What's the Point of Using a Gooseneck Kettle?
Are these avian-necked water boiling vessels actually useful and practical tools for brewing coffee?
Or are they simply overhyped objects d’art for baristas and aging hipsters?
Let’s find out together!
What a Gooseneck Kettle Is
A gooseneck kettle is a modernist take on the kettles of yore, with elegantly tapered, lengthy spouts that make them highly suited to brewing methods that require manual precision.
In other words, it’s a kettle with a long, thin spout.
When to use a Gooseneck Kettle
Gooseneck kettles offer a small, but important advantage, in certain brewing methods. They make it easier to control the flow of hot water.
The extra precision makes it a little easier to fill up the chambers of a French Press or AeroPress—but where goosenecks really shine when you’re brewing Pour Over coffee.
If your primary method of brewing coffee at home is pour over, you’re really doing yourself a disservice by not using a gooseneck kettle. It’s much easier to control both where the water goes—for even saturation and extraction—and the flow rate, which is especially important in some pour over recipes. It’s particularly helpful for executing the bloom.
A Gooseneck kettle is part of our 11 ways to upgrade your coffee game.
Do You Really Need a Gooseneck Kettle?
In short, no. A kettle with a long neck is a “nice to have,” not a “need to have.” As far as coffee brewing equipment goes, you’ll get much more bang for the buck out of upgrading your grinder, your brewer, or even your coffee itself.
Gooseneck kettles—especially the more expensive ones—are pretty much luxury items at this point. Affordable, relatively easy to attain luxury items—but luxury items all the same. Keep that in mind if you have the retail therapy bug. If you want one, get one!
But you don’t need one, and if you feel like your coffee is lacking you would get more out of redirecting those funds to upgrading to better brewing gear… or higher quality coffee!
But I Want One. Which One Should I Get?
The one that looks coolest to you. (I’m actually not kidding.)
As long as you’re not selecting a kettle with obvious design flaws, reliability issues, or other shortcomings based on reviews, you should pick one that appeals to your sensibilities.
Build quality varies among gooseneck kettles, with cheaper models tending to be less “solid” feeling. Based on my own experience, this seems to be the main difference between expensive kettles like the Fellow EKG, and the many less expensive models that imitate it.
That said, most of the EKG dupes I’ve seen tend to boil water just fine. Sometimes their control knobs feel a little cheap and plastic-y, but if you’re more concerned about design aesthetics—you’re probably not looking into a Fellow EKG kettle just for the “performance”—they still look convincingly metallic.
All in all, gooseneck kettles aren’t just a cool looking, trendy tool to add to your home coffee brewing arsenal. They make it easier to control the flow of hot water over your coffee grounds.
Luckily you can find hundreds of Gooseneck Kettles on amazon with free shipping.
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