A large majority of people do not realize that different types of teas and coffee require different water temperatures to bring out their best flavors. Most people simply bring water to a boil or near boil and pour it over their tea leaves or coffee grounds thinking they have done the best job possible. What they don’t realize is that they are not getting the ultimate taste of their drink if they are not using hot water at the correct temperature. Hence, if you truly want to savor the full flavor of white or green tea then the temperature of your hot water should be between 160 -185 °F, for pour-over coffee the temperature of the water should be around 200 – 205 °F and for black or herbal tea it needs to be at the boiling point or 212 °F. If you do not use the correct temperature for the given type of beverage, then either you will not be extracting all the essential flavors leading to a weak, tasteless drink or over extracting and getting a bitter tasting drink. Either way you will not get the right taste of the drink. This is why a good electric kettle with variable temperature control is absolutely essential if you enjoy drinking different types of hot beverages.
The stylish looking Cuisinart CPK-17C electric kettle comes in an elegant stainless steel body with controls conveniently situated in its handle. With a steel body, a hefty capacity of 1.7 liters, a hidden heating element, and blue lit water window, it will indeed be the center piece of any kitchen counter.
Beauty however, is not the only thing this kettle has going for it. It is also loaded with many useful features. The cordless kettle sits on a base that can swivel a full 360 degrees, which means the kettle can easily be lifted from any direction. The handle is embedded with six pre-set temperature buttons which also mention the type of tea, or coffee a particular setting is most appropriate for. A major bonus for those of us who keep forgetting the best temperature for a given type of a beverage! For example the 200 °F button also has French Press written below it. Additionally, there is a start button and a keep warm button. Once the water reaches the desired temperature, the automatic keep warm function kicks in and the temperature is maintained for thirty minutes. When the desired temperature is reached, the buttons gives a beep signal while the back lit stays bright for the duration of heating. This makes it easy to see what is going on even if it is dark. Other positive points of the kettle include:
- Quick Heating: The Cusinart works efficiently, bringing one liter of water to boil in slightly over four minutes.
- Accurate Temperature: The CPK-17 is equipped with a thermometer, so when a temperature is selected, the kettle consistently heats the water accurately to that temperature, with a maximum variation of 3 to 4 degrees. Many competitors tend to be off their mark by as much as ten degrees.
- No Spill Spout: The shape of the spout is such that it pours with total control, without splattering water all over the place.
- Sturdy build: The Cusinart CPK-17 is built to last, and can take heavy use and still keep on working.
- Empty Kettle Warning: If the kettle is returned to the base empty a “boil-dry protection” starts to sound so the kettle is not damaged.
- Good Warranty: Heating is tough on appliances and especially kettles tend not to have a very long life. However, the Cusinart CPK-17 is backed by a three year warranty, which is significantly longer than most of its competitors offer.
There are some minor points that consumers who have used the kettle have found troubling. The first among these is that the kettle is heavy, even empty it weighs 2.5 pounds, obviously it is only going to get heavier with water. However, it must be remembered that this is a big kettle, thus the weight is not unexpected. Some people found cleaning to be a bit difficult as the top is fairly narrow. Finally, the water level indicator is situated under the handle, and as such the water level becomes difficult to see.
The Cuisinart CPK-17 electric kettle is a very easy to use. It comes with a strong backing by the company and is pleasing to the eye. According to the people who have used it, it is durable provided the basic maintenance instructions are followed.