I’m crazy about coffee! I love it. I’m pretty picky about it. I spend a bunch of money buying the best coffee beans, grinding myself fresh, and my favorite is the simple doppio! There you have it. That’s all you need to know about how much I’m into the coffee. Now to the exciting part; what happened before, and after I bought a heating coffee mug.
Let’s step back a moment. Being a coffee fanatic makes you want to drink good, hot coffee under any circumstance. When you are out and need some coffee, you don’t want to hunt for a 3rd wave coffee shop. Instead, you want to have your brew with you. The first step in that journey is to buy a simple coffee mug. Most of the coffee mugs out there have a decent level of insulation. Where things differ is the design of the cap! My favorite in this space is CamelBak Forge that has a leak-proof system that you can unlock and lock with a single hand. One-hand operation is vital if you are planning to drink during your commute. CamelBak has a cap that releases the lock when you hold it with a single hand and locks back when you release it. The design makes sure the lid is only unlocked while your drink. Beautiful.
Unfortunately, after a while, a simple insulated mug isn’t enough. Even if you prewarm the cup, it will still not survive for a half day. My first brilliant idea was to look for something that can keep a cup warm and leave the mug world. I bought the desktop coffee warmer from Cosori. It works great! It helps, but not enough. Maybe it could work better if I bought one of their mugs that helps to seal the surface between the cup and the warmer. I doubt it would be as effective as I needed, though. By the way, I like my coffee hot! How hot? We will get to that.
The next step in my journey was to look for heating coffee mugs. I’m sure you have seen the sexy Ember mugs at a Starbucks. They look just beautiful. It just makes you feel like you want to hold it and walk around the block to show it off 🙂 I bought one! It lasted 24 hours.
Based on my research, Ember is using a Phase Changer Material (PCM) that stores heat and releases when needed. It expects you to fill the mug with very hot coffee. It cools it down and stores the heat in the PCM. It has a battery regulated system that releases the heat when the contents of the mug get cold. That is pretty smart, but there are other mugs out there, like Burnout, that does the same thing without a battery. The advantage of having a battery is that you can select a preferred temperature for the coffee, instead of a default one set by the manufacturer. With that said, the maximum temperature in Ember is 145°F (62.5°C), and that was not enough for me. Ember relies too much on the initial spike of temperature provided by the coffee you first will in and the PCM. The battery is tiny to heat and keep the contents hot for longer than 2-3 hours.
So, where does that leave us? Cauldryn it is. I will be honest. The thing looks like a tool to be used to pound nails on the wall. It is not a mug you would like to hold in your hands in an executive board meeting 🙂 But, it is amazingly functional. There is even an accessory you can buy to brew coffee in it! It can bring water to boiling temperature and keep your coffee hot as long as you need. I purchased the large 75 Wh battery option that is larger than the battery of most 13″ laptops out there. It even has two USB ports on it to charge your phone or tablet 🙂 I’m using it for a month now, and never ran out of battery in a day! The only issue is the cap 🙁 You need to be very careful with it. Otherwise, it might leak. I wish they came up with a design similar to CamelBak. They have a car adapter base as well, but there is no way you can plug/unplug with a single hand while driving. You can use the base to keep things hot, but if you are planning to drink while driving, you better fall back to battery use.
After a month of using a heating coffee mug.
Do I need to tell you that I love it! I’m writing a blog post about a coffee mug, right? Of course, I love it. Here is the interesting finding though. I’m drinking less coffee. I know how much coffee I consume based on the amount of beans I purchase every month. It decreased! I noticed I started brewing less coffee as well. While trying to understand what had changed, I saw that I was drinking my coffee slower because it was as hot as I wanted it to be! Apparently, I was getting to the bottom of my cups faster because the coffee was cold. The part that I enjoyed drinking coffee was when my coffee was hot. I did not notice any of this, because most of the time when I drink coffee, I’m on my laptop doing something else. A coffee mug is helping me decrease my coffee consumption! Wow!
Finally, now that I have a coffee mug that can heat my coffee the full spectrum, I know that I like my coffee precisely at 170°F (77°C). No other coffee mug could accomplish that.
I hope this blog post saves you some research and testing to find your ideal mug 🙂 There you have it!