Best Coffee For Stovetop Percolators: 4 Top Choices

Want to find the best coffee for stovetop percolators? This article offers suggestions for those looking to take their percolator coffee to the next level.

Best coffee for stovetop percolators
Read on and choose the best coffee for your stovetop percolator

There’s something magical and nostalgic about stovetop percolators, even if your parents or grandparents never owned one. They call up a bygone era where making coffee was more of a production than it is now.

For those looking to capture the magic, stovetop percolators give a more updated option. But once you have your percolator, how do you choose the best coffee to go with it?

I’ve covered the best coffee for percolators more generally before, but stovetop percolators present a few specific needs. Read on to find out what you should be looking for and my favorite picks for the old-fashioned stovetop brewing method that’s making a comeback.

Stovetop Percolators: Old School Turned New School Brewing

A pot that is sitting on a grill
Percolators were one of the earliest coffee machines

Percolators were one of the earliest machines for brewing coffee, with the first patent for a modern percolator going to Hanson Goodrich in 1889. Of course, that machine is a pretty far cry from the kind of stovetop percolator available on the market today, but the basic premise is the same. 

The newer models incorporate lighter, stronger materials like stainless steel and various kinds of rubber gaskets, and they’re easier on the eyes, but the action is the same. As a result, some commonalities appear in the best coffee for stovetop percolators both in the past and now. There are some things to know about choosing coffee for your stovetop machine versus a countertop model.

Coffee For Your Stovetop Percolator: What To Look For

Dark roast ground coffee and beans
Dark roast ground coffee gives you bitter flavors

In general, you want to avoid dark roast coffee beans for percolators because the process of percolating coffee tends to continue cooking it somewhat–so you’re more likely to get bitter flavors with darker roasts. You also want to avoid the lightest roasts with a stovetop percolator because the process doesn’t do them justice; instead, they end up watery and weak-tasting.

The region tends to come into play a little more with stovetop percolators compared to countertop models. Since you’re applying heat a little more directly, you want coffee beans that can stand up to the extraction–and that largely means Latin American beans, with a few exceptions. So what beans make the best coffee for a stovetop percolator? I have a few choices.

The Best Coffee For Stovetop Percolator Kettles: My Selections

So knowing that region and roast both play a crucial role in selecting the best coffee for stovetop percolator kettles, a few brands shine. The following are my top picks based on the flavor and consistency of the finished coffee:

Copper Moon Guatemala Antigua: I make no secret that I enjoy Guatemalan coffees in general, but this single-batch roasted blend performs exceptionally well in a percolator. It’s categorized as a light roast, but it is still dark enough to get a nice flavor depth and capture notes of smoke, spice, and cocoa. Copper Moon is also socially and environmentally active, which just adds to the charm of their coffees.

Copper Moon Guatemalan Antigua Blend, Whole Bean Coffee, 2 Pound Bag, Light Roast Coffee from Guatemala, Rich, Smooth, and Mild, with A Nutty Finish
  • CAFÉ COFFEE BREWED BY YOU: Start each day sipping a cup of coffee as flavorful as they serve in a coffee shop. Whether you enjoy organic or fair trade beans, single origin brews, or full bodied dark or medium roasts, we have blends in your flavor profile.
  • WHOLE BEAN OR GROUND: Do you prefer to grind your own coffee beans fresh each morning for the perfect pour over, press pot or cold brew, or do you prefer the simple convenience of pre-ground coffee? Copper Moon Coffee has a variety of blends in both forms.
  • SINGLE BATCH ROASTED: At Copper Moon Coffee, we roast single batches of beans for the best flavor. Our variety of origins, blends, & roasts bring you the freshest coffee to brew & serve, with a delightfully full body & creamy, smooth finish to each sip.
  • COPPER MOON MOMENT IN EVERY CUP: A Copper Moon is when the sun, earth, & full moon align in a single, delightful event. Each sip of a cup of Copper Moon Coffee is a similarly singular & delightful event, the perfect blend of fresh beans & careful roasting.
  • QUALITY IN A CUP: Compare to coffee from VitaCup, Community Coffee, Full Circle, Peet's Coffee, Perfect Pod, Starbucks, Seattle's Best Coffee, San Francisco Bay Coffee, Marley Coffee, Caribou Coffee, Folgers, Dunkin' Donuts, Maxwell House, Green Mountain.

Volcanica Peru Tres Cumbres: The stovetop percolator brewing method is excellent at bringing out hidden nuances in coffee, and that’s a significant reason why Volcanica’s Peruvian Tres Cumbres organic beans work so well with it. The coffee is complex, with floral notes hidden among lemon grass and plum's soft acidity and flavors. The finished result is a smooth finish and a mild cup that is good, either black or with milk and sugar.

Peru Coffee, Organic, Tres Cumbres, Whole Bean, Fresh Roasted, 16-ounce
  • Peru Coffee Tres Cumbres is a complex full bodied coffee with floral, smoky overtones, a gentle acidity and a clean, bright aromatic finish.Organically grown.
  • Medium roasted whole beans allowing the true flavor characteristic to come through for a remarkable taste.
  • Fresh roasted then immediately packed and sealed to assure freshness.
  • 100% Customer Satisfaction Guaranteed.

Barrie House Ethiopian Yirgacheffe: This medium roast Ethiopian coffee is Fair Trade and Organic certified, and while the brand isn’t one of the most well-known, they’ve been in business since the 1930s–which is a good sign that there’s a quality product. The coffee is rich in all the flavor notes I associate with Ethiopian beans. Still, the roast is light enough that the result out of a stovetop percolator doesn’t take on any pronounced bitterness—a smooth, velvety cup of coffee out of your percolator that’s still rich and full-bodied. 

Barrie House Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Single Origin Whole Bean Coffee, 2 lb Bag | Fair Trade Organic Certified |Medium Roast | High Acidity and Clean Finish | 100% Arabica Coffee Beans
  • Ethiopian Yirgacheffe: From Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee, beans from the Yirgacheffe region are among the world’s best. Grown at high elevation, it has a bright clean taste and high acidity. The tasting notes are citrusy, lemon zest, floral bright and sweet aromatic making a bright clean taste and high acidity.
  • WHOLE BEAN FOR MAXIMUM FRESHNESS: Treat yourself every morning to the most flavorful, aromatic and delicious cup of coffee you can have by starting with whole beans (stored properly) and grinding right before brewing.
  • FROM FARM TO CUP: Our coffee cherries, sourced from trusted partners around the world, are harvested, processed, dried, sorted, graded and expertly roasted so that you can enjoy the best cup of coffee in the comfort of your own home.
  • COMMITMENT TO QUALITY: As 3rd generation family roasters, we have been perfecting the art of small batch gourmet coffee roasting for over 80 years in Upstate New York, ensuring top quality.
  • BARRIE HOUSE MISSION: The secret to our success is based on a simple idea: that coffee should be the highest quality - distinct, consistent, aromatic, balanced, and most of all, delicious.

Volcanica Sumatra Mandheling: This is perhaps the darkest of the coffees I’d recommend for stovetop percolator brewing, but Volcanica’s Sumatra Mandheling is worth trying if you want something with a more robust flavor. It can be tricky to find medium or lighter roast Sumatran coffees, but this blend hits the balance in the tendency towards Indonesian coffees to come in darker roasts. It’s still on the darker side of medium, but it’s not so roasted that the percolator process will produce burned flavors. 

Sumatra Mandheling Coffee, Medium Roast, Whole Bean, Fresh Roasted, 16-ounce
  • Sumatra Coffee is known for its smooth chocolate flavor with earthy undertones.
  • Among the world's finest coffees displaying rich flavor, extraordinary full body and distinctively vibrant, low-key acidity.
  • Naturally low acid coffee.
  • Medium roasted whole beans allowing the true flavor characteristic to come through for a remarkable taste.
  • 100% Customer Satisfaction Guaranteed.

Author

  • Savannah is a coffee lover who took her appreciation of the brew to the next level starting in college, becoming a barista before combining her love of writing with her affection for a good brew. She has written for several publications including Cracked.com and TopTenz, and also works as a ghostwriter.