As much as espresso makers and single-serve coffee makers seem to be all the rage at the moment, we can never replace a good drip coffee maker. It’s just always going to be easier to use and much more family-friendly. It’s tradition! An American rite of drip coffee that we don’t see dying down any time soon. With that in mind, we thought we should tell you all about one of our all-time favorite coffee makers: The Cuisinart Perfectemp DCC-3200.
Cuisinart is known for sorts of kitchen appliances, and they’ve started to be competitive in the coffee department since around 2010. Their most popular (and for a good reason) coffee maker has been this one. Let’s see what it’s all about.
First of all, we should talk about why the Cuisinart DCC-3200 coffee maker is called “perfectemp.” We’ve written some articles here about thermal carafes and mug heaters- the temperature at which your coffee is when you drink it is super important. Many companies don’t care about that. Cuisinart does.
When you have a coffee maker that brews several cups at once, what do you do so that it doesn’t get cold by the time you go and pour yourself your second or third cup? The old answer would be to brew one at a time, wasting precious time and having to turn the machine on and brew every single time.
With this coffee maker, however, you can choose to heat the carafe. But that’s not all: you’ve got three different temperature settings for the carafe. You’ve got a low set -which is more like warm- medium, and high. It is fantastic news for busy people who don’t have the time to brew several cups but need several cups a day. It is, in general, great not to have to worry about your coffee going cold.
Now let’s take a look at the setup of the Perfectemp.
Cuisinart DCC-3200 Setup
It’s got a silver casing, which gives it a traditional espresso-machine-like look. Classy. As for the inside, the water tank can hold water for up to 14 cups at a time, which is the maximum amount the glass carafe can take. It comes with a water filter which you only need to soak and rinse, and it’s ready to use.
By the way, the glass carafe is one of the most comfortable to use you’ll ever have the pleasure of using. It’s got a substantial grip, and it’s chunky by design, giving it a stable center of gravity. Pouring coffee is never messy with this carafe. It’s something that’s not directly related to the coffee itself, but it makes such a difference. Kudos to Cuisinart for thinking of the little things.
You can use either a standard mesh gold-tone filter, which is reusable or a paper filter. Both options come with your purchase, and it all depends on your personal choice. The fact that you get both options when buying the machine is a nice touch. Most coffee makers don’t come with both options.
Cuisinart DC-3200 Perfectemp Brewing
One of the good things about this one is that the buttons are super clear, making it easy to use. Even a kid could make coffee without making -too much- of a mess!
First, you got a small digital display that will display the time- all the time. It also has two handy buttons: the top switch, “tone,” which will help you deactivate the classic beep that drip coffee machines make when they’re done brewing. If you have pets or small children, this is truly a lifesaver.
Second, the button at the bottom, which says “carafe temp.” Hitting this button will change the carafe temperature from none to low, to medium, to high, to none. Easy peasy.
As for the brewing options, we’ve got four useful settings here. First, the classic “bold” set makes your coffee more substantial and bolder by increasing the amount of pre-infusion the coffee grounds undergo before starting the actual brewing process.
Then we have the Brew/off, which doubles as an auto-off. You hit this one to either start brewing or stop brewing if you decide you’ve had enough. You can then set the auto shut-off function so that the machine shuts itself off between 1 and 4 hours after you use it. It’s convenient.
The next button is a programmable auto-on or auto-brew feature. You can program the coffee maker to start brewing at a specific time and, as long as it has coffee grounds and water, it will brew some coffee without you having even to turn it on. You can program this up to 24 hours in advance. And since coffee is that very first thing we need in the morning -and given how much of a mess we could make if we’re too sleepy- this function is just about the best thing we could ask.
Adjustable size button feature:
Finally, we have an adjustable size button. Instead of brewing a whole carafe, we can choose to make either one, two, three, or four cups. Since it’s a drip machine, it’s not an option we will choose very frequently, but it is still perfect to have it when you don’t need a whole carafe.
All in all, we think brewing with this coffee maker is one of the most satisfying experiences we’ve had so far with a drip machine. And believe us, we’ve tried a lot of them! This one has an easy-to-navigate interface, and it’s also very well designed so that pouring grounds or water inside is never complicated—simple but efficient design.
Read more: How to Clean Cuisinart Coffee Maker
It’s inexpensive, easy to use, and good-looking.
You really couldn’t ask for a lot more. This machine will brew great coffee, and it’s packed with beneficial features, leaving out all the useless features that other coffee makers have to add things to the list. This coffee maker does the job well and does it at a fraction of the price.