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Whether you’re drinking your first cup of the day at home or on the go, there are so many ways to make good, balanced coffee. We’ve put together some of our recommendations for coffee gear and coffee makers to help you brew your preferred cup.
Coffee Grinder: Baratza Encore Coffee Grinder
If you prefer buying whole coffee beans, having a reliable coffee grinder is a must. The Baratza Encore Coffee Grinder’s operation is straightforward and it produces a consistent grind that’s more even than competitors we tested. We like that cleaning and keeping up with maintenance is easy, and that the Encore doesn’t take up much counter space. Pairing it with pour-over coffee gear like our recommendation for an electric kettle (the Cuisinart CPK-17 PerfecTemp Cordless Electric Kettle) and coffee dripper (the Kalita Wave 185 Dripper) won’t cost a fortune if you’re just making coffee for one.
For an everyday home brewer that makes a consistent cup of coffee, we recommend the OXO On 9-Cup Coffee Maker. It comes with a well-insulated carafe and a convenient programmable start time feature that allows you to set the machine to brew coffee that’s ready before you wake. The On 9-Cup Coffee Maker works fast and runs through an automatic pre-infusion cycle for better extraction. We like that its carafe pours easily, it has a clean design, and keeps coffee hot for hours on end. While the coffee it produces isn’t always as nuanced as coffee that our runner-up pick, the Bonavita BV1901TS Connoisseur, produces, its overall performance sits above the average drip coffee maker, it has an easy-to-read digital display, and manages to make a good-tasting cup of coffee in small and large batches.
Espresso Machine: Breville Infuser
We put more than 60 hours of research into testing five espresso machines for beginners before choosing the Breville Infuser as our top pick. As long as you also get our recommendation for a consistent espresso grinder, the Rancilio Rocky, the Breville has all of the basic accessories you need. If you want to make lattes that look and taste as good as the one you’d get from a café, you’ll be able to do so with the Infuser. Its milk comes out rich and frothy, and it pulls espresso shots easier than similar models we tested. In less than a minute, it heats water to brewing temperatures. In testing, we found it to be user-friendly and had no issues with its easy-to-follow instructions, so if it’s your first time using an espresso machine, you won’t have trouble operating this machine.
French Press: Bodum Brazil
The Bodum Brazil is simple, inexpensive, and perfect for casual coffee drinkers. It makes a strong, balanced cup of coffee that you can enjoy at home or on to go in a leakproof travel mug. During testing, we found that the Bodum Brazil produced coffee with the same amount of grit as brews produced by models that cost up to seven times as much. The Brazil’s filter pushes down with more ease than competitors and none of its parts feel cheap. It has a heat-resistant glass beaker and a plastic handle that stays cool for easy pouring.
Cold-Brew Coffee maker: OXO Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee Maker
Taking the time to cold brew coffee instead of cooling down hot coffee will result in a less bitter, more flavorful drink. If you’re interested in this brewing approach, we recommend the OXO Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee Maker because it is well designed, has lots of measurement markings, and uses a reservoir-and-vessel system. It isn’t too tall for most countertops and its glass carafe can easily be stored in a refrigerator. Of the 15 cold-brew coffee makers we’ve tested over the past two years, we’ve found that the Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee Maker produces the boldest and strongest coffee. Acidity is balanced with this pick and it has a metal mesh filter that brings out more flavor than similar models we tested.
These picks may have been updated. Click through to see the current recommendations or availability updates for the best travel mug, the best french press, the best drip coffee maker, the best cold-brew coffee maker, The Best Espresso Machine, Grinder, and Accessories for Beginners, the best coffee grinder, the best electric kettle, and the best gear for making pour-over coffee
Taste The Coffee 2019