The Following Comments Include Thank You's
A non-drip, pourable carafe, small pot mode, scoop, easy to program
You've got to be kidding!
The Bottom Line:
The designer of this coffee maker must have experienced the same flaws that I had. I seriously thank you for your attention to detail and for eliminating those problems.
You must know, in our house you don't replace an appliance, a car, a pair of shoes, or anything else until it's dead and non-functional. It is often with mixed blessings that I receive the declaration, it needs to be replaced or it doesn't work. (Often, but not always.) Occasionally I jump up and down with joy when that moment occurs, and that's what I did when our coffee maker died the just death.
It was programmable, had a 12-cup capacity, inexpensive, and reliable but it had one major (very major) fault—it didn't pour. So when it was finally time to replace it my first question to the sales clerk was, can I take the floor model to a water faucet and pour? They laughed, but the sales clerk at Bed Bath and Beyond said, her mother had this maker and swore by it, that it actually poured and that it was the best coffee maker she had ever had. (She also let me pour.) Her mother was older than me, which meant she probably had at least as many as I had.
My new, absolute most favorite, coffee maker is the Cuisinart Brew Central 12-Cup Coffee Maker. I'm so thrilled with it that I've considered treating it like a pair of shoes and buying a second one now while it's still possible.
What it Has!
Manual brew cycle
Carafe temperature controls, adjustable heater plate setting
1-4 cup brewing option
Auto on 24-hour advance brew start
Decalcification indicator signal for a self-clean
Brushed stainless steel finish
Easy to read LCD Clock
Comfort grip handle on the carafe
Charcoal water filter
With all of these features, there is one that stands out: it pours without spilling coffee all over the table. The spout has a deep channel, the lid on the carafe is recessed enough that the coffee pours without any interference. The sales clerk's mother was correct; this is the best coffee maker I've ever had. This comes with a short cord, a gold tone filter, a scoop, a water filter and a smile.
Setting It Up
Setting up the programming is easy. Turn the function knob to brew and flip the switch to turn on for a quick pot. When the indicator turns red the cycle begins. Switch it to off to turn this off and that's the quick and easy manual procedure.
I wake at 5:30 a.m. however I'm not a morning person. PLEASE set the coffee pot up to automatically turn on and brew, oh please. (Give me coffee and nobody will get hurt!) We walk dogs first thing in the morning and when we return the coffee begins brewing while I'm feeding our canine friends. Setting up the automatic brewing cycle is easy. Set the clock first, and then program the auto on. What is different from my previous pot is that every time I make a pot it's necessary to flip the switch to on. The green indicator light turns on to remind me that it's in programmable mode. It beeps when the coffee has finished brewing. It also beeps when the heating plate turns off. I have it set for an hour at the highest setting. This keeps the coffee hot for an hour (or up to three hours if required). We leave after nearly one hour from when the coffee finishes brewing. Because I'm a space cadet in the morning, I could easily forget to turn the coffee off but I feel so safe knowing that this automatically turns off in an hour.
There are times when one of us travels and the one to four cup setting is perfect. This makes hot, small batches of coffee unlike other coffee makers that make cool small pots of coffee. It "double heats" the water while making the perfect batch. Oh, and speaking of perfect
The scoop is perfect. I like my coffee thick, strong, dark, and uncontaminated by cream. My rule of thumb is one scoop for each cup of coffee and one scoop for the pot. We don't use the Gold Tone Filter, it's difficult to clean, but instead we use paper filters. For an eight-cup pot I use nine scoops of coffee (one for the pot, one for each cup of water). The manufacturer recommends using no more than 15 scoops for a full 12-cup pot.
This does not have a water level indicator, nor does it grind coffee. I opted to avoid the automatic coffee grinding feature available in slightly more expensive models. The word wasn't good on their reliability and my father-in-law's philosophy prevailed—the grinder became just one more feature that could break down.
Filling the water compartment is difficult. The water compartment has a water filter that needs to be replaced every 60 days (or 60 uses—in our case every 56 days). The filter is easy to replace—it pulls out as a long stem with the filter at the lower end. The reservoir is difficult to fill. It's in one small corner of the machine. Lift the lid and pour but be careful. The coffee maker is tall and we keep ours under a cabinet, this is difficult to fill under the cabinet. (We pull it out for easier access.)
I was attracted to some of the features, especially the possibility of not spilling coffee while pouring, but I was also attracted to the name. I expect quality in some of the Cuisinart's products. They offer a three-year limited warranty that their product will be "free of defects in materials or workmanship under normal home use for three years from the date of original purchase."
My house is an 1895 version of a Queen Anne, the 1930's vintage appearance of this works in my old kitchen. The brushed stainless steel exterior is easy to clean. I expected to spend a lot more, however, the regular price was $79.99 and a sale price took it down to $65 which was less than most of the other comparable coffee makers. OK, I've used this for several months now and honestly, every time we serve a cup of coffee I silently say thank you to the "someone" who recommended this pot and to the engineer who figured out how to make a perfect coffee maker. Seriously!