When you’re entertaining for the holidays — especially if you have guests staying with you — you’re likely to consume and serve a lot of coffee. With so many great coffee makers on sale these days, you might be wondering which one to pick up ahead of the holiday guest rush in order to have exactly what you need for your home. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as picking up the newest model that’s on sale, but it’s also not complicated if you can identify your needs.
The number one thing to consider is how you’re going to be serving, and to how many people. If you have a group of over ten people, I suggest skipping single-serve machines altogether and going for a large-capacity brewer, such as the Black and Decker 12-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker. It’s rated 84/100 by Viewpoints reviewers and will be on sale at Wal-Mart for just $9.44 on Black Friday. If price is less of a concern, consider the Cuisinart Coffee Plus 12-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker with Hot Water System. Viewpoints reviewers give this a whopping 95/100 — which is reason enough to buy — but if you still need convincing, consider the fact that you can use it to provide hot water for any tea drinkers you may be hosting.
If you have a smaller group, however, you might be able to get away with a single-serve machine, especially if your guests have varied tastes.
For those who don’t do drip coffee, consider an Aerobie AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker, which helps you brew a perfect press quickly and easily every time. No wonder Viewpoints reviewers rank it higher than any French press, with a rating of 95/100. With the time this affordable gadget saves, you can produce a number of pressed cups of coffee faster than you’d imagine. If pour-over is more your style, consider the Chemex 8-Cup Classic Series Glass Coffeemaker, which offers quality without sacrificing volume or ease.
Caffeine addicts will likely require the jolt only espresso can provide, and for that you should look no further than the Nespresso CitiZ & Milk Espresso Machine D120. This sleek appliance is a favorite among Viewpoints reviewers, who give it a score of 98/100. At nearly $300 dollars, this is an investment, to be sure, but one that practically no one who’s tried it regrets.
By far the most popular single-serve option is the ever-popular Keurig Elite K45, which reviewers say produced flavorful coffee with the utmost of ease, earning the machine a rating of 94/100. It also doesn’t hurt that this coffee maker is available for under $100 at a number of retailers this Black Friday. The only thing better would be the upcoming Keurig BOLT Carafe Brewing System, which combines the ease of a single-serve with the convenience of brewing up to 64 ounces of coffee in about two minutes.
Now you know the most important things to figure out before shopping for a holiday entertaining-worthy coffee maker is how many people you’ll be serving and what their preferences are. Once you know that, it’s just a matter of braving the crowds and hitting the mall.