#Coffee Lover’s Gift Giving Guide : Great ideas from $25

If you are like me then you absolutely detest having to put up with the huge crowds and endless searching from store to store for the perfect gift for the loved ones on your list.  I know I really benefit from online gift shopping, especially since I don’t live anywhere near an urban center where I can even find what I’m looking for.  If it’s not at WalMart, then I have to buy it online 😉  Also, if you’ve never purchased gifts online, then you are in for a treat.  It is super easy and you always get what you want.  In addition, it is very secure.  Some folks are afraid to use their credit/debit cards online (and with good reason with all of the identity theft nowadays), but do you honestly feel better handing your card to a store clerk that makes $6/hour, or a waitress who makes $4/hour?  I have been using the same credit card online for 10 years and haven’t once experienced any issues.  So check out my recommended gift ideas for the coffee drinkers on your list.  I have broken it down by price range, and there is something for everyone from the regular joe coffee drinker, or the snobbiest of coffee snobs!

GIFTS UNDER $30

bodum chambord french press pictureBodum Chambord 3-Cup French Press

The French Press is a must have for ANY coffee drinker.  Even the most sophisticated coffee snobs hold the press pot in high regard!  I personally love this method because it allows you to experience coffee in its barest form, ground beans + hot water…nothing else to get in the way of the rich flavor!  The 3 cup size is perfect for a single cup, but larger sizes are available too.



aeropress imageAeroPress Coffee & Espresso Maker


The AeroPress looks like a giant coffee syringe, but it really is a coffee brewer.  It is a unique design that uses a combination of pressure extraction, steeping, and paper filtration.  It produces a very smooth and clean cup of coffee that is reported by some to be easier on the digestive system than other brewing methods.  I have yet to meet someone who has tried the AeroPress that did not agree that it makes a super cup of coffee. The AeroPress is likely not in your local store, but you can purchase it online for less than $30.


planetary design travel french press imagePlanetary Design Double-Shot Stainless Steel French Press Mug

A travel mug and a french press coffee brewer all in one! The lid has a plunger attached to it, you simply scoop some coffee right into the mug, add hot water, put the lid on, and push the plunger down 4 minutes later. Now you have a flavorful cup of coffee, and you don’t have to share 😉 This particular model has a compartment in the bottom with a little cup that you can store another cup’s worth of coffee grinds in. These mugs are available in many fun colors and will be sure to be a hit.  This is an updated version with a much improved handle and storage compartment.  The customer service at Planetary Design is super!  The handle fell off of my original mug a year after I had purchased it and they replaced it with the updated version NO CHARGE!  Now that is standing behind your product.



Bialetti Moka Pot ImageBialetti Moka Express Stovetop Espresso Maker

The Moka pot is yet another excellent, yet inexpensive, brewer.  You’ll find my instructional video here. The moka pot, also known as the stovetop espresso maker, brews a concentrated cup of coffee…not espresso.  I love the flavor filled cup that it makes and it is nearly dummy proof.  I’ve seen these in stores for almost $100, but it is much cheaper here.



tightvac coffee storage imageTightVac Coffee Storage Container

Coffee freshness is impacted negatively by heat, light, moisture, and oxygen.  The TightVac coffee storage containers can help with all of the above (unless you store them in the oven).  What I found really cool about the TightVac is the pressure release valve, quite similar to what you find on bags of coffee.  This allows the CO2, produced by the roasted beans, to escape the container without allowing oxygen to enter.  These containers start a just a few dollars and can keep up to 5 lbs of coffee fresh!  See my post on this product.

GIFTS UNDER $100


bodum santos imageBodum Santos Stovetop Glass Vacuum / Syphon Pot Coffee Maker

I absolutely love this brewer, and everyone that comes over for a cup of coffee comments on the great tasting coffee that it creates…and that it looks like drug paraphernalia 😉   This coffee maker gets its name from the way the water shoots from the bottom chamber to the top, like a siphon, but then when it is removed from the heat source, the liquid is actually drawn into the bottom like a vacuum. This way of making coffee is similar to the french press in that the coffee steeps in the water, but you can use a finer grind, which produces a fuller taste profile.   There is a nylon filter between the two chambers that simply removes the grinds, without removing any of the flavorful oils from your brew.  Alternatively, you can purchase a glass filter rod.  You’ll save a bundle buying this brewer here.


breville bcg450xl imageBreville BCG450XL Conical Burr Coffee Grinder

The grinder is more important that the brewer!  If your grinder is not up to snuff, then your coffee will always be plagued by inconsistency and bitter flavors.  Only a burr grinder can produce the uniform sized coffee particles necessary for your selected brewing method.  I have owned 2 of these grinders, and purchased 3 others as gifts!  The Breville does a great job with every method from perc to syphon pot, the only exception being espresso.  While you can use it for espresso brewing, I really recommend the Baratza Vario (like I have) 🙂  Are there better grinders than the Breville BCG450XL?  Certainly…but not at this price point!



Bodum Colombia Thermal French PressBodum Colombia 8-Cup Stainless Steel Thermal French Press

So what do you do when you’ve owned 3 glass french press pots, and they have all been broken by your non-coffee snob family members?   You get a stainless steel one of course!  The Bodum Colombia has been my daily brewer for a year now.  It is easy to use, brews a sweet cup, and despite my 3 wild boys always running around, it is still intact (only 1 dent).  This pot is slick and easy to clean. (My video review/demo) NOW ON SALE FOR %50 oFF!

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Nate

Nate is a special kind of coffee lover. He began drinking the same swill that most others do, but thought there must be something better out there. Sure enough, he was right, even more so than he ever dreamed possible. He soon found his way into the specialty coffee industry, and was tasting exceptional coffees from dozens of roasters from around the country. He is now committed to teaching others how they can appreciate coffee, and how they can make the best coffee in town and save money at the same time! Cheers c[_]

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