Moccamaster KBT 10-Cup Coffee Brewer with Thermal Carafe Image

Technivorm Moccamaster KBT741 Review: Brilliance in Action

You have to give it up to the folks at Technivorm. In an age when almost everything is mass-produced in mega-factories some place in China, these guys take the time to hand-make all their products and presumably even give every box a kiss before it’s shipped out to you. That's rare!  What this extra attention results in, is superb quality that has gained a cult-following among coffee lovers the world over. And the Technivorm Moccamaster KBT 10-cup coffee maker pays homage to this culture of excellence.

This $300 machine has quickly become the darling of even the most hard-core aficionados. Just like the pretty impressive Behmor Brazen Plus, it holds the SCAA (Specialty Coffee Association of America) Gold Cup Award for optimal brewing conditions, and adds two more European certifications just to prove how much of a badass it is.

But let’s be honest, $300 for a drip coffee machine is quite a bit of change. Especially when there are machines out there like the $180 Bonavita BV1800, which do a pretty convincing job of masterfully serenading you with every cuppa joe. So does this Moccamaster coffee maker deserve those extra green bucks? Well, let's find out!

Design

Tall, dark, and handsome aptly describes this machine. Pretty Tall! At almost 15.5 inches in height, the Technivorm certainly isn’t built for crammed kitchens. But somehow, even with its towering dimensions, it still manages to present a subdued footprint. The designers have taken the 12-inch width and 7-inch-depth, thrown in some pretty interesting angles, and ended up with a coffee maker that seems smaller than it actually is. They should give a go at making dresses!

Reminiscent of the Bonavita BV1800, Technivorm have taken a no-frills design approach to things. So if you’re a sucker for LCD displays, wake-up timers, and a little programmable voice that comments on your staggering beauty each time you pour out a cup, then sorry, you’re out of luck.

All you get is a well-marked water tank sitting on the pillar-esque heating unit, and a cone-shaped filter basket seemingly floating above the 40oz thermal carafe. So if you’re a sucker for LCD displays, wake-up timers, and a little programmable voice that comments on your staggering beauty each time you pour out a cup, then sorry, you’re out of luck.

While there is a bit of a learning curve to it, this machine is as simple-to-use as it gets. The guys at Technivorm have made little design tweaks, which you might not notice at first, but will play a huge role in making those sleepy mornings much more bearable.

How to Make Coffee with the Technivorm Moccamaster Coffee Maker

The first step, after cursing the world for yet another dreary morning, is to fill up the water tank. It has a wide mouth and is clearly marked in both cups and liters, which makes filling up a total dream.

The lid is also remarkably easy to place back on, unlike other coffee makers that require an advanced degree in mechanical engineering to get the job done.

Manual Drip Stop

Once your water is in there, it’s time to work the filter basket. It uses either no. 4 cone paper filters or the permanent gold kind. But you’ll notice something a bit different with this filter basket. There is a little lever that controls the manual drip stop, which can be placed in three positions.

The first keeps the drip mechanism open and allows you to brew a full carafe, the second closes it partially to whip-up a half carafe, and the last closes it completely, so you can pour out a cup in the midst of brewing. Pretty cool! But if you’re a bit forgetful in the morning, then just leave it in the fully open position and save yourself the hassle of mopping up a coffee-flooded floor!

Nifty Safety Features

When the grounds are loaded in, all you have to do is load the filter basket, swing the water outlet arm over it, screw the brew-through lid into the carafe, slide the pot into place, flick the 'on’ switch, and you’re in business!

What you might not realize, is that a lot of things had to fall in place for the brewing process to actually begin. The machine wouldn’t have started if there was no water in the tank, or if the carafe hadn’t pressed a white button at the base when you slid it in.

All these safety features are intended to ward off the symptoms of can’t-think-straight-at-5-in-the-morning syndrome.

PRO TIPS


While the Moccamaster doesn’t take a genius to master, there are a couple of tips that will make the learning curve that much quicker:

  • To prevent overflowing of the filter basket, be sure to use a medium and a fine grind. It's also wise to first brew with the filter basket cover removed to get a feel of how the water flows.
  • You can pre-infuse the coffee by placing the little lever on the filter basket in the fully-closed position for 30 seconds, and achieve a richer-tasting brew.

Performance

When it comes to brew time, the Technivorm KBT is up there with the big dogs by managing to brew a full carafe in under 6 minutes. This might not be as impressive as the 3-minute brew time of the lightning-fast Bunn Velocity Brew BT, but it’s still snappy enough for you not to feel the sting of the lack of a wake-up timer.

Arguably the strongest point of this machine is its ability to keep the water at that heavenly temperature of 195-205F, courtesy of the high quality copper heating element. This is the reason why it was awarded by the SCAA and the reason why your taste buds will be doing the happy dance once they sample the deliciousness.

The thermal carafe, at the very least, deserves a 21-gun salute for its heat-retaining properties. 6 hours later, and this stainless steel stunner still manages to keep your coffee hot enough to make you do little joy-filled cartwheels.

Its funnel-mouthed design, which might take a bit of getting used to, is brilliant at preventing spills. You can pour out your coffee from any direction and still end up with a nice stream. But if all this change is just too much for you to take, you can simply pour out that java with the brew-through lid still fixed.

4.3/5

Pros

Here are some notable pros of the Moccamaster KBT 10 Cup Coffee Brewer:

  • Relatively quick and quiet operation.
  • Large and impressively effcient thermal carafe.
  • Durable and handsome build.
  • Commendable safety features.
  • Brilliant tasting brew.

Cons

Here are some notable cons of the Moccamaster KBT 10 Cup Coffee Brewer:

  • Takes up a bit of counter space.
  • Pricier in relation to the competition.

Pricing

The Moccamaster KBT 10 Cup Coffee Brewer is available on Amazon for $309.00

Verdict

There are many that claim that the Technivorm Moccamaster is the best drip machine ever built. And while this is debatable, one thing is for certain, this machine will not disappoint.

While there are some worthy competitors like the Behmor Brazen Plus, the build-quality, functionality, and performance of the Technivorm place it in a league of its own. So if spending $300 on a coffee maker won’t get you into trouble with your significant other, then pick up this bad boy and sample what SCAA-certified java tastes like.

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