The coffee siphon (also known as the vacuum coffee pot) makes brief, innocuous appearances now and again in films. Its design has changed little since the 1830s, when it was first patented in Germany. And indeed, the glass bell and bulb suspended by a retort stand over a flame suggest both ornamental and scientific Victoriana, its utilization a delicate and ritualistic art, like alchemy or a seance. Some mediocre caf├ęs will use it solely for decoration. Its subtle presence as a status symbol persists through occasional sightings in cinema. Read the rest of this entry »