Do Percolators Make Good Coffee? Percolator Coffee Explained!

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A woman is preparing coffee in a coffee shop using percolators.
Table of Contents
A woman is preparing coffee in a coffee shop using percolators.

Key Takeaways:

  • Percolator coffee offers a depth of flavor and rich taste that is highly sought after by coffee enthusiasts.
  • While there is a potential for bitter – tasting coffee with percolators, adjusting factors like grind size, brew time, and water temperature can help avoid this issue.
  • Percolators are an affordable option for enjoying a good cup of Joe, making them worth considering for those on a tight budget.
  • Compared to drip coffee makers, percolators offer ease of use, versatility in brewing strength and flavors, as well as various capacities to suit different needs.

Do Percolators Make Good Coffee?

Percolator coffee are highly sought after by coffee lovers because it brings a depth of flavor and a rich taste that is loved by many coffee enthusiasts.

Are you struggling to decide whether a coffee percolator is worth your investment? These brewing machines are loved by many for creating a stronger, fuller-bodied cup of Joe. This article will delve into the pros and cons of percolator coffee, compare it with other brewing methods, and help you discern if the flavor improvement matches the hype.

Let’s brew some knowledge together!

Pros of Percolator Coffee

Depth of flavor

One of the salient features that make percolators a favorite among coffee enthusiasts is their unique ability to brew a cup with significant depth of flavor. Unlike other brewing methods, a percolator operates by continuously cycling hot water through the coffee grounds, extracting more flavors from them.

This process gives birth to a rich, robust and deep-tasting brew – something not easily achievable in other types of coffee makers. In fact, many cafe-goers often find themselves surprised at how much bolder and stronger their homemade percolated coffee can be compared to the usual drip made ones they’re accustomed to.

Remember each person’s perception of taste may vary slightly due to different factors such as bean variety and grind size: What some might extol as an intense flavor profile equaling an excellent cup of Joe’, others could perceive it as overly strong or bitter – but when brewed correctly with attention to detail, your morning routine could very well turn into an exhilarating epicurean experience offering tongue-tantalizing layers within every sip you take.

Rich taste

Percolator coffee is renowned for its rich taste that brings a depth of flavor to your cup of Joe. The unique brewing process of percolators allows the water to continuously pass through the coffee grounds, resulting in a strong and robust brew.

This method extracts more oils and flavors from the beans, giving you a cup of coffee with a fuller body and bolder taste. Whether you prefer dark roasts or lighter blends, percolators have the ability to bring out subtle flavor notes that may be missed by other brewing methods.

So if you’re looking for a truly satisfying and flavorful coffee experience, percolators are definitely worth considering.

Affordable option

Percolators are not only known for their rich flavor, but they also offer an affordable way to enjoy a good cup of Joe. Compared to other coffee brewing methods like espresso machines or specialty pour-over setups, percolators are often much more budget-friendly options.

You can find electric percolators and stovetop models that fit various price ranges, making it accessible for coffee lovers on a tight budget.

So if you’re looking to get the most bang for your buck without compromising on taste, a percolator is definitely worth considering.

Cons of Percolator Coffee

Percolator coffee has a potential downside in that it can sometimes result in bitter-tasting coffee due to over-extraction.

Potential for bitter coffee

Percolator coffee has been known to have a potential downside: the risk of brewing bitter-tasting coffee. This is often due to over-extraction, where the water passes through the grounds repeatedly, resulting in an intensified and sometimes unpleasant taste.

With some adjustments and practice, it is possible to avoid this issue altogether and achieve a delicious cup of percolator coffee. By adjusting factors such as grind size, brew time, and water temperature, you can control the strength and flavor of your coffee.

While bitterness can occur with percolators, it doesn’t mean all percolated coffees will have this issue. With patience and experimentation, you can find your perfect balance and enjoy a richly flavored cup of Joe every time.

Messy brewing process

One drawback of percolator coffee is the messy brewing process. When using a percolator, the water continuously boils and bubbles up through the coffee grounds, creating a potential for spillage and mess.

Carefully monitor the brewing process to avoid any overflowing or splattering. With practice and careful handling, you can minimize the mess and enjoy your cup of Joe without any hassle.


Percolators have been criticized for their inefficiency in brewing coffee. Unlike drip coffee makers, percolators require more time and attention to achieve the desired strength and flavor of coffee.

This is because the brewed coffee continuously recycles through the grounds, which can lead to over-extraction if left unattended. Due to the nature of percolator brewing, it may take longer for the water to reach optimal temperature, resulting in a longer overall brew time.

With practice and careful monitoring, it is possible to overcome these inefficiencies and still enjoy a delicious cup of percolator-brewed coffee.

Comparing Percolators to Drip Coffee Makers

Percolators and drip coffee makers offer different brewing methods, with percolators known for their stronger and more flavorful coffee. Find out which one is right for you!

Ease of use and skill required

Percolators offer a straightforward and user-friendly brewing process, making them an attractive option for coffee lovers of all skill levels. Unlike some other brewing methods that require precise measurements or complex techniques, using a percolator is as simple as adding water, coffee grounds, and turning it on.

The built-in mechanism does the rest of the work for you, so even if you’re new to brewing coffee at home, you can easily achieve a satisfying cup of Joe with minimal effort. Percolators provide the flexibility to adjust your brew strength according to your preferences by controlling factors like grind size and brewing time.

Whether you’re a beginner or experienced in the art of coffee-making, the ease of use offered by percolators ensures that anyone can enjoy a delicious cup of freshly brewed coffee without any hassle or complicated steps involved.


Percolators offer versatility when it comes to brewing coffee. Unlike drip coffee makers that rely on a specific temperature and water flow, percolators allow you to adjust the strength of your brew according to your preferences.

Whether you like a bold and robust cup or a milder flavor, percolators can cater to your taste buds. Additionally, percolators are not limited to just coffee grounds – you can also use them for tea leaves or other infusions, making them a versatile option for those who enjoy experimenting with different flavors.

So if you’re looking for a coffee maker that offers flexibility in customizing your brews, consider giving percolators a try!


Percolators come in various sizes, offering a range of capacities to suit different needs. Whether you’re brewing for yourself or a crowd, there is likely a percolator that can accommodate your requirements.

From compact models perfect for single servings to larger ones suitable for gatherings, percolators provide options for coffee lovers of all scales. With their generous capacity, they make it easy to brew enough coffee to satisfy everyone’s caffeine cravings without the need for multiple batches.

So whether you’re enjoying a quiet morning alone or hosting a brunch with friends and family, rest assured that there is a percolator out there ready to handle your needs efficiently and effortlessly.


Percolator coffee offers a taste that is unmatched by other brewing methods. With its unique process of continuously circulating water through the grounds, percolators bring out the deeper and richer flavors of your favorite beans.

The result is a robust and full-bodied cup of Joe that will satisfy even the most discerning palate. Percolators are known for brewing stronger coffee compared to drip machines, allowing you to enjoy a bolder flavor profile with every sip.

So if you’re looking for a brew method that delivers an unforgettable taste experience, percolators are definitely worth considering.

Considering the Quality of Percolator Coffee

When considering the quality of percolator coffee, take into account factors such as brew strength, flavor, brew size, and convenience.

Factors to consider (brew strength, flavor, brew size, convenience)

When evaluating the quality of percolator coffee, there are several important factors to consider:

  1. Brew strength: Percolators are known for brewing strong coffee due to their unique brewing process. The water is continuously circulated through the grounds, resulting in a rich and robust flavor.
  2. Flavor: Percolators bring out deeper and more pronounced flavor notes in the coffee. This can be especially beneficial for those who prefer a bold and full-bodied cup of Joe.
  3. Brew size: Percolators come in various sizes, allowing you to brew larger quantities of coffee at once. This is particularly convenient when hosting guests or needing multiple servings throughout the day.
  4. Convenience: While percolators may not be as quick and easy to use as drip coffee makers, they do offer convenience in their own way. Simply add water, coffee grounds, and let the percolator do its work while you attend to other tasks.

Importance of practice

Mastering the art of brewing coffee with a percolator requires practice and patience. While some may find it challenging at first, honing your technique can result in a truly satisfying cup of Joe.

Experimentation with brew strength, flavor extraction, and brew size will help you discover your preferred method for achieving the perfect balance. Remember that the quality of percolator coffee greatly depends on how well you understand your individual brewing parameters and make adjustments accordingly.

With time and practice, you’ll be able to unlock the full potential of this classic brewing method and enjoy its rich and flavorful results.


While percolators may have their drawbacks, they are definitely worth the hype for coffee lovers seeking a bolder and richer flavor. The depth of flavor and affordability make them a popular choice among enthusiasts.

With practice and attention to brewing technique, percolators can produce a delicious cup of Joe that rivals other brewing methods. So go ahead and give percolator coffee a try – you may just find your new favorite brew!


How do coffee percolators work?

Coffee percolators work by continuously cycling hot water through the coffee grounds. As the water boils and rises up through a tube, it is then dispersed over the coffee grounds, extracting the flavor.

Can I make coffee in a percolator?

Yes, you can make coffee in a percolator. Percolators are specially designed for brewing coffee and can produce a rich and flavorful cup.

Is percolator coffee similar to French press coffee?

Percolator coffee and French press coffee are different brewing methods. Percolator coffee cycles hot water through the coffee grounds, while French press coffee steeps the grounds in water before pressing them through a filter. The resulting taste and texture can be distinct between the two methods.

How is coffee made in a percolator?

Coffee made in a percolator involves adding water and coffee grounds to the percolator basket. The percolator then heats the water, creating a boiling and cycling process that extracts the flavors from the coffee grounds.

Does a percolator make coffee taste better?

Whether a percolator makes coffee taste better is subjective. Some people enjoy the bold and robust flavors that percolators produce, while others prefer the smoother taste of other brewing methods like drip or French press.

Can I use a percolator to make a drip coffee?

No, percolators are not designed to make drip coffee. Drip coffee machines have a different brewing mechanism, involving the steady flow of water through a coffee filter.

Can I use an electric percolator on the stovetop?

No, electric percolators are specifically designed for use with electricity. Using an electric percolator on a stovetop can be dangerous and may damage the percolator.

How much coffee should I use in a percolator?

The amount of coffee to use in a percolator depends on personal preference and the desired strength of the coffee. As a general guideline, you can use approximately 1 tablespoon of ground coffee per cup of water.

Does vintage coffee percolator work better than a modern one?

The performance of a vintage coffee percolator compared to a modern one can vary. It depends on the specific model and its condition. While some vintage coffee percolators may have sentimental value and charm, newer models often come with more advanced features and technology.

About the Author:
Emily Thompson is an enthusiastic guide in the world of coffee, sharing her expertise in flavors, brewing techniques, and cultural significance. Her journey, fueled by a deep love for coffee, involves educating coffee enthusiasts of all levels to enhance their coffee experiences. Emily's content spans from brewing guides to the cultural importance of coffee, emphasizing ethical sourcing and sustainability.