Friday, April 10, 2020

Guardians of the Coffee

 I found this Guardian Service coffee pot at an estate sale for $1.  I'd seen them before, but never used one, so for a buck, I thought I'd give it a try.

There was no plug, so I assumed it was some kind of percolator, but after researching, found that it's actually a drip brewer.  I learned how to brew a pot here.  First I had to learn the terminology for the various parts.  The pot is called "the urn" and is made from hammered aluminum.  What I would call the coffee basket (sits on top of the urn) is the "dripper". My dripper was missing the handle.

All Guardian Service lids have the knight's helmet logo.

In the bottom of the dripper, place the filter disc (seam side down).

Place 2 tsp coffee grounds (coarser grind) per desired cup of coffee on top of the filter disc (sorry, forgot to get a picture of that).

Press coffee down with the "water distributor". That's the curly-q rod with what's shaped like a biscuit cutter on the bottom. At first I thought the curly-q piece was a heating element until I discovered there was no plug.  Turns out, it's just the handle for the water distributor.

Brewing a pot of coffee in this is a fairly involved process.  You preheat the urn with hot water while you boil a pot of water.  Once the water is "actively boiling", dump the water from the urn, place the dripper on top of the urn and slowly pour the boiling water into the dripper.  If making a full pot, you will have to wait for some of the water to drip through before filling with the remaining water.  Then you wait.  Dripping takes about 10 minutes.

I have to admit, I didn't care for the flavor.  I think it took on the flavor of the aluminum. That combined with the effort to make a pot of coffee drove me back to my traditional percolator.

Century Metalcraft manufactured a whole line of Guardian Service cookware including various pots, pans, and casserole dishes.

Guardian Service was sold in a similar fashion to Tupperware and Pampered Chef.  Salesmen would host a party at your home and cook a meal for your guests, hoping to sell sets or at least pieces.  A complete set could cost as much as the average monthly salary.

Century Metalcraft closed and Guardian Service production ceased after the plant burned down in 1956.


  1. It kind of reminds me of a French Press.

  2. i suspect the aluminum was a double-edged sword of sorts -- heats up quickly, but also imparts a flavor. maybe that's why their popularity waned, while glass drip-style coffee pots are now all the rage.

  3. It looks really cool tho and for a buck why not! Did you go insane waiting 10 minutes for a cup of Joe??


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...