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Bunn Thermal Brewer - Scott Gammons's Review
Posted: November 12, 2004, 10:48pm
review rating: 4.3
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Bunn Thermal Brewer
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More About This Product
Arrow The Bunn Thermal Brewer has 23 Reviews
Arrow The Bunn Thermal Brewer has been rated 6.64 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since February 3, 2003.
Arrow Bunn Thermal Brewer reviews have been viewed 126,225 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Nick P 8.80
Chris A 8.50
Terry James 8.00
Zach Georgopoulos 8.00
Michael C 8.00

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 8.0
Manufacturer: Bunn Quality: 9
Average Price: $140.00 Usability: 8
Price Paid: $76.00 Cost vs. Value 9
Where Bought: Whole Latte Love Aesthetics 5
Owned for: 1 week Overall 9
Writer's Expertise: I like coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: Black & Decker Coffee Maker
Bottom Line: Excellent speed and excellent coffee at a good price.  Only a few things to keep in mind when using this machine.  Highly recommended!
Positive Product Points

Excellent and consistant brew temps that don't burn the coffee or underextract.  Good dispersion head to spread the hot water around in the filter basket and get the most flavor out of the ground beans.  3 minutes for a full pot of coffee.  Serviceable and fairly stout carafe with decent capacity and good heat retention.  Seems pretty solid and well made for the most part.  Brews a darned good pot of coffee with a fine grind.

Negative Product Points

I'm not a fan of the aesthetics of this machine or of the plastic top end.  It's not the most horrible looking thing I've seen, but it sure does have a warty darth vader's helmet appearance.  The quick brew times come with a price and that is pretty much a requirement that you use Bunn filters or grind your beans a little more coarse if the filter basket overflows/pukes grinds during the brew which could result in a weaker brew.  The plastic filter basket fits kind of loose when placed in the proper slot, though I guess it's better to be a little loose than too tight to fit properly.  This machine will be difficult to flush with descaling agent and then flush that out of the system.  You can't place the entire brewer under a cabinet and still use it because you have to pour the water in the top of the machine.  The machine must sit forward of the front edge of the cabinet a few inches to give you room to pour the water in the top.  Small sacrifices IMHO.

Detailed Commentary

Don't let the negative product points I listed above scare you out of purchasing this machine.  It's one of the best coffee makers out there for the money right now and it makes a superb pot of drip brew in record time.  Given the abbreviated brew time, a fine grind is recommended to get the most flavor out of the beans.  I grind it a little finer than typical drip brew grinds, which makes the grinds float a bit higher in the filter than standard store bought drip grind coffee.  I grind my beans so that the grinds float to the very edge of the Bunn filter when brewing, but not quite over the top and the flavor is pure heaven in a cup.  You get maximum extraction and maximum flavor and no burnt taste or sour taste.  If your grinds sit at the bottom of the filter and don't try to climb the sides of the filter, you aren't grinding it fine enough.  I think I have a larger volume of spent grinds on the sides of the filter than I do at the bottom of the filter when I get done brewing.  Strange but true...

The operational aspects of this machine have been covered in other excellent reviews of this machine and I'm not going to be able to state it more clearly than the nice folks who already have.  

The thermal carafe is heavy-duty stuff.  It weighs a ton when full and isn't exactly feather light when empty.  I like the carafe a lot, but some might not like the weight.  I personally love the heavy feel of the carafe because I know that it will be difficult to break or significantly damage it and I'm a klutz.

If anyone has a source or model number for a permanent gold metal filter that will fit this filter basket, I'd really appreciate a link to it.  Locating a local source for Bunn filters doesn't seem likely and a permanent solution seems like a better and more economical idea.

Buying Experience

Bought off ebay from Whole Latte Love.  I highly recommend this company.  Their service is top notch!

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review rating: 4.3
Posted: November 12, 2004, 10:48pm
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