Editor’s Note: This product has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it has been discontinued. You can still read our original review below, but Top Ten Reviews is no longer updating this product’s information.
The Zojirushi Fresh Brew EC-BD15BA is a drip coffee maker that brews into a stainless steel thermal carafe, unlike coffee makers that brew into a glass carafe that sits on a hot plate. This results in good coffee, though the machine itself lacks convenience features such as a water filter, a permanent grounds filter and strength settings.
In its quest to brew a hot pot of coffee that maintains the right temperature, the Zojirushi goes a step beyond the best coffee makers by brewing into the thermal carafe. It brews through an insulated basket so that the brewing process does not compromise temperature. This design helps it avoid the burnt taste that can result from glass carafes on top of warming plates.
Along with this convenient feature, the Zojirushi includes a brew-pause feature, which lets you sneak a cup while the coffee is brewing. This is sometimes a necessity, especially in the mornings, when you don't want to wait.
Like a number of the best coffee machines, this comes with a programmable clock so you can set the device to make your coffee at any time you want. You can program the device the night before and wake up to delicious and hot coffee each morning. If you are hosting a dinner party, you can set the clock and have a full pot of fresh coffee ready right when your guests are ready for a tasty after-dinner cup to go with dessert.
Unlike the best drip coffee makers, you do not get coffee strength settings or a water filter, which would be useful. You also do not get the choice between using a permanent filter or a paper filter; this is designed for paper filters only.
This coffee maker has an attractive, minimalistic design. The Zojirushi Corporation provides customer service by telephone and email, and you get a user manual with this device. You only get a one-year warranty for this coffee maker.
The Zojirushi Fresh Brew is not among the top-rated coffee makers in our lineup because it lacks some design capabilities, as well as some convenience and safety functions. However, you can still get a tasty pot of coffee from this device, and with its thermal pot, you don't have to worry about it burning.