If you're looking for a compact, easy-to-use coffee maker for the office or for a college student dorm room or grad office, this will do the trick. It's slim, uncomplicated, and won't take up a lot of space on the counter. It's also short enough to fit under older low-hanging cabinets. It comes in many colors, though I went with black. It's a nice-looking item and fairly solid for something in this price range.
It's incredibly simple to use: put grounds in the basket, add water, push the on button. In a few minutes, you have a 16-oz travel mug full of coffee at your preferred strength level. Screw on the lid, make sure the latch is shut tight, and off you go. The machine shuts off automatically when done--I no longer need to worry that I left the coffeemaker on.
The travel mug is 100% leak-proof, and it comes completely apart for thorough washing. Screw off the bottom, remove the stainless steel insert, and everything is dishwasher safe. Very little chance for bacteria or mold to hide, and the stainless steel is stain-proof and doesn't have any nasty aftertaste nor does it retain flavors.
A regular coffee mug will also fit on the platform, so the coffee doesn't have to be brewed in the mug. A second cup can be made within 30 seconds, after letting it cool down a tad.
The only downsides are these:
--the water isn't rushed through. It doesn't drip, either. It simply pours a moderate stream of coffee. Because it isn't pushed through with force, if you're used to a strong espresso like I was before that machine broke, you may be dismayed having to use a little more coffee that usual to get it to the right strength. It does brew a fairly good mug, though.
--the included grounds basket is made with the plastic framework on the inside of the metal "strainer" part. I found it hard to get all of the grounds out after dumping without rinsing some down the sink (not good, can build up and clog the drain). It would be better if the basket/strainer part was on the inside, and the frame on the outside. What I'd prefer is an all-metal basket like a strainer, with a little handle similar to the one the plastic and metal basket has, and no plastic used at all. I found that #2 cone coffee filters fit the basket area perfectly, if you follow the instructions and fold the crimped edges as directed. I'm on the hunt for a permanent solution that will be more landfill-friendly, similar to the metal basket I'd described, but this will do for now.
--I like milk and sugar in mine. To accommodate that in the travel mug I have to brew less coffee. This is disappointing because I'd like to take 16 ozs of coffee that has then been doctored, and I can't. I'm looking for a bigger travel mug so I can brew with the smaller one and doctor in the bigger one, but I'm having a hard time finding one with the features the included mug has. I really like the secure flip top, the loop handle for easy carrying, and the fact that it comes apart completely.
--Others have mentioned the tendency for it to burp a little extra out after it's shut off. It does. I usually tip it forward after shut-off and give it a second to burp out the last drops. It's not egregious, just a few drops.
All-in-all, this is a good product, and a great answer to an unexpected coffee machine malfunction, though I'll likely be purchasing a more complex machine for daily home use, and taking this one to the office for that afternoon pick-me-up.