Rubber Ring: A Sad Fact Widely Known

mokapot2Tea drinking visitors to my house have always, over the years, made polite fun of my collection of Bialetti Moka pots.  I have five, graded by how many espressos they make: one, three (I have two of these), six and nine.  Being of Italian stock, these ingenious, classic stove-top coffee makers have been a huge part of my life since I was tiny; the beautiful aroma of the brewing process could, in TV home-improvement logic, have sold my house and those of my grandparents and extended family, thousands of times over.  But for all that they’re life-saving devices for drowsy, dual-ended-candle-burning coffee addicts, they do have an Achilles heel: their functionality depends entirely on a little rubber seal.  Using a Moka pot at least once a day means copious washing (in water only, never with washing up liquid) and eventually, this rubber ring wears away and stops sealing – leading to treacly coffee bleeding out of the middle or simply not filling the upper chamber.  My whinge is this: why is it so hard to find these little rubber rings in Dublin?  I do trek to the wonderful Little Italy in Smithfield for supplies as often as possible but, the thing is, so many places sell Moka pots – why can’t they just keep bags of replacement seals?  The pots themselves usually cost around €20 for a three-cup (probably a lot less in Italy, or anywhere else), and should last a lifetime if cared for correctly – in fact, the more used and worn-looking, the more charming they are.  And, of course, they make progressively delicious, fragrant coffee too.  It’s just such an aggravating, violent-tremble-inducing pity that this can all go suddenly awry for the sake of the death of a wee rubber ring.  Still, what’s a little psychomotor, vigilance and cognitive performance impairment between cups?

7 thoughts on “Rubber Ring: A Sad Fact Widely Known

  1. They have replacements in Stock, opposite the Stephen’s Green Centre (next to the Gaiety Theatre). They sell a fairly wide range of Bialetti stuff. I got a three-cup seal there maybe two years ago, but I presume they still have them.

  2. Thank you very much Karl! You’re the second person to let me know this and I will be heading over there as soon as possible, with fingers crossed and eyes held open with matchsticks. Great site, Karl.

  3. No probs, Johnnie. Hope they have one. Got to your site via the Irish Times politics blog. Cheers for the positive comments re: my site. I should update my blog more often, though. Manana, manana.

  4. I have the same problem as Johnnie, does anyone know of a shop in Los Angeles, California, where I can purchase these rubber seals? Thanks, Suzanne

  5. I live in Israel, southern area. Really hard to find the rubber seals. I am looking in to ordering online. Suggestions?

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