Amazing cheap product, that provides a different kind of coffee. Personally I love it! Some people don't, but I think it's a life experience to try it at least once.
Positive Product Points
- Aesthetically beautiful - Strong, balanced coffee - Very easy to use - Easy to clean-up - Cheap - The more you use it, the better the coffee will taste! - Amazing choice for someone who travels a lot and likes to have good coffee regularly. - For those who are suspicious about aluminium cooking, there are some Stainless Steel moka's out there. - Allows people to develop new techniques to brew it, according to their will (not like nespresso for example) - Available in many sizes (from 1-cup to 18-cup) - You can brew a Moka pot in any kind of intense heat source (gas stove, electric, ceramic, simple fire in a camp). A couple of months ago I even saw an electric moka.
Negative Product Points
- It's a little bit uncool to clean it every time you brew it. Personally I just rinse it under water (I dislike removing the coffee oils attached to the Moka's walls). - The first couple of brews have a metallized flavour. Pour them in the sink. (Waste of coffee :S) - Need to be careful, so that no one puts it in the dishwasher or cleans it abrasively. It might ruin the device. - When you leave coffee remains inside it, for quite some time, the boiler starts to corrode.
I bought it myself just for curiosity. Since I was a young child I got used to see it in every kitchen in my country (Portugal) a strange aluminum device where every morning, someone putted it in the stove and suddenly a dark fluid started to come out. I remember loving the smell of it, and hated when my familiars said: "Tu és demasiado novo para beber café." (You are too young to drink coffee).
I got older, and when I reached 15 I started to drink coffee occasionally (espresso kind in coffee shops). In Portugal there are coffee shops all over the place.
The years passed by, and I started to remember the old Moka Pot days. I had never drank coffee from it, and as I said in the beginning I was really curious to understand why millions of people had it at home, and used it as a morning ritual.
Fortunately, it isn't hard to get Moka's around, so I bought my Bialetti for 25€. The first time I used it, I found that the taste was really different. Much more smoother and balanced than espresso, although not as bright, in terms of flavour of course.
I kept using it each morning, and during long study nights, since I can't afford a good espresso machine, and I don't want to spend 50 cents in a coffee shop, every time I want to drink good coffee until the end of my course. (I'm still a college student with no regular income)
Each day that passes I like it more and more. Not just the coffee, but also the process of preparing it. I really enjoy the reaction of my friends and familiars when I brew a Moka for them. They tend to open their eyes and say: "Wow...this is different!"
Many reviewers, like to make comparisons between moka pot coffee and espresso coffee, but in my honest opinion, that is a big mistake. Both brew different kinds of coffee, therefore I won't say the quality of Moka pot coffee is bad. It's really hard to get crema (foam) with it, but if you use even grinded coffee, a small moka pot, a low stove flame and freshly roasted coffee you can get a good amount of it. If, like me, you don't have the resources (€€€) for it, just use the italian technique to create fake crema. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=38S4TSt02ZI
One big positive point, is that you can play with the coffee "grindness", amount of coffee, level of water, stove's heat, different coffee blends, in order to achieve new results with your morning ritual.
TIPS: - Don't leave it too much time in the stove because it starts to boil after some time. - Don't tamp the coffee when preparing the Moka - Don't clean it too much. With the brews, the aluminium walls will create a thin amount of coffee oil that enriches the flavor of every coffee you brew. Personally I just rinse it over water. - Make sure you Moka is well tight during the brew. - Don't get paranoid if the aluminium walls start to create stains. It's perfectly normal. (My Moka's inside is yellow/brown) - Try new different ways of brewing it, and try to see any differences between the brews. It can be fun :P
Since it's so cheap, I never contacted Bialetti. If it get's broken, I'll buy another one with no hesitation.