56 of 58 people found the following review helpful
on 11 April 2013
This, for our household will be our fifth attempt at owning a bean to cup machine.
The first two were refurbished De'Longhi ESAM04.350.S machines which both suffered from the same fault and were ultimately refunded.
The third was a brand new Severin S2+ which failed to heat the water if the custom temp was set to 'high', but worked correctly if set to 'regular or 'very high'. This was also refunded.
Machine number four was the first order of this Melitta which unfortunately arrived with the bean hopper cracked and broken, but Amazon promptly exchanged the machine, bringing our machine count up to five.
Onward then, to the merits of Melitta.
First impressions are good - the machine is well presented and of average size for a machine of this type. Unlike it's De'Longhi and Severin predecessors, the Melitta has no automatic milk system and no computerised controls or text display (only symbols). This makes the machine refreshingly simple and straight forward to operate.
There is no need to program water volumes to accomodate specific cup sizes, as the rotary knob allows for continuous variation between 30ml and 220ml. A coffee strength button selects between four levels, and there are separate buttons to start dispensing either one or two cups of coffee via the twin spouts.
The milk frothing attachment is a joy to use. Simply place a cup containing some milk to the side of the machine, then swing the frothing 'whisk' forward from the side of the machine and lower it into the cup - no need to hold the cup. Pressing the steam button enables the steam knob - the operation of which starts up the whisk and pumps steam through at the same time, enabling you to control exactly how much to heat your milk. My only criticism is that unit does not extend far enough round the front of the machine for it to be used in a cup placed wholly on the drip tray to the side of the coffee spouts.
The devided bean hopper lets you have two types of coffee bean in the machine at once, and a lever selects which type of bean is to be used. It should be noted however, that once switched, beans from the previous preparation will still be in the mouth of the grinder and it might take up to two further cups brewed before the switch is 100% complete. For those people wanting the first cup to be espresso and the very next cup to be decaff, the ground coffee chute would be the only option.
The quality of the coffee produced by the Melitta will of course be dependent upon the beans used, but the crema and taste is exactly as I would expect it to be. A major benefit for us is the fact that as supplied from the factory the coffee comes out hot - and this is the mid setting of three which can be configured by pushing a combination of buttons. The De'Longhi machines (when they worked) produced a beverage that needed to be drunk immediately lest it became cold in a short amount of time, even on the highest setting. In my opinion, there is no need to warm the cups first either, which is just as well as the Melitta's cup warmer is 'passive' and only gets warm off the heat produced by the coffee preparation process.
The Water tank can be fitted with a filter (one is included), and in common with other machines the water hardness should be set so the machine can alert you as to when descaling is required, which the machine will do itself with the help of the usual chemical tablet and procedure common to most manufacturers. Filling the tank is easy, either by lifting the tank upwards and out by using the built-in handle, or by raising the flap and using a jug.
The drip tray pulls out from the front, the coffee grounds being deposited into a separate container that lifts out of the drip tray and are dry enough to dump straight into the bin (unlike the Severin). The brewing unit removes from the side of the machine for rinsing under the tap, and the milk whisk/wand is detachable and dishwasher safe.
As to the longevity of the machine, only time will tell and one thing of note, is the lack of service agent in the UK. All service\repairs are handled from Germany as Melitta does not (at the time of writing) have a representative presence within the UK. The machine arrives fitted with a Euro Mains plug and UK adapter.Standard warranty for domestic use is 24 months, but it is unclear as to wether this also extends to the UK.
So far, we love the machine and must therefore rate it five stars. Of course if anything should becoma apparent to change our opinion, I will return to update this review.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 22 January 2015
Excellent machine. Makes great coffee. The best beans I've found so far are Lavazza Qualita Rossa. Even on the weakest setting the coffee tastes great and you get a good crema.
My only negative comment would be that the drip tray seems to collect a lot of water - need to empty it every 8 cups or so.
Update - just had to run a cleaning cycle - really easy. A tip.. buy the cleaning tabs from amazon.de not amazon.co.uk. They are half the price - and in my case, I bought from the same supplier as the UK site, but I bought 40 tabs (10 packs) for about £20 instead of £4 for 4 (1 pack). Daft situtation. I even had to pay 9 for international postage and it's still that much cheaper...
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 17 May 2015
I have only had this a week so this is an initial review.
This is really easy to set up, you do not have to have a degree in mechanics to do it. The instructions a clear but the multi language manual refers to figures inside the manual cover so flipping between the words and the diagrams need to be understood. A download single language manual is available from Melitta web site.
Initially I was very unhappy with the coffee results, the coffee taste was er... not my cup of tea. This was due to the coffee beans that I ordered at the same time as the machine being the Lavazza Qualita Rossa Coffee Beans. These beans may be fine for use in other machines and systems but for my taste in this machine the result was far from good, they were thrown away after experimenting with different coffee strengths to no avail. Maybe by changing the coffee grinder settings and heat something may have improved but I didn't investigate. Using the Espresso beans from the same company Lavazza totally transformed the taste. Great coffee, espresso and long coffee was a welcome experience to prove to me the money was well spent on this machine. When used with the milk frother for a latte or cappuccino the results were fantastic. Better than the high street in my experience. 13cm Latte glasses will fit under the variable height dispensing nozzles. Like most machines anything taller will require decanting the coffee after the brew.
This is a very simple and easy machine to use. Fill the bean hopper (you can use two different types of bean and flip a leaver to select which one to use) switch on, decide the amount of coffee, and press a button for either one cup or two. Brilliance in simplicity, no nagging inane text information it just gets the job done, and does it well.
The milk frother is easily detached for cleaning and is long enough to froth milk in deeper milk jugs, deeper than some other machines. It can be dropped a full 11cm into a jug.
Things of note that other reviewers have stated, the drip tray has to be emptied daily as the machine cleans both before and after power on and auto power off. I always leave a cup under the dispensing outlet to reduce the content of the drip tray but it still has to be emptied every day.
The Water filter cartridge supplied is a Claris screw in type that only filters when the machine is used thus prolonging the life of the filter however depending on the filter vendor replacements can be expensive. I use filtered water along side the filter cartridge to keep everything as scale free as possible and will change the filter every 2 months as is recommended. The screw in filters are allegedly the same as used by Krups, AEG, Bosch, Siemens but not the same as those used in Jura machines
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 16 May 2015
It's brand new and I have only run a few cups through it but so far I am incredibly impressed.
A bit complicated to set up initially in that when it comes from the factory you have to purge the system via the steam wand (one time only), but just follow the instructions and it is fine.
Then you are meant to put a filter in, which comes with it, but the instruction book makes it clear this is an option. It is something you want to use in hard water areas- both for coffee quality and so the machine doesn't become too calcified. However, you get a water hardness test strip with the machine, and we are 1 out of 5, so soft and I don't thing it is necessary- particularly when the filter needs changing every 2 months are nearly £10 a time. If you are in a hard water area, you could get a Britta water jug and fill the machine using that. I intend to just decalcify and clean very regularly- the tablets to clean don't cost much at all.
The unit is largely made out of plastic, but it is obviously very well engineered. The quality of everything, including the packaging and manual, shines through. This is top quality kit.
So far I have run a few espresso shots through and a long coffee, selecting the longer coffee by turning the right knob. I also moved the strength setting up to 3 bean strength from the factory default 2, and using Kirkland Signature Starbucks Espresso Blend from Costco, it nearly blew my head off, so I have moved it back down to 2 strength (4 in total).
Coffee tastes exceptionally good, just as good as Starbucks, Costa or your local coffee shop. It is also nice and hot with plenty of steam, despite it being on the medium heat factory default.
I didn't have the combined drip tray and coffee grind collector fully pushed home when first operated so some of the coffee came out of the grinds collector into the drip tray. Now fully pushed home and the grind 'cakes' come out dry and well formed for easy chucking in the bin or on the flower bed.
The steam wand/ whisk is a revelation. Previously I have been using a Dualit espresso machine (the manual variety) which made great coffee, but the milk wand took forever to heat up the milk (well, up to 5 mins). After 30 seconds this thing is getting there, and the whisk spins combining with the steam, making a great foam. Only machine I have seen with this excellent feature.
Cleaning is really easy. Again with the Dualit, I would have to run steam out of the steam wand after washing it down, empty the coffee holder, rinse it, then run water through it- a 5 min job on its own. With this the only thing you have to do is unclip the steam wand if you have used it (it comes right off) and run it under the tap - a 10 second job, or just put it on the top shelf of the dishwasher. That steam wand/ whisk really is ingenious design.
So far I am delighted- I really cannot see why you would want to spend any more on a bean to cup machine than this lovely piece of well made kit- forget fancy touchscreens etc, not needed.
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on 27 December 2014
In truth, I don't need to repeat everything that "STVTECH" said in their excellent review of 11th April 2013 - as that more or less says it all and is one of the best I've seen. However, I felt I needed to at least register my own 5 STAR rating, as this machine is one item that definitely deserves it.
I probably wouldn't have bought it but for the Black Friday price (£350). Even then, a lot of money... but when I looked back at what we had paid for our Delonghi EAM3200 back in 2008 (£299), perhaps it wasn't so much after-all (indeed, that Delonghi is still on Amazon at nearly £400).
We enjoyed the Delonghi, but this is different class in all honesty. The crema is thicker, the coffee is (much) hotter & tastier, the milk whisk works so well, and the general finish of the machine is real quality (IMO).
I would have preferred a less passive cup warmer (though as I said, the coffee comes out much hotter anyway) - and initially, I thought we had an internal leak, though that proved not to be case (see below), because apparently the machine cleans itself as it goes.
We were so worried by this "leak", that we rang the UK helpline (it was an 0800 number, but I can't find it - will update when found)... it went through to Germany anyway, and I asked them why there was water in the drip tray inside the machine, and the brewer unit appeared wet. They informed me that the machine is designed to self-clean, and that the internals are rinsed after every cup made - and that after approximately 8 cups, the drip tray would need emptying.
I was relieved at that - but it does mean that the water tank doesn't last as long, and that you have to keep an eye on the drip tray. It would also have been nice if this "feature" had been mentioned in the manual.
Despite those couple of (minor) niggles, this machine is still well worth the 5 stars. By the way, I notice that their webste also now refers to a UK agent, which might be useful to put some peoples mind at rest - see details below.
Melitta System Service UK Limited
Unit A / Enterprise House
Maidenhead Berkshire SL6 8DR
EDIT 30/12/2014... Found the free-phone "Consumer Services help line number" - it is 0800 0288002 (though as I say, it goes through to Germany anyway). Also on the leaflet giving me this number was a UK REGISTERED OFFICE address (not the above mentioned SERVICE address) :-
Melitta International GmbH - UK Division
32a Thorpe Wood Business Park
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 24 November 2014
Great product easy to use, bought mine a month ago and love it, love the milk frothing device give the best frothy milk, so easy to keep clean and use, kids also love using it for hot chocolate, well made sturdy machine, simple to use and clean, push a button and out comes the coffee, also love the option to select different beans as this suits both me and my wife as she prefers a Decafe coffee so gives her an option to either use decafe beans or for just one cup the ground shoot.
Far better machine and better built than other brands especially for the price.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 19 January 2015
I brought this Melitta Coffee Machine during the Black Friday frenzy for a stupid price and to be honest thought that amazon would not be able to supply, so much so that I brought another machine during the 4 weeks wait. Then after a tiny prompt it was supplied quite out of the blue...thank you amazon. What can I say.....a lovely black monster of a machine, just fits under the wall units on the work top. Gloss black with chrome trim. Looks nice ...even if a little on the big side. Makes gorgeous coffee....Americano, latte, cappuccino. What I like about this machine is: lovely coffee, excellent heater/ whisk for heating and frothing your milk, easy to clean, large water tank, dual hopper for two types of bean, ease of operation , easy to remove and clean brewing unit, simple controls, good build for plastic, nice display tells you what going on and not. Dislikes: very noisy grinder, rattles and hums a bit, the drip tray need emptying often and it appears to get through a lot of coffee. But overall i am pleaseed with amazon and my purchase, especailly at a bargain price. Very Convenient ....automated quality cofee, is there better....not at this price. Although i do wonder about the Heston / Breville machine manual barista express ........mmmmmmm
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 19 January 2015
I bought my machine month ago. I am very happy with it, especially that i found good promo on it. I was looking for good automatic machine for past few months. Milk frother works very well.
Few setting to change coffee temps. Which is very helfull, especially for them who likes their coffee hot. Not like delonghi when you will add splash of milk and coffee is cold. One minus that machine cleans itself twice, on the beggining and after. After few times aprox 10 u need to empty water tray and small tank just 1 L is not enought. But this is just minor problem. Overly very happy
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 30 May 2015
I have owned many coffee machines from a trusty old Gaggia Classic to a Saeco bean to cup machine and a Tassimo drinks maker but this machine knocks the spots of everything else!
Making coffee is now a joy - no stress, no mess! So far it had produced perfect espresso for me every time using the 3 bean/strength setting. I am using Illy beans and Starbucks house blend in the two bean hoppers.
The milk frother is pure genius - German engineering at its best! Not only does it steam the milk, it whisks it at the same time top produce perfect cappuccino/latte drinks every time. Again, cleaning is so simple, just rinse the steam wand under the tap and switch the machine off when you're done!
The machine is slightly large and takes up a fair bit of space on my kitchen counter but it looks superb and visitors to my kitchen are literally drawn to the machine and comment on how good it looks (and how good my coffee is!)
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 26 December 2014
Wonderful. My previous machine was a delonghi which was replaced 3 times. Total crap. This melitta makes amazing hot coffee and is well built. The milky further is superb together with the bean selector. So practical.