K-Cups to Kopi Joss: 20 Ways to Brew Coffee from Around the World

Coffee Brewing Methods from Around the World

If you’re like us, a cup of coffee is about more than a jolt of caffeine to kick start your day. It’s a comforting ritual that more than a billion people around the world have made part of their mornings. In the USA alone more than 79% of our sleepy citizens prepare coffee at home, which is something we love to do as well. As we started to tiptoe beyond the efficient brews supplied by our Keurig, we realized something that both ignited and comforted our wanderlust: making coffee at home is a great way to celebrate some of our past vacations.

Coffee Brewing Methods from Around the WorldThinking back on our travels, coffee has occasionally been a destination in itself; our trips to places like Panama and Ecuador were, in part, inspired by coffees we hoped to try. Other trips, like Albuquerque and Auckland were simply improved by the chance to try new brews and types of beans. In the same way that coffee has been a big part of our travels, it also helps us extend our memories.

We drink a lot of coffee in our house, but we’re far from experts. Neither of us have worked with coffee in a professional setting, but we’ve enjoyed discovering new and unique ways to brew coffee. It’s amazing how elements like grind level, water temperature, and of course the device you use can make a big difference. Because our travels have introduced us to some fun new ways to brew coffee, we thought it would be just as fun to try our hand at testing some of these methods in our own home!

If you, too, are interested in trying some new coffee brewing methods, the items we list in this post might be a great start for you, too. While researching this article, we tried to identify the origin of each of these coffee methods; some of them are pretty clear due to patents, but others are surprisingly up for debate. In many ways, this list just scratches the surface of what kind of coffee makers you can use, and we’re sure our own list will grow as our travels continue and we learn even more.

One note: every product listed in this article is something we actually own. We selected each product independently, purchased them with our own money, and were not paid to write these reviews. We also include links to where you can purchase them in case you want to expand your own in-home coffee bar. We may earn a small commission off of the Amazon purchases that will not impact the price you pay, but that doesn’t influence our choice to include them on this list. These items are great quality and Amazon ships fast, so it’s the perfect fit!

So pour yourself a fresh cup and let’s dive into some of the fun ways to make coffee!


Origin: USA

Possibly our favorite, or at least our go-to option for a high-quality cup of coffee, Chemex has been a classic staple for many coffee enthusiasts since it’s debut in 1941. Invented by a German chemist named Dr. Peter Schlumbohm, his goal was to create a method for brewing a cup of coffee that was simple and beautiful in appearance. The beauty of the Chemex device led to well-received accolades in both the scientific community and the art world, landing a spot in the Brooklyn Museum, the Corning Museum of Glass, and the Museum of Modern Art just to name a few. Still, it’s not just a nice looking carafe: the non-porous glass won’t absorb odors, and the scientifically designed paper filter eliminates oils, all of which helps create a clean, smooth, and consistently great cup of coffee. There are many other pour-over coffee brewing methods (the Hario V60, Kalita Wave, and Fellow Stagg come to mind as popular alternatives- especially if you want to place the brewer directly on top of your cup), but Chemex is our favorite of this segment. The Chemex website provides detailed instructions for how to use the device if you’re looking to get started.

Simple, classic, and consistently good, Chemex is a great choice if you’re looking to add a new coffee maker to your collection.

Watch: Video Instructions for Chemex

Shop: Chemex on Amazon | Reusable Coffee Filter for Chemex on Amazon

Belgian Balance Siphon Coffee

Origin: Belgium (or Austria?)

Belgian Balance Siphon Coffee
Belgian Balance Siphon Coffee. Source: Pexels
We’ve seen this one listed under a few different names; Belgian Luxury Royal Balance Syphon Coffee, Belgian Balance Coffee, Royal Coffee Maker, and Balance Brewer are just a few. Whichever you choose to call it, this device makes a great cup of coffee and provides some nice “coffee theater” in the process! It dates back to the 1850s, when Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria commissioned the design of the device to act as one of the centerpieces for a Royal banquet. Today, these Balance coffee machines are still considered an impressive work of art, with some places taking the handcrafted traditions to new levels and selling them for up to $24,000 each! We found some more reasonably priced Balance coffee machines on Amazon, where they are priced within the $100-$200 range. It may not be the most convenient way to brew coffee, but it might be one of the most elegant!

Watch: Video Instructions for the Belgian Balance Siphon Coffee machine

Shop: Belgian Balance Coffee machine on Amazon

Kyoto-style Cold Brew Coffee Tower

Origin: Japan

Kyoto Cold Brew Coffee TowerWe fell in love with this style of coffee maker on our trip to Kyoto a couple of years ago. While the Cold Brew Drip Tower originated in Japan, it was also known as “Dutch Coffee” after Dutch traders were introduced to it during their voyages to Japan in the 1600s. This slow dripping cold brew tower creates an incredibly smooth, delicate, yet flavorful cold brew coffee, and it’s sure to grab the attention of your guests! Let’s face it: you don’t have to use a tower to make cold brew coffee; in fact, we’ve had success with many cold brew pitchers that you can put in the fridge. They work fine, but those pitchers don’t have anything close to the style that the cold brew tower does! You’re buying this tower as much for the looks as you are the beverage itself, and fortunately, the quality of the end product is worth the investment.

The process slowly steeps the grounds (drip by drip) and uses gravity and beaker channels to move the coffee through multiple filters over the course of 8-12 hours. The slow drip and coil channels create a long oxidation process and add an element of aeration (similar to aerating a bottle of wine) to improve the overall flavor and mellow out the coffee. We purchased the Yama Cold Brew Tower through Clive Coffee (they also sell replacement parts), and use this coffee brewing method about once a week. We use a slightly coarse ground and set the dripper to about 45 drips per minute, so a little less than one per second.

Watch: Video Instructions for the Cold Brew Coffee Tower

Shop: Cold Brew Coffee Tower on Amazon

If you like cold brew but you’re looking for an easier option, try a coffee pitcher for your fridge. We’ve used a few different versions over the years, but the coffee maker from Ovalware is our current favorite. The middle of the pitcher contains a removable canister that holds your preferred amount of coffee. Just add your grounds, fill the pitcher with cold filtered water (we always recommend avoiding tap water), and put it in the fridge overnight. The amount of time in the fridge varies depending on who you ask, but we’ve found 12 hours to be just about right for our preference. In the morning, just remove the pitcher, remove the middle canister with the grounds, and enjoy your cold brew! It’s important to remember to remove those coffee grounds- if you leave them in the pitcher it can ruin the batch and make your coffee taste bitter.

Shop: Cold Brew coffee pitcher on Amazon

Moka Pot

Origin: Italy

Moka Pot Bialetti and Alessi PulcinaThe world-famous stovetop coffee machine, Moka Pot, has been a common item in European households for more than 50 years. Invented in 1933 by Luigi di Ponti and Italian engineer Alfonso Bialetti, the Moka Pot quickly developed a devoted following and became a staple in kitchens everywhere. It has a distinctive modern industrial design and has been recognized by numerous museums around the world including the London Science Museum, the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and MoMA just to name a few.

Italy is one of the major epicenters for the coffee world, and the Moka Pot’s connection to the country is strong. One of our favorite Moka Pots is the Alessi Pulcina, which is the result of a partnership between Italian coffee giant Illy and the famous Italian designer/architect Michele De Lucchi. They took the traditional format of the octagonal Moka Pot and spiced it up with design elements that add impressive beauty and style to the device. The shape is also designed to keep the coffee from burning during the “eruption” phase, which has been one of the issues with traditional Bialetti Moka Pot coffee. The result gives you a strong, robust cup of stove-top espresso. As an added bonus, the 6-cup Alessi Pulcina comes with an additional “American Coffee” filter that you can use to make incredible Caffè Americanos! If you’re looking for a beautiful coffee pot to add to your kitchen that also makes great coffee, consider the Alessi Pulcina Moka Pot.

Watch: Video Instructions for Moka Pot

Shop: Bialetti Moka Pot on Amazon | Alessi Pulcina Moka Pot on Amazon


Origin: USA

AeroPress with a standThis is a favorite for coffee enthusiasts everywhere, and for good reason: it creates an amazing cup of coffee! We were first introduced to AeroPress on our trip to Seattle many years ago, and we immediately knew we had to buy one of the devices for ourselves. AeoroPress has a devoted following, and it has even inspired a fan-driven event called the AeroPress World Championships which hosts entrants from more than 60 countries! The small device is inexpensive (about $30 on Amazon) and it doesn’t require a power source or battery—it’s also portable and easy to travel with if you want to ensure you can make great coffee on the road. The AeroPress comes apart into three pieces: the bottom cap where you place the paper filter, the middle part where you add the hot water and coffee, and the “plunger” which is used to add pressure in the last step of the process, where you will push the coffee through the channels and into the cup. Once you get the hang of it, you can make a delicious cup of coffee with the AeroPress in about 2 minutes!

Watch: Video Instructions for the AeroPress

Shop: Aeropress on Amazon

Turkish Coffee

Origin: Ottoman Empire

Turkish Coffee CezveRecognized by UNESCO for its significance in cultural heritage, Turkish Coffee is a must-try if you ever see it on a menu when you travel, but you can also make it at home! Stephanie has enjoyed it in Turkey, but my first introduction to Turkish Coffee was during our visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina a few years ago. The coffee beans are ground to a fine powder and added to water inside a special hand-held brass or copper pot called a Cezve (or Ibrik in some parts of the world). The process for making great Turkish Coffee can be difficult to master, and some methods even include resting the still-brewing coffee in a bed of sand as part of the process. It’s traditionally served in small cups about the size of an espresso cup and often accompanied by Turkish delight. We also like to add a dash of cardamom and sugar to bring out a nice effervescence that compliments the overall flavor.

When it comes to Turkish Coffee, using the right bean is essential. Turkey’s Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi is the most well-known Turkish Coffee brand, and it’s the one we typically use. They’ve been in business since 1871 and are a great choice if you’re looking to make Turkish Coffee at home. Al Ameed Turkish Coffee from Jordan is another safe choice if you’re looking for specialized Turkish Coffee options. As an added bonus, Al Ameed often has cardamom already added to their coffee, so it saves you a step. Both of these brands can be found in most specialty grocery stores and are also available on Amazon.

Watch: Video Instructions for Turkish Coffee

Purchase on Amazon: Turkish Coffee Cezve on Amazon | Mehmet Efendi Turkish Coffee | Al Ameed Turkish Coffee

Bripe – Coffee Brew Pipe

Origin: USA/Canada

Bripe Coffee Brew PipeHere’s a new one that you probably haven’t heard of: the Bripe, or Coffee Brew Pipe. If you’ve ever had the urge to drink coffee from a pipe, perhaps while camping or hiking, then you probably would enjoy Briping. Even if the thought has never crossed your mind, the very nature of this coffee maker is ultra-portable, so there’s no need for batteries, electricity, or even a stove. The Coffee Brew Pipe comes with a portable butane-powered lighter and a thermometer to help you brew your coffee right in the device. The process is quick, easy, and fun, resulting in a convenient cup of coffee— well, a convenient pipe of coffee if you want to be specific.

The Bripe coffee brewing method was invented by two friends (an American and a Canadian) in 2015, and a portion of their proceeds go to supporting a coffee operation with the Quitirrisi Tribe in Puriscal, Costa Rica and the Fundeico Foundation. Take a look at the video below to learn more and visit their website for details.

Watch: Video Instructions for the Bripe

Shop: You can purchase the Bripe Coffee Brew Pipe on their website

Cowboy Coffee

Origin: ‘Merica (USA)

Cowboy Coffee at a camp siteYou may or may not have heard of Cowboy Coffee before, but you would probably recognize it if you’ve watched movies that depict the wild west or played video games like the Red Dead Redemption series. I’m a huge fan of the RDR games; I love a good western, and having grown up in Oregon I learned all about the Oregon Trail, Lewis and Clark, and pioneers as a kid, so this coffee brewing method really appealed to me when I heard about it. Cowboy Coffee is essentially how coffee was made in those days, and the process is still used for camping, hiking, or any outdoor activity where you might want to start up a campfire and make a pot of coffee (assuming you don’t have a Bripe handy, but I digress).

The brewing process for Cowboy Coffee is fairly simple: just add water to a steel coffee pot, add a healthy amount of coarse ground coffee, and set it over a heat source. Once you see a rolling boil, let it go for 5 minutes or so before removing it from the heat. The pot gets HOT, so you will want to use a glove when handling the pot. In the final step, add a little cold water and let it rest to allow the grounds to settle. That’s pretty much it! The traditional way to make Cowboy Coffee is over a campfire, but you can also use your stove at home. The key to Cowboy Coffee is a “well seasoned” coffee pot, and you can often find those at antique stores or on Ebay. If you don’t want to buy a used item, we recommend the coffee pots from GSI Outdoors or Graniteware, and you can find them in places like Cabela’s and L.L. Bean. These coffee pots have that rustic, no-frills look you want when you’re making Cowboy Coffee, but they’re also high quality and reasonably priced.

Watch: Video Instructions for Cowboy Coffee

Shop: Campfire Cowboy Coffee Pot on Amazon

Neapolitan Flip Pot

Origin: Italy

Neapolitan Flip Coffee MakerThe Neapolitan Flip coffee device was developed by a French inventor in 1819, but Italy adopted it as their own; in fact, it’s known as the signature method for coffee preparation in Naples even to this day. The device uses two stacked pots with the top canister starting in an upside down position. The coffee grounds (medium coarse) are added to a tray in the middle before water is added to the bottom pot, and the whole thing is placed on a stovetop or heat source. When the water reaches a boiling point, the entire device is flipped upside down so the pot with the water drains through the coffee tray and fills the pot on the opposite side of the device. It’s worth noting that this flip step can be tricky and you’ll want to make sure both sides are secure before turning it over. Also, there seems to be two kinds of Neapolitan Flip coffee makers, with the main difference being the handle: one has smaller handles that are closer to the pots while the other has rod-like handles that give you a little more room for a grip. We chose the version with the rods since the smaller handles seem to increase the likelihood of burned knuckles during that last flip part, but both options should work the same otherwise. This stovetop brewer takes time and precision to master, but it’s a nice addition to the coffee collection.

Watch: Video Instructions for Neapolitan Flip coffee brewer

Shop: Neapolitan Flip Pot on Amazon

Pour-Over Drippers: V60, Kalita, and Origami

Origin: Japan

Origami Dripper, Hario v60, Kalita Pour-over Coffee DrippersWhen it comes to pour-over coffee, the Hario V60 and Kalita Wave are at or near the top of my list of preferred methods. Both drippers were invented by Japanese companies, and you’ll find a wide range of opinions when it comes to which one is the best method. They both utilize the pour-over method with a paper filter approach that was invented in 1908 by German entrepreneur Melitta Bentz (who went on to found the Melitta coffee company). The cup angles, holes in the base of the dripper, and size all play a role in each design, but both of these drippers will produce a wonderful cup of coffee. We also love the colorful Origami drippers, which were invented by another Japanese company and have a coffee brewing method that is similar to the V60 and Kalitas. These pour-over drippers are inexpensive, and their small sizes makes them easily portable, so they are great to have as part of your own coffee maker lineup.

Learn more in the videos below.

Watch: Video Instructions for Hario V60 | Kalita Wave | Origami Dripper

Shop: Hario V60 on Amazon | Kalita Wave on Amazon

Costa Rican Chorreador

Origin: Costa Rica

Costa Rican Chorreador Coffee SockCosta Rica has been on our travel bucket list for quite a while. We’ve long enjoyed coffee with Costa Rican origins, and we’ve heard stories about the chorreador coffee maker that’s popular there. Rather than wait for an opportunity to travel to Costa Rica, we decided to “virtually travel” there by way of the chorreador. We discovered Cafe Britt during our trip to Panama, and we were thrilled to see they sold authentic Costa Rican chorreadors on their website. The chorreader uses a cloth bag (called a bolsita) held open by a wire rim to filter the coffee. It really does look like a little sock, but Costa Rican Chorreader sounds cooler than Costa Rican Sock Coffee. It’s been used for more than 200 years in this part of the world, so you have to trust the experts on this. The bolsitas don’t need to be replaced after each use—they usually last about 3 months—but replacement “socks” are available on Amazon.

Watch: Video and Instructions for using the Costa Rican Chorreador

Shop: Chorreador at Cafe Britt | Replacement coffee socks on Amazon

French Press Coffee

Origin: France (or Italy?)

Bodum Columbia Stainless Steel French PressA favorite coffee brewing method of mine going back to my college days, French Press is one of the classic staples of coffee brewing. A forerunner of the French Press was patented in 1852 by two French inventors, but a version of the French Press that most resembles the modern-day device was patented by Italians in 1929. Also known as a coffee press, cafetière, or coffee plunger, the French Press uses coarse ground coffee steeped in hot water before finally being “pressed” by a steel or nylon filter. The press (or plunge) pushes the grounds to the bottom of the pot while leaving the coffee above, ready to pour and enjoy. You can find French Press coffee makers at almost any coffee house, high-end restaurants and dining experiences (we loved it when we were served French press coffee on our cruise a few years ago), and they’re easy to find online. We like the stainless steel Columbia French Press from Bodum, which makes it easy to clean and doesn’t wear down as quickly as some of the more common plastic framed models. The double-wall steel build also retains heat longer than some of the glass French Press coffee makers we’ve used in the past, so we’ve been very happy with this purchase.

Watch: Video Instructions for French Press

Shop: French Press on Amazon

Kumbakonam Degree Coffee

Origin: India

Parts of the Kumbakonam Degree Coffee brewerI have never been to India, but Stephanie visited on a work trip back in 2010. Kumbakonam Degree Coffee is a specialty in the southeastern part of the country, and when we heard about this coffee brewing method we instantly knew we wanted to learn how it was done and add it to our collection. Kumbakonam Degree Coffee uses two small brass canisters with powdered chicory coffee, hot water, and milk. The brass canisters are filled with coffee in two spots, sandwiched between the plunger piece, giving the brewing process a unique two-tiered steeping process to extract flavors. The brass pieces of the brewing device are beautiful, and the coffee is traditionally served in small cups called dabara or davara which sit in a small bowl to mix and collect overflow. We found a set of four cups paired with the Kumbakonam Degreee Coffee brewer on Etsy, and we love it as a centerpiece to our coffee collection. Our methods for making this type of coffee are far from authentic, but we enjoy learning about the process and practicing our skills while we dream of the day that we can visit India and try real Kumbakonam Degree Coffee in-person!

Kumbakonam Degree Coffee with ChicoryAs mentioned above, chicory coffee is typically used in Kumbakonam Degree Coffee. Chicory is the root of the endive plant (a vegetable similar to lettuce), and it’s roasted and ground with coffee beans to create chicory coffee. The resulting combination produces an earthy, nutty, and slightly herbal taste that is unique to other types of coffee—it’s unlike anything we’ve tried! While chicory coffee is not very common in the United States, the famous Cafe Du Monde in New Orleans has a wonderful chicory coffee that you can purchase in grocery stores, and it’s what we used to make our Kumbakonam Degree Coffee. In the absence of actual chicory coffee beans from India, it fills the role very nicely!

The video below shows the authentic process of making Kumbakonam Degree Coffee.

Watch: Video Instructions for Kumbakonam Degree Coffee

Shop: Chicory Coffee on Amazon | Kumbakonam Degree Coffee on Etsy

Siphon Coffee/Vacuum Pot

Origin: Germany

Hario Siphon Coffee BrewerI do love vacuum coffee makers! We’ve enjoyed Siphon Coffee in places like London, Auckland, and Seattle and it’s typically made using a device like the Hario Syphon Coffee Maker we now have in our home. Hario was founded in 1921, and the Japanese company makes some of the best Syphon coffee brewers on the market—they also produce the wildly popular V60 pour over device we also love. The device has a few names—I’ve seen it called siphon, syphon coffee, vacuum pot, or vacuum coffee, and it comes in various forms, but the two beakers that look like something out of a science lab are my favorite.

The first vacuum coffee makers were invented in the 1830s in Berlin, and they’ve become particularly popular in Japan. The Siphon brewer creates a striking visual next to some of the more traditional coffee machines on our list, which can also be a fun conversation starter or an opportunity to enjoy a little coffee theater with guests. There are a few different methods to creating the right cup of coffee with this device and like anything it will take practice and experimentation to get things just how you like them to be. For instance, after many failed attempts, we swapped out the cloth filter for a reusable steel filter and found that it finally produced a drinkable cup of coffee. This full immersion coffee brewing method can be tricky to master, but if you’re up to the challenge it can be a rewarding addition to your coffee collection. It’s a fun way to make coffee that also adds a touch of style and intrigue to your coffee bar!

Watch: Video Instructions for Siphon Coffee Maker

Shop: Hario Siphon Coffee Maker on Amazon | Stainless Steel Coffee Filter for Hario Siphon Coffee

Coffee Pods – Keurig and Nespresso

Origin: Switzerland

Beloved in kitchens, waiting rooms, hotel rooms, and office break rooms around the world, this is a brewing style that most likely feels comfortable to just about everyone. Coffee pods were invented in the mid-1970s by a Swiss Engineer named Eric Favre, but it wasn’t until the mid-1990s that the quick and easy Keurig and Nespresso coffee machines truly revolutionized at-home coffee making. In our home, the Keurig and Nespresso Vertuo are the go-to coffee makers when we need to make coffee fast.

We’ve had a few different Keurigs over the years, from smaller sized options like the K-Mini to larger, more robust options like the K-Elite, and they come in a variety of colors and sizes. We even use it to quickly churn out hot water for some of the other coffee brewing methods we list in this article. While it’s not going to win you any points with hardcore coffee aficianados, a Keurig is almost essential for a basic, no frills cup of coffee.

The Nespresso Vertuo is another popular coffee machine that uses “pods” to create quick and easy coffee on the go. The Nespresso Vertuo lets you create many different flavors of espresso and brewed coffee, but the patented “Centrifusion” system is where Nespresso sets itself apart from the competition, producing a rich crema and creating an almost latte or cappuccino-like texture—especially with the Caramelizio pods. For an added bonus, the version we have (a wonderful gift from our family!) includes the Aeroccino Milk Frother. Take a look at the Amazon link below for that package.

Shop: Keurig Machines on Amazon | Nespresso Vertuo with Aeroccino Milk Frother on Amazon

Vietnamese Filter Coffee Phin

Origin: Vietnam

Vietnamese Coffee Filter PhinStephanie and I are huge fans of Vietnamese Iced Coffee, and she even got to enjoy it on her solo trip to Ho Chi Minh City back in 2011. When I discovered the Vietnamese Phin Coffee filter I knew it was an item we needed to add to our home collection!

It’s believed that French Catholic missionaries introduced the first coffee plants to Vietnam in 1857. Since then, the country has grown into the world’s second-largest coffee exporter and the largest producer of Robusta variety coffee beans. Coffee is a big deal in Vietnam, and they have a unique method for brewing a cup of joe, using a small coffee drip filter called a “Phin” that looks a little like a miniature cooking pot. It sits directly on top of the coffee cup, and there’s a perforated filter plate that’s placed inside the device, reminiscent of the Kumbakonam Degree Coffee method from India. The final step involves pouring hot water over the grounds and letting it steep and drip into the cup, so it also has similarities to pour-over and French Press methods as well. It’s quick and easy to use, producing a high quality cup of coffee within about 5 minutes. The best part is you can easily use it to make Vietnamese Iced Coffee as well as hot coffee. To make the iced coffee, just add sweetened condensed milk before you start brewing your coffee. When the process is complete, pour the brewed coffee over a glass of ice, stir it up, and enjoy!

We found a wonderful Vietnamese Coffee Filter on Amazon for about $12, and we use the traditional Vietnamese coffee from Trung Nguyen. Trung Nguyen is the number one coffee brand in Vietnam, and their products are available in the USA in specialty supermarkets as well as on Amazon. Vietnam is one of the countries we hope to visit again soon, and we can’t wait to enjoy an authentic cup in person during our trip!

Watch: Video Instructions for Vietnamese Drip Coffee

Shop: Vietnamese Drip Filter Coffee makers on Amazon | Trang Nguyen Vietnamese Coffee grounds on Amazon

Ipoh White Coffee

Origin: Malaysia

OldTown White Coffee from MalaysiaThis is a specific type of coffee we discovered on our travels around southeast Asia, as opposed to a coffee machine or brewing device. We first learned about Ipoh White Coffee on our food tour in Kuala Lumpur and we were instantly hooked! This is a regional specialty, and the town where the drink originated (Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia) has been listed among the top three coffee towns worldwide by Lonely Planet. What makes Ipoh White Coffee unique? The coffee beans are roasted with margarine at a lower temperature, giving them a lighter color and a unique taste. The coffee is then ground, brewed, and served with sweetened condensed milk, which creates a lighter colored coffee with slight caramel notes and a velvety smooth mouthfeel. That light color is where the name “White Coffee” comes from; the coffee beans themselves are not actually white. We were lucky enough to try it as both a hot cup of coffee and iced coffee (out of a plastic bag!) and we highly recommend trying this if your travels take you to Kuala Lumpur.

There are many cafes around Malaysia that serve White Coffee, but the most well-known is OldTown White Coffee. With more than 200 locations in the country, they’re easy to find no matter where you are in Malaysia. But you don’t have to travel to Malaysia to try this—you can find OldTown White Coffee instant coffee mix in many specialty supermarkets, and they’re also sold on Amazon. It’s not quite the same as enjoying it in Malaysia, but if you can’t make the trip you can still try this unique style of coffee in the comfort of your own home.

This video from Malaysia’s BFM 89.9 shares some historical information and additional details about Ipoh White Coffee.

Watch: Ipoh White Coffee Video

Shop: White Coffee on Amazon


Origin: Hong Kong

The MinipressoHave you ever gone on vacation and wished you had a way to make a great cup of espresso right in your hotel room? Many hotel rooms have Keurig machines or Mr. Coffee-style drip machines, but neither of those options will produce a quality espresso. The Minipresso is the perfect solution to that dilemma, and it’s great for camping or traveling due to its small size and portability. It doesn’t require batteries, and there is no power cable needed—you just add your coffee grounds, add hot water, put it all together, and pump the device with your hand to create your espresso! The Minipresso is even compatible with Nespresso capsules, so you also have the option to drop one of those in for convenience instead of manually adding coffee grounds.

The Minipresso portable coffee maker was invented by Wacaco, a Hong Kong-based startup, and it’s available in a variety of colors and styles.

Watch: Video Instructions for the Wacaco Minipresso

Shop: Wacaco Minipresso on Amazon

BONUS: Kopi Joss Coffee

Origin: Indonesia

Kopi Joss Charcoal CoffeeWe’ve never made Kopi Joss at home—and, in fact, we’ve never tried it ourselves—but we couldn’t share a coffee article without mentioning Kopi Joss. We discovered this type of coffee right before our trip to Yogyakarta in 2015, and it’s a local specialty in that part of Indonesia. They know coffee in this part of the world; in fact, Kopi Joss comes from the island of Java, which itself has become one of the nicknames for coffee. If you’ve been to a Starbucks or any coffee house you’ve most likely seen Indonesian or Sumatra roasts on the menu, but chances are you’ve never had coffee like this! The name Kopi Joss combines the word for coffee in Indonesia (Kopi) with the phonetically derived word for how it sounds when the coffee is brewing: joss. Long story short, Kopi Joss is coffee with a lump of hot burning coal dropped into it. The hot coal fizzes when it’s dropped into the cup of coffee, creating the “joss” sound. It’s believed that the burning coal helps remove toxicity and purify the coffee. Reviews of the coffee usually describe it as slightly burnt with caramel notes, and I can imagine it would be probably the darkest, perhaps boldest coffee you would ever try.

Sadly, torrential rains kept us from getting to the coffee stalls in Yogyakarta to try Kopi Joss ourselves, but a return trip is high on our travel bucket list! This video shares some more information on Kopi Joss and shows the process.

Watch: Kopi Joss Video

DOUBLE BONUS: Experiment with Coffee Beans

Miller's Coffee roaster
Miller’s Coffee roaster in Auckland
You don’t have to settle for pre-packaged bags of mass-produced coffee beans from your grocery store. We’ve been fortunate to discover some wonderful coffee roasters over the years, and a few of our favorites are Sleepy Monk, Red Rooster Coffee, Commonwealth Joe, New Mexico Piñon Coffee, and Haymarket Coffee Company. When traveling, make a point of buying a bag or two from a local coffee roaster to enjoy when you return home, this can also double as a nice souvenir from your travels! We also recommend looking into the local roasters who might be in your neighborhood; supporting a local business while trying a new type of bean might feel like a mini vacation!

If you’re just getting started, our favorite roasters have a great variety to choose from and ship worldwide, so you can get quality coffee no matter where you live. Visit their websites below to see what they offer, you just might taste the difference like we have!

Shop: Sleepy Monk | Red Rooster Coffee | Commonwealth Joe | Haymarket Coffee Company | New Mexico Piñon Coffee

TRIPLE BONUS: A note on Coffee Grinders

We didn’t want to get too technical with this post since we’re not coffee experts, but it’s important to note that the key to coffee brewing methods is the grind. Each method requires a different coffee grind level; for example, French Press and Cowboy Coffee use a coarse grind while Espresso and Turkish Coffee work best with a finer grind. Coffee grinders come in a variety of prices, from $10 to $4,000 (or more for professional models!) but we’ve used two options in our house – the Fellow Ode and the Breville Smart Grinder Pro. Both are quick, easy to use, and produce a consistent, even grind for a wide range of brewing methods. The right grind can make or break your beverage, so it’s worth investing in a quality coffee grinder if you plan to try multiple brewing methods.

Shop: Fellow Ode Grinder on Amazon

Shop: Breville Smart Grinder Pro on Amazon

Coffee from Around the World!

Coffee Brewing Methods Around the WorldThere’s a reason people start their day with a cup of coffee every morning: coffee provides the comfort and the caffeine we need to start the day off right. Combining our love of coffee with travel has taken our appreciation to the next level; every cup reminds us of a great memory and connects us to why we love to travel and learn about the world in the first place. If you’re looking to pair coffee and travel at home, try a new coffee brewing method and a different bean. We’re sure you’ll find the experience as rewarding as we do!

Here are a few more coffee photos from our collection and our travels!

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K-Cups to Kopi Joss: 20 Ways to Brew Coffee from Around the World

* From time to time, our travels are directly impacted by a service or company. In this case, we visited multiple locations and purchased multiple coffee makers. This post includes our candid review of our experience. We selected these locations and items based on our own research and travel needs; we were not offered and did not receive compensation of any kind from them or any other party in exchange for our review. Learn more about our travel philosophy here.