THE BREWING PROCESS
Unsure how to brew coffee in your vacuum coffee pot?  Here is my recommended procedure
for brewing coffee in a standard stovetop vacuum pot:

Measure the water. 1. Measure water into the lower globe (decanter) using an average coffee cup.  Count how many "cups" are needed to fill the decanter to at least 1/2 full and no more than 7/8 full.

[Note: A "cup" in the coffee world is 5 fluid ounces]

Heat the water. 2. Place the lower decanter on the heat source over high heat.  You can place the decanter directly on a gas burner or an electric heating element made specifically for your vacuum pot - but if you are using a household electric stove, use a wire trivet or heat diffuser to avoid damaging the glass. [Obviously, this does not apply to a metal vacuum pot]

Put in the filter. 3. Position the filter in the upper globe, locking in place if necessary.  There are a huge number of different filter designs, some with clips or spring locks, and some which require paper or cloth filters.

Measure the ground coffee. 4. Measure ground coffee (medium-fine grind) into the upper globe, using two level tablespoons of coffee for each "cup" used in step 1.  For future pots, adjust the amount of coffee up or down to suit your individual taste. [Avoid grinders which produce a lot of dust, as this may clog the filter and may produce excessive sediment in the brew]

Assemble the pot. 5. When the water in the decanter has begun to simmer, position the upper globe (funnel) in place on top of the decanter and press down firmly to form a good seal. [If using a gasketless vacuum pot, moisten the ground glass lip and place the upper globe in place].

Stir the grounds. 6. As the water heats, vapor pressure will force the water up the funnel tube into the upper globe.  When about half of the water has risen to the top, turn the heat down to medium and give the coffee in the upper globe a quick stir to ensure that the grounds are well distributed.

Let gurgle 1 minute. 7. As soon as the water level in the decanter reaches the bottom of the funnel tube, air and water vapor will rush up the tube causing the coffee in the upper globe to "gurgle". Allow the coffee to gurgle for at least one minute [some people let the coffee gurgle for 1-3 minutes. Longer gurgling times will produce a stronger brew]. 

Remove fom heat. 8. Remove the pot from the heat.   As the water vapor in the bottom condenses, a vacuum is formed which will siphon the brewed coffee back down into the decanter.  [If the coffee fails to come down, make sure that:  (a) the coffee is not too finely ground;  (b) the seal between the top and bottom globes is secure and air-tight; and (c) you allowed the coffee to gurgle at least one minute - brewing less than a full pot will require longer gurgle times.] 

Remove upper globe. 9. When all the coffee has been siphoned down into the decanter, remove the upper globe by grasping the decanter handle and pressing against the upper globe with your thumb to break the seal.  Carefully remove the upper globe and set aside. 

Pour and enjoy! 10. Serve coffee.  Enjoy.

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Address comments to: Brian Harris