Coffee is my drug of choice, and it has been for longer than it hasn’t. It makes my brain come alive every morning, and soon thereafter, my body usually catches up. This is why, as previously mentioned, there’s so many coffee making contraptions in my kitchen, and it is also why I am well suited to review the Keurig K45 Elite Brewing System.
Comments regarding the K45 introductory article from various social networks were surprisingly negative, citing that K-cup machines make mediocre coffee, that making coffee in general isn’t particularly challenging, and, though convenient, they ultimately make a rather expensive cup of home brewed coffee. Needless to say, those comments helped shape this review. The following is what I discovered over the past month of living with the K45.
The machine is very easy to assemble and set up, and once it is set up, it is very easy to use. Since the K45 came with a 12 pod variety pack of coffee and tea, it was almost immediately apparent that the quality of the coffee that ends up in the cup is heavily dependent on what company filled the pod and with what. Since that 12 pack was consumed within the first two days of this test, seven other 12 packs have been purchased, their contents brewed, and that brewed coffee consumed, and I can tell you definitively that it is the coffee supplier and not the brewer that produces a mediocre cup of coffee.
Of all the coffee making devices in my house, the K45 is by far the simplest to use, but not by much. The 13 year old Bunn that sits right next to it is pretty darn simple to use, as well. Compared to a Moka Express or French press, the K45 is massively simpler to use, but it is not fair to compare these contrivances. The Moka Express and French press are used by people who want to control every aspect of the brewing process, while a K-cup machine is for people who can’t be bothered with such things.
If there is anything particularly unflattering to mention about K-cup brewers is the fact that the pods are quite expensive and wasteful. I have paid between $7.99 and $14.99 for 12 K-cup pods which works out to between $0.67 and $1.25 per 6-10 ounce cup. If you happen to be the kind of person who consumes one small cup of coffee per day, the price is not too bad. I, however, consume 40 ounces per day which works out to a coffee habit that drains $3.35-$6.25 from my pocket. This also means that I am sending five K-cups to the landfill in order for me to get my fix. Sorry Earth.
**Full disclosure: This coffeemaker was provided at no cost for editorial consideration.