Grind and brew coffee makers are relatively new on the market, but the demand for them is growing because of the convenience of these machines. This type of coffee makers has a few advantages over a regular pair of separate grinder and brewing machine.
- Grind and brew coffee machines are more compact than the pair grinder – brewer
- In the brewing process there are less steps to do, you only put your beans and press the start button
- They can be programmed to brew a cup 24 hours in advance, and unlike with a regular set of brewer grinder, you don’t have to grind your coffee the night before, the machine will do it at the brewing time.
- Because you can program it to grind and brew, you have the freshest coffee possible in the morning.
- They can be programmed to brew from two to twelve cups
- No mess with transferring from grinder to the coffee maker
- Unlike single cup makers, they can brew 12 cups at once, when you need them
- Like any drip coffee machine, the plate keeps the coffee hot in the carafe
Cuisinart DGB-900BC Grind-and-Brew
Cuisinart has a few grind and brew models on the market, and all of them are pretty good machines. But there are a few models that stand out and the Cuisinart DGB-900BC is one of those models.
Here are some of the features of this machine:
- It has a burr grinder that can be fine tuned for optimum grind size
- It has a strength selector, to adjust how much grinds will go into the brewing filter
- It has a charcoal filter to automatically filter bad water. This is a nice feature, since water quality is very important for coffee brewing.
- Gold -tone filter ensure a great aroma in your cup. Compared to a regular paper filter, the mesh filter is cheaper and it gives you a bolder coffee. If you like light bodied coffee, you can still use paper filters, though.
- Two to Twelve cups brewing selection
- Programmable for up to 24 hours.
- 3 years warranty
- Grinder bypass for using pre-ground coffee
- BPA free
- Brew pause function, (you can’t pause more than 20 seconds though)
- Beep signaling when the brewing is finished
The Cuisinart DGB-900BC has great ratings on Amazon, and people who started drinking coffee from one of these couldn’t go back to their old drip machine. This is pretty amazing for a bean to cup coffee machine.
Why Are Grind and Brew Coffee Makers Great?
Chances are you already know this, but I love the concept behind the machine, so I can’t stop talking and writing about it.
Whether you are looking to buy this as a home coffee brewer, or for your office, the best quality of it is that it preserves the coffee aromas, giving you a great cup.
How does it do it? It does it by simply incorporating a grinder into the brewer. “Is that simple?” you might ask. Yes, it is that simple. And yes having them as separate units would give you the same result, “if” coffee is ground freshly. And that “if” changes everything. You know, nowadays is all about convenience, and efficiency. How many office places are equipped with both a brewer and a grinder?
The reason is simple, people at work need a coffee, and the process to get one has to be simple, efficient and fast. So, measuring, grinding coffee, transferring to the brewer, cleaning up after grinding, doesn’t quite qualify it as efficient and fast. The same goes for your home brewing.
Then how do we make things efficient? We eliminate the grinder and we buy pre-ground drip size coffee. This is way more efficient and convenient, however, we lose aroma and flavor. Did you ever notice that with those big containers of ground coffee, the coffee becomes stale? The reason is simple, ground coffee loses aroma at a much faster rate than the beans.
Now with a little background into the “bean to cup” concept we can go further and see what other features we want with grind & brew coffee machines.
Capresso 464.05 CoffeeTeam – Grind and Brew
The Capresso CoffeeTeam GS is one of the best bean to cup drip coffee makers.
Here are the features of the Capresso CoffeeTeam GS:
- It has a great quality conical burr grinder with five settings for adjusting the grind size.
- The grinder is slow grinder and this has a couple of advantages: low heat generated during grinding preserves the highly volatile aromatic oils in coffee, and a more silent grind.
- Gold tone filter included, but it can be used with paper filters as well if you want a clear coffee. Gold tone filters are the best for getting a flavorful cup from a drip coffee machine.
- Includes charcoal filter to remove chlorine and other impurities from the tap water.
- Option to bypass the grinder when using pre-ground coffee
- Direct feed technology, so that the ground coffee goes straight into the filter.
- Two to Ten cups brewing selection.
- 1 year warranty for household use.
- Drip-trip/brew pause function to get a cup of coffee before the brewing is finished.
The pros: It makes an incredible cup of joe, it has a great grinder, and the customer support is stellar.
The cons: reliability has decreased compared to their previous model, and getting the right strength of coffee seems complicated to understand at first, (once you understand the concept it’s really simple).
Cuisinart DGB-625BC Inexpensive Grind and Brew Coffee Maker
Hard to beat the price of this grind and brew. The price on Amazon has dropped dramatically, and this brewing system has all the great features of the more expensive models.
- Built in grinder
- Fully programmable for up to 24 hours
- 1 to 4 cup settings for brewing (Allows special brewing for small quantities. With regular drip machines coffee is not as flavorful when brewing small quantities.)
- Charcoal filter to remove chlorine from the tap water
- Pre-ground coffee option
- Gold Tone commercial grade filter
- This model is less noisy than the previous one
- Brew pause function so you can get a cup before brewing is finished
- BPA free
- Three years warranty
The only thing that this grind and brew is missing is the adjustable grind size. But if you like coffee on the weaker side, this model is perfect for you. It grinds medium size, for a perfect balance between aromas and coffee strength.
Breville BDC650BSS Grind Control
The Breville Grind Control is one of the best coffee bean to cup coffee makers. The Grind Control from Breville can function both as a regular drip coffee machine and as a single serve. This is easily selected by pressing a button. The button allows you to switch between cup and carafe mode.
There are a few functions that caught my attention and I would like to emphasize them. The machine has 8 strength settings, to help you make the perfect cup. The strength is easily controlled from the control panel. The machine has an adjustable grinder, and there is also a calibration function. The grinder has an adjustment knob, that will allow you to set it for finer or coarser grinds. You can also use pre ground coffee, if you want. Maybe you want to brew a cup of decaf, or some flavored coffee for a guest. The display is really nice, and it
As with any complex coffee machine, with many components, there are more problems than a regular drip coffee machine. One of the problems is that the grinder doesn’t work with oily beans. Darker roasts tend to release the oils faster than lighter ones. If you are a dark roast coffee lover, this machine will not work for you, and probably no other bean to cup. This is a rather big machine, but this is normal, given the fact that has a built in grinder
As any other bean to cup, it’s not very reliable. Plan to buy a new one within two to three years.
Superautomatic Espresso Machines
Even though superautomatic espresso machines qualify as a bean to cup, we are not going to include them in this review. It is worth mentioning them as a great option, (I am an espresso lover), but they are a totally different class of coffee makers. Firstly, they are much more expensive, because they are more complex. Secondly, espresso is another brewing method, giving you a different cup. Take a look at our page about super-automatics, if this is what you are looking for.