I've only really woken up to proper coffee (e.g the non-instant variety) in the last couple of years, and have found that using a cafetiere is a simple way of preparing the morning brew. I've got a number of cafetieres in the house - not because i've set out specifically to collect them, but because the family has accumulated them over the years from birthday / Christmas gifts etc.
Today i'm reviewing the Debenhams silver eight cup cafetiere which is currently available for only £12 (RRP £14.99) - the price is arguably very competitive compared to the slightly pricier Bodum cafetieres on the market.
Appearance, Design, and Use
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The product is shaped in the traditional style, and has a pleasant appearance with a shiny chrome finish. The black plastic handle makes transporting the cafetiere easy, and doesn't become excessively hot whilst the product is filled with water. The packaging doesn't mention whether or not the glass is of the toughened borosilicate variety - although I can only speak from experience and say that it hasn't cracked when boiling water has been poured into it. Like most other cafetieres, the use of the device is straightforward - the following instructions describe the basic process;
1. Remove the lid and plunger before pouring in your ground coffee.
2. Fill the remainder of the cafetiere with hot water and then stir. Replace lid.
3. After around four minutes (depending on taste) the plunger can be slowly pressed downward - your coffee is ready to pour.
Once you're done, cleaning the cafetiere is very easy - just take the plunger out of the jug and rinse it under the tap, then swill the jug with water. Every so often, you may need to give it a more thorough clean - although rinsing is effective for the most part.
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Overall, the Debenhams Eight Cup Silver Cafetiere is a well made and easy to use product which is available for a reasonable price. In my experience i've found than the plunger pushes down in a smooth manner, and the design is such that the product doesn't become excessively hot during use.
When I first think of coffee, the name Debenhams doesn't spring to mind. Nescafe Maxwell house and definitely Starbucks. But Debenhams? Well this isn't actually about the coffee it's about the maker and that's where Debenhams comes in.
I love my coffee. And thing in the morning I NEED my coffee. With out a large mug of Joe I couldn't even be described as human. But, and this is a big but, I won't drink just anything. Yes the caffeine works wonders in waking me up, but taste is also important, in fact it's THE most important thing when it comes to coffee.
I drink a lot of freeze-dried coffee when at School (don't worry I'm in Med school, not high school) this isn't through choice it's just what they have there and it's ok I guess. But when I'm at home I always use my parents coffee machine as the results are so much better. I don't think there is any comparison between freeze dried coffee and freshly ground.
But when I can't use my favourite machine I always use this little handy gadget. The reason I use this so often is this is my coffee machine when in my Dorm Room. This way I get the great taste of real coffee yet it takes up little too no room at all, and can be put away out of sight straight after use.
This Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere doesn't actually make 8 cups of coffee, not what I consider a cup anyway. When it says 8 cups it means the little small cups you get in a hotel after your meal. The kind that you could empty three or more of into a mug. This said it makes enough for my large coffee thermos in the morning and that's good enough for me.
This cafetiere works like any other cheap or expensive model. It works by a plunging action which pushes and filters the ground coffee to the bottom of the jug. First of all I put on the kettle, and as it's coming to the boil I choose which coffee I would like strong, mild, French blend whatever. Once the kettle has boiled I leave it to cool ever so slightly, this is what's recommended as poring on boiling water will apparently scorch the coffee and result in an inferior end product. I literally leave it for around five minutes, so it's still hot but not boiling, plus this will minimise the chances of the jug cracking from the shock of boiling water.Then I simple add the amount of scoops of coffee I require depending on the strength desired. Pour on the water, and then pull the plunger up to the top of the inside of the lid. This is done by pulling up the thin silver central pole than is attached to the mesh covered strainer. There is a nice little silver ball-like finial on the top of this bar so is easy to hold as I screw on the lid. Then I leave it for a few minutes (again the time you leave it depends on how strong you want your coffee) all I have to do is slowly push down on the plunger, the slower you push, the longer the coffee has to infuse into the water. Push all the way down to the bottom to trap the grounds between the mesh and the glass. Then simply pour and enjoy.
To ensure you get no little gritty bits of the beans slowly pour it out, don't tip it too far forward as it's not necessary and may result in some residue ending up in your cup.
Cleaning this item is also very easy, it can be washed by hand, by simply submerging in warm soapy water like you would washing anything in the sink. Or the jug and plunger can be placed in the dishwasher (I have however never done this as there is no dishwasher at my collage Dorm apart from me). The jug is made of glass but doesn't feel that strong like that of a Pyrex jug it is just standard glass by the look of it. The rest of the unit is made of a silver metal material, probably stainless steel but again it doest have much weight to it.
My mother gave me this as a lovely gift as she knows how much I enjoy a good cup of coffee and she also knows what I'm like without one (a zombie).
This is a great alternative to a more expensive and large coffee machine, the results of course depend on the quality of the ground beans you use, but the results are just as good as that from a huge machine at a fraction of the cost. My Mum picked this up in Debenhams for £12.99
Thanks for reading :0) 2night.
I am not a big coffee drinker, finding the taste far too harsh for me, so I was understandably perturbed when my sister bought me this Debenhams cafetiere for my birthday last year. She is aware of my general dislike of coffee and when questioned admitted she only bought it to ensure I was prepared to make her a decent cup of coffee when she visited rather than handing her a seemingly unimpressive cup of Kenco, which is the coffee I tend to keep in for visitors.
This is an eight cup cafetiere, remember a 'cup' in coffee terms is rather smaller than you would think and in reality this item will hold a little more than three mugs worth. You need to follow the instructions on the packet of whichever coffee you are using as the brewing time will differ, I am using a flavoured coffee at the moment and the brew time is four minutes but in the past I have used coffee which takes half the time.
To work the cafetiere you simply spoon the ground coffee into the glass jug, add water that has been boiled and allowed to cool for a minute or two, allow brewing time and then depress the plunger to push all the floating coffee to the bottom. Allow it to settle for a few moments and pour your hot drink into a cup or mug, adding milk and sugar to your personal requirements.
This particular cafetiere has a very smooth action when you come to press down on the plunger, it gets fairly stiff the closer you get to the base of the jug but this is not unmanageable and cannot be prevented as by this time you are fighting against the coffee grinds. The fine mesh attached to the base of the plunger does an excellent job of keeping the small bits of coffee at the bottom of the jug, occasionally a few tiny bits will appear in a cup of coffee but I understand this can happen with any coffee maker of this type.
The whole cafetiere is suitable for washing in a dishwasher, but I actually enjoy the process of rinsing out the coffee grinds and washing it manually so haven't attempted this. As long as you wash it out within an hour or two of use it really is a very quick and easy job, although if you leave the cafetiere with a residue of coffee in it you may find it stains the glass somewhat and makes cleaning trickier. The silvered casing lost it's shine quicker than I thought it would, I have managed to buff it back up but it continues to show fingerprints up quite badly.
My only real criticism of this cafetiere is the fact that the glass used to make the jug is incredibly thin which means your coffee will not stay hot for long once brewed. I myself very rarely drink the coffee I have made but when my daughter visited recently I brewed her a cafetiere full of a vanilla flavoured coffee I had bought; she drank the first two mugs but by the time she was ready for the third it was only lukewarm, not piping hot as is required for a drinkable cup of coffee. The thin glass also worries me when I come to wash it up as I feel even the clink of a teaspoon coming into contact with it in the washing up bowl could cause some damage.
Overall, however, I am more than impressed with my cafetiere - even as someone who is not a coffee lover. I adore the smell of the brewing coffee as it makes my home seem more lived in, in fact I believe it's a tried and tested method of convincing someone that your house is the ideal place for them to live while it is on the market - the smells of freshly brewed coffee and freshly baked bread subliminally working on the emotions of buyers. Having looked online I can see this cafetiere retails for £16, this is slightly more expensive than Bodum cafetieres but I would not have expected anything less from Debenhams.
I got this as a christmas present a few years ago and to be honest dont use it a great deal. It is not because it doesnt make nice coffee, just not a huge coffee drinker. However when we have had a nice evbevening meal it is noce to finish off with a good coffee and instant coffee just doesnt cut the mustard!
In these circumstances this cafetiere is perfect. It is a tough glass jug with a very stylish metal casing which forms feet to sit on. The lid has a plunger so once the coffee has been in the water for a while, I've no idea what is the optimum length of time, the plunger can be pushed down and the coffee flakes separated from the coffee for easy drinking. There is never any flakes in the coffee once poured so the plunger does its job well!
The lid sits on the top firmly so it doesnt move when pouring the drink and can be done with one hand.
It is an 8 cup cafetiere but this is really 8 small cups of coffee, not mugs as we use. Only makes about 4 mugs of coffee really!
This is a really nice way to end a meal and an easy way to make a really decent coffee, well that is providingood coffee is bought!! Not really being that up on what is good and what is not, I just try to find non bitter coffee. This cafetiere doesnt really make the coffee bitter on any of the coffees I've bought to put in it.
I addition to making nice coffee it also looks nice on the shelf in the kitchen!!
We drink a lot of coffee in our house, my husband in particular who is also a massive coffee snob. He is fussy about the bean, its origin and taste and complains bitterly if its only instant coffee left in the house. His preferred method of preparing coffee is with a cafetiere and we have gone through four or five in the ten years we have been together. This one was our latest purchase earlier on this year after my husband decided that our four cup capacity was not enough and we needed to upsize to an 8 cup pot.
We picked this cafetiere up from Debenhams for around £10 in the last sale. Usual price instore and on the Debenhams website is £15.
In terms of design and styling it is very similar to most other cafetieres on the market, both at the bottom of the price ranges and the top. It is composed of metal and glass and looks very smart and elegant on our worksurface (shame the rest of the worksurface stuff can't be described the same way!).
To use you place the ground coffee inside, pour boiling water on until its almost at the top, wait four minutes (ish) and then press the plunger down to force the grounds to the bottom of the cafetiere. It holds 1000ml, which makes 8 good sized mugs of coffee - or four of my husband's special mug!
To clean you should use warm soapy water and take all of the plunger bits apart to get rid of the coffee grounds. I generally assume that absolutely everything is dishwasher safe and wash the cafetiere in the dishwasher regularly with no adverse affects, other than the fact that if you forget to take the glass inner out of its metal frame then bits of food etc get caught between the two. After a nasty surprise or two it doesn't take long to take the two bits apart before putting in the machine.
The plunger has three layers to ensure that all the grounds stay out of your coffee cup. In the past we have had problems with the wire meshy stuff that makes up part of the plunger- staining, fraying, rusting a little at the sides, but we have been very happy with this cafetiere, no problems at all. The whole plunger unscrews so that you can wash each layer separately, but I do find this a little tricky and find I have to use quite a bit of force to twist off the screw, which is above the flat bit of the plunger - putting it back together again is much easier! I know a lot of people who would have difficulty undoing this screw, but if you have a dishwasher it is possible to wash it whole in there rather than dismantle the whole thing. I do it regularly when I am in a rush or just too lazy to fiddle with the screws.
Overall I was very happy with this cafetiere, sadly I say was as after surviving several bounces on the floor the inner glass bit was knocked off the worksurface and smashed on our concrete/lino kitchen floor. If I had had it in the metal frame it wouldn't have happened as the frame protects the glass really well. It didn't splinter into lots of pieces, just cracked in two dramatically, which was excellent from a safety point of view and very easy to clear up.
Having tried cafetieres from the bottom of the range to the £35 cafetieres at the top I can say that this performs just as well as the more expensive ones and lasts longer than the cheaper ones when it comes to the plunger parts. It is a good quality item and we have ordered a replacement from Debenhams at £11.25 in the sale this week (Sept 2011)
~A super little cafetiere~
This very nice looking and easy to use Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere was something I bought before xmas from Debenhams when it was reduced in price. Once I had tried it out and found it to be a very nice little cafetiere I bought another one to give as a xmas gift to a fellow fan of freshly made cafetiere coffee, which I feel shows how pleased I am with my initial purchase. I must admit that when I was looking at similar products I was mostly drawn to this one based on its cheap as chips price and although I wasn't expecting all that much from this item it really has been a pleasure to use as it makes a lovely cup of hot steamy coffee every time.
When wanting to review my Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere here it wasn't listed as a product so a suggestion was made to allow me to share my thoughts about it. With its nice sleek silver toned appearance and well made easy to operate plunger and filter I feel the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere was a really good buy and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it. When I compare the price of this to many of the other similar cafetieres I saw on sale I feel this is super value as even at it original sale price of £11 (which is what is was when I bought mine before discounts) it was miles cheaper than any other similar sized cafetiere that I saw in Debenhams.
~Presentation and packing~
The way that the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere is presented does have a slightly budget feel to it as the box has a no frills kind of look and when I bought mine the massive yellow £11 offer sticker was stuck to both sides of my box. When I tried to take the big yellow sticker off of the second cafetiere box that I gave as a gift, it was stuck so firmly on that I made rather a mess of the box on one side. In the end I gave up trying to prize the sticker off and gave the slightly mangled box as it was as I had no other choice. The colour scheme of the box is a simple black and white and shows a nice piccy of the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere on it which gives an idea of what you are getting.
The rest of the box is fine as far as I am concerned as it provides enough protection for the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere when you need to transport it from store to home. Once I unpacked the one I kept it had plenty of brown cardboard around it to protect it and the glass part of the coffer maker was sleeved in a protective layer to keep the glass scratch and blemish free (which mine was). The body and plunger of the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere all arrived looking new and pristine once out of the box, so I feel what the packing lacked in fancy fripperies on the outside, it more than made up with by being well made and sturdy enough to protect what is mostly a glass based item whilst in transit.
~A Super silver coffee maker~
The pieces that make up my Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere are all well made and easy to care for. I have washed my coffee maker by hand and in the dishwasher and it comes out well either way. So far the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere has come up nice and clean with no real problems of any note that would effect its usage. The clear glass body of the coffee maker is not all that thick although it is more than strong enough to hold up to the daily use it has had since I bought this. There are no scratches or marks on the glass and it has not cracked even though I have not been all that careful with it every time I have used it or washed it.
The metal parts of the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere are still very slivery and shiny even after this little beauty has been used daily and then washed and rinsed off. The only really slightly annoying thing that I find is that if I wash the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere in the dishwasher it can sometimes end up with slight water marks on the silver lid and sides which need a little rub with a soft clean cloth or tissue to get them off. Other than that there has been no problem with the silver metal work that makes up the side supports of the coffee maker and there has been no loss of lovely silvery colour on them at all.
The lid of the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere has a sleek silver toned finish yet it is secretly made from a very durable plastic type material with an inner part that is finished in paler plastic. The silver lid has a hole through the centre through which the plunger arm runs and this means that the plunger, lid and filter are all fitted to the same central metal arm. The lid can be moved along the arm and the filter section with its fine metal mesh and metal base sits secured at the base of the plunger arm and cannot be moved as it is a static item. The filter in the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere is made from a very fine mesh that has a slightly curved shape at the sides which can sometimes trap coffee grounds in the gap that runs all the way around the metal base and the mesh base.
This is not too much of a problem when using the coffee maker as when it is in use it traps everything in its path and leaves no nasty particles in my coffee. The only time that the trapped grounds are an issue is when washing and rinsing the item as you do need to rinse them out by hand, regardless of whether you intend to wash the whole thing by hand or in the dishwasher. I don't mind this too much as I need to get rid of the rest of the coffee grounds in any case so I tend to give the whole thing a light rinse before it goes into the dishwasher which takes no time at all.
~Making a nice black coffee~
Obviously the quality of the coffee used in the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere does effect the final result you get, although I have had some rather good results with this even when using some of the cheaper coffees such as the Sainsburys own label ones. I have found that this will produce a really nice coffee with a good smooth flavour to it which is in part due to the fine mesh filter that the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere uses to keep my coffee drink smooth and coffee ground free. I also find that as per the makers instructions it is best to add a little warm water to the clean and empty glass housing prior to filling it with coffee and hot water as this will minimize the chances of the glass cracking or breaking when in use. This warm water is t be discarded before filling up the coffee maker for use.
I find that to make a whole jug of coffee I need to put a number of heaped teaspoons full of coffee into the base of the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere then fill it with hot water giving it a light stir before I put the lid on top of the whole thing. At that point once the lid is in place I like to leave the coffee to do its thing for a coupe of minutes before pressing down the plunger. Now there are a number of things that I have tried out with this to see which produces the nicest drink and my tried and tested methods have been as follows.
Method one has been to leave the coffee in the glass housing with the plunger up for longer than usual to see what effect that would have on the taste of my drink. When leaving the coffee to its own devices for up to 5 minutes then operating the plunger I found that the coffee produced was in the main too bitter and overly strong, so I scrapped that idea. Method two was to allow the coffee to remain unplunged for 2 minutes and then press the plunger half way down only and leave it like that while I drank my first cup. The result here was that the next cups of coffee were once again too strong with some bitterness.
The third and final method was to allow the coffee to remain in the glass part for 2 minutes then plunge the whole thing gently to the bottom of the container and this was what made the best coffee. I now use this easy method every time and it never fails to produce a good hot black coffee with plenty of flavour and no nasty bits floating around in it. I find that the plunger arm works nice and smoothly when I use it and the remains or grounds of the coffee are always kept away from the liquid, leaving a nice smooth particle free coffee drink.
Although the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere is meant to be an 8 cup item, I feel that these 8 cups must be the teeny tiny type and not the full sized mugs that we all drink our tea and coffee in these days. As such I have found that the right amount of mugs per filled coffee jug is actually closer to 3 1/2 to 4 medium sized mugs which in reality will give two people roughly 2 mugs of coffee each. As the size of the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere is not super large, I feel this is a good amount of coffee per use. In terms of rating the Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere I feel that for the money it offers a well made and attractive to look at product which is easy to use and as such I want to give it a 5 star product rating.