Given today’s overheated political climate, no one will judge you for drinking your coffee on ice. And while iced coffee is surely delicious, it is a decidedly huge pain to make if you’re starting from a traditional, boiling-hot brew. (Cold-brew nerds, stop reading now.) Enter the $30 HyperChiller, a device that promises to chill your coffee down to prepare it for iceability in 60 seconds.
Here’s how it works. The device includes a series of stainless steel chambers packed into a larger plastic container. You pour water into the inner and outer chambers by putting the constructed chiller into the freezer overnight. Come coffee time, you simply pour your piping hot coffee into the top, swirl it around for a minute, then pour it out into your waiting vessel. For an extra chilly kick, give it an extra minute in the chiller. The device can be used twice before the frozen water in the inner and outer sleeves melts. (The second time is not quite as effective.)
The HyperChiller works better than I expected. I poured 212-degree coffee into the ready unit, and after a minute the temperature was down to a cool 88. That’s not quite “iced coffee” temp, but it is cool enough to pour on ice and not have it immediately melt. A two-minute chill test fared slightly better, getting the coffee down from 212 to 61 degrees.
You don’t have to use the HyperChiller with coffee, of course. You can use it on room-temperature beverages to chill down a cocktail without ice, or, better yet, bring a warm glass of white wine down to a palatable level. This is perhaps the most compelling use for the device (at least in my house), where chilling wine with melty ice just isn’t an option. With room-temperature wine, a one-minute chill brought the beverage from 74 degrees down to 45. In two minutes, it went from 74 degrees to 42, not much of a difference, but plenty cold for a white wine. Either way, that’s better than you’ll get with any bottle-chilling method I’m aware of, and I’ve tried them all.
The HyperChiller takes up an awful lot of room in the freezer (and must be stored upright), and dealing with the various pieces is neither intuitive nor easy. It’s tough to get the various stainless steel sleeves properly aligned with the plastic lid, and while you can generally just rinse out the HyperChiller and refreeze it without a wash, eventually everything has to be cleaned, which is a bit of a pain. Finally, take care when pouring from the HyperChiller, as there are special vents to allow air to escape from the interior chambers. When the ice in those chambers melts, you can end up inadvertently pouring water out of the vents, making a mess and requiring you to refill the chambers from scratch.
7/10 – Very good, but not quite great.