A minor update to the CM6300, the CM6310 is Miele's do-it-all, bean-to-cup coffee machine. It's designed to make the process as easy as possible, delivering espresso and milk-based drinks at the touch of a button. For those looking for a fully automatic machine, with the least amount of effort possible, it's a decent choice. It certainly isn't one for budget buyers, though: it costs £1,299.
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Miele is well known for the build quality of its appliances, and the CM6310 is everything that we've come to expect from the company. While not quite as stylish as some of Miele's other products, this coffee machine has an industrial look and ruggedness to it. There's a high attention to detail that makes the CM6310 a little different to the competition.
For starters, rather than a thin drip metal tray cover, the CM6310's feels sturdier than most. When I pulled out the drip tray, I was pleasantly surprised to find that it has a plastic cover. This makes carrying a full tray to the sink much easier, avoiding any spillage.
Miele ships the CM6310 with a stainless-steel milk flask, which you can store in the fridge, with milk ready to go when you need it. When you don't have the flask out, the coffee machine's milk tube clips into the drip tray, keeping it neatly out of the way. I do urge a bit of caution when unplugging the milk tube, however, since it's easy to pull up the drip tray cover and knock over a mug sitting on it.
You can move the coffee spout up and down, with a range of adjustment between 80mm and 140mm. That's plenty of height difference to accommodate everything from an espresso cup to a latte glass. Although the CM6310 is 427mm deep, so likely to take up the full depth of a kitchen counter, it's one of the slimmest and narrowest bean-to-cup machines around, at 359mm high and 251mm wide.
A sizeable bean hopper will take most of a regular bag of beans. It's sealed with a lid that has a rubber surround to help keep the beans fresh. If you have some ground coffee to use, the CM6310 also has a separate chute, so you can manually add a single dose.
Miele has designed the CM6310 to be exceptionally easy to use, with a clear LCD screen that displays the settings and the drink you've selected.
Control is via the touch buttons on the front panel, and they're some of the best that I've ever used, picking up every input first time.
For quick operation, there are four one-touch buttons for drinks: espresso, coffee, cappuccino and latte macchiato. Tapping the More button brings up a recipe menu for the other drinks that the CM6310 can make (ristretto, long coffee, caffè latte, hot milk, milk froth and hot water).
Each recipe can be customised to suit your tastes, varying the coffee strength and volume. You can even set profiles on the machine so that each person in your house can have coffee the way that they want it.
Adjusting recipes in a profile can be a little fiddly, since most of the settings merely adjust an on-screen option, but trying to set volume starts the process of making a drink; you hit stop when you have the right amount of coffee. As a result, I wasted a few shots of espresso at first: I hit the volume option without having a cup to hand.
Finally, there's a button to make two cups at the same time. Cups should be warmed before use, and the CM6310 has a cup warmer on top. You'll need to turn this on in the menu, since it's disabled by default to save energy.
Throughout my time with the Miele CM6310, I slowly adjusted the espresso settings to suit my tastes, picking the strength and brew temperature. I also opted for a finer grind, using the control hidden inside the side panel.
Results were good to begin with and excellent once I had the machine set up the way I wanted. I found that the CM6310 delivered a near-perfect shot of espresso, and I measured a temperature of 61oC – pretty much spot on for espresso.
I found the crema to be thick, oily and luxurious, with the shot of coffee giving a full-bodied taste and the pronounced acidity of my test beans. It's fair to say that the CM6310 delivers top-notch espresso shots that can rival some of the best manual machines.
All of the longer coffee drinks (coffee and long coffee) are made by pouring hot water for longer through the beans, which is known as a caffè crema. The CM6310 is incapable of making an Americano (hot water added to espresso) or long black (espresso added to hot water) automatically. This is because its hot-water spout is a separate outlet. You can still make these drinks manually, but I'd have liked a fully automatic option.
Making milk-based drinks is easy: simply fill the thermos with milk and plug in the milk tube. The Miele CM6310 can then automatically steam and froth the milk, before pouring the drink.
Results are good, but they're not the best I've tasted. I found the foam to be a little light. Ideally, a coffee machine should be able to produce foam with a luxurious and silky texture. Admittedly, the CM6310 isn't far off, and my cappuccino was still very good, but I've seen better automatic results.
Bean-to-cup machines tend to require more maintenance, compared to a manual pump machine, because of their additional complexity and parts. For the most part, the Miele CM6310 makes things easy and automatic. For example, when you turn it on or off, the coffee machine auto-rinses the spout to keep everything clean.
I also found it simple to remove and clean the drip tray (parts of it are dishwasher-safe, although using a soft soapy cloth will prevent any discoloration). The used-grounds container comes out with the drip tray and was easy to empty; a weekly clean will help prevent any mold growth.
Opening the side panel also provides access to the brew unit, which pulls out so you can give it a rinse: once a week is recommended.
For cleaning jobs that need to be performed regularly, the Miele CM6310 helpfully prompts you.
For example, if you've made a milk-based drink, you'll be asked to rinse the milk tube when you turn off the coffee machine. At regular intervals, you'll be prompted to use cleaning tablets, descale the machine, or to clean the milk pipework fully, too.
This kind of maintenance is part and parcel of owning a bean-to-cup machine, and the helpful reminders make sure that you keep the coffee machine in optimum condition.
Other than this, the only other thing you have to do is fill up the 1.8L water reservoir when empty. It pulls neatly out of the side of the machine so you can fill it up from the tap. There's no space for a water filter, which is a little unusual at this price.
The CM6310 is a great coffee machine. It's incredibly well built, makes great espresso and decent milky drinks, too. But, there are a couple of things that hold it back. The range of drinks on offer isn't as flexible as with some other machines I've tested, and it's a little disappointing that you can't make an automatic Americano. Given the high price, I'd expect a little more.
Currently, the Melitta Caffeo Barista TS is a better choice: it's cheaper, has a greater range of recipes on offer and a clever hopper that can be loaded with two different types of beans.
A capable and easy-to-use coffee machine that can do almost everything, but the Miele CM6310 is a little expensive and not quite as flexible as the competition.