The Gooseneck Kettle: A Necessary Tool for the Home Barista?

Ever wondered why the baristas at your favourite café use these specially designed kettles with a characteristic long thin spout and thick handle? Does it actually make a significant difference to a pour-over or is it just a visual gimmick employed by baristas to whet the appetites of coffee drinkers?

Why Use A Gooseneck Kettle for Pourovers?

The gooseneck kettle was specifically designed for pour-over coffee brewing methods. Whether you’re using a V60, Chemex or Kalita, here are some reasons why we recommend using a gooseneck kettle over a traditional one:

1. More control of flow rate
The gooseneck kettle’s curved, long and thin neck gives increased control over the rate at which water flows onto the coffee grounds. This allows more even contact between the grounds and water, giving a more consistent extraction throughout the various phases of the pour-over and ultimately achieving a more flavourful cup with each brew.

2. Greater grip comfort

The gooseneck kettle’s handle and its placement gives the brewer a more comfortable fuller grip whilst preventing accidental contact between the brewer’s hand and the kettle’s main body during pouring. This allows for easier, more consistent and repeatable pours while also preventing accidental scalding.

Manual vs Electric
There are two main kinds of gooseneck kettles: Manual and Electric. When deciding between the two, it is important to remember these points:

  • The optimal water temperature for brewing is somewhere between 90°C (195F) and 96°C (205F).

  • Manual gooseneck kettles can be used the old school way; by placing it over a direct heat source, such as a stove top or induction heater, to boil the water. Alternatively, boil the water in a separate kettle before decanting into the gooseneck kettle.

  • Electric gooseneck kettles, however, simply require you to plug it in, fill with water and hit the switch to start boiling. Some electric kettles also have an in-built temperature control component that allows you to precisely dial in and set your desired water temperature for brewing.
While an Electric Variable Temperature Gooseneck Kettle might be relatively more expensive than a manual one, it is certainly more practical over numerous pours in the long run. It removes a lot of guess work during brewing and allows you to quickly dial in your recipe measurements to ensure more consistent and easily repeatable results. Also, unlike manual kettles, where there is the danger of forgetting to take it off the heat source, the auto-off switch mechanism of electric kettles also prevents potentially dangerous overheating which may ruin your kettle and cause severe burns.

Our Take: At PPP Coffee, we love using both manual and electric kettles. Over at our cafes, we use the Hario Buono Kettle to complement our Marco boilers, and the Brewista Artisan Electric Gooseneck in our office pantry! 

Written by PPP Coffee

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