Picture the scene – you’re on a long hike. Eventually, you find the perfect place for a break. So you open your backpack and take out your latest coffee device – your Bripe. You add ground coffee and water, then take a lighter and heat it. A few minutes, you’re relaxing and enjoying your surroundings, puffing on – a coffee pipe!
Enter the Bripe coffee pipe and easily the most hipster way to enjoy freshly brewed coffee outdoors. If you’re not familiar with it, this Bripe review will help explain what it is, what it does, and whether it is the best outdoor coffee maker.
What Is A Bripe?
The Bripe is an ultra-portable metal pipe for making coffee. Within it is a small filter that catches the coffee grounds as you sip your coffee through the pipe’s stem. This is known as briping.
Preparing the Bripe is straightforward. First, add the grounds and water, then heat it with a lighter. Leave it to steep and cool, then drink it.
The Bripe is meant for people to use outdoors, like many other portable coffee makers. However, of all the ones we’ve tested, this is by far the most unique.
Who Invented The Bripe?
In 2015, outdoor enthusiast Tim Panek hit upon the idea of a handy and compact coffee maker like no other. So, he designed a Bripe prototype and approached Craig Hall with his vision.
Craig is the founder of Equator Coffee Roasters and loves the outdoors too. Drawing on his coffee expertise, he improved the details of Bripe. Then, together, the pair settled on launching an extremely portable coffee maker with outdoor life in mind that makes excellent coffee.
Tim and Craig set up an IndieGoGo project to raise funding for Bripe, achieving their target in 2016.
What Is In The Bripe Kit?
The complete kit includes seven items. Let’s look at each of them to determine whether this is a revolutionary product or little more than a gimmick.
Bripe Coffee Brew Pipe
The brew pipe is the primary component of the brewer. It’s built from copper, making it an excellent conductor of heat – crucial for a coffee maker relying on a torch lighter for its heat source. In addition, the base of the brew pipe has an inner cone. This enhances cooling and heating efficiency, meaning you can brew a shot of coffee that will be ready to drink in three minutes.
Base Cooling Plate
The coffee pipe fits on the cooling plate perfectly, so it’s the ideal base to rest the pipe on to allow it to cool after brewing.
Quad Jet Torch Lighter
The lighter is well built, you can refill it, and one charge is good for 12 Bripes – impressive! Furthermore, there is a dial at the base for adjusting the flame size.
Butane gas canister isn’t included because of shipping restrictions. However, you can find butane refill canisters anywhere from Amazon to hardware stores and smoke shops. Also, if you’re an outdoor adventurer, you’ll know the importance of a lighter, even if you hadn’t yet considered using it for brewing coffee.
When brewing coffee at home, we typically use a water temperature between 195°F and 205°F (90°C-96°C). Why? Because this range ensures optimal extraction. Bripe has a thermometer that allows you to check the temperature. However, the manual recommends a temperature of 185°F (85°C), but you can alter the temperature depending on factors including coffee beans and roasts.
Frankly, drinking hot beverages through a “straw” is not ideal because you risk burning your tongue. However, the thermometer means you can ensure the coffee is at 140°F before you drink it. Not only that, but you can use it for stirring.
Stainless Steel Reusable Variable Filter
The coffee brew pipe comes with a metal filter. There are three filter screens, each with different-sized holes. The stainless steel filter areas range between 300 and 500 microns in size.
The smallest size (in the middle) is for fine coffee grinds, while the largest is for coarser grinds and tea. So, which filter screen you use will depend on the size of the coffee grind.
The coffee tube is a test tube-like plastic container for storing your grounds, which is also useful for transferring coffee to the Bripe. However, the difficulty comes before this point – how to get the grounds into the tube first, given its small diameter. This process can be tricky, so we recommend practice beforehand!
The carry case is a nice touch for carrying all the other items in and ensuring better portability. It’s also very well made and resembles a large wallet.
Our Verdict On The Design
Rather than a gimmick, the attention to detail and thought that has gone into the design tells us that the Bripe is the real deal. Don’t forget that co-founder Craig also founded Equator Coffee Roasters, so he’s well aware of what makes a good coffee.
How Do You Make Coffee With Bripe?
Heating the coffee takes one minute, while you can make the coffee in just a few minutes. Let’s break down how.
1. Set the filter
Properly place the filter to cover stem hole in the brewing pipe and rotate it until the filter area aligns with the hole size you require. The middle filter is the finest.
2. Add the coffee grounds and water
As we mentioned earlier, there is a cone at the bottom of the inside of the brewing pipe. Add grounds until they barely cover the mound, then pour in water until it reaches the fill line marked on the exterior. Stir and mix the grounds and water using the thermometer, then place it in the filter stem hole.
3. Heat the brew pipe
Using a blue flame Quad Jet torch lighter, heat the inner cone from underneath the pipe. Once the brew temperature reaches a maximum of 185°F (85°C), reduce the size of the flame by turning the adjustment dial on the bottom.
Tip: Ensure you hold the cork handle. If you don’t, the copper surface will burn your hand. Usually, the device will heat up in just one minute.
4. Cool The Coffee Down
Place the brew pipe on the base plate and give the coffee a delicate stir with the thermometer. Leave it to steep until the temperature reduces to 140°F (60°C).
5. Start Briping!
Once the coffee is cool enough, blow air gently into the pipe to clear the grounds clinging to the filter screen, then drink the coffee through the stem.
You can add sugar, milk, or anything you like to make your favorite beverage.
How Good Is The Coffee?
The Bripe is an immersion dripper that has a straw, and, to heat it, you use a lighter rather than a stove. So, if you use the same coffee you usually use, brew it to the correct temperature, and over the same length of time, Bripe makes great coffee.
The most offputting thing will be the mouthfeel, and that’s because the permanent filter (as with French press) can’t block all the particles. However, because the coffee steeps for a while before you drink it, most of the particles will sink to the bottom beforehand. If you notice the grounds when you sip using the straw, opt for the finest filter.
Overall, it’s worth remembering that the machine is intended for outdoor use without expensive equipment, so don’t expect the kind of premium coffee you’d brew at home.
What Makes Bripe Unique?
Compact And Lightweight
The Bripe coffee brew pipe kit contains everything you require to brew and drink coffee. It’s no bigger than a pipe and weighs only 337g, so it will easily fit in a backpack. The carrying case it comes with adds even more portability.
Brew Coffee Anywhere
This coffee pipe enables you to brew coffee wherever you are as it just requires ground coffee, water, and a lighter. So, you don’t need a stove, a pot, or even a cup, as you can sip your coffee through the pipe stem.
Not only that, but the Bripe is environmentally friendly and reusable, while its need for a butane torch heat source represents the most efficient way of getting boiling water in the wild.
The Bripe coffee brew pipe offers a waste-free experience except for the grounds. Even then, you can use them as fertilizer in the soil. This environmental efficiency is in stark contrast to many other portable coffee makers that rely on capsules.
Whatever your outdoor pursuit, the Bripe is likely to come in handy. You can take it with you when cycling, angling, hiking, or doing a range of other activities for enjoying good, fresh brew coffee without harming the great outdoors environment.
Whether you’re a hiker, camper, canoeist, cyclist, or any other outdoor enthusiast you care to name, the Bripe coffee pipe is worth considering. Also, the fact it’s environmentally friendly means that, by definition, it will align with the values of most people who enjoy outdoor pursuits.
It’s such a unique product and the most hipster way of brewing coffee too, so if you’re a fan of the sub-culture and love coffee, the Bripe will be a perfect fit. You don’t need to sacrifice the coffee quality and drink instant coffee
If any (or all) of these qualities apply to you, we can highly recommend investing in a Bripe. Similarly, it makes a unique and thoughtful gift for someone you know who enjoys outdoor life and coffee.
Either way, if you or someone you know has a love of outdoor pursuits and decent coffee, you can’t go far wrong with the Bripe.
Bripe is available on Amazon, but it’s often out of stock. However, you can visit their official website to pre-order and get free shipping in the US when the Bripe is available.
Since the Bripe coffee brew pipe kit contains a lighter, you can’t take it in the carry-on luggage. You also need to make sure the fuel is empty and packed in your checked baggage. However, it’d be helpful if you consult the airline about their transporting policy.