Chemex Ottomatic Review: Is It Really Necessary?

Hi! My name is Arne. Having spent years working as a barista I'm now on a mission to bring more good coffee to the people. To that end, my team and I provide you with a broad knowledge base on the subject of coffee.

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It's a topsy-turvy world we live in, folks. In today's Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 review, I'll be looking at an automatic dripper from the manufacturer of the most iconic pour-over coffee maker of all time.

It’s a topsy-turvy world we live in, folks. In today’s Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 review, I’ll be looking at an automatic dripper from the manufacturer of the most iconic pour-over coffee maker of all time.

In my drip coffee maker guide I’ve reviewed several machines that strive to emulate what you’d get from a manual Chemex dripper. Not only that, some of ’em include glass carafes that border on being Chemex copy cats. And now I find that Chemex has jumped on the automatic pour-over coffee maker bandwagon.

Maybe it’s just an attempt to control the narrative – to show the pretenders to the throne who’s really king of the coffee castle. Or maybe the manufacturer just sees a chance to make a quick buck. Either way, it feels pretty ironic to me!

Anyway, I’m looking forward to seeing what the Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker is all about. I just hope it does the mighty Chemex Coffeemaker justice.

Elegant and consistent

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0

An easy way to enjoy Chemex coffee

Looks amazing

Reliable and consistent brewing

Easy to use

Trusted manufacturer

Expensive for what you get

No adjustable brew settings

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 Review Overview

If you’ve checked out my Chemex Coffeemaker guide 2024, you’ll know how much I love the thing. And I’m not alone. The brewer’s popularity has ebbed and flowed over the years, but its iconic status was cemented when it was entered into the permanent collection at the Museum of Modern Art.

These days, pour-over coffee is very much in fashion, which is why manufacturers fall over themselves to release sophisticated automatic machines. After all, they want to stay relevant as more people discover the joys of manual brewing.

Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great. Plus, I’ve reviewed some incredible coffee makers recently, including the Brim 8-Cup Pour-Over Coffee Maker. Still, did Chemex really need to make an automatic dripper for its sublime glass beaker? I guess that’s not for me to say.

Chemex Ottomatic

What I can say is that the Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker is lovely to behold. Featuring a sleek design that’s both modern and timeless, the Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker compliments the Chemex beaker in superb fashion.

I particularly appreciate the large, exposed shower head and the clearly marked water tank. However, I’m a little disappointed by how much plastic is in evidence – especially given the $349.99 price tag.

As you’d expect, the Ottomatic coffee maker is far from just a pretty face. In fact, the machine has some nifty tricks up its sleeve. So, is this thing worth shelling out for, or are you better off sticking with your gooseneck kettle? I aim to try and find out in this Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 Review!

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 Features

The Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker might look fairly straightforward, but there’s a lot going on under the surface. Let’s look at the features that make this elegant automatic dripper so intriguing.

Carafe

The Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker comes with the classic 6-cup carafe. Made from non-porous borosilicate glass, the Chemex beaker was inspired, in part, by laboratory equipment. So much has been written about the Chemex Coffeemaker that I won’t try and add anything new.

Suffice to say it looks really cool and the hourglass shape does wonders for your coffee. I’ve always loved the peculiar wooden collar with its rawhide tie – it really does prevent you from burning your fingers. Still, you can buy the Ottomatic 2.0 with the glass handle version of the carafe if you’d prefer.

Water Reservoir

I’m used to seeing exposed water tanks on the new generation automatic coffee makers. However, I will say that the Ottomatic’s clear reservoir is very well conceived. With a 40-ounce (1.2 liter) capacity, the water tank is sufficiently large to brew an entire 8-cup carafe.

I particularly like the Chemex-shaped level markers on the side, which make it easy to brew accurately. Oh, and you should know that the Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker uses all the water in the tank during the brewing process.

Spray Head

Now we come to the truly exciting part of my Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 review! I get to tell you all about the manufacturer’s “Greedy Cup” sprayhead technology. And yes, I wish they hadn’t called it that. Anyway, the Chemex Ottomatic’s stainless steel shower head is key to its success.

Rather than just dumping water over ground coffee in a steady stream, the Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker aims to replicate a sophisticated manual pouring technique. 

So, as well as an initial pre-infusion, there are several pulses of water released during brewing.

This staged brewing cycle ensures consistency in temperature and evenness in extraction, both of which are essential to achieving balanced cup results.

Brew Modes

Chemex Ottomatic Brewing

At this point in my Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 review I’m starting to see who this machine is geared toward. Listen, I’m fully aware of how intimidating the whole pour-over coffee thing might seem to the uninitiated. Plus, not everyone has the time to invest in perfecting their technique.

With that in mind, I can appreciate how attractive the Ottomatic 2.0 might be. There are two brew modes, one for hot coffee and one for iced coffee. As far as I can tell, the iced coffee mode just means the machine doesn’t engage the hot plate – there’s no change in the way the machine brews.

Speaking of, the Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker takes care of everything, and has been carefully calibrated to do so. In short, the machine controls pre-infusion, contact time between water and coffee and ideal brewing temperature.

I can already hear pour-over specialists crowing about how important it is to be able to adjust temperature for different origins and roast profiles. They’ve got a good point. However, the folks that’ll buy this thing don’t care about getting technical; they just want to enjoy consistent Chemex coffee with the minimum of fuss.

Hot Plate

I really dislike coffee maker keep-warm functions, and the thought of putting my beloved Chemex Coffeemaker on a hot plate sendsshivers down my spine. 

In my experience, no matter how sophisticated a keep-warm function claims to be, the end results always taste like stewed rocket fuel. That’s why I always recommend making as much coffee as you’ll want to drink in one sitting.

Anyway, Chemex proudly says its hot plate will keep the coffee warm for up to 90 minutes “without burning or compromising flavor.” Sorry guys, but I’ll take that claim with a big old grain of salt!

Filters

Chemx Filter

One of the potential downsides of using a Chemex Coffeemaker is the fact that its paper filters are so expensive. Don’t imagine you can get away with using anything but Chemex Bonded filters, which will set you back a pretty penny.

The proprietary Chemex filters consist of a heavy pulp and supposedly perform better than traditional filters simply because of the paper quality. Plus, the filters have been pre-cleaned with oxygen, so you don’t have to worry about chemicals leaching into your cup of joe.

Of course, you could buy a permanent filter for the Chemex, like the Barista Warrior. However, you might sacrifice some cup quality by doing so. Personally, I always prefer the clean brew I get when I’m using paper coffee filters.

Accessories

As I mentioned earlier, the Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker comes with a 6-cup carafe. The manufacturer also throws in a (small) box of its bonded paper filters. You’ll also get a neat glass coffeemaker cover, which I’d advise using in lieu of the hot plate function.

My favorite of the included accessories is the brew clip, which you clip onto the carafe during brewing. This nifty little thing helps encourage a steady flow rate by creating an additional air channel. I think that’s super cool!

Warranty

For such an expensive coffee maker, I’m kind of surprised to see that Chemex only offers a one-year warranty. Then again, maybe it’s just that the manufacturer is so confident nothing will go wrong that it doesn’t feel the need to offer more.

In any case, the manufacturer has you covered during the first year you own the Ottomatic 2.0. Unless you try to make coffee with sparkling water or drop the thing in the bathtub, that is. Then you’ll be on your own!

How to Use the Chemex Ottomatic 2.0

Chemex Ottomatic Pouring

If you’ve made it this far into my Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 review you’ll have cottoned on to how easy it is to use. With that said, don’t skimp on the essentials for good coffee – like any preparation method, the Ottomatic follows the principle of garbage in, garbage out. 

So, make sure you’re using high-quality coffee beans that have been sourced by an independent roaster. Plus, you’re going to want to grind them fresh each time you brew. If you don’t already own a means of achieving this, check out my best burr coffee grinder guide for inspiration.

Before using the Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 for the first time, I’d recommend flushing the lines by brewing a full tank of water without water. While you’re at it, go ahead and rinse the glass carafe. Once that’s done, here’s how to brew coffee:

  1. Add the amount of fresh, filtered water you’ll be using to the reservoir.

  2. Attach the brew clip to the side of the carafe opposite to the pouring spout.

  3. Place a Chemex filter into the neck of the carafe, then add ground coffee beans. I’d recommend a medium-coarse grind size. The manufacturer recommends using one scoop per 5 ounces (148 milliliters) of water, but I say use a coffee scale for accurate results.

  4. For hot coffee, set the switch to the single line position. Once the brewing process is complete, the hot plate will be activated. To skip the hot plate altogether, brew by flipping the switch to the double line position.

  5. Once the Ottomatic 2.0 has used all the water in the reservoir, the indicator light will turn solid red (hot plate) or blinking red (no hot plate).

  6. Once all the water has passed through the filter it’s time to enjoy your coffee!

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 Cleaning

I’m happy to report that the Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker requires relatively little care and attention. Of course, you’ll want to keep it looking its best by wiping down the exterior with a damp cloth. However, this cleaning and descaling section will be very brief. 

The glass carafe itself can supposedly go in the dishwasher, but I wouldn’t risk it. Instead, rinse it with a little warm water and dish soap from time to time.

As you’d imagine, the Ottomatic 2.0 will require descaling on a fairly regular basis. The frequency of descaling comes down to your water’s hardness, but I’d say once every three months is a safe bet. Oh, and the manufacturer even includes a bottle of descaling solution with your purchase.

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 Specifications

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0
Manufacturer

Chemex

Model number

1000840

Product category

Grind and brew coffee maker

Housing material

Stainless steel

Color options

Silver

Carafe

Borosilicate glass

Keep warm function

Yes

Milk frother

User interface

Buttons and dials

App

Removable water reservoir

Water reservoir capacity

40.6 fl oz / 1.2 l

Brew capacity

30 fl oz / 887 ml

Single cup function

Reusable coffee filter

Coffee pod compatible

Grinder

N/A

Grind adjustment levels

N/A

Bean hopper capacity

N/A

Ground coffee option

Brew styles

1

Adjustable coffee temperature

Coffee strength adjustment levels

Hot water function

Water filter

Power consumption

1200 W

Weight

12.6 lb / 5.7 kg

Dimensions

13.0 x 7.5 x 12.2 in
33.0 x 19.1 x 31.0 cm

Warranty

1 year

SCA certified home brewer

Notes

Included Accessories: CHEMEX filters, Glass coffeemaker cover, Coffeemaker cleaner, User guide.

Current price on Amazon

$349.99

All specifications

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 vs Other Coffee Makers

I’ve already mentioned other coffee makers in this Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 review, and now it’s comparison time. So, let’s look at a couple of outstanding automatic coffee makers that are trying to give the Chemex a run for its money.

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 vs Technivorm Moccamaster

Technivorm Moccamaster

I recently updated my Technivorm Moccamaster review, which gave me a chance to reassess this classic machine. So, is the Moccamaster KBGV Select still the best coffee maker in the world? Short answer: yes it is.

Costing $237.28, the Moccamaster costs about the same as the Ottomatic coffee maker. However, the Moccamaster has been Golden Cup certified by the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA). It’s easy to see why – the Moccamaster has it dialed in terms of brewing temperature and time. Plus, its shower head performs perfectly.

Add in the fact that the Technivorm is built to last with premium components, and it’s hard to see why you wouldn’t buy it.

See Also: Technivorm Moccamaster Hands-On Review 2024

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 vs Ratio Six

Ratio 6

The Ratio Six Coffee Maker hasn’t been around as long as the Chemex or Moccamaster. However, it’s quickly become one of my all-time faves.

Costing $339.00, the Ratio Six is substantially more affordable than the Ottomatic 2.0. The Ratio Six also features incredible attention to detail, including borosilicate glass supply lines and a stainless steel shower head.

Like the Moccamaster coffee maker, the Ratio Six coffee maker is Golden Cup-certified by the SCA. During my testing, the Ratio fully lived up to all the hype – this thing performs to the highest level and produces astonishing coffee. Not only that, the Ratio Six is easy to use and looks amazing. What can I say – I absolutely love this machine!

See Also: Ratio Six Hands-On Review 2024

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 vs Others Comparison Chart

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0Moccamaster KBGV SelectRatio Six Coffee Maker
Manufacturer

Chemex

Technivorm Moccamaster

Ratio

Model number

1000840

KGBV Select

Six

Product category

Grind and brew coffee maker

Drip coffee maker

Drip coffee maker

Housing material

Stainless steel

Stainless steel with plastic parts

Stainless steel with plastic parts

Color options

Silver

Anthracite, Beetroot, Black, Brushed Brass, Butter Yellow, Candy Apple Red, Juniper, Matte Black, Matte Silver, Merlot Red, Midnight Blue, Off-White, Orange, Pink, Pistachio, Polished Silver, Red, Rose Gold, Slate, Stone Grey, Turquoise, Yellow Pepper

Stainless Steel, White

Carafe

Borosilicate glass

Borosilicate glass

Thermal

Keep warm function

Yes

Yes (adjustable)

No

Milk frother

User interface

Buttons and dials

Buttons and dials

Buttons and dials

App

Removable water reservoir

Water reservoir capacity

40.6 fl oz / 1.2 l

44.0 fl oz / 1.3 l

44.0 fl oz / 1.3 l

Brew capacity

30 fl oz / 887 ml

42 fl oz / 1242 ml

40 fl oz / 1183 ml

Single cup function

Reusable coffee filter

Coffee pod compatible

Grinder

N/A

Grind adjustment levels

N/A

Bean hopper capacity

N/A

Ground coffee option

Brew styles

1

1

1

Adjustable coffee temperature

Coffee strength adjustment levels

Hot water function

Water filter

Power consumption

1200 W

1475 W

1400 W

Weight

12.6 lb / 5.7 kg

6.0 lb / 2.7 kg

8.0 lb / 3.6 kg

Dimensions

13.0 x 7.5 x 12.2 in
33.0 x 19.1 x 31.0 cm

14.0 x 12.8 x 6.5 in
35.6 x 32.5 x 16.5 cm

14.3 x 6.8 x 13.5 in
36.3 x 17.3 x 34.3 cm

Warranty

1 year

5 years

5 years

SCA certified home brewer

Notes

Included Accessories: CHEMEX filters, Glass coffeemaker cover, Coffeemaker cleaner, User guide.

Included Accessories: User manual

Included Accessories: Removable power cord, User guide, Catcher for filter basket, Heat shield/lid for filter basket, Ratio microfiber towel, 4 paper filters.

Current price on Amazon

$349.99

$359.00

$339.00

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0Moccamaster KBGV SelectRatio Six Coffee Maker
Manufacturer

Chemex

Technivorm Moccamaster

Ratio

Model number

1000840

KGBV Select

Six

Product category

Grind and brew coffee maker

Drip coffee maker

Drip coffee maker

Housing material

Stainless steel

Stainless steel with plastic parts

Stainless steel with plastic parts

Color options

Silver

Anthracite, Beetroot, Black, Brushed Brass, Butter Yellow, Candy Apple Red, Juniper, Matte Black, Matte Silver, Merlot Red, Midnight Blue, Off-White, Orange, Pink, Pistachio, Polished Silver, Red, Rose Gold, Slate, Stone Grey, Turquoise, Yellow Pepper

Stainless Steel, White

Carafe

Borosilicate glass

Borosilicate glass

Thermal

Keep warm function

Yes

Yes (adjustable)

No

Milk frother

User interface

Buttons and dials

Buttons and dials

Buttons and dials

App

Removable water reservoir

Water reservoir capacity

40.6 fl oz / 1.2 l

44.0 fl oz / 1.3 l

44.0 fl oz / 1.3 l

Brew capacity

30 fl oz / 887 ml

42 fl oz / 1242 ml

40 fl oz / 1183 ml

Single cup function

Reusable coffee filter

Coffee pod compatible

Grinder

N/A

Grind adjustment levels

N/A

Bean hopper capacity

N/A

Ground coffee option

Brew styles

1

1

1

Pre-infusion

Adjustable coffee temperature

Coffee strength adjustment levels

Hot water function

Water filter

Power consumption

1200 W

1475 W

1400 W

Weight

12.6 lb / 5.7 kg

6.0 lb / 2.7 kg

8.0 lb / 3.6 kg

Dimensions

13.0 x 7.5 x 12.2 in
33.0 x 19.1 x 31.0 cm

14.0 x 12.8 x 6.5 in
35.6 x 32.5 x 16.5 cm

14.3 x 6.8 x 13.5 in
36.3 x 17.3 x 34.3 cm

Warranty

1 year

5 years

5 years

SCA certified home brewer

Notes

Included Accessories: CHEMEX filters, Glass coffeemaker cover, Coffeemaker cleaner, User guide.

Included Accessories: User manual

Included Accessories: Removable power cord, User guide, Catcher for filter basket, Heat shield/lid for filter basket, Ratio microfiber towel, 4 paper filters.

Current price on Amazon

$349.99

$359.00

$339.00

Verdict: Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 Review

Elegant and consistent

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0

An easy way to enjoy Chemex coffee

Looks amazing

Reliable and consistent brewing

Easy to use

Trusted manufacturer

Expensive for what you get

No adjustable brew settings

Having reached the end of my Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 review, I have to say I’m on the fence about whether or not to recommend it. I mean, I get why the thing is cool – it looks great and performs admirably – but it costs a lot of money. To be honest, I don’t feel like the Ottomatic 2.0 is sophisticated enough to justify the investment.

If you want pour-over style coffee without the manual effort, there are better and more affordable options out there. Ultimately, I’d say buy a Chemex coffee maker and a gooseneck kettle, then spend a little time experimenting. It really isn’t that hard to get good results, and you will have saved loads of cash!

Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 Review FAQs

For best results, use a medium-coarse grind size with the Chemex Ottomatic.

The Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker isn’t programmable. If you’re looking for a sophisticated machine with programmable options, consider checking out the Breville Precision Brewer.

The Chemex Ottomatic 2.0 coffee maker brews within the ideal temperature range of 197.6-204.8 degrees Fahrenheit, as recommended by the Specialty coffee association (SCA).

Although the manufacturer recommends using its own descaling solution, you’ll get good results using a mix of white vinegar and water.

Your coffee expert
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Arne Preuss

Hi! My name is Arne. Having spent years working as a barista I'm now on a mission to bring more good coffee to the people. To that end, my team and I provide you with a broad knowledge base on the subject of coffee.

More about Arne Preuss

Hi! My name is Arne. Having spent years working as a barista I'm now on a mission to bring more good coffee to the people. To that end, my team and I provide you with a broad knowledge base on the subject of coffee.

More about Arne Preuss

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