7 Coffee Makers so good, the SCAA certified them
The fact that you are looking for a ‘Specialty Coffee Association of America’ certified coffee maker tells us two things: you take your morning brew seriously and you only want the best of the best. We like you!
Read our guide below to understand exactly what this certification means (including the ‘golden cup standard’) and once you’ve done that, you are good to dive into the reviews and you’ll be able to choose the one best suited for your needs.
Technivorm Moccamaster KBT-741
A high-quality modern classic that makes the best cup of coffee. With its unique copper heating system and metallic showerhead, it does an impeccable job at keeping the temperature consistent throughout the whole brew. It’s an investment, but it’s bound to last you for years, 5 of which are covered by the warranty. Nice one.
How to choose a coffee maker that’s SCAA certified…
The fact that there are so many different models out there can make it very hard to choose the drip coffee maker that is most suited for you. We have a few favorite drip coffee makers, but in this list we’ve only included reviews of what we believe to be the best SCAA certified coffee brewers for different types of consumers.
The Specialty Coffee Association of America has very strict requirements, and only a premium selection of coffee machines have achieved this certification so far. (1)
All SCA Certified Brewers have met these requirements, which are based on proper water temperature, brewing time, and ability to brew within the SCA Golden Cup recommendations.
These rigorous requirements make this premium certification very prestigious, meaning that you don’t have to worry about quality when you choose from the range of SCAA approved coffee makers: all the ones that we’ve included are bound to give you a damn fine cup of coffee.
Let’s look at what you do have to consider instead.
Depending on the time that you allow yourself to have breakfast in the morning (and on your patience), you might want to consider the brew time of your next coffee brewer before buying it. The average of these models is 8 minutes, with some taking 10-12 and some others only 4 minutes.
This video by Americas Test Kitchen talks about the importance of brew time in relation to the Moccamaster:
Do you usually make coffee only for yourself? Or do you prefer larger pots for family and friends? Make sure you pick a machine that makes enough coffee to suit your caffeine needs. While 8 cup models are common, some of these SCA certified coffee machines can brew larger quantities (10 or even 12 cups).
But there’s no point in investing in such a large coffee maker if you only need a large mug for yourself. On the other hand, if you like having the choice, some models give you the option to choose between a single cup, half a pot or a full pot, without compromising on extraction quality.
Settings and Features: what matters to you?
Ask yourself: what do you expect from your coffee maker? (Other than “coffee”… duh.)
Some drip coffee makers offer more options than others when it comes to temperature and pre infusion settings, allowing you more control over the brewing parameters. While we think these are great features, the choice is incredibly subjective. There’s no reason to invest in a more precise and flexible coffee brewer, if you’re only interested in one-touch brewing.
If you want to be able to combine your dripper with your favorite manual pour over, there are certain models that allow you to do so. We have even included a coffee dripper for those who like to mix up their black morning brew with cappuccinos and lattes.
And if you are used to waking up to the smell of coffee, then make sure that you pick a coffee maker with programmable features.
Thermal or glass carafe.
The carafe plays a huge part in the final result: no matter how good the coffee is, you are not going to enjoy it as much if it cools down within a few minutes.
SCAA certification requires the carafe to keep the temperature for at least 30 minutes, but most of them keep it for a couple of hours.
The main thing to consider when it comes to carafes is the material: thermal or glass carafe?
Glass carafes, which are generally cheaper, do a better job at keeping the coffee piping hot for the first few minutes. However, if the hot plate that keeps them warm stays in contact with the carafe for too long, it will heat up and “stew” the coffee, resulting in a bitter flavor (as well as wasting energy). We believe they are a better option only if you usually drink your coffee soon after brewing it.
A thermal carafe is made of stainless steel and is the best option if you want to take your time drinking your coffee. It can keep your coffee hot without compromising flavor. If you’re slow drinker, read our guide to the best thermal coffee makers here.
Let’s be realistic: you might fall in love with the look of a particular coffee brewer, but if it doesn’t fit on your kitchen counter and underneath your cupboards… then it might be a bit of a pickle. Make sure you check the measurements (especially the height) before making your final choice.
The 7 Best SCAA Coffee Makers in 2020
Now that you know what to look for in a coffee machine, you are now equipped to pick out the perfect one for you.
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|Breville Precision Brewer|
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|Cuisinart Pour Over Coffee Brewer|
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|OXO Barista Brain|
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|Behmor Brazen Plus|
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|Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker|
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Dimensions: 12.4” x 6.8” x 12.2”
- Capacity: 8 cups
- Time: 6 minutes
- Materials: Stainless steel & BPA-free plastic
The Bonavita BV1900TS 8 cup coffee maker is a sleek, minimalistic, one touch brewer without bells and whistles. It’s the most affordable amongst the SCAA-certified coffee machines, making it the best choice if you don’t have much of a budget but do not wish to compromise on the quality of your morning brew (why should you?!).
The Bonavita BV1900TS comes with a showerhead-style top that allows for an even extraction and a pre infusion mode that lets the coffee grounds bloom (similarly to manual poor overs) before completing the brew. This Bonavita coffee maker very quick, allowing you to brew 8 cups in only 6 minutes, and the high quality stainless steel carafe keeps your coffee hot for up to 2 hours.
As for practicality, the always dreaded cleaning process won’t be a problem: all of this Bonavita coffee maker’s BPA-free plastic parts are dishwasher safe. Bear in mind that the BV1900TS is not programmable. If you want that functionality, look at the Bonavita BV1900TD instead.
Overall, the Bonavita BV1900TS is an excellent value for money drip coffee machine that won’t take up too much space on your counter, and will brew high-quality coffee that meets SCAA’s Golden Cup standards.
Read our Bonavita BV1900TS review here.
It’s in the name: the precision of the PID water temperature control and the settings to determine water-flow and pre infusion time allow you to basically brew craft filter coffee automatically. However, if you don’t want to abandon your French press or Kalita Wave, you can combine this automatic dripper with your favorite pour-over device thanks to a handy adaptor.
The Breville Precision Brewer has 6 preset modes that include Gold (meeting the highest SCAA standards), Cold Brew and My Brew, which helps you replicate the cup of coffee that YOU enjoyed the most.
This 12-cup programmable coffeemaker is also ideal if you don’t want to give up the possibility to brew a single cup at the time whilst still being able to enjoy larger pots of coffee. The Breville Precision coffee brewer can even detect if you are using a single cup instead of a carafe, changing the settings automatically.
Brew larger quantities by placing a flat-bottomed paper filter in the basket…or insert the cone adaptor and a smaller paper filter to brew smaller quantities.
This stainless-steel thermal carafe coffee maker does a great job of keeping your coffee warm. However, if you prefer a glass carafe, you could try the Breville BDC400 Precision Brewer, which is also SCAA certified.
The temperature settings are so accurate that you can really tailor the brewing process to different grinds and roasts. We believe it’s the perfect coffee maker for those who are happy to invest some money to have maximum control over the brew cycle and enjoy fantastic tasting coffee that is brewed just like they want.
You can learn more about this Breville coffee maker in our review here.
3. Cuisinart PurePrecision CPO-850 Pour Over Coffee Brewer – Most Programmable
Dimensions: 14.5” x 9.75” x 15.5”
- Capacity: 8 cups
- Time: 7 minutes
- Materials: Stainless steel & plastic, with thermal carafe
If you are part of the ‘I’m too sleepy to make a good coffee in the morning’ club, then you are going to love this Cuisinart PurePrecision model. Your morning is guaranteed to start in the best way possible with your usual cup of joe if you program it to start within a given 24 hour period. You also have the flexibility to adjust settings such as flavor strength (mild, medium, bold), temperature (hot or extra hot), and bloom mode for optimum extraction.
The Cuisinart CPO 850 comes with a unique laser-etched metal filter, a charcoal water filter and a handy #4 paper filter starter pack. If you don’t like waiting until the coffee has filled the carafe before you can enjoy your first cup, you will appreciate the Cuisinart PurePrecision’s Brew Pause feature. It also has a handy self-cleaning mode.
The Cuisinart CPO 850 comes with a stainless steel carafe, but if you prefer glass carafes, you can check out the CPO-800.
The sleek design of this stainless steel dripper and its transparent water reservoir make it the best choice if you are looking for a coffee maker that brews you an excellent cup of joe without having to compromise on the looks.
The OXO On Barista Brain is very straightforward: it has a simple control panel consisting of a single button with a dial that lets you choose between brewing 2-4 or 5-9 cups of coffee. This automatic dripper mimics manual pour over methods thanks to the pulsating brew, the 7-hole rainmaker shower head and the pre infusion mode.
The mixing tube in the carafe channels the ‘new’ coffee straight to the bottom, ensuring a consistent cup and avoiding stratification.
Stratification is what happens when the weaker coffee ends up on top, resulting in inconsistent extraction and different flavors across different ‘layers’. The thermal carafe is bound to keep your coffee warm, but the display lets you know how long it’s been sitting there for (stopping after an hour).
The OXO On Barista Brain is also particularly quiet, has a handy indicator that lets you know when it needs descaling, and is programmable. Perfect if you are looking for a practical coffee maker that gives you the option of brewing half a carafe and is extremely pleasing to the eye.
5. Behmor Brazen Plus Temperature Control Coffee Maker – Most Customizable
Dimensions: 9″ x 9″ x 15.25″
- Capacity: 8 cups
- Time: 7-8 minutes
- Materials: Stainless steel & plastic, with thermal carafe
If you are a bit of a control freak when it comes to your morning brew, we won’t judge: we’ll simply recommend the Behmor Brazen Plus. This coffee maker allows you to control the coffee flavor by changing the water temperature (accurate to one degree), and adjusting the duration of the pre-soak. The Behmor Brazen Plus has also provided a solution to an often overlooked but important factor, since water only boils at 100°C/212°F when at sea level: altitude. (2)
In order to get that perfectly extracted cup of coffee, as well as ensure our machines lasts, you need to be aware if you’re brewing at high elevations.
This incredibly customizable coffee maker has even got an elevation calibration, allowing you to set a specific altitude to ensure the best possible extraction. Crazy, right?
The Behmor Brazen Plus has a high-quality stainless steel water reservoir. pulsing water flow, and an oversized shower head that is perfect for an even extraction. You can use the included gold-tone mesh filter or paper filters. The high-quality stainless steel carafe keeps your coffee warm for hours without burning it and doesn’t cause dripping when removed from the stand. It’s also programmable, which is always handy.
While it’s slower than other drip coffee makers, the Behmor Brazen Plus Temperature Control Coffee Maker is definitely worth it if you value the customization of your cup of coffee above anything else.
Do you enjoy variety? Would you like the option to choose between a black coffee and other types of brews, as well as between a single cup and a large pot? Then this is the coffee maker you are looking for. Ninja has a range of popular models, but this one is their best in terms of brew quality.
The Ninja brewer has 4 brew styles: classic, rich, iced coffee, and specialty brew.
Cappuccinos, you said? How can I make cappuccinos with a drip coffee maker? Well, the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker is unique: it’s the only SCAA certified dripper that comes with a practical fold-away frother that you can use to warm up or froth up the milk whilst you wait for your coffee to be brewed.
As for quantities, it has 6 different brew sizes, ranging from a single cup (that you can easily place directly below the filter basket, thanks to a retractable stand) to a full carafe.
If you just want a good brew with a twist and are not interested in influencing the coffee brewing parameters, then we think you’d really enjoy the Ninja. This 10-cup programmable coffeemaker is perfect if you are looking to go pod-free and reduce your plastic waste without compromising on quality.
The name is a guarantee in itself. All Moccamaster coffee brewers have been granted the seal of approval from the European Coffee Brewing Centre as well as being certified by the SCAA (3). Basically, the Technivorm makes the best and most consistent cup of coffee.
The philosophy of Technivorm Moccamaster’s inventor, Gerard C. Smit, is to produce long-lasting, reliable, energy efficient, and recyclable products.
The water and coffee only come in contact with metal parts, starting from the unique and precise copper-heating system that brings the water to the SCAA recommended brewing temperature. Thanks to the rectangular metallic showerhead with 9 outlets, the temperature is maintained extremely consistent throughout extraction. The pulse action mimics the manual pouring and allows your coffee grounds to bloom, and you can choose whether to brew a full or half pot with the lever on the brew basket.
While not programmable, the Technivorm Moccamaster is very simple to use and even allows you to stop the flow to enjoy a cheeky cup of coffee before the whole brewing is completed.
The Moccamaster KBT 741 uses cone-shaped filters and comes with a high-quality thermal carafe with brew-through lid and a special tube that, like the Oxo Barista Brain, avoids stratification and ensures a consistent pot of coffee. If you’d prefer a glass carafe, check out the Technivorm 59616 KBG.
This expensive coffee maker from Technivorm is handmade in the Netherlands and is incredibly durable (the 5-year warranty is pretty reassuring).
Thanks to its iconic aesthetic that recalls its earliest 60s design and its well-deserved reputation, the Technivorm Moccamaster is a modern classic. It’s perfect for anyone with high standards who is happy to invest in a durable coffee maker to enjoy the very best cup of joe. You can read our full review of the Moccamaster KBT741 here.
THE VERDICT? Which SCAA Coffee Maker is the best?
Thanks to the unique elements of its brewing process that ensure a divine and consistent cup of coffee, we believe that the Technivorm Moccamaster is the best SCAA coffee maker.
However, the best coffee maker for you is the one that meets your caffeinated needs and preferences. We hope that each coffee maker review combined with our breakdown of features that you should consider has helped you with your choice.
If you still haven’t found “the one” on this list, you may prefer getting one of these coffee makers instead. It’s almost time to enjoy a high-quality cup of joe with your next brewer (exciting!). Which brewer do you think is best? Let us know in the comments!
SCAA certified is a coffee maker that has met the rigorous requirements set by the Specialty Coffee Association of America. Their prestigious certification is only given to a premium selection of drippers that can brew within their Golden Cup Requirements, which range from water temperature to brewing time to uniformity of extraction. An SCAA certification is basically synonymous with excellence.
The best Technivorm coffee maker is the Technivorm Moccamaster KBT-741, in our opinion and based on customers’ reviews. However, all the Technivorm coffee makers are certified by the SCAA and the European Coffee Brewing Centre, meaning that you are always guaranteed to enjoy a high-quality cup of coffee no matter what model you choose.
Coffee makers brew at a temperature that ranges between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit (90 to 96 degrees Celsius). This is the recommended range, as a lower temperature would result in under-extracted coffee, whereas a higher brewing temperature could burn the coffee and result in over-extraction. The Specialty Coffee Association of America recommends that brewers should reach 197.6°F within one minute and never exceed 204.8°F.
In a coffee maker you should look for a satisfying capacity, brewing time, settings and features that you are interested in, size, and check whether it comes with a glass or thermal carafe. As for settings and features, make sure you pick a coffee maker that satisfies your needs, such as being able to control the extraction process or program it with a timer.
- SCA Certified Home Brewer Program. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://sca.coffee/certified-home-brewer
- Molina, A. (2018, October 11). How Does Elevation Affect Your Ideal Coffee Brew Temperature?. Retrieved from https://www.perfectdailygrind.com/2018/10/how-does-elevation-affect-your-ideal-coffee-brew-temperature/
- The Coffeemaker Makers. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://us.moccamaster.com/about-us