I’ve Used This Coffee Maker for 15 Years — It’s Ruined Me for All Other Machines

published Jul 5, 2023
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Drinking coffee at breakfast
Credit: yipengge / Getty Images

I honestly don’t recall how my husband and I discovered Bunn’s GRB Speed Brew Classic Coffee Maker, which we have been using for (conservatively) 15 years. Time is relative now! But I do know that the Bun has completely ruined us for all other coffee makers. 

Quick Overview

Why Do We Love the Bunn GRB Speed Brew Classic Coffee Maker?

The Bunn makes a full carafe of coffee (that’s 10 cups) in just four minutes. A hot water tank, taller filter, and multi-stream sprayhead help with the quick brew, while a warming plate can keep your coffee hot for hours.

When you’re accustomed to brewing a perfect pot of coffee in just four minutes every morning, using anything else that takes even just a minute or two longer makes the wait feel like an eternity. To say I’ve grown impatient and irritated at a family member’s house or host’s weekend retreat is not something I’m proud of, but it’s absolutely true. When I’m not in the presence of a Bunn, it feels like coffee-making amateur hour. 

What’s So Great About the Bunn GRB Speed Brew Classic Coffee Maker?

There are many things about the Bunn GRB Speed Brew to recommend, but what makes it a superstar is the exceptionally quick brewing time. This thing can make 10 cups of coffee in four minutes. Let me repeat — a full carafe of freshly made coffee in just four minutes! 

At first glance, the machine looks like any other, and for the most part, it operates the same way too. But the secret is the internal commercial-grade stainless steel hot water tank that keeps 70 ounces of water hot and ready to go at all times. Instead of the machine needing time to heat the water and run it through the coffee grounds, piping-hot water is instantly dispatched to begin the brew process, which is as simple as filling the filter with ground beans and closing the lid. If you need to refill the water reservoir, the tank quickly makes hot water so your next brew is always ready whenever you are. 

Credit: Mimi O'Connor

So, hot coffee on demand is the big appeal. But there are other things I appreciate about Bunn’s Speed Brew. Like that Bunn is also a major manufacturer of commercial-use coffee machines. Its stainless steel stations and clear “decanters” are ubiquitous throughout the hospitality industry, from diners to hotels. While Bunn’s consumer product thankfully has a smaller footprint, it retains an industrial, pragmatic aesthetic, which I enjoy. The Speed Brew is simple, streamlined, and isn’t here to win any beauty contests, but it makes damn good coffee — and fast.

Another feature that enables a quick brew is the machine’s funnel, which accommodates Bunn’s filters that are 1/4 inch taller than standard ones. The design adjustment allows water to flow more quickly out of the filter, and prevents coffee grounds from overflowing — which is the worst.

Credit: Mimi O'Connor

In addition to the taller filters, there’s a multi-stream sprayhead that basically showers the hot water over the grounds, instead of one single stream that gets just the center of the filter. This helps evenly distribute the water and, in my and my husband’s opinion, makes for a more flavorful cup of coffee — even if we’re just using plain ol’ Kirkland Signature beans.  

The carafe is pretty straightforward to use and clean, and there’s a whole proprietary lid and spout design that “arcs the coffee into the cup and wicks the rest back into the carafe.” In my experience, I don’t really see any of that and have gotten some post-pour drip, but for the most part, the carafe is trouble-free. A warmer plate sits underneath the carafe, so you’ll have hot coffee for however long you need.

The Bunn has been going on 15 years in my house, and it’s still making delicious coffee quickly. In fact, it’s probably taken you longer to read this review than it took for me to make another pot. 

Buy: BUNN BX Speed Brew Classic 10-Cup Coffee Brewer, $111.32 (originally $139.99)