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Philips Coffee Brewers - All - Scott Burton's Review
Posted: June 10, 2003, 12:27pm
review rating: 4.7
feedback: (1) comments | read | write
Philips Coffee Brewers - All
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Arrow The Philips Coffee Brewers - All has 5 Reviews
Arrow The Philips Coffee Brewers - All has been rated 8.76 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since February 23, 2002.
Arrow Philips Coffee Brewers - All reviews have been viewed 44,862 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Eddie Dove 7.50
J Gabel 5.57
Linda Langille 5.00
Scott Burton 4.66
Jason Johnston 3.50

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 9.0
Product Reviewed: HD7610
Manufacturer: Philips Quality: 9
Average Price: Varies Usability: 8
Price Paid: $35.00 Cost vs. Value 10
Where Bought: Target Aesthetics 9
Owned for: 1 year Overall 9
Writer's Expertise: Intermediate Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: Numerous Krups drip pots
Bottom Line: Best auto-drip I've ever had
Positive Product Points

Delicious brew, timed operation. Heating plate keeps coffee from scorching as quickly as typical autos. "Flavor Selector" modifies drip rate.

Negative Product Points

Flimsy flip-top, destined for failure. Cone filter may be too small for large double-strength brews. A future revision should have more drip rate selections to help dial-in the right flavor.

Detailed Commentary

Absolutely the best automatic drip pot I've ever owned. Subtle notes come through clearly, which is a new experience for me with drip pots.

I'd love a few extra kitchens; one for prep work, another stuffed with ranges, ovens, deep fryer. I'd love a garde manger and a walk in, and a pasta kitchen next to a pastry kitchen. I'd love an excuse to tear out a wall to install a 30-gallon bread kneader. By that token, it sure would be nice to dedicate a room to vac pots, press pots, roasters, grinders and Silvia.

But I don't have that room just yet. So my collection of French drip, Moka, press pots and Ibriks will have to stay packed away while I bang out coffee in the Philips HD 7610.

Automatic drip pots tend to break severely under my stewardship but this is one I'd seek out again when it breaks. It has a straightforward timer, automatic timeout (your coffee is charcoal water at this point, but at least you didn't burn the house down!), and it makes a solid cup of coffee.

Open the flip-top (another review pointed out the downside to this design, and I fully agree) it's obvious why it makes great drip coffee: the Philips uses a drip-ring design to soak the filter basket. Drip-rings use multiple holes (like an espresso grouphead) to ensure that the grounds are evenly, thouroghly soaked, eliminating the dry spots that lead to uneven extraction. The sign of a good drip operation is even, raucous fulminating at the beginning of extraction, and the Philips is a fulminating mess. More on that later.

A key feature is the "Flavor Selector" (yes, I'd like to select Flavor please). A four-position switch ("Gold" and "Mocha" in two pot sizes) adjusts the flow rate of water into the filter basket. The "Gold" setting is what you use when your Mom comes over; it's a flavorful version of the hog swill they grew up drinking. "Mocha" restricts the drip for longer extraction. The pot size portion of the selector prevents the filter basket from being flooded during long extractions.

That last point balances the only real negative; you really have to watch the flow for slower drips, making sure the basket isn't flooded and leaking over the edge of your filter (I prefer paper filters - the gold filter may be tall enough). You'll end up with underextracted elements mixed in with the brew.

It's easy to compensate: first, brew only two volumes, four-cup or full-pot; second, slightly modify grind to adjust for volumes inbetween. It's a little like espresso in that regard.

The built-in charcoal filter is nice, but not neccesary if you generally use filtered water. I haven't tried to find refills, and probably won't.

With respect to raucous, fulminating behavior; it sure makes great coffee, but what a mess! As gasses are being released at the first sight of hot water, the filter basket and shower head come in contact with the expanding blob of coffee grounds. Hey, doesn't bother me, but the neat-freak in your life may think otherwise. I know mine does.

Buying Experience

Target. You get what you want, stand in line an hour, pay throught the nose. Routine at this point.

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review rating: 4.7
Posted: June 10, 2003, 12:27pm
feedback: (1) comments | read | write
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