Articles
icoffee steam brewer
icoffee steambrewer : image gourmetsleuth.com

iCoffee Review

This is a review of the new iCoffee steam brew coffee maker.  The review was not sponsored or solicited by the manufacturer.  I purchased the coffee maker to replace my recently deceased brewer and so far it has proven to provide one heck-of-a good cup of coffee.

Article by: Barbara Bowman


User Rating:
Not Yet Rated!      
view all comments (0)
Related Videos

About iCoffee

The dreaded day finally came. I paddled downstairs at 6:00 a.m. and pressed the brew buttons on my 5 year old Capresso coffee maker.  I walked over, turned on the computer and checked back after 5 minutes.  Nothing, not a gurgle, not a sound, the buttons were no longer illuminated.  Given I frequently question my sanity at that hour, I pressed the buttons again.  Returned to my computer, started pouring through my email.  Again, no sounds, no aroma of coffee, and then I knew, Capresso was a goner.

History Of The iCoffee SteamBrew

I first discovered the coffee maker in an issue of Housewares Magazine, a trade rag.  The coffee maker sounded interesting.  I went to the web and found the announcement at the Housewares show in Chicago and a few reviews from people who did a tasting at the show.  I learned the product was not yet available but was estimated to be on store shelves in July 2013.   I did an occasional search but as of July, the product was still not to be found.  It wasn't until September 26th, the date my Capresso went to that coffee-shop in the sky, that I started my search again. 

Coffee Perfection In The Making

According to the iCoffee.com website, it took 7 years and 1257 prototypes before the coffee maker was put into production.  Mr. Bruce Burrows, the inventor, started tinkering around with the idea of steam brewing back in 2005.  His goal was to produce a full-bodied, smooth cup of coffee without any of the bitterness produced by many (most) coffee makers.  He teamed up with Remington to produce the ultimate coffee brewer.

The process simplified, is that the grounds are steamed until evenly moistened.  A series of rotating jets then continue to stir the coffee to extract maximum flavor from the grounds.  The resulting coffee is deep, dark, rich and smooth.  If you want to read more about the technology you can visit the iCoffee website.

The Review

Pros

  • Makes great coffee
  • Simple display, intuitive to  use
  • Easy to program

Cons

  • Not inexpensive $169.95  (but in line with comparable featured brewers)
  • Aesthetic is a little bulky

front panel of icoffeeFeature Simplicity

The  brewer has all the most basic features I like in a coffee pot and not a lot of extra gadgetry:

  • A glass carafe - my old brewer had a stainless steel thermos carafe and I have to say, personally, it drove me nuts.  I never could tell how much coffee was still in the darn thing.  I prefer the glass with the easy to read measuring lines on the front.
  • Clock - not that I needed yet-another appliance with a clock but this is necessary for programmable timer.
  • Programmable timer -  I don't always use this but I do like to set a time if I have to leave very early in the morning and want my coffee pot to act as my alarm clock.
  • Gold Filter - built into the brew basket.  No separate filter, no filter paper required.
  • On-off button with chime -  The chime is clever but I suspect I'll be shutting that feature off within a week or so.

The Overall Design

icoffee brew basket and lidThe iCoffee is just about 1/4" taller than my old coffee maker.  The design is a simple look but a little "bulbous" due to the large water receptacle area used for steaming and stirring the grounds.  I'm a fan of good industrial design but when it comes to my morning cup of coffee, function leads form.

It still fits under a standard counter top with cabinets above.  The brew basket (shown here) has a "window" where you can watch the grounds swirling around.  Again, entertaining for the first few pots but otherwise unnecessary.

Would I Recommend This Coffee Maker?

Absolutely!  The coffee tastes so  much better (to my preference) than the Capresso, or any other drip maker I've had in the past (Braun, Krups). Even if you don't like very bold coffee, just reduce the amount of grounds you use and it will lighten it up.  You'll still have a very flavorful, smooth cup of coffee.

Bloomingdale's does demo the coffee maker sometimes so you may want a visit a store and taste test before you buy. 

blog comments powered by Disqus_
Contribute


» Log-in to contribute

You must be registered to comment or contribute to our website. Please login or click here to register.


Login

  •  
  •  

 

Proposed New Label Law Sugary Drinks

California is proposing a new law that would place a warning label on sugary drinks stating they promote obesity, diabetes and tooth decay. Will this make you buy/drink fewer soft drinks?

Results

"Total voters : 82"

Coffee Recipes

Maintenance

Cleaning is very simple.  Rinse out the grounds out of the brewing basket after each use.  You can put the brew basket and lid in the dishwasher.  I prefer to hand wash coffee filters and parts.  

Rinse and wash the carafe with a little warm soapy water.  The booklet mentions that abrasive cleaner should not be used because scratching may cause the glass to eventually break.

Cleaning And Descaling

Remington recommends descaling the coffee maker with white household vinegar every 40 - 100 cycles depending on your water.

Type of Water
Cleaning Frequency
 Soft Water
 Every 80 brew cycles
 Hard Water
 Every 40 brew cycles
 Purified Water
 Every 100 brew cycles
  1. You just add white vinegar up to the 4 cup mark.  Turn on the coffee maker.   You need to keep an eye on the unit while it does this. Once the vinegar is gone from the reservoir, turn off the brewer.  
  2. Allow the vinegar to sit in the unit for 30 minutes.
  3. After 30 minutes empty the carafe.  Fill the reservoir up to the 12 cup mark. Turn it on. Once the reservoir is empty turn off the brewer.  Discard the water/vinegar in the carafe and you're done.

Where To Buy

Currently (October 2013) the iCoffee is sold by Frontgate ($169.99) and Bloomingdale ($225.99) catalogs.  Bloomingdale's also sells it in some retail stores.  Bloomingdale's price is $225.00 (on sale $169.99 on October 1, 2013) online but when I walked in the store and mentioned Frontgate, they matched the price, even though I didn't even ask them to.  Bloomingdale's also told us we had 1  year to return it.  That's a very generous return policy!