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Reviews

Cuisinart DCC-1200 Brew Central Coffee Maker Review

Item: Cuisinart DCC-1200 Brew Central Coffee Maker
Compiled By: AboutCoffees.com | Rating: 4 of 5 from  2860buyer reviews.

Cuisinart DCC-1200 Coffee Maker ReviewCuisinart tea kettles, coffee Makers and espresso machines are popular additions to households, combining innovative styling with practical features.  Introduced in 2007, the Brew Central Coffee Maker, model DC-1200 is a 12 cup coffeemaker with retro styling and high tech features. Since this machine was originally introduced in 2007,  Cuisinart’s engineering team has made a few modifications, presumably based on consumer feedback. The result of these modifications have made a great coffee maker even greater, garnering very high consumer reviews on most popular retail sites.

Size

The DCC-1200 will brew anywhere from 1 to 12 cups, and features a 1-4 cup brew setting specifically for smaller amounts. The 12 cup carafe provides comfortable, drip less pouring thanks to the ergonomically designed handle, and it is solidly constructed and fits securely in the recess of the coffee machine. The tight fitting lid on the carafe makes pouring precise, without leaking even when the pot is full.

Style And Color

This model is available in a range of colors, from Black Chrome to Metallic Pink. The brushed metal exterior is accentuated with retro style controls knobs and a aircraft type rocker switch that turns the DCC-1200 on or off. This model is available in 5 colors, such as Black Chrome, Black and Brushed Metal, Matte Black, Metallic Pink and Metallic Red. The Metallic Pink is an interesting choice for a coffee maker, but we found in most places it was a little more expensive.  The housing is solid and durable and reminds this writer of a simpler time, when classic styling and durable materials were order of the day.

The filter basket on the DCC-1200 holds a standard #4 paper filter or a permanent filter. The basket fits inside the housing instead of swinging out like so many models which prevents a possible  nonalignment between the water and the filter that will cause a mess.

Water is a crucial element of great coffee, so Cuisinart actually included a charcoal water filter into the DCC-1200. This filter ensures great tasting coffee by removing all of the impurities such as chlorine, calcium and other contaminates from ordinary tap water. Cuisinart recommends changing the water filter every 60 days or 60 uses or even more often if you have hard water. You can order from Cuisinart, or Amazon.com Look for DCC-RWF1 Replacement Coffeemaker Water Filters, you get 2 in a package which should last a couple of months.

This unit uses ground coffee, so you can enjoy your favorite beans if you have a grinder, or ground coffee. The grind of the coffee is critical for proper flavor extraction, because if the grind is too fine, over extraction and bitterness will result. Too fine a grind may also clog the filter. If the grind is too coarse, the water will pass through too quickly and the desired flavors will not be extracted. A medium fine grind is recommended.

A shower head type nozzle sprays the filtered water evenly over the grounds, which reduces temperature loss as water passes through grounds. The water actually runs up a track onto the underside of the lid and is sprinkled over the ground coffee like a rain shower.
Brew Features

Like most coffee machines, the DCC-1200 has a brew pause feature that stops flow of coffee from basket when carafe is removed. This way you can enjoy a cup of coffee before brewing has finished if you just cannot wait for your cup of joe.

If you usually make less than 5 cups, the 1-4 cup setting will double heat the water, so your small pot is as piping hot as a full pot would be. To use the feature, you simply press the 1-4 button on the control panel after turning the unit on.
Controls

The unit features an easy to program LCD digital clock, the primary purpose of which is to set time for automatic functions, but it also displays the time, of course.

An Auto On feature is used to program the start time of the brew cycle, and can be set for any time, day or night. An Auto Off feature can be used to shut off the coffeemaker at a preset time, anywhere from 0 to 4 hours.

A control Knob controls the temperature of the heater plate with three temperature settings high, medium and low, and this machine will beep five times when brewing is complete and again when the warming plate shuts off.

A Self Clean light begins to flash when calcium buildup is interfering with the functioning of your coffeemaker and the flavor of your coffee. To clean, you simply run a cycle of water and vinegar through the coffee maker, the processes of which is outlined in the owner’s manual.

Dimensions

The machine is fairly tall, so if your only counter space is only under the cabinets, you may not be able to lift the reservoir lid completely to refill the machine without pulling it out bit. Some have suggested that the DCC-1200 requires 7.5 inches wide by 8.5 inches depth of counter space with no overhead obstruction OR 21.5 inches overhead space to lift the lid completely. Without the top open, the coffee maker measures 7.5″w x 8.5″d x 14.25″h.

Accessories And Parts

The DCC-1200 include the 12 cup carafe with ergonomic handle, a gold tone filter and a set of DCC-RWF1 coffeemaker water filters. To order replacement filters or parts for the DCC-1200, visit Cusinart.com or Amazon.com for replacements such as the Cuisinart DCC-1200PRC 12-Cup Replacement Carafe-Black You can Google “replacement parts for DCC-1200″, and you will get plenty of results. A reordering form for parts and accessories is also included with the manual.

Pros

Some of the best features are also the simplest. The carafe has a spout that pours very nicely without spilling, which may not be high on your list for a coffee maker, however it is a nice feature to have, and appreciated. The instruction booklet is very good and very thorough and included an ordering form for replacement parts and filters.

The water filter is a great touch. I usually use water filtered through a Brita, but it does save having to empty my jug and refill it. If you don’t currently use filtered water to make coffee, you don’t know what your missing. With the included gold metal filter, this machine makes really smooth, tasty and hot cofee.

The Self Clean reminder is also a great feature, as I am sure many forget to descale thier coffee machines. Myself included.

Cons

The Brew Central Coffee Maker is not without it’s disadvantages. The water reservoir is located in the back on the right side. The opening is narrow, so it may prove a little challenging  to get all the water inside without spilling any, even with the pour spout on the carafe.

Another thing that could be seen as a disadvantage, although I would call it more of a caveat is that the charcol water filters require replacing. You may not mind though, after you taste the coffee. The filters are easy to replace and not very expensive.

Consumer Reviews

The average customer review on Amazon.com was Very positive overall, with 4 out of 5 stars from over 2,860 reviews on Amazon.

Price

Although the price point is a little higher than most coffee makers, the quality of construction, plus the built in water filter makes the DCC-1200 a good value, and you would probably not regret purchasing one for yourself.  Click the link below to check the current price of the item.

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