Having trouble deciding which pour-over dripper is for you? I’m sure the colour and sizing choices don’t make it any easier. If you’re like me, anything that is copper is a must-have, so naturally, I tried two of the more popular choices out there - in copper! Let’s weigh in on the Kalita Wave and the Hario V60, both designed in Japan.
The Kalita Wave - 185 ml (also available in 155 ml) is hand-made in Tsubame, Japan. It’s quite the showstopper in copper, but it’s also available stainless steel, ceramic and glass+colour bottoms (the latter of the two are not hand-made, but offer a better price-point if you want the best brewer for your buck).
The Hario V60 also comes in two sizes (01 and 02) along with many finishes to suit your style plastic, glass, ceramic and metal. The 02 produces a larger, standard cup size. The 01 size is be more portable, just remember to match up your filter size!
We’ll go into more detail below, but if you’re looking for a simple answer, the Kalita Wave is an easier brewer to familiarize yourself with the pour over technique, whereas the Hario V60 will give you a little more control in dialling in that perfect cup.
The metal variants are extremely refined, and are as much a statement piece as they are functional coffee brewers. They also have great heat-retention. The ceramic brewers are your classic white, sturdy brewers that also offer a one-up on heat retention over their glass and plastic counterparts. What ever floats your fancy, we’ve got one that’ll work for you.
On to the function! Both brewers produce a great cup of coffee, but they have a few differences. The V60’s design allows you to really tweak your brew and gives you much more leg room for varying your grind-size and pour (flow-rate varies more strongly with grind-size in this dripper). This is due to the larger opening a the bottom of the cone-shaped brewer, which inherently makes it require a more precise touch. It’s perfect for a drawn-out Sunday morning where you’ve got time to drink a few mugs and experiment a little. Once you get your technique down, it creates an exquisite cup.
Let's touch quickly on the filter paper for the v60... There are now two styles, differentiated most easily by the tab around the upper rim. The tabbed filter is the newer style of the two, which has a thicker and "tighter weave" if you will. The design change increases the water-coffee contact time, resulting in a lengthened brew time. You may have to adjust your grind size ever so slightly to compensate. It is also easier to wash out the paper taste!
The Kalita Wave is well known for it’s wavy filter and flat-bottomed design, which also has three smaller holes as opposed to one (even, spread out flow). With a little more restriction to your flow and a unique filter, it’s quite simple to make a great tasting cup. The filter design minimizes contact with the walls of the dripper, much like the ribs on the inside of the V60 dripper. The Kalita Wave is a staple in many home brewers arsenal’s as it screams consistency, it is very well-suited for a daily-dripper. Don't forget to pick your filter type: bleached, or non. The bleached filter has a less noticeable paper taste, just be sure to pre-wet them before putting your coffee in!
If you’re still unsure, maybe these wise words will help hit the Checkout button. If you’re just starting out with pour over and want something you can pick up easily and use every day, give the Kalita Wave a try. If you want something that you can experiment with and try out some variations to dial in the perfect cup, dive in with the Hario V60. At the end of the day, both devices are absolutely amazing - you won’t be dissatisfied… So, why not buy both?
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