Ready to Brew
Easy to use and clean, makes great coffee, adapter allows you to brew any coffee.
Unit is pricey and the coffee can be as well.
The Bottom Line:
A very good investment for coffee lovers.
Every morning when I awake, there's one thing that motivates me to jump out of bed and prepare to face the busy world for another day: the thought of a fresh, steaming cup of roasty coffee rich with cream and piping hot. Indeed, I can't function without some java to pry my eyelids open, and the situation is the same for my Beloved Barbara. There's just one slight problem: that cup of coffee that I enjoy may not always be the same one she enjoys.
You see, I like my coffee bold and roasty, while the Mrs. prefers a milder blend. We both like to liven things up a bit with pumpkin-spiced coffees, but that's usually as far as she'll go-whilst I enjoy hazelnut, vanilla, and even blueberry laced brews. Problem is, one can't realistically make two pots (or even two half pots) of coffee each this morning. We were at an impasse.
Leave it to Keurig to save the day with the Keurig B70 single cup coffee maker. Actually, Costco had an assist here, too, since they were sell the unit in a bundle pack with 72 assorted K-Cups of coffee and a My K-Cup filter for $139.99. That might seem a high price tag for some, but we've only had the B70 for a week and deem the price money very well spent.
The Keurig B70 not only makes great coffee, it looks great, too. The unit will take up an area about 6 inches wide and a foot deep on your counter space. It does require a three-prong electrical socket for power, too. The sleek black and silver plastic and metal design is attractive and modern; it almost has the air of a chic espresso machine. Durability seems reasonable given the mostly high-impact plastic construction. Like everything these days, the B70 is made in China.
Setting it Up and Use
We were pretty much ready to go right out of the box. Setup was as simple as snapping in the plastic base and water reservoir. Once you've done this, you'll be making coffee in no time. The removable reservoir can be easily filled without detaching. There is no water filter, so Keurig recommends you use bottled spring or purified water.
Your Keurig B70 will take about 6 or 7 minutes to heat the water before it's ready to brew. You'll know when it's ready because it will tell you so: the words "Ready to Brew" will prominently display on the LCD screen. If you're impatient, you can program the timer to automatically turn the B70 on in the morning before you awake, and to turn off at a certain time, too.
Before your first brew, you'll need to select your cup size. Medium seems to work best, producing 8 ounces of brew; anything larger and my cup of Joe is too watery. The large mug size does work well, however, when I make tea with the My K-Cup; more on that later.
But once your unit is ready to brew, making each cup is as easy as placing your cup on the base tray, lifting the brew compartment handle, snapping in the K-Cup of your choice, closing the hatch and hitting the "Brew" button. Almost immediately, rich hot coffee will begin streaming into your mug.
What Coffee is Available?
Like trying different coffees? You're in luck with the Keurig B70. There are hundreds of varieties available, including Newman's Own, Tully's, Green Mountain, Coffee People, and Caribou. K-Cups are available at Wal-Mart and Bed, Bath and Beyond brick and mortar stores in packs of 12, 18, and 24. They usually work out to about 50 cents a cup. Amazon has the best selection and prices here with discounts can be driven down to about 40 cents per cup. Tea and hot chocolate are also sold in K-Cups.
How's the Coffee?
We find the resulting coffee to be in par with just about any ground coffee you make in a more traditional coffee maker. The roastier blends are rich and aromatic, the milder ones smooth and satisfying. The Keurig B70 simply doesn't put out watery coffee, and we like the fact that each serving is fresh brewed, so we never end up with a stale-tasting last cup.
To be sure, the B70 works best with the K-cups that it was designed to brew from. However, with the My K-Cup accessory, you can also brew single servings of just about any coffee you like. The My K-Cup adapter comes with an included holder that is supposed to be used in place of the one designed to hold a standard K-Cup.
Sadly, it doesn't work too well. The replacement holder does not have the custom grooves that allow it to snap firmly in place (as the included holder does), and so whenever we use it we get a messy river of muddy grounds pouring forth from our B70. All is not lost, however, since you can place the small basket filter in the regular holder and still get great coffee. For best results, use finely ground coffee, don't pack or tamp it into the filter basket, and only add coffee just below the level of the rim. When you do this, you can get a fresh cup of any coffee you choose on a moment's notice. Ironically enough, the My K-Cup makes perfect tea every time, and is perhaps better suited for this than it is for coffee.
Not only is the B70 easy to use, it's easy to clean, especially when using the K-cups. Because the brewing water passes through small holes in the top and bottom of the cups, the grounds are contained and don't spill out to make a mess. The base cup stand slides out easy as pie for washing, as does the K-cup holder. Only the rim around the holder area can be a bit tricky, but it's easy enough to slide a cloth in there and extract any stray grounds.
My Beloved Barbara was a bit skeptical at first about the Keurig B70 single cup coffee maker. It only took two cups to convince her this was a smart buy. It's perfect in the morning for just the right amount of coffee we want in an endless array of varieties, flexible enough to allow us to use any coffee we want, and perfect for a single serving in the afternoon or evening. For great, fresh hot coffee whenever you want, The Keurig B70 is the way to go.