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In full disclosure, the fine folks over at Minos Living sent me over a Minos Moka Pot free of charge to get my feedback and as a possible subject for a product review.
In the coffee business there are a few brewers that are long-standing classics, overwhelmingly dominate in their field, true icons. The Bialetti Stove Top Espresso maker stands out as one such icon, nearly untouchable and uncontested.
If you search Amazon for stove top espresso makers, you will see the Original Bialetti Moka Express at the top and then the rest of the page is mostly knock-offs sporting the same basic design. There is also the Bialetti Venus and all it’s knock-offs. It isn’t until you get to the fourth page (at least for me) that you come across something different, a uniquely designed, rounded (almost egg shaped) moka pot with a pop of color, the Minos Moka Pot.
Granted, the Minos Moka Pot isn’t for everyone. It is a little on the expensive side for stovetop brewers. It isn’t an entry level piece— it is an enthusiast’s piece. A brewer for someone who loves design and wants to leave their stovetop espresso maker out. It is a premium brewer meant to be enjoyed and admired.
Since the Minos Moka Pot is inevitably going to be compared to the Bialetti Moka Express (the standard), I thought I would just lay out the differences and let you know what you are paying for when you splurge on a Minos Moka Pot.
The Minos is stainless steel instead of aluminum. This means that is it heavier and more durable. It also means that you don’t need to worry about building up a nice coffee residue on the interior of your moka pot to keep the metal from changing the flavor of your coffee (a very common practice with aluminum brewers) . The Minos is meant to be kept clean (invest in some Cafiza).
The Minos is eye catching. The picture doesn’t really do it justice. When I pulled the Minos Moka Pot out of the box I was blown away. It is pretty. It also comes with three easily interchangeable colors (red, yellow and blue). The Bialetti Moka Express on the other hand is iconic, instantly recognized and understood.
The two moka pots use the same basic physics and designs to brew a cup of coffee. A minor design change is the relief valve is hidden underneath the top compartment of the Minos Moka Pot. I preferred the taste of the coffee from the Minos but I would expect it to be similar to other stainless steel moka pots.
In the end, it comes down to price, aesthetics and uniqueness. If you are someone who values quality and uniqueness, who wants to purchase a moka pot that goes off the tried and true norm, and will add a pop of colorful intrigue to your coffee brewing, the Minos Moka Pot is worth checking out. It is also at a nice price point for a gift. As wedding season continues and Christmas rapidly approaches, I would consider the Minos a great option, something the receiver can enjoy for many years.
If on the other hand, you are one that identifies with the icons, has some budget restraints or want to go with one of the most recognizable coffee brewing apparatuses in the world, you may want to stick with the classic. Cheers!
You can see my brewing guide for the Moka Pot here.