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Coffee Filter: The Grounds Are Grounded!

Acoffee filter is nothing but a glorified strainer. A coffee filter is usually made out of paper or steel – mostly steel – and is used in coffee brewing devices to filter out the soaked grounds. Ever heard of Madras Filter Coffee? That is a very famous coffee made in Tamil Nadu (earlier known as Madras), India, and it derives its name because of the place and because a coffee filter is used to make the brew.

History Of The Coffee Filter

The coffee filter has an interesting and amusing history: In the 1700s someone who was fed up with the sight of grounded beans in his coffee filled his sock – Ewwwww! – with coffee grounds and poured hot water into the sock, and drank up the liquid that filtered out. Thus, the idea for the coffee filter was born!

In the year 1908, paper coffee filters that are available nowadays came into being. A German – Melitta Bentz – found the taste of coffee too bitter and the sight of soaked coffee grounds all over inside her coffee cup too messy. She desperately wanted to filter out the grounds from the decoction. So she used her son’s porous blotter paper to filter out the grounds from the liquid. And, thus, the paper coffee filter was born.

Metal Coffee Filters

Metal coffee filters, that are in use nowadays, were first created around the early 1800s. Even at that time they were smash hits and sold like hot cakes. The principle was very simple: Fix a filter in a kettle-like pot, place the coffee grounds on the filter and then spread hot water over the grounds, and serve. Nowadays, these filters are available with an electrical heating mechanism, and many homes use them. A variant of these coffee filters is the drip coffee maker, which keeps the concoction heated and ready to drink for a long time. These drip coffee machines are used widely in USA and Europe.

Types Of Coffee Filters

A coffee filter can be made with different materials. Here are some examples: (i) Paper filters work on the Japanese concept of use once and throw, but they can be messy and cumbersome to use. (ii) Gold filters – yes, you read that right – last for a long time and maybe if you are the Sultan of Brunei you should buy one. (iii) Cloth filters are available too and they are considered environment-friendly, but they too are a bit messy. (iv) The normal strainer kind of filters are used mostly in making filter coffee. They last long and have gained wide acceptance.

To conclude, the question to be asked is whether you would prefer coffee made by the filter method or some other method. The answer lies in your taste buds: Drink coffee made using all the devices and go with what you prefer.