It's no secret that I love the Able Brewing Kone. It's a reusable metal filter designed for pourover coffee brewing. It nestles snugly in the hourglass neck of a Chemex pot and filters the coffee using both the sediment in the coffee bed and tiny holes that are etched in the metal of the filter. It makes a cup of coffee that delivers the rich, full-bodied mouthfeel of a press pot while preserving the delicate flavors that are typical of a pourover. If that isn't enough, it's also made in America.
Keith Gehrke, the founder of Able Brewing and inventor of the Kone, just launched the third (and final) version of the metal filter on Kickstarter. After testing 40 different prototypes, Gehrke settled on a design that removes some of the sharp edges from the filter, reduces the hole size, and produces a better extracted, cleaner cup of coffee. The most visible changes, the addition of an injection-molded plastic ring around the top of the filter and the flat tip, aren't nods to safety, they are all part of Gehrke's quest to brew the best cuppa. The flattened tip removes the possibility of leaks through any gaps that can form in a conical tip, and the injection-molded ring adds structural integrity that allows the Kone to be made of thinner steel with smaller holes for the filter itself.
The plastic ring has another benefit as well. Says Gehrke:
The Kone was designed to be a floating filter, but the weight of the coffee and water forces it against the Chemex glass. Something I have solved with the new plastic ring. Now it will float. This allows for better, more even extraction.
Along with the new version of the filter, Gehrke is launching a ceramic brewer, the Able Brewing System, which is designed to complement the new Kone. While the new Kone will still work with your trusty Chemex, Gehrke worked with a ceramic studio in Portland to build something that will allow you to make a perfect cup of coffee as well as showcase and store your Kone.
Gehrke's using Kickstarter as a pre-order system for the new products. The third-generation Kone will be available in August and the brewing system will follow it in September. The pre-order price for a third-generation Kone is $45 ($15 off the normal price) and the new Kone + the Able Brewing System is selling for $125.