Day 1: Spanish Coffee Maker

All right, so here we are at day one of turning my New York life into my Madrid life. And what’s first on the list …

This morning I woke up and walked over to the stove to make a cup of coffee. But while there I realized I didn’t have a Spanish coffee maker, only a regular American one. After being away from the “American” for some time, I looked at it. It was big, yellow, and took up lots of space on my store bought rolling countertop. I took the coffee pot out of the fixture, filled it with water, and poured it into the back. Then I opened the economy size Chock Full O’ Nuts on the counter and scooped in 4 spoonfuls.  I pushed the button and waited. I stared at it while it made gurgling noises, almost like the grounds and the water were fighting each other, and after however long I saw a light brown substance trickle down into the coffee pot. There it was, American coffee.

Once the noise had stopped I lifted the coffee pot. Light brown.

I took my milk from the fridge and poured it into a pot on the stove. I heated the milk. Then mixed the milk and coffee together and sat down on my couch. It didn’t smell like coffee and it didn’t taste like coffee. It’s what I would refer to as Waffee, a mixture of water and coffee.

First mission: Spanish coffee maker.

Spain coffee is to Madrileños what Guinness is to the Irish. Any place you go you see people sitting in cafes enjoying a coffee, or standing at a Cerveceria shooting back a cortado. Point is, coffee is important. And if something is important in a culture, well, in my opinion that something, whatever it is, is sure to be the best at it.

Coffee plays a major role in my life in Madrid. Daily I go to the same cafe in Lavapies and I sit and work, read, chat with friends for hours. After the cafe, I head home around 2 p.m. and make lunch. After lunch I put my gorgeous Spanish coffee maker on the stove and wait for the coffee to brew.

My gorgeous Spanish coffee maker, which some Italians might say is really an Italian model, is silver. It shines. You can buy this beautiful device at any local Chino in the area. I should mention here that in Madrid there are stores that everyone calls “Los Chinos,” which in English translates to the Chinese. Politically incorrect, yes, but remember, this is Madrid. So the Chinos is where you go to buy pretty much anything you want. There you can find purses, makeup, ashtrays, utensils, rugs, shower curtains, candles, socks, and table cloths. It’s pretty much like combining Bed Bath & Beyond, Target, and Crate & Barrel. You go to the Chinos and you find all the necessities for CHEAP. My gorgeous Spanish stove top coffee maker costs about 7 euros, which is around 10 / 11 dollars.  And my Spanish stove top coffee maker makes beautifully strong, aromatic, and delicious coffee.

First mission is to find a Spanish stove top coffee maker for the equivalent of 10/11 dollars in New York. A great thing about New York is that you can order online. The world of online shopping has yet to reach Madrid. After scrolling through all the major websites, looking for a 3 cup coffee maker and finding them between 34 – 80 dollars. I took a break. I stretched my legs, walked around the apartment for a bit. Then I sat down again and went to The first one at a reasonable price was from Sears, then from Target for 8 dollars but only 1-cup, and then a 6-cup on Amazon for 8 dollars. After fifteen more minutes I found a 3-cup from Pillsbury for $12.95. And then there it was. The perfect 3-cup Spanish stove top coffee maker on Amazon for $10.95.  Wait…I have to pay shipping, which would make it around twenty-two dollars. Nope, back to the computer search. Finally after an hour of searching I found a 3-cup stove top coffee maker for $14.99 from A Whole Latte Love and I don’t have to pay shipping or tax….Okay, it’s not for the 11 dollar price I wanted, but it’s better than twenty-two, right?

Mission One Accomplished!

Now I just have to wait for it to arrive!

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  • Arthur Hamilton

    I bought one in Germany in 2007. Still have it. It cost me 5 euros. Should have bought more. I’ve found out that people love them, here in East Tex.

    Also, I spent 4 years in Madrid. I love their coffee, too!!

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