Oxo On Barista Brain

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Oxo On Barista Brain
8.9 Total Score

$299.95 $299.99

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  • Truly Innovative
  • 2 in 1 Design
  • Selectable Water Volume Brewing
  • Large 12 Cup Size

Description and Review

Oxo On Barista Brain Review

Overview

Oxo is a company with a huge product inventory targeted for home and kitchen use. As a popular home equipment they could not neglect including a coffee maker. Although they are not specialized for this type of appliances they have developed the innovative Barista Brain, as an alternative coffee dripper. The Oxo On Barista Brain has met successfully the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA) requirements, which includes the optimum coffee temperature at around 200°F (±2°F).

Very stylish with the right mix of metal and plastic features high adjustability in terms of time, temperature and volume. Its water tank has a borosilicate glass kettle and has 60 oz. capacity while it can produce up to 12 cups of coffee. The carafe is made of double wall stainless steel for thermal insulation and durability. Everything is controlled through a microprocessor and the selections are displayed on a flashy LED display at the bottom. The adjustments are performed with a single illuminated button.

What stands out is a built in scale, where the water tank sits , that enables the machine to detect the water volume and brew accordingly. But this is also adjustable and you can select brewing the whole water content or less if needed. The water in the reservoir can remain warm for up to 30 minutes and you can use it for tea making also. A large filter basket with flat bottom sits on top, equipped with a plastic shower head, which also serves as a lid. Finally a safety valve at the bottom prevents dripping in case of premature withdrawal of the metal carafe.

Testing

The water tank which is simultaneously a water carafe has an elegant design and is huge, as the rest of the machine. However it has a nice grip with a button on top that opens smoothly the lid. After filling the carafe with water the machine shows the measured volume and there is a capability of brewing the whole content or part of it. You can brew from 4 to 12 cups and leave the rest in the reservoir. For instance if you select to brew 4 cups, 8 cups will remain in the water tank. If you select to brew 6 cups, then 6 more cups will remain inside.

The machine takes a whopping 10 minutes to heat up the whole 12 cup carafe which is one of the slowest ever recorded. If you add up the brewing cycle, that takes about 5 minutes, you end up with a sum of 15 minutes. Not fast but keep in mind that it has to heat up 60 oz. of water, that is almost double than the average water volume. Pulling the carafe after the completion of brewing cycle we noticed excessive dripping for several seconds. It seems that the valve was not working properly. Furthermore it seems that the carafe is not capable of handling the full 12 cup amount and tends to overfill.

Regarding the coffee we got a tasty cup which was hotter than the average and honestly backs up its SCAA certification. The design of flat bottom basket didn’t have similar results for lower volume of coffee though. When we tried to make just 2 cups the coffee turned out bitter and stronger. Concerning the lid of the carafe, it has to be tightly screwed into if you want to prevent spilling when pouring coffee. Not that suitable for weak hand users indeed.

Verdict

A really creative coffee maker, which unfortunately will not satisfy impatient individuals that need their coffee right away. As a large volume coffee maker has an equally big foot print, that will steal significant space from your counter. In fact you get two appliances in one that looks more like a space age coffee lab, that will amuse the tech geeks. Overlooking some minor flaws such as the tight lid or the filter basket dripping it can certainly justify its high price tag.

8.9 Total Score

Build Quality
8.5
Functions
9
Ease of Use
9
Coffee Taste
9
PROS
  • Truly Innovative
  • 2 in 1 Design
  • Selectable Water Volume Brewing
  • Large 12 Cup Size
CONS
  • Tight Carafe Lid
  • Filter Basket Dripping

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