Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 Review
Pros: Pre-infusion, glass brewer, prominent spout, visible brewing
Cons: Expensive, delicate, requires Chemex filter
Compare to Similar Products
Chemex Ottomatic 2.0
|Price||$350 List||$330 List|
$329.95 at Amazon
$74.99 at Amazon
$39.99 at Amazon
$152.69 at Amazon
|Pros||Pre-infusion, glass brewer, prominent spout, visible brewing||Excellent brew quality, tons of features, cold brew setting||Easy cleaning, simple design, can use pods||Inexpensive, automatic brew feature||Easy to use, almost no cleaning, barcode reader, water tank swivels|
|Cons||Expensive, delicate, requires Chemex filter||Expensive, not for average consumer||Small water tank opening, fill to brew volume||Hard to fill, bulky||Pods are expensive, requires specific pod, lacks brew quality|
|Bottom Line||This elegantly designed glass coffee maker brews a clean, flavorful cup of coffee||For anyone who enjoys the fullest expression of flavor in their coffee||The combination of features and affordability make this a great budget option||The most affordable and straightforward coffee maker that consistently brews decent coffee||An excellent choice for those who appreciate an appliance with single-button simplicity|
|Rating Categories||Chemex Ottomatic 2.0||Breville Precision...||Hamilton Beach 2-Way||Black+Decker 12-Cup...||Nespresso VertuoPlus|
|Brew Quality (30%)|
|User Friendliness (35%)|
|Ease of Cleaning (20%)|
|Specs||Chemex Ottomatic 2.0||Breville Precision...||Hamilton Beach 2-Way||Black+Decker 12-Cup...||Nespresso VertuoPlus|
|Brew Temp (°F)||164.42||168.22||166.14||161.98||167.9|
|Preinfusion||Yes, not adjustable||Yes, adjustable||No||No||Yes, not adjustable|
|Filter Shape||Cone||Cone or flat||Flat||Flat||Pod|
|Energy Usage||1000 watts||1650 watts||950 watts||975 watts||1350 watts|
|Dimensions (H x W x D)||11.5" x 7.5" x 11"||12.4" x 6.7" x 15.7"||13.9" x 12.2" x 11.1"||8.2" x 12.2" x 11"||12.8" x 8.7" x 12.7"|
|Weight||6.8 lbs||13 lbs||5.0 lbs||4.75 lbs||10.1 lbs|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 is the only glass brewer in our review. The Chemex reduces contact with plastic during brewing producing a cleaner tasting cup of coffee. The high temperatures required to brew coffee can produce a flavor defect when water comes in contact with a plastic brew basket. For example, our coffee professionals experienced a plastic-tasting coffee with other brewers during our initial testing. This issue is eliminated with the Ottomatic 2.0.
The Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 is designed to match the quality of a manual pour-over. However, the water distribution did not come close to that of a manual brew. To brew using a Chemex, you need to purchase Chemex brand paper filters. Chemex designed the Ottomatic 2.0 with an automatic pre-infusion and a pre-programmed water distribution pattern to match the brew pattern of a manual brew. The Otto 2.0 also has an open design allowing you to watch the brewing process.
This brewer has a powerful showerhead that creates pronounced holes in the brew bed. Unfortunately, the force of the spray head does not match the precision of a gooseneck kettle. After further research, it is evident that the Chemex showerhead pulls coffee inward, away from the filter, likely over-extracting coffee at the center and under-extracting coffee at the sides.
This sleek pour-over brewer offers the simplicity of a one-button toggle. The toggle allows for brewing either hot or iced coffee, but the Ottomatic 2.0 is not programmable. Turn the switch to the hot brew mode, and the hotplate automatically activates. This hotplate is not activated during the iced coffee mode. Fill the hour-glass brewer to the wooden handle with ice, and the Ottomatic brews the proper ratio for iced coffee.
After brewing, replace the filter with the carafe lid, and your coffee will stay warm for up ninety minutes. The hot plate automatically shuts off, so you don't have to worry about turning it off.
The carafe measures 6-cups at the leather strap. It's important to know the full capacity of the water tank is 8-cups. If you brew with a full water tank, the provided 6-cup carafe will actually overflow. Sold separately is an 8-cup carafe that also works with the Ottomatic 2.0
The classic Chemex design comes standard with a wooden handle tied together with a leather strap, now offered in eight different colors. The only part of the brewer that wears down over time is the wooden handle. Replacement handles are very affordable on the Chemex website.
The spout of this hourglass brewer provides a smooth low flow. However, coffee can escape from the spout channel if you pour it from the brewer too quickly.
Ease of Cleaning
The hourglass carafe is easy to rinse, but the lower section is harder to access for cleanings — the neck area of the brewer is not big enough to reach into with a sponge. Instead, we found a bottle brush to be the most effective tool to clean the carafe. The wooden neck cuff of the carafe and the screen on the brewer's shower head are removable for cleaning. Although cleaning is straightforward with the Ottomatic 2.0, the brewer is fragile and requires extra care to not break it.
Descaling takes a fraction of the time of other brewers with the Ottomatic 2.0. The total descaling process time is only 24 minutes. There is no programmed cleaning cycle on this brewer. Instead, use the Chemex-specific descaling solution and run one brew cycle with the solution and two cycles with water to flush.
We brewed five back-to-back batches of coffee, measuring brew time and temperature consistency. The Ottomatic 2.0 excels in brew time consistency. The total brew time varied by only one second between five consecutive brew cycles.
The Ottomatic 2.0 is the most expensive brewer in our review and with subpar brewing capability. The quality we received from this brewer was not worth the hefty price. We recommend looking at other less expensive models with better water distribution.
The classic design of the Chemex pour-over meets modern convenience with the Ottomatic 2.0. Visibility into the brew bed allows you to see the entire brewing cycle. The Ottomatic can brew hot or iced coffee. Preprogrammed brew settings mimic the water distribution of a manual brew pour-over. Unfortunately, the showerhead on the Ottomatic 2.0 does not efficiently recreate the precision pour of a gooseneck kettle.
— Liz Nelson
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