I have yet, with the exception of Nespresso (which are wasteful IMO), to come across an intuitive coffee machine. They’re noisey, with a shitload of buttons and very difficult to keep clean. I don’t care about the professional grade stuff, but even basic consumer coffee makers are very hard to understand in their immense complexity.
I would happily pay $1000 for one with two rotary knobs, one for flavor intensity, another for quantity and a big red button with “Fucking Coffee Please” written on it even if it made shit coffee, just to make a statement.
I’ve never cared for fancy stuff, but I do appreciate quality of whatever I put down my throat. I recently got a used DeLonghi from a family member. It was free and makes a great cup. But Holy Jesus the stuff and thingamajigs and featuers it has. Makes no sense. And the shitty UI doesn’t help. It took me, literally 30 mins to get the thing to make my first cup of coffee and it was enough tribulation for a lifetime. Yesterday I took on the task of cleaning it properly for the first time, and there were compartments within compartments behind lids behind covers. It’s like a whole other dimension in there! And this goes for, not only this, but every other coffee machine out there.
I know it’s a terrible 1st world problem to whine about, but I do find the subpar design of these things very baffling.
If you are truly concerned about the 2 swimming pools of waste they create annually, it really doesn’t take much effort open the foil top, compost the grounds and throw the remaining aluminum into your recycle bin.
This is kind of another topic, but here’s my .02.
You’re right, it’s probably not the end of the world. Neither are disposable cups or plastic bags. But I think fundamentally the idea of separate capsules, while convenient, is wasteful and doesn’t inspire much of a recycling attitude. People buy these machines because they are indolent and desire convenience. I agree it’s not a big deal to recycle them as you describe, but most will find it too much of an inconvenience and they will not bother.
From a convenience point of view, Nespresso machines are way superior than traditional machines. But regardless of my reasoning, until they figure out a way to make the whole thing biodegradable, it’s still pretty great I can choose not to buy one.
A Mr. Coffee from the 80’s is what I use. It only has 1 switch. It makes great coffee. Always grind right before you brew, and make sure you get a model that doesn’t brew too fast otherwise you are just wasting your coffee. Agreed that most of the coffee machines on the market now are shit.
But as long as we are there, can’t we use your argument to eliminate coffee drinking in its entirety? What about the waste to make a coffee machine that has a limited lifetime of 5-20 years? What about the waste of shipping a commodity across the globe? What about the waste of land to grow a luxury?
This is still my favourite coffee maker… and possibly one of my favourite things in our kitchen. It’s super easy to use, simple to clean, easy to replace seals every 6 months or so, never fails, doesn’t confuse. I love it! (not quite a coffee machine… but hey!)
We use it every morning, although I did just learn that ours is a 6 cup coffee maker, so I’ve been starting the day with a triple shot… which would explain why Starbucks never seems to live up to freshly ground Stumptown beans!
We just replaced our Bodum Coffee Bean Grinder with a Kitchen Aid one… I wouldn’t recommend it, would have stuck with the Bodum if we hadn’t moved from the UK to the US meaning it wouldn’t work with the new voltage!
Get a Moccamaster, and you will never have to complain about coffee ever again. It won’t even cost $1000, you will have $600 left over to spend on a burr grinder and gourmet roasted beans.
As for the Moka makers…there are certain points of view that suggest having aluminum directly in contact with heat, and then consuming those products, can lead to dementia. There’s no conclusive science on this however.
I have been listening to the hand-wringing of industrial designers for 30 years.
The “moral dilemma” of making stuff.
Yet in that 30 years not a single designer has defined sustainable or waste in a credible way. Should I enjoy a Nespresso or should I live like the average Bangladeshy? I’m happy to listen to evidence, but all I get is unsubstantiated platitudes.
Apparently adding milk to your coffee is worse than making a Nespresso.
If you go down the road of calculating our your CO2 footprint + hazardous materials + landfill, you will not be able to make even the simplest decision. Sadly we need an organization with a global view of pollution to apply good decisions.
I dislike the concept of capsules. It makes a lot of sense for companies to push the gillette model of disposable proprietry consumables, and some of these capsules taste good, but i just plain refuse to give in…
I have a stovetop bialetti for emergencies but otherwise I use a La Pavoni and a Gaggia grinder. It’s not for everyone but i find the ritual a bit zen-like.
The OP complained about too many functions and dials…well these guys are minimalist industrial machines, put the coffee in bring down the lever, although there is some learning to do with technique if you want top notch coffee.Also you can service them yourself and they are built like a tank.