- Brew Quality (50%)7.8/10
- Design (15%)8.9/10
- Ease of Use (35%)8.8/10
- Brew Quality (50%)7.9/10
- Design (15%)9.3/10
- Ease of Use (35%)9.1/10
The Takeya cold brew coffee maker and the Bean Envy are two top-quality products. The Takeya is a large-sized brewer that brews either in the door or on a shelf of your refrigerator. However, despite its more favorable brew ratio of 1:9 compared to the Bean Envy (1:12), the Bean Envy produces a slightly better brew and is therefore more economical. The yield of the Bean Envy is 34 fl.oz. while that of the Takeya is 40.5 fl.oz.
Both products are quality choices for design and materials. Takeya is made locally in the USA from high-quality Tritan plastic. The lid is perfectly spill-proof and simply twists to pour. The Takeya’s main drawback is the relatively high parts count for cleaning.
Bean Envy is a glass carafe with a stainless steel filter, therefore it can also double up as a hot beverage brewer. The silicone base is one of the neatest and best designs we’ve seen. Additionally, the two-stopper concept - one for brewing and one for pouring - is quite unique, however, the pop-up silicone stopper doesn’t produce the smoothest pour.
- Bouquet (10%)8.5/10
- Drinkability (70%)8.0/10
- Sediment (20%)7.0/10
- Bouquet (10%)8.0/10
- Drinkability (70%)8.0/10
- Sediment (20%)7.5/10
The Takeya cold brew coffee maker produced a moderately strong bouquet and one of the better ones we’ve sampled. Crisper and sweeter notes were present, but somewhat subdued. Earthy notes, with acidic overtones, tended to be more prominent.
The Bean Envy produced a medium to strong bouquet. It had a distinctive roasted note, but there was some complexity to it. We also detected woody and herby notes, with a slight underlying hint of chocolate.
We diluted the Takeya concentrate 1:1 with filtered water. While the Takeya had a complex flavor profile, it was more medium-bodied. Deep earthy or chocolatey flavors came through the most with a strong roasted flavor. A tinge of sweetness made for a light aftertaste and overall it was smooth and enjoyable to drink. Adding cream to the water dilution resulted in a more finished taste.
Bean Envy presented a strong roasted flavor with a semi-full-bodied experience. Overall, the brew was a little bitter with not so much of a sweet aftertaste. We liked it as it was, but you could even dilute it a little. All things considered, it was a good brew for mixing. We have found that a brewer with a thin neck and wider base tends to get better results, and Bean Envy fits this design.
With repeated testing, we found that the Takeya has a tendency to produce quite a bit of sediment depending on how you handle it. You have to screw the filter tightly into the lid, and avoid shaking too vigorously. Though you can technically brew with the Takeya on its side, it’s probably best to brew standing up. We allowed the concentrate to settle, decanted into another container, and discarded the sediment left behind.
After allowing the brew to settle, we decanted the contents to see how much sediment remained at the bottom. The Bean Envy produced a moderate amount of sediment as a fine sludge. Considering that it’s best to stir the brew before pouring to drink, we would recommend a second decanting. The sediment produced, however, was a good compromise for the quality of the brew.
- Stopper / Lid (30%)10/10
- Filter (40%)8.0/10
- Build Quality (30%)9.0/10
- Stopper / Lid (30%)9.5/10
- Filter (40%)9.0/10
- Build Quality (30%)9.5/10
In the ‘Box’
- Assembled brew decanter
- Inlay leaflet
- User guide
The Takeya Cold Brew Coffee Maker comes fully assembled. Both the inlay leaflet and the user guide are placed in the brew decanter. The User Guide has a product description, brewing instructions, five suggested drink recipes, and a 1-Year Limited Warranty notification.
- Box WDH: 5.3 x 5.1 x 8.7 inches
- Assembled brew carafe
- Extra silicone lid
- Brew guide and manual
- Warranty tag and promotional card
Bean Envy is a high-quality craft product. The first thing you see in the box is the VIP card which invites you to scan the QR code to register your warranty, gain exclusive offers, and more — except our code didn’t work. Their only website is on Amazon and there’s no way to find the registration page. There is, however, a tag with a warranty on any broken glass, a support email, and toll-free number.
Unperturbed, we unpacked the rest of the box. The side of the box promises a microdot precision laser fitter, a silicone base, and an extra strong borosilicate glass decanter. This product comes with two lids: one for brewing and one for post-decanting. The final item was a very high-quality product booklet, brew guide, and care manual all in one.
- Heightwith Stopper Lid:12.2 in (310 mm)
- Base Diameter:4.3 x 3.7 in oblong (110 x 95 mm)
- Width:5.9 in (150 mm)
- Weight:12.0 oz (340 g)
- Material:BPA-free Tritan plastic
The Takeya has a slightly oblong base which tapers up to a round top. It therefore tends to fit most refrigerator doors. The brew decanter has a screw-on frame with a handle and a screwable lid that also attaches to the filter. The high-quality Tritan plastic looks very clean and is also stain, odor, and shatter resistant. The decanter is made in the USA while the filter is made in China.
- Heightwith Stopper Lid:7.9 in (200 mm)
- Base Diameter:4.7 in (120 mm)
- Width:5.9 in (150 mm)
- Weight:16.5 oz (470 g)
- Material:Borosilicate glass, stainless steel, silicone
The decanter is well-made and specifically, we liked the thick rim. The extended and rounded handle is also very easy to grip. Likewise, the silicone base is neither too thick nor too thin and effortlessly slips on and off. This is something that not every brewer using a silicone base gets right. The base of the glass carafe is actually slightly indented for the fit and Bean Envy are awaiting patent approval for this design.
Stopper / Lid
- Diameter:6.3 in with handle (160 mm)
- Material:Tritan plastic
- Additional Features:silicone gasket
We tested the decanter vessel and were happy to find it did not leak. The product is very secure and tight. The lid partially unscrews for pouring, and then further unscrews to remove completely. The container can also hold hot liquids, but you should not fully seal the lid while still hot.
- Diameter:3.3 & 2.7 in (85 & 70 mm)
- Material:Stainless steel, silicone
- Additional Features:Silicone seal
The Bean Envy doesn’t stop with its unique carafe design. The stainless steel brew lid is quite similar to other designs, however, the additional all-silicone lid for post-decanting is quite unique.
This lid makes up for the disparity between the fit of the lid with the filter and that without. Not only that, the silicone lid has a unique pop function. You just lift the lid slightly to pour from two different open positions, or you can twist the lid to a sealed position. However, we found the carafe doesn’t pour so well with the silicone lid extended.
- Length:0.4 in (265 mm)
- Diameter:2.7 in (70 mm)
- Material:nylon & polypropylene
- Additional Features:detachable extender
A key feature of the Takeya cold coffee brewer seems to be the full-length filter that maximizes contact with grounds. The grounds fill the filter and go part way up into the extender.
It comes in two parts, and the upper extender detaches for easy cleaning, which seems to be its key function. However, we found it a bit cumbersome to attach the extender to the filter. The filter is a porous nylon polyester and allows for a relatively good brew to develop. A filter replacement is also available as a separate purchase.
- Length:6.9 in (175 mm)
- Diameter:2.7 in (70 mm)
- Material:Lasered stainless steel
- Additional Features:Silicone seal
The Bean Envy filter is well-machined and made from fine laser-cut stainless steel. There are no sharp edges, but unfortunately, the bottom of the filter is solid. We have found that the presence of holes at the bottom makes it easier for decanting all the liquid, and may contribute to developing a better brew.
Also, from our extensive testing experience, fine-cut laser filters tend not to be the best. This is because they lack sufficient permeability for a good brew to develop. The Bean Envy filter, on the other hand, proved not to be the case as the brew quality was relatively good — also evidenced by the amount of sediment produced.
9The Tritan plastic brew decanter is a high-class piece of equipment and the airtight screw top is well-designed. The long filter, however, requires more effort for cleaning. The way the filter assembles is also a little cumbersome. Additionally, the sediment test shows that the filter is not so effective if you’re careless when putting it together or if you shake the vessel too vigorously. While overall of good quality, there are more parts than we’d prefer.
Overall, we were very satisfied with the quality of the Bean Envy cold coffee brewer. The extra thought put into the base and lid designs was much appreciated. The only improvement would be with an upgrade to the filter and the pour with the silicone stopper.
Ease of Use
- Brewing (45%)8.5/10
- Decanting (35%)9.5/10
- Cleaning and Storage (20%)8.0/10
- Brewing (45%)9.5/10
- Decanting (35%)9.0/10
- Cleaning and Storage (20%)8.5/10
The Takeya cold brew coffee maker doesn’t require any gradual wetting of the grounds. Just put 170g of grounds in the filter (it should come to 2 inches from the extender rim) and you’re ready to go.
Then, you screw on the lid and immerse it into the pitcher with 7 cups of cold water. If you prefer metric, that’s roughly 1,680 ml — about an inch from the top of the vessel.
After inserting the filter with the grounds, we shook the container and let it sit for 10 minutes. The brewer was shaken thoroughly once again before going into the refrigerator on its side. We shook the container periodically another four times over the 18 hours of brewing. This device therefore takes a little more attention than other methods, but overall it’s quite straightforward.
A key selling point for this brewer is its airtight seal. This means coffee odors will not contaminate your refrigerator while brewing. There is also less oxidative stress, so you can store your coffee longer.
The nice thing about Bean Envy is their included brew guide. First, they recommend freshly ground beans, and as coarse as you can grind them. They also pay due attention to brew ratio, which other manufacturers don’t generally do.
They recommend a typical 1:4 ratio. In their instructions, they speak of 8 tablespoons of grounds to 32 fl oz (1 L) of water. We carefully measured both water and grounds for testing. The Bean Envy filter takes 3 oz (typical for its size) or 85 g of grounds. The volume of water needed to completely soak the grounds was 1.1 L or 38 fl. oz. This is a typical ratio of 1:12 which matches with a number of other similar brewers.
Because of the type of filter, it took quite some time for the water to pass through. Therefore, you may want to start with at least 20 fl oz (600 ml) of water already added to the carafe.
Decanting the Takeya simply means unscrewing the lid and taking out the attached filter. Next, unscrew the filter from the lid and then screw the air-tight lid back onto the pitcher.In this sense, it’s one of the most convenient immersion brewer designs.
After removing the filter, the manufacturer recommends you place it in a tall glass for 45 min to catch remaining concentrate. You should also clean the lid of any grounds before screwing it back onto the decanter. These tips are only found on the product homepage.
As pointed out, if you fail to attach the filter extender securely, or shake the vessel too vigorously, you may have to decant the contents a second time.
When you need to decant some coffee to drink, partially unscrew the lid to align the gap to the spout. It’s safe to pick up the container by the lid handle because the lid ring remains securely attached.
As with most similar immersion filter brewers, decanting requires very little work. It took a little force to pry the filter out because it was tightly bonded—which was not a bad thing. Decanting would be easier though if the filter base had holes for all the liquid to flow out more easily. After decanting, you simply place on the silicone lid, which, apart from creating a different look, was also a very good fit.
Cleaning and Storage
In total, the Takeya separates into seven cleanable parts. The online instructions state that all parts, including the filter, are dishwasher safe. We presume, however, that it would be better to not put the rubber gasket for the screwable lid into the dishwasher. For hand washing, it’s very easy to reach inside the brew vessel.
The filter itself is quite long, and was difficult to clean without a bottle brush. Without proper cleaning, over time coffee oils can clog the fine holes and produce a stale smell. For deep cleaning, you should soak in a 50/50 solution of water and white vinegar.
Cleaning was not as straightforward as it seemed like it should be. The handle has a nice silicone sleeve for comfortable gripping. It took a little effort to remove that for cleaning and to replace it again.
Storage is easy enough because all parts screw together and you are unlikely to misplace any parts if you reassemble properly. Replacement filters can also be purchased online.
We found it best to clean the brewer by hand, but the glass carafe and filter can easily go into a dishwasher. Both the filter and the carafe required the use of a bottle brush. The silicone base is very secure, yet you can slip it off easily and it’s also one of the best designs we have seen. Because there are two lids, you should make sure not to misplace one or the other while in storage.