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Chemex Review

Channel your inner barista with the Chemex pour-over coffee maker. The elegant simplicity of this coffee maker is perfect for brewing small batches of superior tasting coffee. The coffee maker is all one piece consisting of a carafe with a permanently attached funnel on top. It has a brewing capacity of 30 ounces, making it ideal if you are living alone or with non-coffee drinkers.

The Chemex coffee maker's small size is great for small apartments and kitchens with limited counter space. It's easy to store and can even be placed in the refrigerator if you enjoy a cold coffee or want to make coffee that you can save and use later. Its small size and simple design also mean it's easy to clean and maintain even with frequent use.

About Chemex

The Chemex company has been around since the 1980s and has always been family-owned and operated since that time. Although the company has been around for close to 40 years, the actual Chemex design has been around much longer. According to the Illinois Institute of Technology, the Chemex coffee maker is on the list of the 100 Best Designed Products of Modern Times.

The design was first created in 1941 by a German inventor by the name of Dr. Peter Schlumbohm. In the past 70 years, the design has remained virtually unchanged. The reason for this is because Dr. Schlumbohm created the ideal coffee-maker despite its simplicity.

The Chemex's hourglass shape fits the specially designed Chemex coffee filters perfectly. Chemex filters are also scientifically designed to keep out any sediment and unwanted tastes, so you get the purest tasting coffee every time. Chemex coffee makers are all nonporous glass to further assure that non-coffee flavors never seep into the coffee.

The Chemex company has its headquarters in western Massachusetts; this is also where the company manufactures its coffee makers for worldwide distribution. The Chemex coffee maker has even earned a permanent place in museums because its visual design is considered a work of art. You can see this coffee maker on display in places like MOMA in New York City and The Corning Museum of Glass as well as other museums worldwide.

What We Like Best

  • Nonporous Borosilicate glass material will not hold unwanted flavors or smells
  • One-piece simple design
  • Small enough to fit in the refrigerator if you want to save coffee for later

If you appreciate visually appealing products that are easy to use and maintain, the Chemex coffee maker is hard to beat. The Chemex is about as close to maintenance-free as you can get, simply rinse it out after using it. It doesn't require any descaling or special cleaning.

Its small capacity is great for households of only one or two people. If you like the convenience of a single-serve machine without the need for single-serve coffee pods, the Chemex might be the perfect solution for you.

The Chemex eliminates the need to be continually ordering pods and hoping the pods are compatible with your particular machine and brews a much more flavorful and high-quality coffee. Additionally, its minute size allows you to store it almost anywhere you have a space making it great for apartment dwellers.

The Chemex coffee maker was named one of our picks for the Best Coffee Makers

What We Don't Like

  • Can only use Chemex filters with the Chemex maker

While there is a lot to love about the Chemex coffee maker, some people may be turned off because the coffee maker is only compatible with Chemex filters. Sure, it's great that the filters specialty design allows you to brew very high quality coffee in the comfort of your home. Still, it is a bit of an inconvenience that you can't just pick up filters at your local store during your usual grocery run.

While online retailers make it easier and more convenient to order the filters, you always need to know how many filters you have. If you aren't routinely checking your household stock of filters, you may be unpleasantly surprised one day when you go to make a pot of coffee and don't have any and have to wait for a shipment. This feature may not be a deal-breaker, but it does require you to remember one more thing or pay for yet another auto-shipment.



The Chemex coffee maker combines practical use with visual artistry. It's simple, and well-thought-out design allows you to make small batches of cafe-quality coffee. However, you do need to be willing to put a little time into your coffee making with the Chemex. As with any pour-over coffee maker, it will require a longer brew time and more hands-on brewing than simply pushing a button on an automatic coffee maker.

However, if you appreciate pure-tasting coffee and prefer to brew small batches at a time rather than larger quantities of less flavorful coffee, the Chemex may be perfect for you. The Chemex is great if you want a real coffee taste, but don't have the room or the need for a huge and expensive state-of-the-art machine. The Chemex allows your inner coffee connoisseur to enjoy a smooth and pure coffee experience without the inconvenience.

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