Bunn My Cafe MCU
Jennifer’s Rating: 4.5 Stars
In 2023 this Coffee machine is no longer available and so difficult to find even second hand. I would recommend one of the following as an alternative.
The Bunn, My Cafe MCU coffee maker, was one of the most popular single-serve coffee brewers on the market today for its reliability and versatility. You could brew anything you want under the sun by means of 4 interchangeable trays designed differently to hold each medium of coffee or tea bags, too, for that matter.
It also dispenses hot water on demand as well. Having dug deep with the MCU in this review, I felt like it is a great unit that I would consider if I was in the market for a second brewer, and it stood out to me as one of the least problematic models have come across.
UPDATE: This model has been discontinued as of today’s date (11/2/22).
Table of Contents
- Bunn My Cafe MCU
Approximate measurements: 16.5 inches x 9.2 inches x 13.5 inches are what is provided on Amazon’s sales page, but the manufacturer’s website gives a little more precise numbers atÂ 12.1″ in height, 7.2″ in width, and 10.1″ in depth. So, all in all, a very nice, reasonable size brewer that will not make a huge footprint, and since you move the water tank lid to the side as opposed to up, you don’t need to be concerned with countertop-to-clearance space as much as some other brewers, which is nice.
With regard to dispenser-to-cup clearance, the Bunn MCU My Cafe can easily admit travel mugs when the drip tray and plate are removed, but one minor exception is the K-Cup tray which is slightly bulkier. There is 6.25″ of space under the larger K-cup tray, and with the other three trays, there is about 7.25″ of space; if you like to take their coffee on the go, you should find this machine’s space adequate.
In addition to the coffee maker, there are four different multi-compartment drawers. The drawers are each designed differently to accommodate the different coffee deliveries and hot water dispensing. Your machine also includes a few coffee packs and a coffee ground scoop.
There is a manufacturer’s 2-Year Warranty on the Bunn MCU.
Bunn My Cafe MCU Features
- The brewer is made of stainless steel with a black/chrome finish.
- The BUNN MCU has four multi-compartment drawers to accommodate pods, tea bags, loose grounds, and K-cups designed differently for each coffee delivery product.
- The unique “Spin Lid” feature on top of the machine makes it easy to pour water through (it is not a reservoir; however… you pour in the amount of water you need each time you use it.)
- Removable drip tray and plate
- Pulse setting to allow you to obtain a stronger brew
- You can interrupt and restart brew cycles at will
Buttons and Controls
There are actually only two buttons that can be found on the front control panel. They are a Brew button, and below it is the pulse setting button, which is great for extracting better flavor or in the case of something like tea which needs a few extra minutes of steeping time.
The Bunn MyCafe MCU does not have an actual power switch. It is a definite plug-and-play operation. Sorry to have to report that, as I wish it did have an actual switch 🙂
Even with this minimalist approach, one neat feature of importance is the ability to stop brewing and restart at any time just by pushing the brew button and then pushing it again to start it back, which is great to have on hand for whatever purpose. Always good to have on hand to get the right strength at times.
Interchangeable Coffee Drawers
This baby pretty much works with the whole kit and caboodle, whether you need coffee, tea, hot water, etc. It makes this possible using four interchangeable trays or “drawers” that accommodate the above different beverage types.
The soft pod and K-cup trays have a polished chrome appearance; the hot water and grounds tray is black. The coffee grounds tray top resembles a mesh screen. The grounds drawer holds about two tablespoons of grounds. Within it is a filter that can be removed for easy cleaning.
The pod tray has a flatter appearance than the K-cup tray. The hot water tray has a small round depression in it with a small exit hole. All four of the trays have a gray locking button on them that you push on to insert and push on again to remove, which makes them very user-friendly.
When the corresponding tray is loaded with the product of choice, the tray interlocks right under the water-fill opening. You should hear a “click” after pushing in the gray button, so you’re good to go.
Even though this is a great concept, I do find myself wondering where the heck you store all these drawers.
Bunn MCU Reservoir and Water Tank
The concept is very different from what you may be expected; instead of a reservoir keeping water on standby for your convenience and not having to refill it often, it’s made with a water tank that keeps water on standby warm at all times so you can be assured of an expeditious brew cycle.
Basically, you fill the compartment from the top via movement of the “Spin Lid” feature on top that swivels back for easy pouring and slides back when you are done.
Beneath the Spin Lid are different water level indicators. They are somewhat faint looking at first, but the lines for what amount and the “max fill” line (14 oz is the max capacity) are more visible from a top view. The water level indicators read respectively 8, 10, 12, and 14. The range of brew sizes is 4 to 14, so the procedure to get a size not indicated below eight may require the use of a measuring cup to get it exact.
Drip Tray and Plate
A stainless steel plate sits over a plastic drip tray, where would-be runoff would be contained. This plastic drip tray can also be removed to make it easy to accommodate a bigger tumbler.
Both the drip plate and tray are top-rack dishwasher safe.
Energy Save Mode
This subject is very interesting, to say the least. There is a “warm mode” that stays intact for up to 6 hours and a full “sleep mode” that goes into effect in 26 hours (why an arbitrary number such as this, I don’t know)
I find myself scratching my head at this one; after all, 26 hours is a little bit more than a day, and considering the pretty quick startup that takes place (more so if you’re making a succession of cups) I can’t honestly say that this little feature really saves a lot of energy.
The hot water tank heats up to approximately 200 degrees F. After “sleep mode” is kicked off, the normal reheat time is about 2 minutes, and for the six-hour “warm mode,” one minute. Which is not long – so it’s almost like you’re better off just unplugging it at the end of the day.
Ease of Use
One thing that makes using the Bunn MCU MyCafe fun and enjoyable is the many options the different trays provide and the fact that it is easy to tell which one is used for which coffee delivery product. Another unique thing about the trays is that once one is inserted, it kick-starts the brewer into operation mode. So once you have filled the tray of choice and inserted it (and you hear the “click”), you’re going straight to the Brew button and/or Pulse if desired.
The large square Brew button’s red light blinks if the water amount needs to be replenished; when the light goes to steady, it indicates the preheating stage before going green, signaling helpful brewing readiness.
Since you can’t honestly tell how much water is in the unit at one time, you may need to keep a measuring cup handy or pre-measure the desired amount into empty bottles.
I’d also like to stress that the cleaning procedures involved are a little different – all the loose parts, including the interchangeable trays, are dishwasher safe on the top rack, but you may also want to perform due diligence in cleaning the spray head-on the underside of the dispensing area, as continuous use can lead to some buildup. Not difficult as it can be removed to do so.
Bunn MCU MyCafe Consumer Reviews and Ratings
Generally, reviews of the Bunn MCU coffee maker indicated great performance and reliability. My opinion is based on owners who have owned this machine for at least six months to be able to provide an accurate product representation. Customers also felt overall that their customer service experience with Bunn was quite satisfactory. (yep, it is important not to feel like you’re alone in the face of malfunctioning items, so I consider this as well!)
A few people did not care for the part of clearing the loose grounds drawer. Speaking from experience, I know what this can be like. Using one of the reusable filters seems to be the best way to remedy this issue. Finding the included filter basket difficult to clean, switching to reusable single-cup filters improved the experience.
It appeared to function quickly, and many people felt the machine was durable and sturdy. A few people discovered that you can use a measuring cup for accuracy as it is the best way to get around the possible ambiguity they experienced regarding the “how much water is in there?” question regarding the compartment. Measuring between 4 and 14 oz h20 at a timeÂ seemed to do the trick.
One “bone to pick” was the lack of a power switch, which often seems universal in the coffee maker department but is not present in this model. Hot water on standby can seem like an OK idea, but consider that heat is also energy, and some people do not like the idea of â€œwasted energyâ€.
The versatility of this machine makes this model of the Bunn MCU coffee maker a real boon for coffee drinkers who like the luxury of being able to switch between different coffee types.
- Open platform – you can use any K-cup brand you want
- Removable plate andÂ drip tray will accommodate different height cups easily
- Quick heat up from idle mode
- Interchangeable trays support a variety of beverage choices and brewing options
- Ability to interrupt the brewing process and restart again
- Pulse option for getting better flavor when desired
In general, these are what the negatives fall into:
- Absence of a power switch
- The lack of a reservoir
- It may be tricky to tell how much water is inside
- The “warm mode” and “sleep mode” features may not be considered energy efficient to some
As of my latest update, the Bunn MCU My Cafe is no longer selling.
Since this is an “open platform” model, you should not have to search far and wide for “special” types of coffee pods – it won’t cost you a fortune in coffee, either.
Is the Bunn MCU Discontinued Now?
As of today’s date (11/2/22), it has come to my attention that this amazing wonder has been pulled. So sorry to report that, as this was one of my favorite models of all. I have no further information on if/when it may make a comeback. As far as what model has it been supplanted by…I’m getting a source that says it is the Bunn MCR.
I took a look at it, and while it does resemble the MCU on the outside to some degree, it’s a commercial-grade model, and the price I saw quoted reflected that….feel free to check it out but be warned it may be out of your range compared to this one.
Bunn is a trusted name in coffee machines as their automatic-drip style models have stood the test of time. I owned a Bunn drip model once, which was very long-lived then! I feel that is why the Bunn My Cafe MCU makes the Best of list.
One reason the performance reports are so favorable is that Bunn was well-known for commercial-grade coffee makers back in the day, which have higher standards of construction and the ability to withstand wear and tear.
But with the few caveats explained earlier, I think the good reviews and many different features make the Bunn My Cafe MCU a great addition to the home and probably one of the best choices available, especially if you want to experiment with a menu of coffee choices or dispense hot water on tap when the occasion calls for it. I also think the price is good too for what it does.
So there you have it…superb performance and few grievances… can’t ask for more than that in a one-cup coffeemaker. If only they still sold this machine.