Product Type: Debenhams coffee machines
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Cream of the cafetieres
Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere
Member Name: historywitch
Debenhams Silver 8 Cup Cafetiere
Advantages: Elegant, well made, makes a very good cup of coffee.
Disadvantages: Doesn't survive being dropped on concrete
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)
Summary: A superb cafetiere
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