Ask ten different coffee aficionados what their preferred preparation method and be ready to listen to the minutiae of roasts, grinds, temperature, and time – each as personalized and nuanced as the individuals themselves. It’s the subtlety of preparation and commitment to patience which typically distinguishes a cup prepared by a barista from coffee conveniently dripped in a hurry at home. But the equipment used to make coffee does play an important part. The Frank de Paula FrankOne targets to bridge the gap between serviceable to superior with a vacuum-based process optimized to extract flavorful and smooth cups in surprisingly short time.
Engineer/designer Eduardo Umaña designed the FrankOne in collaboration with Luis Fernando Vélez of Amor Perfecto – the largest specialty coffee roaster based in the land of coffee, Colombia – honing in on a new high pressure vacuum technology to deliver a high gradation of flavors from coffee grounds, while requiring the least amount of time.
Umaña’s portfolio already spans categories, representing efforts in the horological to the uniquely illuminating, a problem-solving mind drawn to functional beauty. “For this design, function needed to be prioritized,” notes Umaña, “This is an entirely brand new brewing method we invented and patented. We call it VacTec.” Preliminary design concepts included extra features like a timer and connectivity, but instinctually Umaña remained committed to keeping the brewing system simple. This brewer’s one button design belies plenty of opportunities for experimentation; by altering grind size, steep time, and water temperature the same roasts can exhibit a wide range of flavors.
The resulting system has the appearance of a pour-over receptacle, with a USB-rechargeable vacuum system in the center engineered to pull water through freshly ground coffee through a reusable mesh filter, producing a continuous and consistent flow before flowing into a blown glass serving carafe for serving.
FrankOne significantly cuts down the time it takes to make cold brew from several hours to just a few minutes. Make intense cold brew in a record time of just 4 minutes and hot coffee that is full bodied and clean in just 30 seconds.
In our tests sampled with a variety of roasts, the FrankOne produced highly satisfactory cups, whether brewing hot coffee or preparing cold brew. In the electric powered vacuum process, bitterness is kept isolated in the top receptacle, protecting more delicate and sweeter flavors often masked by foamy crema. Cold brew is particularly expedited using the FrankOne, a brewing technique normally requiring hours, now sped up to mere minutes.
Even if your primary concern is to get a cup of coffee into your system each morning ASAP, the FrankOne is capable of bringing drinkers closer to achieving the Golden Cup Standard with minimal effort beyond a few scoops and 30 seconds of your time.
The FrankOne is available today with free shipping and 12-month warranty for $120 (with a 10% discount available until Oct. 31st using code “DESIGN”).