Gah! Where did all the sexy coffee makers go?

December 28th, 2009

What in the world is going on with small appliances? We need a coffee maker for the store, and one for home too and it turns out our two favourite coffee makers–both unavailable in Canada–seem to be extinct in America too.

jasper morrison

Jasper Morrison for Rowenta. We bought this one for the cottage, and desperately wanted to sell it at mjölk, but Rowenta Canada and US refused to accommodate us. Now even the MOMA no longer carries it, which tells me it’s on its way out. What a shame. Beautiful to look at, simple and clean, and easy to use–it even has a scoop and a place to put filters in the top.


BRAUN Then – we were reminded of BRAUN’s awesomeness while watching Objectified the other night.

Braun now

What the what the? BRAUN Now. How does a company go from the slick white coffee maker above to this thing? I don’t need an aerodynamic EVERYTHING.

Remember your dad’s electric shaver? Simple, elegant, easy on the eyes.


BRAUN 1970s electric shaver


BRAUN 2009 electric shaver

I went looking for a shaver for John, and the simplest I could find was the one above. The designs today give me a headache. Flashy and silly, and often er, perverted (remember that crazy commercial where the cream comes out of the top? Geeze louise, give me a break). As a side note, we sold out of those Hantverk concrete shavings kits before Christmas. Could this mean a resurgence in analog?

Anyway, I digressed with the shaving, but are we alone in wondering what happened to well-designed small appliances? Is there not a market for it in North America? Are we all really THAT into stainless steel mixed with random colour, aerodynamics and mega-sizing? Sigh.

If anyone sees the above coffee makers for sale somewhere (besides ebay), please do let us know!!!

Any suggestions for worthy replacements?

Some parting notes (via Objectified):

Good design is innovative.
Good design makes a product useful.
Good design is aesthetic.
Good design makes a product understandable.
Good design is unobtrusive.
Good design is honest.
Good design is long-lasting.
Good design is thorough down to the last detail.
Good design is environmentally friendly.
Good design is as little design as possible.

Copyright Dieter Rams, amended March 2003 and October 2009.

Filed under: General | 15 comments

15 Responses to 'Gah! Where did all the sexy coffee makers go?'

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  1. I was talking with Martha (from Uniform Studio) last week about coffee makers, and she actually has the Rowenta machine but is looking for a replacement. Apparently the top of it stains from the coffee brewing, and it no longer looks nice.

    I personally LOVE the look of Chemex pots, but I prefer the convenience of automatic drip. I have a stainless Cuisinart in my house, and I just bought a similar model in white for my apartment. It’s not BEAUTIFUL, but it’s not horribly offensive, either:

    I wish this Muji coffee maker were available in the US!!

    Anna @ D16

    28 Dec 09 at 8:09 pm

  2. Anna, we wish the MUJI coffee maker existed here too!

    Thanks everyone for your suggestions…I’ll have to look into them later today – I am relieved to see that there is a bit more out there than I thought. It doesn’t help that when shopping for this stuff one instinctively goes to the department store/big box store…not exactly the most design savvy places.


    29 Dec 09 at 9:23 am

  3. p.s. I tried to include links to Chemex and both of my coffee makers, but my comment kept getting blocked for being spam!

    Anna @ D16

    28 Dec 09 at 8:10 pm

  4. I’ll second the Chemex suggestion, with an added Hario water kettle: I’m completely in love with mine, however, for a “store” machine, it may be too labour intensive for what you want to do. For the best in drip, you could go with a Technivorm Moccamaster. If you want something really slick, I’d suggest the Eva Solo.. I haven’t seen it in too many places around town, but I have seen it at the AGO store. Hope that helps!


    28 Dec 09 at 9:09 pm

  5. The Krups Coffee Machine KM1000

  6. webpossum

    29 Dec 09 at 3:43 am

  7. Mocca Master, it has looked the same since 1969 and is said to be the best, perfect brewing time and temperature and so on, I leave the coffee expertise to my husband, but it sure looks good, and the coffee tastes better in our house now than it does anywhere else :)


    29 Dec 09 at 5:08 am

  8. I haven’t dropped into this place for a few years but… There’s a small appliance store/repair shop on the north side of Bloor St. just east of Bathurst that has carried reconditioned Braun coffeemakers like the classic you’re asking about, plus other items, consistently over the years. I think it’s called Arora Electric. Worth a shot!


    29 Dec 09 at 5:55 am

  9. I’m pretty excited about this new(-ish) Naoto Fukasawa coffee maker, but it looks like thus far it’s only available in Japan and the UK:


    29 Dec 09 at 9:40 am

  10. Might I suggest switching to espresso? The Nespresso line of machines (which use a proprietary capsule system) are all amazingly beatiful.


    29 Dec 09 at 9:46 am

  11. What about a classic Bodum? My parents gave me one as a temporary replacement after our coffeemaker broke, and I’m never going back. According to Cook’s Illustrated (and now me), they really do make better coffee than anything except possibly the Technivorm, and make very little waste.
    Only drawback—if you want to delay drinking, you need something to keep it hot.


    29 Dec 09 at 8:38 pm

  12. I see that I am not the only one desperately searching for an acceptable coffee maker :-) It’s a frustrating search, especially when you only have a tiny kitchen and don’t want to clutter it up with some monster or the hateful Nespresso (sorry Kerrie – but I don’t believe in wasting precious resources or supporting Nestlé when it comes to my morning coffee :-)
    In the meantime, I am sticking to the time-tested Bialetti MokaExpress – which is fine for one, but admittedly not great when you have to accommodate several guests.
    Btw – If anyone has a suggestion for a decent electrical kettle ? These things are even uglier than coffee makers…

    Fat Cat

    30 Dec 09 at 4:53 am

  13. another vote for MUJI but most probably it comes with japanese manual ;)


    30 Dec 09 at 12:38 pm

  14. Thanks everyone for your input! Dialog is fun!

    There appears to be some decent choice out there after all. Of course, the two MUJI/Naoto Fukasawa options are our favourites but of course they are unavailable in N.Am. But maybe someday…

    I definitely think the store needs a maker of some sort, otherwise we need to find a good looking electric kettle, which puts us back to where we started!

    The Cuisinart is definitely the only one I’ve seen as a contender from the big box stores. And the Krups is similar to it…but we are going through an anti-stainless phase. I’ll keep them in mind!

    Nicole: thanks for the suggestion. I was in the Annex the other day and checked that shop, but they didn’t have it. Good idea though (and I grabbed a couple of burritos from the new Big Fat Burrito at Lee’s, which is totally weird)!

    We agree about the Nespresso–we don’t want to be held hostage to a system or type of coffee. But an espresso machine would be great. I just fear that I would be terrible at making drinks on it, as I can barely put out a decent cup of regular coffee.

    Our favourite option for the store is the Mocca Master. The retro look is kind of perfect. But where, pray tell, do we buy such a machine?

    John & Juli

    2 Jan 10 at 11:23 am

  15. Hi!
    I know this is an old post but I had exactly the same problems with coffee makers and such, and found a great solution. A coffee maker from Kenwood, the model is “CM020kMix white” and it comes out in more choices. This is the link;


    5 Jan 10 at 3:00 pm

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