As regular readers will know, I don’t do many product reviews on this blog.
Partly, it’s because I’m perennially short on time. I only have time to write a few blog posts and if I’m going to write about something that’s not about ME, then it’d better be something I think I’ll really love.
But I almost bit their hands off when the people at Tassimo offered me a coffee machine to review.
I’m a big fan of coffee. I’m quite lazy in the kitchen. And since I live with just Flea (who doesn’t drink coffee) making a whole pot of coffee is impractical.
So a Tassimo should be perfect for my morning cup of coffee.
We were sent a Tassimo TAS2002GB model, which retails for around £90. When you unpack the machine, you have to feed water through the tank five times to clean it. Once set up, the Tassimo is simple enough to use. You buy a box of coffee pods, which are inserted into the machine with a bar-code facing up. The machine reads the barcode, and delivers the right amount of water, at the right temperature, for perfect coffee, every time.
The machine is nice and compact with relatively few buttons (simplicity is good, in our world). And £90 is a pretty good price for a coffee machine.
The pods cost around £4 for 16, making them considerably cheaper than buying your brew at Starbucks or Caffe Nero.
But was the Tassimo for us?
Honestly, I found the machine fiddly and slow to set up (it took almost a full day to fully flush our machine the recommended five times before we could use it).
Once it was set up though, it’s very simple to use – I reckon it took around 90 seconds to make a cup of coffee.
And the coffee itself is okay. Not amazing, but not dreadful. You can’t adjust the strength particularly with pre-packaged coffee but you can shut off the coffee feed early for a weaker brew, which is simple enough.
Having said that, there are a couple of reasons why the Tassimo isn’t for us.
First up is the waste. I never realised that when you make a cup of coffee in a Tassimo, the coffee grounds are encased in a rigid plastic disc about twice the size of a teabag. And that disc goes straight in the bin. If you make two cups of coffee, twice a day, that’s 28 discs in the rubbish every week. It would be 56 if you opt for some of the latte or cappuccino discs, since the milk for those drinks comes in an entirely separate pod.
Speaking of milk discs, I’m not sure whose idea it was to make the milk for Tassimo drinks sweetened – but they deserve to have VERY bad things said about them. For anyone who drinks their coffee without sugar, it instantly renders anything made in the Tassimo undrinkable. So people like me end up making coffee in the Tassimo then adding regular cold milk. Hmm. I had a quick look on the Tesco website and can’t see any drinks with unsweetened milk as an option – although I assume it has to be available somewhere.
So, what’s the verdict? While it’s not for us, I think the Tassimo could be a good option if you occasionally make one or two coffees at a time (if you were making four, the first one would be cold by the time the fourth is ready, I suspect) and if you drink sweetened drinks, or black coffee. I know people who rave about the taste of the coffee from the Tassimo, so while it might not be to my personal taste, it could be perfect for you.
For us, though, I’d rather revert to our regular espresso machine, which takes regular ground coffee, or ESE pods, which offer the same convenience as the Tassimo but come in paper bags that can easily be composted. I also like having a milk frother so I can froth my own milk, without adding sugar, thanks all the same.
Have you tried a Tassimo? What did you think?