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Fitness by Crunchgear 2007

Tassimo Premium Hands On

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What is a coffee maker doing in our Fitness by CrunchGear coverage? Well, as “information workers” we probably drink more coffee than water. As a result, our health — and mood — can be adversely effected by the dark sludge that everyone makes in the break room. In fact, one office I worked at had some sort of “mad coffee maker” who added cinnamon to every pot. We never figured out who it was.

Enter the Tassimo Premium coffee maker. In a nod to health, I will admit that the pitcher has a water filter to leach out the nasties, but otherwise, the machine just makes good coffee.



The Filter

The device is quite large — about 10 inches by 10 inches — but fits on the average kitchen counter. There is one big “START/STOP” button and all manual functions are carried out by pressing and holding this button. In Auto mode, you simply place your cup under the spout, pop in a Tassimo disk, and press the button. The water heats up, the drink comes out, and all is right with the world. You can modify the size of the drink later, adding water near the end of the cycle.

Making coffee in a hurry usually results in bad coffee. As a result, many of us drink too-strong or too-weak brews that evokes the gamy taste of Juan Valdez’s urine. I usually make a huge French press of coffee every morning, resulting in a weak brew at the beginning and a sludge that I slurp down an hour and four cups later.


TRON!

The Tassimo system ensures that every cup tastes the same. The brewer reads the little disks — which cost about $8 for 16 servings — and then creates the same cup of of coffee or tea each time. The system also offers hot chocolate and latte with real milk. The Premium model costs $169.99 and the lower-end model is $129.


Dude, it’s cashed.

How were the drinks? I made a coffee, a black tea, and a green tea. Each brew was strong and warm and interestingly enough there was a lot of steam coming from each of the drinks but they were not overly hot. Some sort of trickery afoot? The two coffees were strong and rich, with almost no residue at the bottom of the cup.

I like the fact that all you have to do to get a fairly good cuppa is pop in a disk and let her rip. The heating phase takes about a minute and the drink is ready a minute or so later. One problem I noticed: there is a “water run-off” phase that ejects water into the machine’s drip pan for some unknown reason. It’s actually quite annoying because after you’re done, the Tassimo is still squirting away.

If you’re in an office and want to have good coffee quickly, I can recommend the Tassimo. At home, I think the simple pleasure of boiling the water, pouring the coffee or dipping the bag, and sitting down to a cup might outweigh the robotic benefits of this coffee machine. However, if you’re on the run all the time and just want the caffeine, definitely take a look. I’ve had Nespresso coffee as well, and I’d rate them about the same. However, the Nespresso kit is considerably more expensive than this kit, which might just clinch the deal.

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