Customer Reviews: Coava Kone Pourover Filter
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on April 10, 2011
This filter is pricy; basically over a year of paper filters in cost. That's a pretty big risk for something not Chemex blessed. I was worried the coffee wouldn't come out as good, but I took a chance anyway.

To my relief this filter makes a great cup of coffee!!! You get the flavor and richness of a French Press, but with much less sludge. It's like the best of all worlds!

Also, the Kone is MUCH easier to cleanup than a French press. You have to dump and scoop the used grounds as opposed to just lifting out the paper filter. I've been handwashing and it only takes a minute more to cleanup.

I experimented with grind and found that a slightly finer grind than what I use with paper filters worked better. If you go with the same or a coarser grind the filter mesh isn't plugged as much and water shoots through so fast it doesn't have time to steep. If you go too fine everything gets plugged up and you get a lot of sludge. You'll want to spend some time tweaking.

Unlike other wire mesh filters and such that I've seen this filter is sturdy and well made. Instead of a wire mesh it's a perforated metal sheet which is far more resilient.

As for sizing, I have a 10 cup Chemex pot and the COAVA Kone is a perfect fit.

I'm quite happy! Well worth the investment!
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TOP 50 REVIEWERon May 19, 2011
I purchased my CHEMEX 10 Cup Classic Series Coffee Maker about 9 months ago because I wanted to get away from the plastics in my automatic coffee maker. I'd been reading so many articles about heating food in plastic containers and utensils that I began to wonder how safe having almost boiling water sitting in a coffee filter that was made of plastic while brewing could be. The Chemex was the perfect solution for me. I purchased some Chemex paper filters that seemed to work very well. The only problem was that I went through filters pretty quickly because we drink a lot of coffee here so I had to remember to order them before I ran out. Then I saw this COAVA Kone filter on Amazon. Since it's made of all stainless steel I decided to order it.

I read about all the research and testing that went into it by Keith Gehrke of Coava Coffee in Portland Oregon. It took a year to develop and get it right. I was also impressed that it was made in the USA as not many things are these days. I'm so glad I ordered it! Not only does it make a great cup of coffee, but I use about 20% less ground coffee than I did with the paper filters. The water seems to flow through it a little faster than it does through the paper filters. I'm also grinding the coffee to a fine grind rather than the medium grind that I had to use with the paper filters. With the paper filters, the fine grind made the water move through way too slow. I also notice a slightly cleaner taste in the coffee. I don't imagine there is much of a taste coming off of the paper, but there must be some. I use the method of pouring the hot water into the center of the coffee in the filter and just pouring slowly til the coffee is brewed. I'm usually multitasking first thing in the morning, so I fill the filter and wait until it's almost all through to add more water. I do get a little sediment in the bottom of the coffee pot that I didn't get with the paper filters, but it's worth it for the cleaner taste.

The filter fits perfectly inside the 10 cup Chemex, sitting almost to the very top. I pick it from the slotted area that you pour from on the Chemex when I'm finished and carefully clean it after dumping the used coffee grounds. The filter is thinner than I thought it would be and seems a little delicate although I'm sure it's pretty strong since it's made of stainless steel. I'm adding a short slideshow of photos here so you can see what it looks like. There are thousands of little holes and they're tinier than I thought they would be. You can almost see through it if you look from the side. The best thing is that I don't have to remember to buy paper filters anymore. It was a little pricey, but it'll eventually pay for itself, not only on the cost of paper filters, but because I use less coffee with it. Two thumbs up for a great product!

Update 1/29/13 - I'm still using this filter every day and still loving the coffee. I think I've probably covered the cost of what it would be buying paper filters all this time. The price on the Coava has gone up since I bought it, but I still think it's worth it. There is no taste at all of any filter with this one. And it's in perfect shape after more than a year and a half. It's less delicate than I thought it would be.
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on January 24, 2012
Have used this product fairly extensively and I can say that it's a mixed bag. It's not cheap -- you can buy a LOT of paper filters for as much -- and it is by no means a guaranteed success. To get it to work properly you need to dial in your grind and water flow. I haven't found it to be as consistent or easy to use as a good model of bleached paper filters. An improper grind will leave you with a muddy cup, like a poorly done french press, with a dark ring of fines around the top of the coffee in your mug.

Also, holy crap is this thing sharp. Watch out for poking yourself with the bottom.

Overall, you can make a good cup of coffee using this, but why spend the money then paper filters are cheaper, more consistent (or at least they make it easier to be consistent), and more forgiving? Plus this thing is a pain to store and unpleasant to clean.

Great in theory, not so much in concept.
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on May 26, 2011
Overall the Kone has been a great addition to my growing arsenal of coffee equipment and I've never had as many compliments from family and friends on the quality and flavor of my coffee as I've received since purchasing the Kone and using it according to the easy technique found on the Coava website. The Kone comes highly recommended, especially for those with realistic expectations and who are interested enough in making great coffee to learn a little product specific technique and minor common sense maintenance. I'm sure technique and cleanliness is key to making consistently good coffee with any type of filter and both are easy enough to learn in minutes.

As previous reviewers have pointed out there are pros and cons to using a metal mesh-type filter like a Swissgold or Kone over paper. The Coava Kone was designed to have a very similar flow rate to paper... but I agree that it is faster than the thick standard Chemex paper filters. Paper filters keep sediment out but trap many of the flavoring oils of the coffee bean. The more open design of mesh filters allows the coffee oils into the coffee resulting in a more flavorful, full-bodied cup of coffee. Some people have a preference for for the clean, brighter flavors produced with paper filters... others prefer the rich fullness of coffees produced with mesh filters... some (as with my family) like both options for variety. It's well known that any sediment can be easily controlled for by simply adjusting the grind of the coffee appropriately to suit the filter. Too much sediment then go to a slightly coarser grind... Coava recommends starting with a grind coarser than espresso but finer than drip and adjusting to your preference from there. Whatever grind you choose, you can expect more sediment with the Kone than with paper but significantly less than the same grind using a Swissgold.

Unlike paper filters which you can just toss in the trash, equipment that comes into direct contact with coffee such as carafes, French Presses, Swissgold filters, etc need a soaking in a cleaning solution like Urnex Cafiza every few uses to keep a build up of rancid coffee oils from imparting an unpleasant off-flavor to your coffee... the same is true with the Kone. Cleaning the Kone couldn't be much easier... a quick once over with a carafe cleaning brush under running water, and a soak in Cafiza every few uses, and you're done. As one reviewer stated... the Kone is indeed pointy with no handles... just like the paper filters it was apparently designed replace. It's meant to be a high quality sustainable alternative to paper filters that produces level coffee and it has definitely met those goals. I have never found the edges to be sharp or otherwise hard to handle. It's easily removed from the Chemex with bare fingers even when fairly hot.

Using freshly ground beans and good technique the Chemex & Kone combination makes extremely good coffee... so good, in fact, that Coava and the Coava Kone recently took the coffee world by surprise when Coava used the Chemex/Kone combo to sweep the 2011 NW Regional Brewers Cup and Barista Competition to move to the Nationals against stiff competition from the Hario V60 and Clever Coffee Dripper. But don't take my word for it... competition results are far more persuasive and informational than the average Amazon reviewer - see the following and more on the web:

Fresh Cup Magazine - "Coava Craziness: Portland shop dominates in Tacoma"
Willamette Week - "Meet Portland's New Barista Champion"
MARROW - "2011 NW Regional Barista Champions - Coava Coffee Roaster"
Barista Magazine - "Coava Sweeps Northwest Barista Comp and Brewers Cup!"
Daily Demitasse - "Barista Interview: Devin Chapman"
Seattle Weekly - "The 2011 Northwest Regional Barista Competition: A Reason to Spend a Weekend in Tacoma"

Luckily for us, Coava generously provides their award-winning technique and almost everything else we need to know right on their website which makes it possible for even inexperienced coffee makers like me to make great coffee within minutes. Not only does the Kone work great with the Chemex I also use it with the Technivorm MoccaMaster and the Clever Coffee Dripper as well with great results.

Again, I highly recommend the Kone for those who want to learn to make great coffee, those already know how and want to try a sustainable alternative filter, and who don't mind paying a bit of a premium for it. It's a bit pricey so be sure google around for reviews and check out the Coava website for the instructions so you have realistic expectations and proper technique so you won't be surprised or disappointed. I couldn't be happier with Kone and more importantly, neither could my wife and family.
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on December 22, 2011
Recently I purchased a Chemex coffee maker after graduating from a Keurig. The Chemex is a great device and produces an outstanding cup of coffee. The standard filters for Chemex will give you an extraordinarily clean cup with only a slight paper flavor. **IMPORTANT** This product should only be used with Chemex. I can't imagine how this would work with any other system.

Let me tell you a couple observations and great highlights about this product:

- Construction: From the moment I opened the box and held this item, I was immediately impressed by the precision craftsmanship. You can tell Coava really put some energy into designing this. The filter itself isn't just some generic mesh like other metal filters (i.e. Bodom filter), but someone actually thought about the best spacing and diameter of the holes for use with the Chemex. The cone fits perfectly into the top of the Chemex and doesn't need a handle because of the shape of the Chemex pour spout.

Although is seems well made it this does feel somewhat fragile. I would be very careful not to bend or tap it against anything. Despite what other reviewers have said, there is NO NEED to tap the Kone against anything to remove used grinds. I just put the edge against my thumb and the point against my middle finger, tipped it upside down in the trash can, and gave my wrist a couple snaps. Almost all of the grinds came out together. I then rinsed it in the sink and it was totally clean. Also, the best place to STORE the Kone when not in use (since it does seem fragile) is in the Chemex. That way you won't risk bending it as other reviewers have done.

- Taste: The flavor and consistency of the coffee from this pot is similar to what you would get from a french press. This filter will let some residue through but it isn't noticeable until the bottom of the Chemex, which is sludge. Therefore, I do not recommend pouring the last ~4oz from a full Chemex pot. This minor caveat aside, the lack of ANY paper flavor (unlike the Chemex filters), the richness of the cup it makes, and the reusability makes this an excellent value

Overall I would say this is an excellent value which over time will pay for itself. I am thoroughly impressed with the rich cup of coffee it makes, the ease of use and cleaning, and the quality "Made in the USA" construction.
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VINE VOICEon November 17, 2011
I've been using the Coava Kone for over a year an absolutely love it. I use the Kone and Chemex paper filters, depending on what kind of beans I have on hand and what kind of flavor I want. The Kone offers a darker and richer flavor than standard Chemex paper filters. It's not better or worse than the "bright" flavor normally associated with Chemex; it's just different. The taste is similar to a French press, but more pronounced and not quite as muddied.

Having both the Kone and paper filters makes Chemex pots really versatile. I love that I can get two very different tastes out of the same coffee pot.

Maintaining and cleaning the Kone is a breeze. You simply rinse it out with water after you're done. I use a mild detergent every month or so, but for the most part a rinse is all you need. One reviewer mentioned getting ground stuck at the bottom of the filter. This has never happened to me. I use a 6.5 setting with my KitchenAid Pro Line Series Burr Coffee Mill and never have grounds stuck in the bottom.

The product was designed and manufactured in the USA from American steel. With all the cheap products made in China, it's nice to buy something that supports American jobs and companies from point A to point B. Of course the byproduct of this is the premium price. Keep in mind that this is a solid piece of steel and can last you a long time. It will more than make up for the cost of paper filters.

While I'm not completely giving up on paper filters, I use my Coava Kone fairly often. As I said, it really depends on the beans and what flavor I want. This is a well-made product that adds great versatility to your Chemex pot. My personal suggestion is to grab one, but also keep paper filters on hand when you want a brighter taste.
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on November 6, 2012
I have used a Chemex since I committed to a $40 pound of Jamaican Blue for which my local roaster was taking advanced orders about 7 years ago. After paying that much for a pound of coffee I figured it would be prudent to learn to make The Perfect Cup. Naturally, I Googled 'How to make a perfect cup of coffee', and after reading A LOT about coffee I deciding on the Chemex. At the same time I bought my Chemex I also picked up Chemex unbleached filters, a digital water kettle, and a burr grinder. These are the essential tools for making a perfect cup of coffee!!! I still use these and I have used them every day for 7 years. Except for the filters. Gross.

Having the right tools was only the beginning of my quest for The Perfect Cup. The $40 coffee was long gone before I finally settled on my water/coffee ratio (32oz/44g), the timing of when to grind the beans, starting with a wet or dry filter, water temp, stir or no stir, an award winning micro-roaster who carefully ships great beans, etc. etc. etc. But the key word here is 'settled'. Where I learned to make an exceptionally great cup off coffee that would knock your Folgers pants off, it still wasn't The Perfect Cup.

I had one problem with by brew: I wanted a finer grind to extract more flavor, but that threw off my steep time. The filters stick to the sides of the Chemex leaving only the bottom tip of the filter to drip. The grind I wanted would sit forever like sludge in the bottom of the filter rendering a bitter, cold cup of coffee. I had to settle on using a coarser grind, and less water or more beans. Either way, I knew I was not using my (pricey) beans efficiently. If only I could find a way to set the filter off the sides of the Chemex so the water filtered through faster! Alas. Enter the Coava Kone Pourover Filter...

When I first heard of 'the cone' (as my wife and I call it) I frantically tried to find one. The manufacturer's website said they were back-ordered and would ship more in 6 weeks. That was not acceptable. There were none on Amazon at the time, so I called my local Williams-Sonoma, and to my delight, they had several in stock. So I rushed down to the store, held my nose (that's what us commoners do when putting our nose in the air would be like wearing a 'Oh my God, what am I doing in Williams-Sonoma?!' sign), and got my cone.

With my quest work cut out for me, I rushed back home to get started. I dialed my grinder down to the last 'Fine' notch and brewed a pot directly in the cone per the instructions, i.e., no filter. This was fine enough for some of the grounds to end up in the bottom of the Chemex. As others have said, it brewed up like a cup of French Press. Admittedly, I have never had a proper cup of French Press, but I don't think I would like it if I did. I made a second pot immediately putting a Chemex filter in the cone. This was my intent for the cone all along, but I first had to try it proper as the manufacturer suggested.

On my second attempt using the cone I achieved The Perfect Cup!!!! I've made my coffee this way every day for the past 6 months. I wish I knew the words to describe this amazing cup of coffee. Of course, this cone doesn't make The Perfect Cup out of the box...not even with the filter. You have to know what you're doing. Take the time to learn everything you can about brewing coffee and be prepared for lots of experimentation and tweaking. With the cone and coffee tools I mentioned above, you will get there. And it's a fantastic journey.

The only reason I gave 4 stars instead of 5 is the price. At Williams-Sonoma I thought I was getting ripped off @ $59.99. I mean, it's Williams-Sonoma! $80 is worth it, but it is not a great deal. Try to find one cheaper if you can. I haven't checked around since I bought mine, but at that time they were listed at $50-$55 online, but were out-of-stock. They had only been out a short while then, so it might be demand has justified the higher price. I don't know. But if your quest is The Perfect Cup, can you really put a price on that ;-)
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on December 3, 2011
I knew as soon as I spent $50 on this thing that my pot would get broken...I knew it and I still bought it. I used it 4 times and the next day my son knocked the pot off the counter while cleaning up after himself. I like the filter, it works, makes a great pot of coffee... I was pleasantly surprised at how good my coffee tasted, and I am a home roaster so I didn't think it could get any better. Now I need a new pot!
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on July 4, 2011
This cone is beautiful, effective, and should last forever. I probably spent too much for it, but I like knowing I can make coffee anytime without running out of filters. How much can you say about a coffee filter? It works great.
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on October 5, 2013
I've been using this nearly every day for almost a year. I love it. Makes great coffee, easy to clean. My only complaint is that it's easy to bend. Mine's slightly warped now, so it doesn't rest perfectly against the Chemex. Still works fine though. For this reason, and because these are now selling for $100, I'd recommend getting the 3rd generation (search for it). They're almost half the price, and come with a plastic bumper, which I imagine helps keep the shape. The first generation used to sell for about the same, but I guess because of scarcity (they're no longer made), folks are jacking up the price.

For context: I use a burr grinder (Mazzer) and have a kettle with temp control. I don't use a scale (yet).
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