off” function.

It remembers to turn itself off so that you don’t have to.

Easy to Clean

Another Achilles heel of many young people.

The chosen model must be easy to clean because if things are too difficult it might be left to rot.

Or, like an old piece of cheese, have bits of mould growing out of it!

Robust and Reliable

Your coffee maker needs to be robust and reliable.

It won’t get much TLC because you are just learning how to live on your own.

And you haven’t got the money to buy a replacement for a shoddy model.

So look for a coffee maker that has a longer warranty and that offers free online support via Live Chat and videos.

Portable

Finally as a student you haven’t left home just yet.

You want a coffee maker that is portable enough to take with you when you return home with some washing for your Mom to do.

Right now that I have discussed some of the key features that your coffee maker will need, let’s take a look at these works of art, one by one.

Keurig K- Mini K15

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 7.5 (W) x 10.5 (D) x 11.1 (H)
  • Brew Size (oz.): 6 | 8 | 10
  • Compatibility: K Cup Pod
  • Travel Mug Friendly: Yes
  • Auto Off: Yes
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen 
  • Strength Control: No
  • Temperature Control: No

Description

This coffee maker is designed for small spaces- it is the smallest Keurig model. It even comes with  cord storage.

Interestingly though, it is not the smallest machine in this comparison.

Related Post: Best Keurig for College Dorm 

It can brew any size of coffee from 6 oz to 10 oz- just decide how much water to put into the water reservoir.

It comes with a removable drip tray which can hold the equivalent of one spilt cup.

And it is travel mug compatible.

It has an auto shut off function which is a great energy saving feature or will help you on those occasions when you forget to turn your machine off.

It is K pod compatible which gives you access to over 70 brands and over 400 varieties of coffee.

What Makes It Unique?

This is the only Keurig device in my comparison and so, if you are a keen fan of big brands, then buy it.

After all, Keurig are the absolute King of Single Serve coffee makers.

Coffee makers are great money savers for people who would otherwise be spending a fortune at their local coffee shop.

And for a fraction of the price you can drink the same brands and varieties of coffee.

*Small

*Simple to Use

*Auto Off

* Lukewarm Coffee

*No Water Reservoir

*Not Reliable

Chulux Single Serve Coffee Maker

Details

  • Dimensions (in.):  4.3 (W) x 7.5 (D) x 9.8 (H)
  • Brew Size (oz.): Brew up to 12. 
  • Compatibility: K Cup Pod
  • Travel Mug Friendly: Remove Drip Tray
  • Auto Off: Yes
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen 
  • Strength Control: No
  • Temperature Control: No

Description

This popular Chulux model has many great features.

It is K cup compatible, but that doesn’t mean that you cannot use your own ground coffee.

It has a very compact design and at only 4.3 ” wide it is remarkably slim.

By removing the drip tray it means that you can fill using your travel cup or favorite thermos mug.

One Touch- put the pod in, close the lid and press the button.

What Makes It Unique?

This model is the slimmest at 4.3″ in my comparison,

Like the Keurig model, this coffee maker comes in a wide range of colors including red and blue.

*Small

*Great Taste

Easy to Use

*Difficult to Pour Water In

*Doesn’t Accept Reusable K Cups

No Water Level Indicator

Slow

Hamilton Beach Single Serve

Details

  • Dimensions (in.):  9.8 (W) x 7.6 (D) x 13.5 (H)
  • Brew Size (oz.): 8 – 12. 
  • Compatibility: Loose Ground Coffee
  • Travel Mug Friendly: Yes
  • Auto Off: Yes
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen 
  • Strength Control: No
  • Temperature Control: No

Description

If you are bored of the black plastic design of so many coffee makers or at best black plastic and stainless steel, then welcome to the antidote.

This puppy is all stainless steel.

And with its stainless steel good looks,  this machine doesn’t just look better quality.

It comes with a huge five year limited warranty helping to prove that it is better quality. 

This coffee maker doesn’t use pods, it uses ground coffee that you can just scoop into a basket.

This makes single cups of coffee much cheaper to make and it also means that you have a far greater choice of what coffee to brew.

It will brew cups of coffee up to 14 oz. and there is plenty of room for your favorite travel mug.

What Makes It Unique?

Plenty.

It uses ground coffee, it is stainless steel, it brews cup sizes up to 14 oz and it also includes a cup stand.

And don’t forget the five year warranty. 

In fact, this device has the most unique features of any of the models in my comparison.

*Hot coffee

*Simple to use

*Good Looking

*Needs Paper Filters

*Slow

*Messy

Nespresso VertuoLine Coffee and Espresso Maker

Details

  • Dimensions (in.):  8.3 (W) x 11.91 (H) x 11.93 (D)
  • Brew Size (oz.): From 1.35 to 14.  
  • Compatibility: VertuoLine Pods
  • Travel Mug Friendly: Yes
  • Auto Off: Yes
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen 
  • Strength Control: No
  • Temperature Control: No

Description

Not only is this machine a class apart in its good looks (yeah I know that it is black plastic!) but it also uses space age technology.

No kidding.

In order to create the best coffee, the coffee pod is spun at up to 7000 revolutions per minute.

And it has a built- in milk frother!

Just think of how good those cappuccinos will taste.

Each pod has a barcode, which identifies the perfect brew size for a drink.

From 1.35 oz to 14 ounces, this machine offers incredible flexible.

And the downside to all of this (and you knew that there was going to be one) is that VertuoLine pods are the most expensive coffee pods on the market. 

Oh well, you can’t have it all. 

What Makes It Unique?

This is the only coffee machine in my comparison that uses VertuoLine pods.

It is also the only machine that has a built in milk frother.

*Great Espressos

*Easy to use

*Beautiful

*Lukewarm Coffee

*Lukewarm Coffee

*Get the point?

Black and Decker Single Serve Coffee Maker (CM618)

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 6.14 (W) x 5.47 (D) x 9.41 (H)
  • Brew Size (oz.): up to 16
  • Compatibility: Loose Ground Coffee | Soft Coffee Pods
  • Travel Mug Friendly: Yes. One is included. 
  • Auto Off: Yes
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen 
  • Strength Control: No
  • Temperature Control: No

Description

Black & Decker make a huge range of machines, not just DIY tools.

Don’t worry- I am not about to sell you a screwdriver!

If you want to make ground coffee with the Black and Decker then you have two options.

  • loose ground coffee
  • using soft pods

Soft pods are a different kind of coffee capsule than the K Cup or the VertuoLine. The most famous type of soft pod is Tassimo.

This coffee maker comes with a travel mug.

Other features that it has include an “auto off” feature- for those times when you just forget.

What Makes It Unique?

This coffee machine is compatible with soft pods which no other machine in this comparison is.

And it has a two year warranty which none of the other models have.

*Small

*Lightweight

*Ground coffee

*Lukewarm coffee

*Weak coffee

*Filter basket difficult to clean

AdirChef Grab and Go

Details

  • Dimensions (in.): 6.7 (W) x 5.1 (D) x 10.1 (H)
  • Brew Size (oz.): up to 15
  • Compatibility: Loose Ground Coffee 
  • Travel Mug Friendly: Yes. One is included. 
  • Auto Off: Yes
  • Control: Buttons | Touch Screen 
  • Strength Control: No
  • Temperature Control: No

Description

The Black and Decker has a twin brother.

Allow me to introduce the AdirChef Grab and Go!

It is also black plastic and stainless steel and there are only fractions of inches of difference in the dimensions.

And like the Black and Decker it comes with a travel mug.

You can only use loose coffee grounds and not soft pods.

What Makes It Unique?

Nothing!

*Great price

*Small/ Lightweight

*Hot coffee

*Weak Coffee

*Travel Cup Leaks

*Looks Cheap

Best Swiss Water Process Decaf Coffee

Finding a great tasting decaffeinated coffee that has been produced using a safe and natural process is a tough ask.

Many people drink decaf coffee for health reasons which is very ironic or sad even when you read about the strong (and potentially dangerous) chemicals which are used to produce 70% of the world’s decaffeinated coffee.

But more on that later.

The good news is that there is a safer and more natural process of decaffeinating coffee beans, called the Swiss water process and there are some very high quality coffees that are produced using this method.

Before I start going into any more detail about the decaffeination process, let me show you some of the most popular Swiss water coffees.

NO FUN JO DECAF: 12 oz, Organic Decaf Coffee, Swiss Water Process, Fair Trade Certified, Medium Dark Roast, Whole Bean Arabica Coffee, USDA Certified Organic, Chemical Free, Brewed or Decaf Espresso
Kicking Horse Coffee, Decaf, Swiss Water Process, Dark Roast, Whole Bean, 10 oz - Certified Organic, Fairtrade, Kosher Coffee
2LB Cafe Don Pablo Decaf Swiss Water Process Colombian Gourmet Coffee Decaffeinated - Medium-Dark Roast - Whole Bean Coffee - 2 Pound (2 lb) Bag
100% Colombian SWP Decaf Coffee, Whole Bean, Swiss Water Processed Decaf Coffee, Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC. (2 lb.)
Brand
No Fun Jo Decaf
Kicking Horse
Cafe don Pablo
Fresh Roasted Coffee
Size
12 oz
10 oz
2 LB
2 LB
Roast
Medium Dark
Dark
Medium Dark
Medium
Whole Bean
100% Arabica
Fair Trade
Organic
Price
$11.99
from $6.99
$17.99
$25.95
NO FUN JO DECAF: 12 oz, Organic Decaf Coffee, Swiss Water Process, Fair Trade Certified, Medium Dark Roast, Whole Bean Arabica Coffee, USDA Certified Organic, Chemical Free, Brewed or Decaf Espresso
Brand
No Fun Jo Decaf
Size
12 oz
Roast
Medium Dark
Whole Bean
100% Arabica
Fair Trade
Organic
Price
$11.99
Kicking Horse Coffee, Decaf, Swiss Water Process, Dark Roast, Whole Bean, 10 oz - Certified Organic, Fairtrade, Kosher Coffee
Brand
Kicking Horse
Size
10 oz
Roast
Dark
Whole Bean
100% Arabica
Fair Trade
Organic
Price
from $6.99
2LB Cafe Don Pablo Decaf Swiss Water Process Colombian Gourmet Coffee Decaffeinated - Medium-Dark Roast - Whole Bean Coffee - 2 Pound (2 lb) Bag
Brand
Cafe don Pablo
Size
2 LB
Roast
Medium Dark
Whole Bean
100% Arabica
Fair Trade
Organic
Price
$17.99
100% Colombian SWP Decaf Coffee, Whole Bean, Swiss Water Processed Decaf Coffee, Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC. (2 lb.)
Brand
Fresh Roasted Coffee
Size
2 LB
Roast
Medium
Whole Bean
100% Arabica
Fair Trade
Organic
Price
$25.95

Did you know that the USA has the highest percentage of decaffeinated coffee drinkers in the world?

According to this study, 16% of coffee consumption in the USA is decaffeinated.

Whereas only 1% of Greeks, Fins and Norwegians drink decaf. Go figure.

But let’s take a look in more detail at the Swiss water process to find out why it is so great.

What is Swiss Water Decaf?

Swiss water decaffeination is a method of decaffeinating coffee beans.

Contrary to popular belief, it doesn’t use Swiss water but the name is derived from the fact that it was invented and first used in Switzerland- and it only uses water.

It was first developed in 1933 but it wasn’t until 1979 that it was looked at as a commercial process and later still that it was used on a wide scale.

It is a multi step procedure that uses three main ingredients (green coffee beans, Green Coffee Extract (GCE) and water) and involves natural chemical reaction.

It is quite a hard process to describe in words and so it might be helpful to watch the video below.

Green coffee beans are cleaned and then placed in water. Green Coffee Extract (GCE) is then placed in with the beans.

In the solution, caffeine from the (caffeine rich) green coffee beans is naturally absorbed by the (caffeine poor) GCE.

When the caffeine levels are the same in the Green Coffee Beans and the GCE, the GCE has the caffeine taken out of it using carbon filters.

The caffeine free GCE is placed back in with the coffee beans.

More caffeine flows from the coffee beans to the GCE until the caffeine levels are equal.

The GCE is then decaffeinated using carbon filters before once again being reintroduced with the green coffee beans.

This whole cycle is repeated until the green coffee beans are 99.9% free of caffeine- a process that takes around ten hours.

Other methods of decaffeination

Just like the Swiss water method described above, all methods of decaffeination happen with green coffee beans and not roasted ones.

There are three other methods of decaffeination.

Two of these are traditional solvent based methods and a third non solvent method that uses CO2.

Decaffeination Using Solvents

First, the two solvent methods. It is thought that 70% of all the world’s coffee beans are decaffeinated using a solvent.

Solvent methods use chemical solvents to remove caffeine.

The most common solvents used are methylene chloride or ethyl acetate.

In the direct solvent method, green coffee beans are firstly steamed in order to open up their pores.

They are then rinsed for about ten hours in methylene chloride or ethyl acetate.

The chemical solution and the beans are then separated.

The beans are steamed to get rid of any chemical residue.

Sounds scary doesn’t it?

The other solvent method is an indirect approach.

In this green coffee beans are soaked in very very hot water for several hours.

The beans and water are then separated and the beans are washed in methylene chloride or ethyl acetate for several hours.

The solvent decaffeinates the beans.

After the solvent and water are separated the beans are then soaked in the original water in order to reabsorb some of the natural flavours and oils.

It might be indirect but it still sounds very scary…

Decaffeination using CO₂

This is the newest decaffeination method, which was stumbled upon by the German scientist Kurt Zosel in the late 1960s.

This process starts with green coffee beans being steamed.

These beans are then bathed in compressed CO₂ (which absorbs the caffeine.)

The caffeine is removed from the CO₂ using charcoal filters (which is the same approach as the Swiss water method.)

However, this approach is used in a very limited way commercially and one reason for this could be is that it doesn’t produce great tasting coffee.

Now that we have look at the four main methods of decaffeination, let’s have a look at some pros and cons.

Natural vs Solvent Based Decaffeination- Pros & Cons

The Swiss Water and CO₂ methods are more natural and don’t involve any harmful chemicals.

An advantage that the CO₂ method has over the Swiss water is that the beans are not soaked in any way which some people believe robs the beans of vital flavors.

I am not sure if any of the two chemical treatments have any advantages, apart from the fact that since the majority of decaffeinated beans are treated via chemicals, it must help to bring us cheaper coffee.

Cons
The solvent based methods use strong chemicals, which cannot be good for us or good for the planet.

Perhaps you could argue that the Swiss water method might be very water intensive but it does seem to produce better tasting beans that the CO₂ method and it is commercially much more successful.

No Fun Jo Decaf

Details

  • Size: 12 oz. 
  • Roast: Medium Dark
  • Grind: Whole Bean
  • Bean Type: 100% Arabica
  • Fairtrade: Yes
  • Organic: Yes

Description

The Jo coffee brand is an organic coffee brand which was created to respond to the growing demand on Amazon for top quality coffee.

The founder is Kevin Kapaun who has been roasting coffee since the 1990’s.

Made from the very best Arabica beans- only the top 2% of beans are ever used in No Fun Jo’s blends.

This blend is a medium dark roast which provides sweet blueberry and milk chocolate flavors.

This coffee is also certified organic and free trade.

Who Should Buy It?

This coffee is perfect for someone who wants to drink the highest quality decaf on the market.

Not only is the Swiss water method the most natural way to decaffeinate coffee beans but this coffee is certified organic and fair trade.

It would suit suit lovers of medium dark roasts who like a hint of chocolate in the taste of their coffee.

Lastly, this is a 12 oz. serving which is a relatively small bag. The person who buys this wants to drink some of the freshest tasting coffee available.


Kicking Horse Decaf

Details

  • Size: 12 oz. 
  • Roast: Medium Dark
  • Grind: Whole Bean
  • Bean Type: 100% Arabica
  • Fairtrade: Yes
  • Organic: Yes

Description

With a motto of “wake up and kick ass”, Kicking Horse coffee is proud of its Canadian roots.

This dark blend of coffee is a blend of Arabica beans from Indonesia and Central and South America.

Your coffee will taste of a little chocolate with a hint of pecan nut.

This is another coffee that is certified organic and fair trade.

Who Should Buy It?

Like No Fun Jo’s, Kicking Horse Decaf is for the most discerning and conscientious customer who is interested not only in drinking the finest tasting decaf coffee but who wants that coffee produced to the highest ethical standards.

And the combination of Swiss water process, certified organic and fair trade standards tell us that.

This is a dark roast which can be brewed using the French press, Drip machine, Pour over or Cold brew methods.

Coming in a bag which is the same size as No Fun Jo’s, this coffee will suit coffee lovers who like their coffee very fresh.

Cafe don Pablo

Details

  • Size: 2 LB | 32 oz. 
  • Roast: Medium Dark
  • Grind: Whole Bean
  • Bean Type: 100% Arabica
  • Fairtrade: No
  • Organic: No

Description

Don Pablo is a family owned coffee company that grow their own coffee in Colombia and manage the production of over a million coffee trees in South America.

This packet contains 100% Arabica beans of the finest quality, which have been decaffeinated using the Swiss water process.

These beans are ground in rich, volcanic soil and are a medium dark roast to provide tastes of caramel, chocolate with a hint of citrus.

They are roasted in small batches to preserve the unique flavors of the beans and the freshness of them.

Who Should Buy It?

This large packet of whole bean coffee would really suit people who are partial to roasts from South America.

This larger bag of beans might not suit an individual (unless they drink lots of coffee) but it would be an excellent choice in a small office full of coffee addicts who love drinking coffee that is great quality.

Fresh Roasted Coffee Colombian Decaf

Details

  • Size: 2 LB | 32 oz. 
  • Roast: Medium
  • Grind: Whole Bean
  • Bean Type: 100% Arabica
  • Fairtrade: No
  • Organic: No

Description

The Fresh Roasted Coffee company was formed only in 2009.

As well as providing the best tasting coffee, the company is committed to the best ecological and social practices in its coffee production.

This large packet of whole bean Colombian decaf coffee is made from 100% Arabica beans, all grown in one region in Colombia.

The beans have been medium roasted to provide a rich flavor with hints of honey and walnut.

Who Should Buy It?

This pack of coffee is a real must buy for lovers of single origin beans. And these beans have been grown in the Huila Region of Colombia.

Once again, the larger packet size suits work places where good quality coffee is made for groups of people.

Best Thermos Keeping Coffee Hot

In a “past life”, I spent lots of time driving.

And do you want to know the worst thing about long journeys?

It is how boring they can be.

And do you want to know what my solution was?

Having a good supply of coffee to hand…

and lots of junk food!

And that meant I needed a mug to keep my coffee hot in.

There are lots of coffee addicts out there who, like me, like to have coffee when they are out and about.

And that means that they need to find the best thermos for keeping coffee hot.

Let’s take a look at the chart below to see my top 5 insulated coffee mugs…

Contigo AUTOSEAL West Loop Stainless Steel Travel Mug
Zojirushi SM-SC60HM Stainless Mug, Slate Gray
Hydro Flask Double Wall Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle/Travel Coffee Mug, Wide Mouth with BPA Free Hydro Flip Cap
Thermos Stainless King 16 Ounce Travel Tumbler, Matte Black
Bubba Classic Insulated Desk Mug
Model
Contigo Autoseal
Zojirushi
Hydro Flask
Thermos Stainless King
Bubba Classic Desk Mug
Capacity
16 oz | 20 oz | 24 oz
12 oz | 16 oz | 20 oz
12 oz | 16oz | 18 oz | 20 oz
16 oz
34 oz | 52 oz
Hot | Cold
7 Hours | 18 Hours
8 Hours | 12 Hours
6 Hours Hot | 24 Hours Cold
5 Hours | 9 Hours
6 Hours | 12 Hours
Lid
Autoseal
Flip Open
Various
Lever
Flip Top
Material
Stainless Steel
Stainless Steel
Stainless Steel
Stainless Steel
Stainless Steel
Cup Holder Friendly
Contigo AUTOSEAL West Loop Stainless Steel Travel Mug
Model
Contigo Autoseal
Capacity
16 oz | 20 oz | 24 oz
Hot | Cold
7 Hours | 18 Hours
Lid
Autoseal
Material
Stainless Steel
Cup Holder Friendly
Zojirushi SM-SC60HM Stainless Mug, Slate Gray
Model
Zojirushi
Capacity
12 oz | 16 oz | 20 oz
Hot | Cold
8 Hours | 12 Hours
Lid
Flip Open
Material
Stainless Steel
Cup Holder Friendly
Hydro Flask Double Wall Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle/Travel Coffee Mug, Wide Mouth with BPA Free Hydro Flip Cap
Model
Hydro Flask
Capacity
12 oz | 16oz | 18 oz | 20 oz
Hot | Cold
6 Hours Hot | 24 Hours Cold
Lid
Various
Material
Stainless Steel
Cup Holder Friendly
Thermos Stainless King 16 Ounce Travel Tumbler, Matte Black
Model
Thermos Stainless King
Capacity
16 oz
Hot | Cold
5 Hours | 9 Hours
Lid
Lever
Material
Stainless Steel
Cup Holder Friendly
Bubba Classic Insulated Desk Mug
Model
Bubba Classic Desk Mug
Capacity
34 oz | 52 oz
Hot | Cold
6 Hours | 12 Hours
Lid
Flip Top
Material
Stainless Steel
Cup Holder Friendly

Before we start looking at these thermos mugs individually, let’s talk about the type of qualities that people want in a thermos mug or flask.

Essential Features of a Thermos Flask

I think that there are five that are more important than others

Insulation

This quality is so important that it is almost too obvious to write about.

In order to be enjoyed at its best, coffee needs to kept hot and in order to be refreshing cold drinks need to be kept cool.

For hours and hours…

And day in day out for years.

Because drinking a stone cold coffee and a luke warm energy drink just doesn’t cut it.

Travel Friendly

Thermos mugs are needed by people who are on the go, moving from place to place.

The best ones need to fit in our car cup holders.

They need to be 100% non spill and non leaking because sometimes they are going to be shoved in a bag upside down.

And they need to be able to take the odd knock or two because such things happen when we are in a rush.

Look Beautiful

Many people need a insulated cup as part of their work day.

And most people still need to dress smartly for work and ours mugs need to be as stylish as we are.

They have to help us look the part and feel the part.

Even outside of work, a thermos mug has to complement or add to our smart image as we are working out in the gym or even going for a hike.

Be Easy

Any thermos needs to be easy to use and to clean.

We need a mug that is comfortable to hold and can be used with one hand.

After all, what is the point of being cup holder friendly if I need two hands to operate the lid?

Or of being comfortable to hold if I can’t sip from it and chat with friends on the phone?

Just give a button to press or a lever to flick because unscrewing a cap is a big “no no”.

And it had better to be easy to clean.

Because when we are finished with our thermos, we are finished.

The work day has ended, the gym session is over or the latest adventure completed.

Anything too difficult won’t get done and if the flask or bottle is too much of a challenge to clean, it won’t be used again!

Now that we have looked at some of the important features of a perfect thermos, let’s look at each of my top five cups, one by one.

Contigo Autoseal West Loop Travel Mug

Details

  • Capacity (oz.): 16 | 20 | 24
  • Hot: 7 Hours
  • Cold: 7 Hours
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Leakproof: Yes
  • BPA Free: Yes
  • Clean:  Handwash
  • Cupholder Friendly: Yes

Description

Apart from looking sleek and beautiful, this thermos flask is available in four vibrant colors.

Most importantly, using its thermalock vacuum insulation, it will keep your drinks piping hot or ice cold for hours.

The autoseal feature means that as soon as you stop drinking from this mug, the lid will close securely and not leak or spill any contents which will give you peace of mind and save you time.

This flask promises to be a perfect companion to anyone with a busy lifestyle.

It is ideal for drivers and will fit easily into most car cup holders.

It can be operated with only one hand which is perfect for train and plane passengers.

Finally , it is easy to clean and its lid can be put in a dishwasher.

And because it is BPA free, it is totally safe to use.

Who Should Buy This?

The unique feature that this mug has in my comparison, is the autoseal feature.

After you have finished drinking, without doing anything, the flask locks itself shut.

It is for those people who need a coffee cup that looks smart enough to match their own sense of style.

With its guaranteed anti spill function, this cup promises not too ruin that look either!

Another real strength of this mug is that it can truly be used with one hand meaning that those who like to drink their coffee with driving, running or chatting on their phone can be safe in the knowledge that this cup will really work for them.

*Autoseal Lid

*Leak/ Spill Proof

*Stylish and Beautiful

*Very Popular

*Short Warranty

Zojirushi Stainless Steel Mug

  • Capacity (oz.): 16 | 20 | 20
  • Hot: 8 Hours
  • Cold: 12 Hours
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Leakproof: Yes
  • BPA Free: Yes
  • Clean:  Handwash
  • Cupholder Friendly: Yes

Description

This is a very lightweight and robust flask that comes in a range of 12 different colors, including coral pink and matte gold.

Using a two step slow release lid system helps to avoid any unhelpful splattering of liquids.

And a safety lock prevents the lid from opening accidentally

Keeping your drinks hot for up to 8 hours, this flask is easy to clean with a detachable lid a non stick interior coating.

Who Should Buy This?

The outstanding feature of this flask is that it comes with a huge 5 year warranty.

If over time your flask doesn’t keep your drinks as hot or as cold as it should, you will get a replacement.

This warranty makes it a perfect buy for someone who wants to know that the flask or mug that they are buying will last for a few years.

This flask, like some others has a very wide range of color options.

But, some of the Zojirushi colors are much more unique, such as Matte Gold- which will appeal to people looking for something a little different.

*Long Warranty
*Expensive

*Difficult to Open

Hydro Flask Travel Coffee Mug

  • Capacity (oz.): 12 | 16 | 18 | 20
  • Hot: 8 Hours
  • Cold: 24 Hours
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Leakproof: Some lids
  • BPA Free: Yes
  • Clean:  Handwash
  • Cupholder Friendly: Yes

Description

With a stated aim of saving the world from “lukewarm”, hydro flasks promise to deliver a performance that is as brilliant and vibrant as their colors.

And have you seen their colors? Wow..

Tempshield is a double wall, vacuum insulated design that means that your drinks will stay hot for 6 hours and cold for 24 hours.

This flask has no taste transfer, which means that today’s coffee won’t taste of yesterday’s sports drink.

And Hydroflask want to you to reduce waste by using this flask in your local coffee shop, instead of using a disposable cup.

Who Should Buy This?

I think that there a few unique features that make Hydroflask really appealing to buyers who are concerned about the environment and the world around them.

Firstly these flasks come with a lifetime warranty- which is amazing.

Whilst most other flasks are BPA free, Hydroflasks are BPA, Phthalate, and Toxin-Free.

And Hydroflask donate 5% of the cost of your flask to the charity of your choice.

*Amazing Color Choice

*Great Warranty

*Charitable Donation

*Compatible With Variety of Lids

*Slightly Expensive
Hydro Flask Double Wall Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle/Travel Coffee Mug, Wide Mouth with BPA Free Hydro Flip Cap
  • DESIGN IN MIND: With it's easy-access wide mouth, the sleek design holds the same volume of liquid as other leading coffee thermos brands. Also, safety is top-of-mind, as the bottles are made out of non-toxic BPA-free plastics & 18/8 food-grade stainless steel.
  • SLIP-FREE GRIP: Unlike other leading coffee thermoses, Hydro Flask has a powder coat, which gives you a solid grip. The Powder Coat works with the premium TempShield insulation, which prevents condensation from forming on the outside of the bottle, to give you exactly what you want in an everyday refreshment delivery system.
  • JUST THE RIGHT SIZE: Meets your everyday hydration needs in one container, all while keeping it piping hot or ice cold and fitting comfortable and conveniently in your hand or your vehicles' cup holders. The 12 oz size fits under most single cup coffee brewing systems, and the 16 oz and 20 oz coffee flasks are the same size as most standard to-go coffee sizes, so you don't have to use another paper cup.
  • INSULATION INNOVATION: The double-walled, vacuum insulated TempShield Insulation, the same technology used in all Hydro Flask products, will ensure that your beverage of choice maintains its temperature for many hours to come. Hot drinks up to 6 hours, and cold drinks up to 24 hours.
  • EASY ACCESS HYDRO FLIP: Whether you're on the trail or the chair lift, our Hydro Flip Lid makes it easy to sip lattes and hot chocolate on the go. Please note that the Hydro Flip Lid is not leakproof.

Thermos Stainless King

  • Capacity (oz.): 16 
  • Hot: 7 Hours
  • Cold: 18 Hours
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Leakproof: Yes
  • BPA Free: Yes
  • Clean:  Handwash
  • Cupholder Friendly: Yes

Description

There is no other insulated drink company that comes close to the iconic stature of Thermos!

This flask is beautiful to look at, easy to use and will last for many years.

The King is available in a range of nine very stylish and classic colours.

Promising to keep drinks hot for up to 5 hours, this flask can be used by for both tea and coffee- as there is a tea hook included.

The lid has a built in lever on the lid that can be flicked right or left to open the valve when you want to drink.

Its vacuum insulation means that the flask is easy to hold regardless of whether it is filled with a hot or cold drink.

And a solid five year warranty means that this flask could be part of your adventures for many years to come.

Who Should Buy This?

Thermos Stainless King is for people who associate quality and class with established brands.

If you want peace of mind knowing that your device has been made by the experts, buy this flask.

*Iconic Brand

*Lengthy Warranty

*Only One Size
Sale
Thermos Stainless King 16 Ounce Travel Tumbler, Matte Black
  • 16-ounce capacity
  • Thermos vacuum insulation technology for maximum temperature retention
  • Keeps contents hot for up to 7 hours or cold for up to 18 hours
  • Durable stainless steel interior and exterior
  • DrinkLock sealing lid keeps beverages secure when in the closed position

Bubba Classic Desk Mug

  • Capacity (oz.): 34 | 52 
  • Hot: Not Specified
  • Cold: Not Specified
  • Material: Stainless Steel
  • Leakproof: No
  • BPA Free: Yes
  • Clean:  Handwash
  • Cupholder Friendly: No

Description

The Bubba Classic Desk Mug is an insulated drinks mug that can hold very large quantities of your favourite hot and cold drinks.

Some users report that it can keep drinks hot for 6 hours and cold for 12 hours, the Bubba is great in situations where you are going to be “stuck” in one place for a very long time.

Created in the classic keg shape, this mug is incredible stable and can’t easily be toppled over.

Who Should Buy It?

This mug has two unique features in my comparison- its size and the fact that it has a handle.

Shaped like a barrel, this mug has been designed for people who drink huge amounts of hot or cold liquids.

And if you like a handle on your mug, then the Bubba has your name on it!

This mug is perfect for people who spend their days working at desks- either working from home or in an office.

*Huge Capacity

*Very Stable

*Not Transport Friendly