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A blue Alaska brand coffeemaker.
A blue Alaska brand coffeemaker

A coffeemaker is a small kitchen appliance used to make drip brew-style coffee without having to boil water. Typically, coffee grounds are placed in a paper or metal filter inside a funnel, which is set over a glass or ceramic coffee pot. Cold water is poured into a separate chamber, which is then heated up to the boiling point, and directed into the funnel. This is also called automatic drip-brew.


The "pumping percolator" was developed in France in the early 19th century. Boiling water in a chamber forces itself up a tube and then down into coffee grounds, set over a pot. Also around this time, the French-drip pot was invented, in which hot water is poured over a filter containing ground coffee into a carafe.

A number of different machines used to automate these methods were around until the mid-20th century. In 1972, the first automatic drip-brew coffeemaker, Mr. Coffee, was introduced. It combined aspects of both the drip-brew process and the percolating process with the added feature of heating up the water using an electric element in a separate chamber. Since that time, the number, style, and size of these appliances have increased dramatically. Coffeemakers are currently the most popular way of making coffee at home because of their convenience, however some people feel that the taste complexity of coffee is lost when this method is used.

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