Big Sky Bistro Coffee Press/Mug

/ Friday, 8 January 2010 / Camping

Fine, I’ll admit it.

I’m nothing without a cup of coffee in the morning. For that matter, some days it’s two or three to get me by based on my energy levels. Caffeine just seems to fit into my regular daily pattern of requirements. Hey, everyone’s got a vice right?

The quest for a perfect cup of coffee on the trail, or while bicycle touring is a pretty important deal for me. Paying upwards of $3 or more for a cup at a retail store does have its benefits (free wi-fi access, ability to strike up conversations to other customers) but when traveling on a budget, it’s best to do it yourself.

After a few failed attempts and products I stumbled on the Big Sky Bistro in hopes of finding the elusive best cup of coffee. It’s an all in one approach to the classic coffee mug that has a press integrated to cut down on additional components required to get that fix. At 205 grams, its fairly lightweight and has a capacity of holding 16oz / 470ml of liquids.

Operation of the device is simple. Remove the Cap/Press Device, and put a scoop of coffee in the bottom, and fill the unit with hot water. Next replace the lid and press the handle down a small amount to allow the coffee to steep for a few minutes. Finally, depress the plunger knob all the way to the bottom and you are ready to enjoy your coffee. Couldn’t get any easier.

There is a small sip hole, and I didn’t notice any issues with the plunger knob hitting my face while drinking. The is big enough for your hands to fit through even wearing gloves, however it is so thick I’m unable to get a standard Biner or Clip to attach to it, which limits my portability options. It also is too big to fit in any car holder for those of you wanting to use it on the office. In fact, after I realized this and it was unsafe to drive with it in my lap, I had to empty out all the tasty goodness inside!

Visually, my personal taste says it’s the ugliest looking print to ever have on a coffee cup, and I fully intend on covering it up with stickers, however the plunger components look sharp with their Stainless Steel post and Mesh filter. The filter is surrounded by plastic, which gives me a bit of unease with durability concerns, based on a friends experience with a GSI coffee press, that repeatedly snapped.

I am able to keep the coffee warm enough (i.e. drinkable) for a good hour and 15 minutes indoors which definitely proves the mug has insulation. Because the inside is so wide you can easily clean this mug with brushes, and I’ve even thrown it into the Dishwasher. It is unknown if this mug contains any BPA and poses any safety risks from leeching this organic compound from the plastic.

All in all, I think this product is a win. It’s large bulky size does make limit its applications, and I’m going to have to rethink how to attach it to my panniers/trunk bag, but it’s flexibility to utilize for coffee, teas, yerba mate with its included press allowing you to get the full flavour of your intended drink is second to none. Finally, I can enjoy a good strong cup of coffee.

You can pick up this unit at Amazon.com


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