Our Wilfa Precision Coffee Maker review takes a look at this famous coffee maker that could very well be a piece of art. It has a minimalist modern design and the way it brews coffee is practically mesmerizing.
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Drip coffee makers mimicking the style of pour over coffee is nothing new. Many big names in the industry, including OXO and Breville, do it. Breville BDC450 Precision Brewer even makes it possible to skip its filter assembly and replace it with a Hario V60 or Kalita Wave.
Wilfa Precision Coffee Maker overtly shows off its pour over coffee maker technique. The filter assembly here is essentially a pour over filter. Water flows through an overhead sprayer and reaches the filter assembly.
Wilfa Precision Automatic Coffee Maker At A Glance
- Excellent looks and design
- Makes a good cup of coffee
- Has settings for water flow control
- Easy to use
- Questionable longevity
- Uses a pump, rather than convection to move water to sprayhead, which can be troublesome
- Large footprint makes it unsuitable for smaller kitchens
Features That Make This Coffee Maker Stand Apart From The Rest
Looks That You Could Swoon For
At several points, you’ll see the Wilfa Precision Automatic Coffee Maker be defined as a piece of art and technology. That’s because it has great looks. Water disappears from the reservoir and shows up at the showerhead.
In a way, the reservoir and showerhead form two seemingly unconnected towers. Water flows through the base of the machine to show up at the showerhead. It isn’t something magical, but as design goes, it is easy on the eyes.
The minimalist looks do this coffee maker a favor. It takes on a more nuanced approach and is different than most other coffee makers on the market. That’s perhaps its biggest strength. Yes, it makes a good cup of coffee too (more on that in a bit) but what really draws attention to this coffee maker are its looks.
The showerhead sits a belt-like structure – perhaps it’s better to call it a gate-style structure. It’s pretty sleek and novel and has a great overall look. There are two notches or slits near the top of this “gate”. These provide a place for the filter assembly to hook.
Going simply by looks, this part too seems great. Practically, they seem a bit flimsy. There don’t seem to be any complaints of them coming apart, But I can’t bring myself to trust them.
Dissecting The Overall Design And Construction Quality
For all practical purposes, this is a 5-cup coffee maker. Well, maybe four and three quarters. That’s about all its water reservoir will take. Water flows down from the reservoir into the base. Here, it’s heated by a heater coil, after which the pump sends it up to the showerhead. This is a problem.
Most coffee makers use convection currents and similar systems to move hot water. The addition of a pump adds a point of failure for this coffee maker. And it does fail. Most of the complaints about this coffee maker going bust are related to the pump giving out.
If your coffee maker is under warranty, the company will send you a pump to replace the faulty one for free. For those who face this problem, the pump may give out within weeks or months. That makes getting an extended warranty important.
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The company has been quite upstanding in filling out the warranty problems. However, it’s still a hassle and shouldn’t have been a problem in the first place.
In a way, this is the price you pay for the cool looks of your coffee maker. It would seem worth it, but the novelty wears off real quick and you’re left with a coffee maker that can’t make coffee.
Minus this “little” big problem, the build is fairly solid and dependable. There are points where this machine seems a bit weak, but it’s very sturdy and you are unlikely to witness any breakage.
Product Dimensions And Ergonomics
Product dimensions for the Wilfa Precision Coffee Maker are 14.25 x 8.50 x 14.00 inches. Now that’s a lot of counter space to sacrifice for a five cup coffee maker. It isn’t tall, but it takes a big chunk in length and width.
The setup is aesthetically pleasurable, no doubt, but all that empty space can also stick out like a sore thumb. You keep noticing it and wonder if they could have used it better. To make its hunger of space more vicious, you find the power switch is located at the side.
Well, now you have to sacrifice more space on the side to have room to manage the coffee maker. There’s plenty of empty space at the front and middle, we could have the switch there. But that isn’t the objective because it would spoil the aesthetics.
I’ve said it a few times, but it’s worth repeating once more. The most important characteristic of this machine is aesthetics. Don’t be surprised if that comes by sacrificing some ease of use.
Availability And Purchase Options
Wilfa Precision Coffee Maker has been discontinued by the manufacturer. As you’ve noticed, there are some problems with the functioning of this machine. Add the hefty price tag and the coffee maker has a questionable value for money. There’s only so far you can go based on looks alone.
You can still get this coffee maker from some stores and websites. If you do, make sure you have some plan for repairs to keep it working!
Action! How Well Does The Coffee Maker Perform?
Quality Of The Coffee And Brew
One thing this coffee maker does absolutely right is the way it brews coffee. It is delicious, flavorful, and exactly how coffee is supposed to be. Wilfa Precision doesn’t just pretend to take over the role of brewing pour over coffee.
It makes it happen. The tedious manual struggle of pouring coffee gets fully automated and you can enjoy a great cuppa without having to strain your arm. Sign me up!
You can place the double-walled filter basket and the carafe under the showerhead. Then let it roll. Users can finetune coffee extraction by controlling the water flow from the filter basket. A flow control ring is attached to the basket and can be moved about to your preferred flow rate. The machine uses #4 cone filters.
Water Temperature And Coffee Extraction
The temperature for optimal extraction of coffee is 200°F ± 5°. Wilfa claims to work in the range of 197º-205ºF temperature. That puts it right in the company of SCAA certified coffee makers.
This one is not an SCAA certified coffee maker. And I don’t mean to imply that the lack of certification means it can’t brew at the right temperature.
It does manage to hit the right temperature, but it struggles along the way. Even though the optimum temperature isn’t always available, the quality of coffee is unquestionable.
Wilfa claims that this coffee maker represents the modern drip coffee Nordic coffee tradition. It is a tall claim, but the coffee brewed indeed does honor to its origins. The coffee brewed is worth praise.
Brewing Coffee Without The Filter Basket
Wilfa Precision coffee maker’s claim to fame is its ability to automate the pour over process. It does that with the filter basket, sure, but some flexibility would be welcome.
Thankfully, that flexibility is present. You can brew pour over coffee without using the coffee maker’s included filter basket.
In such a scenario, a pour over coffee maker like Chemex is placed under the showerhead. Overall, the functioning remains unaffected and you get a great cup of coffee brewed by the Chemex.
I dare say the Chemex works better than the filter basket on the Wilfa Precision. The reason is probably down to the use of better filters by Chemex. As it stands, the coffee brewed in a Chemex is sharper and cleaner than that brewed by the default configuration.
The Bottom Line On The Wilfa Automatic Coffee Maker
This coffee maker has its faults, but it also shines through at several points. Its biggest strengths are its appearance and the ability to brew a wonderful cup of coffee.
That should make it worth recommending. However, as we see in this Wilfa Precision Coffee Maker review, its shortcomings aren’t to be overlooked.
The coffee maker is expensive and tends to go out of commission pretty soon. An expensive coffee maker like this can be reasonably expected to last a long time. The value for money proposition for this coffee maker remains questionable.