Which are the best coffee maker machines?

by Jenna
(Boston, MA)

A selection of different coffee makers.

A selection of different coffee makers.


I was about to go out and buy another drip brewer, and then made the mistake of doing some research online. Oh boy…so many types of coffee maker to choose from. And with each one, there are lovers and haters.

So...I need to hear the final word from the Coffee Detective! You know this stuff. Give me the final verdict on the best coffee maker machine for me to buy.




Jenna, hi

You’re going to get me in a whole lot of trouble asking me a question like that!

As you say, each type of coffee maker has its fans and its detractors. And people get pretty passionate about this stuff!

OK, here I go, into the lion’s den...

(You’ll find links at the end of this post to information on all the different brewing systems I mention.)

First off, let’s discount the single serve brewers, like the Keurigs, Nespressos, Tassimos etc.

Yes, they make reasonable coffee. And yes, they are super convenient and easy to use. BUT, they’re really expensive to use. Not the machines themselves, which are generally priced reasonably. But they’ll kill you on the cost of each cup of coffee you make. By buying K-Cups, discs, capsules and the like, you end up paying three or four times what your coffee would cost if you used a traditional kind of brewer.

Not to mention the fact that they are an ecological nightmare. Literally billions of used K-Cups alone end up in landfills each year.

Next up, let’s look at the hands-on brewing systems, like the French press, the Chemex and other pour-over brewers.

These are great and a perfect choice for you if you are really into getting the best from the coffee you buy, and enjoy the time you spend making each brew by hand.

These are your best choice if you are into the act of making coffee, and don’t mind putting in some extra time.

If you are a regular coffee lover, and are in a rush each morning, then you can fall back on the traditional drip brewer. These are old-school and many coffee enthusiasts discount them as a result.

But there are some outstanding drip brewers on the market. My own favorite, and the brewer we use every day, is the Bonavita drip brewer. It makes great coffee, at about 7 cents a cup. Can’t beat it.

OK, now I have to mention coffee percolators. If I don’t, I know I’ll get a ton of email about it! Percolators have a serious fan base. The thing is, they generally make a stronger, richer brew. For a lot of people, that’s the taste of real coffee.

I get it. I use a percolator myself sometimes, and enjoy the coffee.

But here’s the thing. A percolator is great for brewing the perfect cup of Joe. I have no argument there. And this may be exactly what you want. If so, go for it.

But for myself, I won’t use a percolator if I am brewing an a really good, expensive coffee that has a lot of subtle taste notes. A percolator will kill those subtleties. I’ll still just get that cup of Joe.

If I’m brewing a high-end coffee, I’ll go for the hands-on brewing systems, or use my Bonavita drip brewer.

And if you want me to bring this all down to one coffee maker, I’ll go for the Bonavita. There are other drip brewers that are just as good, but they cost a lot more money.

I hope you found this useful!

Best wishes,


P.S. Here are those links I promised you...

A lot more information on choosing the best coffee maker.

Our review of the Bonavita drip brewer.

Our video demo of the French press.

Video review of the Chemex brewer.

Our review of the Tassimo T55 Single Cup Home Brewing System.

Video demo of the iCoffee Opus K-Cup brewer.

A few words on coffee percolators.

Comments for Which are the best coffee maker machines?

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May 21, 2015
the majority consensus
by: Anonymous

seems to be that the automatic Drip coffee pot is the mainstream choice for coffee brewing for everyday coffee.
I think it is obvious from what is displayed in all of the department stores - for instance, you would see 100 drip makers and maybe 1 perc pot and no Silex.
Silex........ I bet you don't even know what Silex is, nevertheless.....

If it is true that the drip pot is now king for brewing.... then I have a recommendation...

That is a electric drip unit with a Thermal Coffee Vessel.

ok,, why......

If the coffee stays on the burner for any length of time it deteriorates rapidly.....and not only do you not enjoy it,,,,,, you end up throwing it away.....

So,, in a thermal carafe the coffee does NOT sit on the burner and cook itself to ruin,,,, there is no burner and the carafe retains the heat fairly well,,,,,

but the plus here is that because the coffee is retained in its fresh brewed state is can be saved - refrigerated and is Excellent for Iced Coffee later in the day......

I decided to go this route with a Phillips Thermal unit and I have to say that this company makes a sturdy and efficient machine. Of course / wait for a sale.....


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