Hamilton Beach The Scoop Single-Serve Coffee Maker 49981 Review
This single-serve coffee maker (starting at $35; available on Amazon) is called The Scoop because users fill an included scoop with their choice of ground coffee rather than inserting a pod. Users measure out coffee grounds with the mesh scoop filter and place it directly in the coffee maker. The next step is to pour water into the reservoir from any 8- to 14-ounce mug, select regular or bold, and wait less than two and a half minutes for a cup to brew. A little platform turns upside down to raise smaller mugs closer to the pouring apparatus.
The bold setting should be used, says the manufacturer, when filling the scoop with premium coffee with a finer grind. The water will sit in the grounds somewhat longer, extracting more of the flavor. Even on this setting, though, some users say too much coffee is needed to make a strong cup. In reviews on Target.com, users say the coffee comes out plenty hot.
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Cleanup is a snap, according to reviews. There are just three moving parts: the scoop, the second filter, and the filter holder. All these rinse out very quickly under the tap, or can be put in the dishwasher. One user notes in a review on Walmart.com that it's important to clean this machine after every use, as the mesh on the steel filters can easily become clogged with coffee residue. Hamilton Beach suggests using a vinegar and water solution once a month, and then running a few cycles of plain water. Some reviewers warn that a fine grind of coffee sometimes leaves grounds in the cup after brewing. Adding a paper filter can fix this problem.
This is a simple machine that shuts off automatically after a cup is made. Its main advantage, as far as users are concerned, is that it takes ground coffee -- no pods -- so it's not wasteful or expensive. At just 8.67 inches high and 6.7 inches wide, The Scoop Single-Serve Coffee Maker also has a smaller-than-average footprint that its adherents appreciate. It comes with a one-year limited warranty.