Coffee, Tea and Hot Water Machines: Multi-purpose Coffee Machines

Coffee, Tea and Hot Water Machines: Keeping Winter Woes at Bay with a Multi-purpose Coffee Machine

Waking up is getting steadily more difficult, the days are shorter and the night comes quickly. Unfortunately, we’re not bears and we cannot take to our caves for three month’s out of the year to hibernate and forget how freezing it is out there.

The next best bet is to layer up, put the heaters (or, if you’re lucky, set the fireplace roaring) – and make yourself a deliciously hot cup of… well, that differs from person to person. A hot cup of tea might do the trick for you, but the next person might want to cry at the idea of that.

Now if you’re in an office environment, you’ve hopefully got some sort of device that allows you to make yourself hot drinks through the day; maybe a tea lady who does her rounds scrupulously and either a) gets your drink just the way you like it or b) simply can’t wrap his or her head around the fact you like more than one scoop of coffee or sugar in your cup.

See the problem? A grouchy Winter-hater, trying their best to make it through another sub-zero day, and his or her hot cuppa just ain’t right.

Coffee, Tea and Hot Water Machines for the Office

As we said, not everyone has the same taste. Even those who classify themselves as coffee lovers all have their own unique tastes – some prefer strong coffee while others enjoy a hint of coffee in their latte’s.

It seems impossible to have one machine that can satisfy everyone’s needs – unless you go back to bare basics or having an urn with supplies laid out for the office. This comes with it’;s own set of disadvantages – like theft, misuse, overuse and wastage.

I’m sure we’ve all seen an office with a coffee vending machine or some sort of automatic coffee machine. These can be configured to dispense exactly what you need! Yes, the vending machine is more easily configured, but let’s discuss both:

Automatic Coffee Machines for Coffee, Tea and Hot Water

This is definitely the higher-end solution; the primary function of the automatic coffee machine (by this I mean a machine that grinds whole coffee beans and produces frothed milk) is to make great tasting, quality coffee.

An easy way around this hiccup is to make use of the hot water spout, usually located nearby the dispensing spout.

It’s quite simple: If you want coffee, you make the coffee as per the machine instructions. If you want tea, you pop a teabag into your cup and fill it up with hot water from the free-standing water spout. According to taste, add a sugar sachet and maybe some steamed milk.

To make soup, follow the exact same process as with tea, but pop your soup sachet in first.

Vending Coffee Machines for Coffee, Tea and Hot Water (AND Hot Chocolate)

Coffee vending machines are designed with the main focus to be convenience and control; convenient in the fact you can dispense (almost) any drink by touching a labelled button, and control in that all your product is safely behind a locked door – meaning no incidences of theft or overuse are headed your way.

Vending machines for coffee are designed to dispense any drink a typical office would desire:

Black coffee, Espresso, Cappuccino (using powdered milk though), Hot chocolate, Hot water, Hot water with milk, Hot water with sugar, and hot water with milk and sugar.

That will surely satisfy every need of every person in your office, and will likely save you some money in the upcoming months of Winter.

While it’s not common, and also not readily recommended, some machines can be configured to dispense soup. The reason this is not usually a recommendation is that the mixing bowls might become contaminated with the soup powder. And who wants “Spicy Tomato” flavoured hot chocolate? Yugh.

The best way around this is to simply make use of the hot water dispensing mechanism, adding your own soup powder and voilà!

What is the price of a coffee, tea and hot water machine?

With an understanding now of everything an office coffee machine can do, you’d think you’ll end up paying and arm and a leg.

If you carefully consider your options, you can come out saving money or at worst – keeping your budget on par with current spending.

A typical office-sized bean to cup coffee machine can set you back up to R 4 000.00 per month, when about 50 people use the machine daily. (If you’re interested, check out the Jura XS9).

However, if you’re looking to cut cost and are more focused on quantity vs quality, look at installing a vending machine that can be personalised. The basic version of this (using instant coffee and powdered milk) will cost you in the region of just under R 3 000.00 per month. Like that idea? You can check out the Aqua Instant Vending solution here, too.

At the end of the day, it’s about what is important to you. If your solution is working (even if you think it’s not) – always research with facts. Have your monthly usage figured out as best you can, and work from there. A new solution will likely save you money, but be sure first.