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Customer Review

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good little coffee maker; terrible cup, April 26, 2010
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This review is from: Black & Decker DCM18S Brew 'n Go Personal Coffeemaker with Travel Mug (Kitchen)
I live alone. While I can certainly drink a full pot of coffee over the course of a day, by the time the last cup is poured, what's in the pot is an acidic, burnt mess. Heaven forbid I forget to empty it before bedtime-- the next day the residue will be caked onto the bottom, requiring more cleaning than a bachelor should ever have to do. Obviously, a single-cup brewer is right for me.

This one has several key advantages. Pop in some coffee grounds and water, press the lever, and in just a few minutes you have one piping hot cup that tastes as good as the first cup from a larger brewer. There's no pot to clean, and the footprint on your counter is very small. Because you only make the coffee when you really want it, you don't get into the situation of having leftover coffee.

You do have to make some adjustments. It's less efficient to make one cup at a time: you have to use proportionately more grounds to get the same strength. If there was a valve on the spout to keep the hot water up there longer, this wouldn't be necessary. But then again, you never lose half a pot's worth of grounds because you only wanted a cup or two-- I think it evens out in the long run.

There's also leakage. If you use the enclosed cup (more on that later), and fill it to near full, that will be more than the reservoir can hold, spilling the excess out the filter holder. This not only forces you to be more careful to do things in the right order (water in first, THEN put coffee in filter) to avoid getting cold water on the grounds, it also moistens the countertop. A washcloth underneath the unit helps manage the spillage.

Finally, a lot of water is lost in the process-- one cup of water will make 5/6 cup of coffee. (I'm estimating.) It's not so bad for me, since that 1/6 cup gets filled with cream and sugar; but if you like black coffee you'll get less than a full cup.

All of these things are minor and you can adapt your behavior to suit it. You have to go through that coffee-adjustment process with a new coffee maker anyway, and within four or five cups, you'll have hit the sweet spot. I like the coffee maker. If only it wasn't for that cup.

Included is a metal-bodied, plastic-lined cup with a sippy lid. It's sized just right for the coffee maker-- at least, it fits under the spout perfectly. It does, however, hold more water than the reservoir can hold; if you make one full cup (which will, remember, become 5/6 of a cup when completed), then a lot of it will overflow into the filter housing and thence onto your countertop. I'm guessing that the cup design team and the reservoir design team weren't on speaking terms.

But the biggest problem is the lid. It doesn't quite fit right. This can not only lead to a completely wasted cup if it tips over and the lid pops off, it becomes in effect a dribble glass. Coffee will not only come out the little sippy hole, but also will work its way up the lid's circumference through the magic of capillary action-- and will then dribble down the corners of your mouth and onto your shirt. Terrible.

Amazon has a very good price on this appliance; I compared their price againt brick & mortar stores as well as other e-tailers. So buy this coffee maker if you find yourself often wasting half-pots or if your coffee needs are modest. (Idea: It would also be great for someone who doesn't indulge in the bean themselves, but who has a frequent visitor who does..) But ditch the cup and use an uncovered mug, or find a travel mug with a better lid design.
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