Easy to use workhorse with very good coffee quality, but uses a lot of beans to get there.
Positive Product Points
Excellent build quality
Very good user interface
Very good coffee quality
Very good usability
Negative Product Points
Flat basket filter seems to use much more coffee than a cone filter for the same amount of coffee
Stainless steel carafe hard to clean and get the last drops of coffee out.
Filter basket seems hard to clean
After 10 years, two LCD display panels, and three carafes, I finally gave up on my Capresso Coffee Team. Having an integral burr grinder was a make or break feature for whatever came machine came next so the choices were limited. Being very impressed by my Breville juicer and toaster and noticing they had good reviews for their coffee makers, it was a no brainer a Breville should replace my workhorse Capresso.
The unbox experience was impressive. Plenty of packing meant wherever this was shipped from, the YouBrew was going to survive the trip to my kitchen. The stainless steel finish is very high quality and seemingly easy to clean. It is imposing on my counter and much larger than the machine it replaced. Not a lot of fiddly bits, and once I figured out how they all went together, I filled up the tank to run water through it. Surprise! Not only did the LCD show the water level in the tank, and the number of cups that could be made, but there was a floating "tank full" indicator where you put the water in. Very cool.
Once I started with the first load of coffee I made 6 cups (half a carafe) and worked on the strength. I was shocked at how much coffee it used to make six cups. The coffee was very good and needed a bit of dialing in to get the flavor right (but totally easy to do). After owning the YouBrew for a few months and quickly running through a lot of expensive (but really good) coffee, I've decided to move to less expensive coffee than my boutique roasts for my daily cuppa.
Because of the design of the stainless steel carafe, there are a few ounces of coffee left that won't pour out. That design also means you need to use a long handled brush to clean the carafe. However, the carafe will keep two cups of coffee warm for hours.
The cleaning experience leaves a little to be desired. Because the freshly ground coffee flows through the filter holder, it needs to be rinsed out but my feeling is that when it needs to be thoroughly cleaned, I'll need a toothbrush. Also, with a cone filter, the coffee grinds drain quickly and it's neater to dispose of the grinds. In the YouBrew's flat basket, I've found if you remove the basket and let the grinds drain in the sink for a while, it's much neater to knock the grinds into the compost bin.
A big hint for US purchasers - Breville appliances are eligible for the 20% discount coupon at Bed Bath and Beyond. At my local retailer, Sur La Table, I asked if they would match the 20% discount and they said yes. Ask your retailer and if they won't, head to Bed, Bath and Beyond.