V60 Vs. Chemex

Ultimate Showdown: V60 Vs. Chemex – Which Pour-Over Reigns Supreme?

If you’re into coffee, you’ve probably heard about pour-over brewing. It’s like the cool kid on the coffee block these days – simple yet sophisticated, and it’s all about making a cup of coffee that’s just right for you.

We’ve got two big names in the spotlight of pour-over brewing: the Hario V60 and the Chemex. These aren’t just your average coffee makers. They’ve got style and fans, and they each bring something special to your morning routine. But here’s the million-dollar question: which one’s better?

Well, it’s not that simple. Both the V60 and the Chemex have their own superpowers, but we’re going to break down what makes each of them stand out and find out which brewer can make your coffee-making ritual even better!

What is Pour-Over Coffee?

Pour over coffee

Pour-over coffee is a brewing method all about precision and personal touch. Unlike popping a pod into a machine or letting a coffee maker do all the work, pour-over is a hands-on experience. It lets you be the master of your brew, controlling every aspect, from water temperature to flow rate.

So, how does it work? You place your ground coffee in a filter, which sits in a funnel-like brewer (that’s where the V60 and Chemex come in). Then, you pour hot water over the grounds slowly and steadily. This process allows the water to pass through the coffee, extracting flavors and aromas directly into your cup or carafe below.

By adjusting how fast you pour the water or how fine you grind your beans, you can tweak the strength and taste of your coffee. Pour-over brewing brings out the best in high-quality beans, highlighting subtle notes that might be lost in a more automated method. Plus, there’s something undeniably satisfying about crafting the perfect cup with your own hands.

V60 Vs. Chemex: An Overview

The V60 and Chemex are stellar choices in the world of pour-over coffee, but they cater to different tastes and preferences. They might share the same brewing philosophy, but each brings its unique flair to the coffee table. The V60 offers precision and adaptability, while the Chemex brings elegance and consistency to your brew.

The Hario V60 Coffee Brewer

V60 Coffee brewer

The term “V60” refers to the V-shaped cone with a 60-degree angle. Crafted in Japan, the V60 has a minimalist yet functional design that coffee enthusiasts adore. It’s not just about looks; the V60’s design is all about optimizing your brew. Those spiral ridges inside? They’re not just for show. They allow for air and coffee to merge optimally, ensuring a uniform extraction of your coffee grounds.

The V60 comes in various materials – glass, ceramic, copper, and even plastic – each adding something different to your brewing experience. And size? Whether you’re making a solo cup or enough to share, there’s a V60 to match. This brewer is celebrated for its versatility and the level of control it offers over your coffee’s taste and strength.

The Chemex Coffee Brewer

Chemex coffee brewer

The Chemex is like the elegant, sophisticated cousin in the coffee world. Invented in 1941 by a chemist, this brewer has a timeless design. The Chemex has been recognized for its iconic design and has a spot in the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

The Chemex’s hourglass shape is made from non-porous, heat-resistant glass and usually comes with a polished wood collar and leather tie – combining form and function beautifully.

But the Chemex isn’t all about looks. It’s known for producing a particularly clean and flavorful cup of coffee, thanks to its special thick paper filters. These filters are key to the Chemex’s ability to brew smooth and sediment-free coffee.

Coffee Brewing Mechanics and User Experience

Brewing coffee is both a science and an art, especially when it comes to pour-over methods. The different brewing mechanics and user experience of the V60 and Chemex can transform your coffee grounds into an individual, delightful cup of coffee.

The V60 appeals to those who relish the detailed, hands-on approach to brewing, allowing nuanced control over the final product. The Chemex, on the other hand, is ideal for those who enjoy the ritual of brewing but prefer a more straightforward, consistent approach with reliably delicious results.

Grind Size Comparison

The V60 and Chemex approach grind size differently:

  • The V60 is quite particular about it – the size of your grind can significantly affect the flavor of your coffee. A finer grind and a slower pour yield a stronger cup, while a coarser grind makes for a lighter brew.
  • The Chemex is more forgiving. It’s designed for a medium-coarse grind but doesn’t fuss much if you stray a bit finer or coarser.

Filters Comparison

Here’s where things get interesting. Both brewing methods use paper filters, but the thickness varies:

  • Chemex filters are thicker, which plays a big role in the clarity of the coffee. They remove more oils and sediments, producing a cleaner, more refined cup.
  • V60 filters are thinner, offering a brighter cup with more pronounced flavors. The choice of the filter affects not just the taste but also the texture and mouthfeel of the coffee.

Brewing Process and User Control

Brewing with the V60 or Chemex isn’t just pouring water over coffee. It’s an experience, a ritual.

  • V60: With the V60, your pouring technique is crucial. The angle, speed, and consistency of your pour matter a lot. It’s all about finding that perfect balance. The V60’s conical shape and internal ridges facilitate a more even extraction, but it demands precision. Coffee enthusiasts who love to experiment and control every aspect of their brewing process will enjoy this method.
  • Chemex: The Chemex offers a more relaxed brewing process. Thanks to its thicker filters and forgiving design, achieving a consistent brew is easier. The pouring technique is still important, but there’s more room for error. The Chemex might be your go-to if you’re a fan of smooth, clean flavors and prefer a straightforward brewing process.

Weird Coffee Tip: Brewing with any type of pour over brewer can be challenging, but with practice, it can become very simple and may well become your favorite method of brewing. To learn how to make an excellent pour over brew, take a look at this article:
How To Brew Pour Over Coffee

Coffee Quality and Flavor Profile


The heart of the matter for any coffee brewer is the taste of the coffee it produces. The V60 and Chemex, while similar in their pour-over approach, create distinctly different coffee experiences.

Hario V60: A Symphony of Flavors

The V60 is known for its ability to highlight the intricate flavors and aromas in coffee. The key here is its design and the thinner filters. This combination allows more oils and finer particles to pass through, resulting in a rich and complex brew. If your coffee beans boast unique flavor notes – say, floral, fruity, or earthy tones – the V60 is adept at bringing those to the forefront.

Because the V60 brew is influenced heavily by technique – the grind size, water temperature, and pouring method – it offers a personalized experience. You can tweak these variables to accentuate different aspects of your coffee. The end result? A cup that can be bright, nuanced, and as bold or subtle as you like.

Chemex: Clarity and Smoothness

The thicker filters of the Chemex are the game-changers here. They do a remarkable job of removing excess oils and sediments. What does this mean for your cup? A coffee that’s clean, smooth, and consistent. The flavors are more unified and balanced, pure and refined.

The Chemex is excellent for those who appreciate the subtler nuances of coffee. It highlights the bean’s natural flavors without letting any particular note overpower the others. This brewer is ideal if you enjoy a cup that’s more on the mellow side without sacrificing depth and complexity.

Practical Considerations

When choosing between the V60 and Chemex, several practical aspects must be considered. These factors can greatly influence your daily coffee routine, from preparation to cleanup. Let’s see how each brewer stacks up:

  • Capacity: One of the first things to consider is how much coffee you typically brew. The V60 is primarily designed for smaller servings, ideal for one or two cups. The Chemex is available in a range of sizes, suitable for brewing larger quantities – perfect if you’re serving coffee to a group or prefer to have multiple cups yourself.
  • Suitability: The V60’s smaller size makes it a great choice for individuals or couples, while the Chemex’s larger capacity suits families or gatherings.
  • Durability: Both the V60 and Chemex are made with high-quality materials. The V60, especially in its plastic version, is more durable and less likely to break, making it a good option for frequent travelers or outdoor enthusiasts. The Chemex, while beautiful, is made of glass and can be more fragile.
  • Portability: The V60’s compact size and lighter weight (especially the plastic model) make it more portable and travel-friendly. The Chemex, being larger and more delicate, is less suited for travel.
  • Price: Generally, the V60 is more affordable than the Chemex. This price difference could be a deciding factor for those on a budget.
  • Value: While the Chemex is more expensive, it’s also seen as a design piece and a long-term investment for coffee enthusiasts. The V60 offers great value for its price, especially for those who prioritize flexibility and portability.

This table summarizes the key practical differences between the V60 and Chemex, helping you to decide which brewer aligns best with your needs and preferences.

FeatureHario V60Chemex
CapacitySingle to double servingsRanges from 3 to 13 cups
DurabilityHigher (especially plastic)Lower (glass construction)
PortabilityMore portableLess portable
PriceGenerally more affordableMore expensive
Ideal ForIndividuals, travelFamilies, gatherings
Coffee QualityBright, nuanced flavorsSmooth, consistent flavors
Ease of UseRequires precise techniqueMore forgiving brewing process

Aesthetic and Lifestyle Fit


Choosing between the V60 and Chemex isn’t just about the coffee; it’s also about how these brewers fit into your lifestyle and kitchen aesthetic. Both have distinct designs that can complement different personalities and home environments.

The Artistic Appeal of Chemex

With its sleek design and glass construction, the Chemex is a statement piece. It’s not just a coffee brewer; it’s a work of art. The elegant hourglass shape, polished wood collar, and leather tie make it a beautiful addition to any kitchen. It’s perfect for those who appreciate classic design and have a penchant for stylish, sophisticated kitchenware.

The Chemex’s timeless design makes it a great fit for modern and traditional kitchens. It’s also a conversation starter, often catching the eye of guests and sparking discussions about its history and unique appearance. If you see your coffee brewing as a routine and an integral part of your home’s charm, the Chemex could be your ideal match.

The Practical Elegance of V60

The V60 offers a more minimalist and modern aesthetic. It’s known for its clean lines and functional design. Available in various materials and colors, from vibrant plastics to classic ceramic or glass, the V60 can fit into any kitchen style, whether for a sleek, contemporary look or something more eclectic.

The V60’s design is also about practicality. Its compact size doesn’t take up much space, making it ideal for smaller kitchens or coffee enthusiasts who prefer a more understated setup. Its simplicity isn’t just in looks; it’s in function, too, embodying the essence of modern, efficient design.

Lifestyle Considerations

Your choice between the V60 and Chemex might also reflect your lifestyle. If you’re always on the go, value efficiency, or have limited space, the V60 aligns well with a more dynamic, practical lifestyle. It’s easy to store, quick to use, and robust enough for travel.

If you savor your coffee time as a tranquil, luxurious part of your day or enjoy hosting and sharing your coffee passion with others, the Chemex fits this more leisurely, communal lifestyle. It’s not just about brewing coffee; it’s about enjoying the experience and the aesthetics.



Can I use regular paper filters with the V60 and Chemex?

Both the V60 and Chemex require specific types of paper filters. The V60 uses thinner filters, while the Chemex uses specially designed thicker ones. It’s important to use the right filters to achieve the best brew quality.

Is the Chemex suitable for making a single cup of coffee?

While the Chemex is generally used for making multiple cups, you can brew a single cup. However, due to its larger size, it might not be as efficient as using a smaller brewer like the V60 for single servings.

How long does it take to brew coffee with a V60 compared to a Chemex?

The brewing time can vary based on your technique and the amount of coffee you’re making. Typically, brewing with a V60 takes about 3 minutes, while the Chemex can take 4 to 5 minutes for larger quantities.

Do I need a special kettle for pour-over coffee?

While not absolutely necessary, a gooseneck kettle is recommended for pour-over brewing with both the V60 and Chemex. It offers better control over the water flow, which is crucial for these brewing methods.

How do I clean my V60 or Chemex?

Both brewers can be easily cleaned with warm, soapy water. The Chemex should be handled with care due to its glass construction. Avoid using abrasive materials that can scratch the surface.

Can the taste of coffee vary even if I use the same beans in both the V60 and Chemex?

Yes, the brewing method significantly affects the coffee’s flavor. The V60 highlights brighter, more nuanced flavors, while the Chemex offers a smoother, cleaner cup. The same beans can taste quite different when brewed with these two methods.

Are the V60 and Chemex environmentally friendly?

Both methods use biodegradable paper filters. The Chemex filters are compostable. Additionally, both brewers do not require electricity, making them more eco-friendly than electric coffee makers.


Ultimately, the choice between the V60 and Chemex can be a reflection of your personal style and the way you live. Whether you lean towards the practical and modern appeal of the V60 or the classic, artistic elegance of the Chemex, both brewers offer a great cup of coffee and a way to express your unique taste and complement your daily life.

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