Brew coffee 19th century style with a balancing siphon



For anyone interested in why the linked dealer calls this the “Royal Belgium”: 25 years ago there was a small company in Belgium that designed and manufactured a line of handcrafted balance brewers. One line, based on 19th century designs, they called the “Royal”. In the early 2000s, as their business started taking off, Chinese companies flooded ebay with cheap knockoffs, putting the words “Royal” and or “Belgium” in the listing to suggest you were buying the Belgian-made brewer. Eventually the Belgian company succumbed and went bust.

Thanks to the Internet Archive, you can still see Patrick’s original brewers:


Those look pretty cool. I’d never seen one of those before. That’s pretty sad how a company can go bust just because of Chinese knockoffs. I’ve heard of companies losing customers and sales, but going completely bust?

gold ira

$200 hand-made? Even without competition, I can’t see how’d they make a profit.

Gorgeous, though.


How long does it take to make a cup?

Great video


Not only that, but how many people have this much space to dedicate to something like this? Totally cool, but also totally impractical. Yes, I know. To some people, impractical is a major part of cool.

The whole point of this brewer is place it on the dining table so your guests can marvel at its operation.


Side note, Calpernia is the best looking 19th century coffee brewer I’ve ever seen!
So how long until vacuum brew sweeps (sucks) across Brooklyn?

Damn. That’s a price point that makes me go… “Hmmm, I’m sure I can find a spot for that somewhere…” and then use it about as often as my French Press or my Stovetop Espresso thingy (i.e. - Maybe once a year)


Yay, it’s up! Thanks to Andrea James for the article and video, Aaron B. for the gift of the coffee maker, and thanks to the coffee gods for the deliciously sweet cup this thing brews!

It is suggested that one pour in water that is already boiling, or at the point of boiling, to speed the process. Boiling that amount of water over the spirit lamp’s flame would take a very long time. Overall, it takes 10 minutes or so from start to finish, but I believe it is meant to be a show on the dinner table for guests, not a daily morning ritual. =)


Hannibal Lecter’s choice of coffee maker


To be fair, it’s meant to be more a thing to show off when you’ve got company over than something used every morning.

It’s nice, but a bit like a large fancy fondue pot: handy to have for parties, but unless you host parties quite often or manage to get a nice one for free or cheap from a thrift shop or relative, it’s probably not worth the investment

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Things like this are why there are things like Sanka.

To me, this thing is just aching for a modern update. I paid about $200 for a pour over style coffee maker (the Brazen) that is okay but not nearly as badass looking (though it is pretty badass looking). It takes up nearly as much space, though more vertical. This thing seems to avoid the issue that the Brazen has of not having a removable water filter. Even though I don’t have a lot of fancy parties, it looks like it makes a good cup of Joe. If you could replace the heat source with an electronic coil, I’d buy it.

Here’s a review of the Royal brewer mentioned by @d_r

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