As someone who is a big fan of Zojirushi rice cookers, water boilers/warmers, travel mugs and carafes I wanted to check out the Zojirushi EC-YTC100XB Coffee Maker. I was able to find this brewer at a good discount and at the time I was actually shopping for one of their thermal carafes when I saw this.
A common complaint about thermal carafe coffee makers is that their carafes are low build quality or poorly executed, I figured this should be an area where the Zojirushi shines. The brewer is not SCA certified as most of the other brewers that I review are, however one of their marketing features is high brew temperature of 200F, in my testing I found brew temperatures at the filter basket to be around 190-195F.
The machine is programmable for timed brewed, but other than that only has options for muting the beep and a faster “time saver” brew mode. It is thoughtfully designed to have a removable water tank and a swing out design for the flat bottom filter basket, which makes it a great choice for placing under a kitchen cabinet. Most other brewers have lids that flip up and will interfere with a standard height kitchen cabinet.
As expected, the brewer comes with a high quality thermal carafe, it doesn’t drip and feels solid. As with many other carafes it does retain a little bit of coffee inside where you almost have to turn the carafe upside down or remove the top in order to get the last few drops out. The brewer has an auto drop stop feature were you can only brew into the provided carafe.
I personally don’t find the brewer to be aesthetically pleasing or displeasing, it is pretty much neutral as you would expect with other Zojirushi home appliances. I had this sitting next to my Ninja CM401 during this testing period and found myself using the Zojirushi more often because of the thermal carafe. The Ninja CM407 is the version of the Ninja Specialty Brewer with the thermal carafe, but when I was shopping and even now, the thermal carafe version is much harder to find and costs a lot more.
The brew cycle is slower than most as it uses pulse brewing through the entire brew, you can use the time saver mode to make this go faster which has a more continuous flow of water. I read another review where it said this brewer made very bitter coffee, I did not find this to be the case. With every coffee and every brewer you will need to adjust your grind size to get optimal taste and extraction. Perhaps if you were using this pre-ground coffee you might have some issues with bitterness due to the longer brew cycle, that is why we recommend that you always freshly grind your own beans using a burr grinder. This brewer’s cup units are 150 ml for a maximum brew size of 1.5 liters or approximately 51 fluid ounces.
Overall, I really like this brewer and would recommend it for people who want a good brewer with a high quality thermal carafe. I use this for mornings where I used timed brew because I know the coffee will still be hot and not have to get cooked on a hot plate like other brewers. I still turn to my Ninja brewer with its option for smaller brew directly into a mug, but for batch brewing I pick the Zojirushi EC-YTC100XB Coffee Maker.
Download the user manual here.