I have been waiting for this moment for weeks! My iCoffee Opus just arrived for review and I am so excited! I promptly took it out of the box and set it up. I even made a cup of coffee before reading the instructions, because that’s how I roll. Luckily, I didn’t really need any instructions, it was very simple to operate.
Unlike the Keurig machine I had previously, this has no timer or heat settings. I also don’t have to go through 5 different menu screens to change the size of the cup that gets brewed, so that’s a plus. Many of you might remember that I got rid of my Keurig and brought in a one cup French Press to save on electricity. I admit, I was missing the convenience and was absolutely thrilled to get my chance to review this new machine.
There seems to be many differences between the iCoffee Opus, the Keurig and the French Press. Each of them has their little perk that the other doesn’t have, and I will go through my findings on them.
The winner here is a clear cut iCoffee Opus! This is because of the lack of complicated settings that a Keurig has, and the whole waiting for water to boil that a French Press has. I like that I can turn the dial based on the size of my cup, and get the perfect size a few seconds later. Although it does seem to take a few seconds longer than the Keurig, it is hardly noticeable.
I honestly have to give the French Press the taste category. I grind beans fresh in my kitchen, pour them into the press and then pour boiling hot water over the grind, press and wait. The taste that comes from the waiting is astounding! There is no coffee pot in the world that can match that flavor. Keurig and iCoffee are tied here, however, since the Keurig machine that I had would allow me to adjust my temperature, I may have to give it to them. The hotter the brew, the more robust the flavor.
iCoffee wins this category. Keurig had some nice lines going for it, but I have a strange sort of OCD that didn’t like that the lines were not even on either side of the machine. I am not sure how to really explain it more than that, but it always felt a little “off”. While I adore my purple French Press, I wish I was warned that the plastic in the lid would stain with the oils from the coffee . Due to that issue, it is an off brown purple now, and I don’t much like that.
Clearly, the French Press is the winner on this one. Not only is the device cheap, but there are no pods to buy. Ground coffee and beans are much cheaper than individual cups, but also garbage/recycling removal costs money and I can simply throw the grounds from the press into my compost pile.
Another winner for the press, for the same reasons as above. However, when I compare just the Keurig and the iCoffee, the iCoffee wins. They send one of their reusable cups in with the machine, whereas you have to buy the one for the Keurig separately, and the one I bought that was Keurig licensed didn’t even fit in their machine, so it was useless and I had to buy a knock off to even get it to work.
iCoffee states that the cup they send is the only one that will work in their machine, due to the placement of their needle, however, I don’t find this to be the case. I checked out the differences in the needles between the Keurig and the iCoffee and they are on opposite sides of the cup holder, which would make it understandable that there would be a difference in the reusable cups. This is, until you look closer at the holders and realize that the arrow for the Keurig is on the opposite side as the one for the iCoffee, but the tabs are in the same locations when you turn one of them around. Basically, the only difference in them is that the printed/etched arrow is different. Simply turn your reusable cup around if needed, and it will work just fine.
Overall, with disregard to the Keurig and the French Press, I am quite happy with the iCoffee Opus. It gives a hot (not steaming hot, but at least not just warm) cup of coffee in under a minute and has an “Energy Saver” button to help offset some electricity that is being used when the machine itself it not.
If you look closely, you can see the “Fill Line” inside of the tank. This picture was taken after one cup of coffee went through the system at their 8.0oz interval. It seems like a lot more than 8 ounces went through, but it is possible that it took another few ounces into the chamber for next use.
I use fairly small mugs, and I thought the 8 ounces would be enough to fill it, but I only got about 2/3rds of a mug full with that size. A simple turn of a dial to 8.5 or 9 ounces and my next cup is nice and full. Now, I know the samplers that came with the machine are supposed to get you to like something new, but that was not the case for me. They were far too strong for my liking, and I enjoy a nice bold cup of java. That’s all fine and well though, I have plenty of my own coffee I plan to use with the machine.
Opus iCoffee is a Remington Designs LLC machine. Remington has had a successful nationwide launch in all 1,000+ Bed Bath & Beyond stores. They are also in Kohl’s and eight other major retailers.
Their new brewing system, SpinBrew technology features a spinning needle with jets that spins, streams and stirs the coffee inside all k-cups and all k-compatible cups during brewing. Their SpinBrew spinning needle technology brews coffee that is dramatically smoother with a more pleasant aftertaste and aroma than Keurig’s stationary needle brewing method. This was verified by The Ohio State University’s Sensory Science Group during recent sensory tests.
Now, the info above was taken directly from the info packet that came with my machine. The issue I have is that, I do not notice a better aftertaste. I did notice a bit of a gritty texture, and not much smoother than the Keurig. I can overlook those things though, because I adore my coffee, and aftertaste isn’t why I drink it.
I thought it was awesome to learn that Consumer Reports highlighted their 12 cup brewer with the SteamBrew technology, in 4 separate issues within the last 12 months. However, I do own their 12 cup brewer with SteamBrew technology and very much hated it. Sadly, I could not find a single thing that I liked about that brewer. I am very happy to report that the Opus iCoffee is MUCH different in my eyes, and I am happy with it.
They were selected by Popular Science for its “Best of What’s New”, 2014 edition, and were the only kitchen appliance to be selected. That’s quite impressive.
The price is comparable to other single serve machines with similar specs, at $139.99.