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VINE VOICEon December 1, 2008
I actually spent about an hour researching my coffee travel mug purchase. I had four criteria that were must-haves:

1. It had to be a mug that I could drink directly from... not a thermos with a separate cup for instance.

2. Stainless steel interior: I found that my current plastic cup was retaining too much sour milk odor even thought I rinsed it out after use. Also although the chance is slim, metal is less likely to leach dangerous chemicals than plastic.

3. Sealed: as in throw it in my bag and not worry what orientation it is in...upside down.... whatever.

4. 16 oz: or more... many travel mugs are 12 oz and that is just too small

This item that you are looking at on this very Amazon detail page indeed meets all the criteria above. It is surprisingly one of few that do.

Once I bought this, I found some other advantages that I liked about it:

- The thermal insulation is superb. Hot liquids stay hot seemingly forever. (it's actually a minor problem if you start out too hot as it takes forever to cool to sipping temperature :-), but removing the lid helps out there)

- 360 degree drink lid: This lets you drink from anywhere around the rim of the cup, but more importantly the design is such that it closely approaches drinking from a normal (un-lidded) cup. So no dribbly holes to drink from and no uneven dispensing due to trapped air.

- easy to clean lid: There are no hidden channels in lid where liquid might get trapped. This apparently si a problem with Oxo Good Grips LiquiSeal Travel Mug

- It has a handle: not something I needed, but it is actually handy for hanging it from your belt when you need both hands free

The Thermos E5 has lived up to my expectations, and meets my coffee travel cup needs. However it does have a couple of drawbacks, and for these I will deduct 1 star (I would deduct only 1/2 star if that where possible):

- Narrow opening: When the lid is completely removed, the opening is rather narrow. This not only makes cleaning (that is scrubbing rather than rinsing) difficult, but is sure to confound that barista you order that complex coffee drink from.

- Wide bottom: OK, this is great for stability, but it prevents it from fitting in most cup holders. I know it was not designed for this, but it is something I would ideally like to have.

- Open/Close mechanism requires 2 hands. Since it essentially twists on/off like a cap, it cannot be operated 1-handed like a "pop open" type mechanism

- Open/Close mechanism may fall off if open to wide. I have not yet had this happen, but it is potentially possible that if you twist it open you may go too far and the top will come off completely while you are drinking
1414 comments|282 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 7, 2008
I've never felt this way about a thermal mug before, but when I first laid eyes on this mug, I knew my long search was over. This mug delivers as promised, and has everything that I value.

- Solid construction means that this will last for years.
- Quality thermal sealing retains hot and cold temperature.
- Tight seal is truly spill-proof.
- Stainless steel looks very eye-catching.
- Bonus caribiner makes this easy to carry.

A few words on getting the most out of this product.

As my pictures show, it is a bit cumbersome to clean. Get a bottle brush and clean it thoroughly as soon as you are done with it. I use this mug exclusively for teas with NO milk.

The seal is superbly tight -- I can hold this over my head when closed and have no fear of getting drenched. The seal forms SO well that when you unscrew the mug for your first sip, you will probably hear a little pop.

I usually get about 3 hours of "hot", with up to 6 hours of "warm". Cold lasts much longer (as long as 6 hours of "icy" with another 4 hours of "cool".

You can extend the length of the thermal retention by "priming" the mug in advance with hot or cold. While my tea is steeping in the morning, I pour boiling hot water into the mug to start the heat retention. If you close the flow after each sip, you will probably extend temperature retention for even longer.

I expect to use this for years to come. At this point, I've been using it 4 or 5 times a week for 6 months, and have no complaints.
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on August 13, 2007
No . . . not that. But with my other home-to-office travel mug, inevitably as I slid behind the wheel, holding my mug tightly, I'd bump something and splash steaming coffee all over my pants. No longer. Not only does this Travel Mug keep the coffee hot for hours, it seals so tightly I can hold it upside down, even toss it into the passenger seat, and no spills! Construction is outstanding. The only drawback (and reason for four stars instead of five) is that the top is a little tricky to put on straight and screw down, and it takes some practice to unscrew it just the right amount for convenient sipping. A word of caution -- it keeps the coffee so hot that the first sip can burn your lip! I've learned to let the coffee cool to drinking temperature before I seal it up for the trip to the office, or anywhere else.
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on September 16, 2006
This mug is without question the best I've ever used for my coffee while on the way to and at work. I've tried quite a few others, and this is absolutely a fantastic product! It keeps coffee hot for hours, does not leak or dribble, and the drink from any angle top shows that someone actually thought about it in the design process. I can't speak highly enough about this mug! I have the mug, and will be ordering the 20oz E5 beverage bottle and also the tumbler in the very near future! FANTASTIC product!!!!
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on March 31, 2008
This mug is so much better than any other travel mug I've ever used for coffee and tea. First of all, it retains temperature extremely well - as other reviewers have noted, you should let a hot beverage cool to a drinkable temperature before putting the top on. For my coffee this is not a problem, as the milk I add brings it to a nice temperature, but I do have to leave the top off or add an ice cube to tea. I've done the same with previous thermoses I've owned, but usually you pour those into a cap where you can blow/cool the liquid, whereas with this product its so easy to just drink the piping hot liquid straight out of the thermos - its also easy to scald one's lips. Which brings me to the best design feature - the 360 lid. So simple. It really feels like drinking out of a mug.

The product comes with a carabiner for clipping onto a bag, but its so leakproof that if there's room in my bag I just toss it in!

Significantly, this is one of the few stainless travel mugs I have seen that says its safe to go in the dishwasher. Since the coffee stains the inside of any cup and mucks up the top, I always put travel mugs in the dishwasher and have had to discard many where water got into the "vacuum" space (icky). With the solid Thermos construction I don't anticipate any problems, but its nice to have their guarantee.

This mug's design is just short of perfect. My only complaint is aesthetic - the yellow trim makes it so "hardware" looking. I would have preferred all black. And initially, I thought the "shock-absorbing" bottom was overkill, but it really does give stability to the base on a desk and avoids the bonky sound/feel that a normal thermos makes when you set it on a hard surface. Even such small things make this mug a pleasure to use. I bought two.
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on June 12, 2010
I have been using this mug for about six months. I decided I wanted to take my morning's worth of coffee (about 16 oz.) from home to work rather than buying some or making some at the office. My old Nissan travel cup wasn't big enough and lost heat fairly fast, so I was hoping this Thermos fit the bill. And it does, for me. I can still drink hot coffee from it after three hours or more. I do pre-heat the mug with hot tap water while the coffee's brewing.

Here are some design points and trade-offs to consider before deciding if this item is right for you:

Heat retention: This mugs keeps its temperature longer than any insulated cup/mug I've ever had. It is more like a Thermos bottle that you can easily drink from than a standard insulated travel mug.

360-degree drinking position: The lid is a threaded screw-on type. All the way tightened down, nothing comes out. Twist open half way, to a detent you can feel in the threads, and you can drink from the vents in the recessed top. You can sip from any side in the dark without worrying about coffee dribbling onto your clothes from an out-of-position spout.

Seal: I've never had a leak problem from this mug. The lid actually has two seals, one at the bottom for all-the-way closed and the other to prevent liquid getting past the threads when the lid's in the drinking position. Screwed down tight, nothing gets out of this lid.

Mug handle: I used a straight-sided Nissan cup for years and it didn't bother me to drink from, but having the handle gives you more carrying options and is something you can get a grip (or finger-hold) on if you have your hands full. It also comes with a carabiner so you can clip it to your backpack, duffel, bookbag &c.

Top opening: The opening in the top of the mug is pretty small, (about 1.25 in./32 mm diameter) as is the case with a lot of good vacuum bottles, because the most heat is lost out the top. This may cause trouble filling, but it hasn't been an issue for me.

Base diameter: The bottom is fairly wide, about 3.5 in./90 mm. This may not fit in some automobile cupholders. The base is firm but slightly grippy plastic, with "treads" to stabilize it on flat surfaces. The base also projects enough to give some protection from dings if the mug is dropped.

Top operation: You have to turn the top by its edge, the same place your lip goes when you're drinking. If your hands are dirty, this could be a concern. The lid sometimes squeaks -- fairly quietly -- as it's being twisted.

Drinking attitude: Because of the small-diameter top opening, the lower your contents get the further you have to tip the mug to get the liquid over the inner lip. When you get to the very last drops, the mug has to be pretty close to vertical. Besides being a little awkward, this can block your vision or even take your eyes off the road if you are driving.

Cleaning: Pretty easy if you have a bottle brush, a bit of a pain if you don't. I have washed it in the dishwasher, but I am wary of that because I'm afraid it could compromise the vacuum seal.

Durability: Having dropped and knocked this mug around a few times, I'm pretty pleased with its ruggedness.

So I gave five stars because this product met my needs far better than any similar product I've had. Most of the cons don't outweigh the pros for my personal use, and if they did I'd still probably give four stars.
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on November 3, 2006
This is the best travel mug I've ever had. Yesterday I poured coffee at 7am and around 3pm it was still luke-warm. This mug is totally worth it.
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on January 30, 2009
I have owned the Thermos E5 for more than a year. It is about the 10th stainless travel mug I've had. Several have been good, but none holds a candle to this one.

Proof! Tonight I filled my cup with hot coffee at 7:30PM. We went to a restaurant and on the way I drank about half the coffee. When we arrived I screwed the top down and left the mug in my car. The outside temperature was 10 degrees... cold! When we came back three hours later my coffee was still hot. I don't mean warm, I mean hot. I couldn't believe it.

If you want the best travel mug in the world, buy this one. No drips, no leaks, you can drink out of it from all sides, and it keeps the stuff inside HOT, no matter what.

Update July 27, 2014: I just came across this review and thought I should update it. I have had this same Thermos E5 cup for 5-1/2 years. It still looks and works as well as when I got it. It has fallen off the roof of my car twice when I drove off and forgot it was sitting there. It has a small dent in the side from the second fall but doesn't leak, and hold temperature as always. Kind of a battle scar, I guess.

About two years ago I washed the cup in the dishwasher. The rubber handle came loose from the steel rods that hold it. I stuck some epoxy down the holes in the handle and slid it back on. It's still tight, and can even survive the dishwasher now.

The top seal (translucent plastic) which I figured to be the first thing to go, is as pliable as new, and has never stained.

Bottom line: I wish I could find a car that would hold up under the punishment I've given this cup. It truly is an amazing thing.

11/15/15: Seven years down the road with daily use and this cup is still like brand new. It looks great, keeps my hot tea hot for hours, takes all kinds of abuse, and simply will not give up. If you want truly bullet proof cup, this is it. I think it will out live me.
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on January 29, 2009
I use this for Hot drinks (Coffee) only. I sip on the same 16 oz of coffee all day long. When you pour hot coffee right from the pot it will stay ultra hot all day long. If it is too hot for you, simply open the lid a bit and it will cool off some. I will sometimes fill it with hot water and let it sit until the coffee brews and this seems to make it last even longer.

I have owned one of these for at least a year and have dropped it on pavement numerous times. It's 100 % tough. I started washing it in the dishwasher because of pure laziness and after a month or two it was ruined and would no longer hold the heat. I'm an idiot and now I'm paying for it cause I'm shelling out another 30 + bucks for a new one.

Truth be told, it is worth the $$ because it is durable and effective.
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on January 15, 2011
For a few glorious weeks, it was the Holy Grail of travel mugs.

After a month of use, it started dribbling coffee onto my clothes. A stranger at a conference saw me using this mug gingerly, and we commiserated. There are rubber-like gaskets that must be in place in 2 spots to keep mug from leaking. Rings came off within a month; big surprise. We had recommended the mug to friends; some lost the gaskets entirely before they knew rings had detached. I see now that my experience was not unique. I always washed by hand, so that is not the problem.

Do I want to CrazyGlue the gaskets to the plastic, and continue to drink hot coffee or tea? Not worth the time and trouble to return, and you don't buy a replacement if the first one has flaws. But it was such a GOOOD mug for those days......
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