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Recent Tasting Notes
I have a love-hate relationship with my Cauldryn. I chose Cauldryn over other brands like Ember because Cauldryn had a larger capacity, longer battery life and larger temperature range…but with that comes clunky appearance and added weight.
The good first…
This thing can boil water so you can use it to brew tea/coffee/instant soup, unlike rival mugs that can only keep your beverage warm after it’s already been made. I often use it as a sort of mini electric kettle to make tea upstairs when I don’t want to go down to the kitchen. If you use the desktop base to power the mug instead of the battery pack it reduces the weight and makes it a bit less awkward to pick up. Cauldryn and Yunnan Sourcing’s raw pu-erh cha gao got me through some very long, cold days of pruning trees in an orchard…the battery will last a good while if it’s just maintaining “drinking temperature” instead of boiling so something like cha gao that works with almost any temperature water worked really well in the cup. There is a car power base with a cigarette lighter plug and some other attachments for blending and coffee brewing available as extras.
The not so good…
The bluetooth “smart” features are kind of a joke. An older version of bluetooth is used and the range is so short that you might as well just use the buttons on the mug to adjust the temperature instead of connecting your phone. Oh, and if you’re using the desktop power base, every time you lift the mug up to take a drink you’ll lose your bluetooth connection and have to reconnect every time you set the mug back on the base. The slider on the lid traps gunk in it. I’ve been hesitant to put very many beverages in the mug and mostly use it for heating water that I pour into other teaware because Cauldryn’s lid is almost impossible to thoroughly clean. I’d be afraid of smells and things starting to grow in hidden places if I ever had tea with milk in it. The lid also drips badly if you try to pour from the cup. I’ve burned myself more than once with drips of just boiled water that went in unexpected directions. The heating element is the bottom of the cup. If you remove the heating element you have a bottomless cup, a metal tube. This makes cleaning interesting since you want to clean the one side of the heating element but not get the other side wet. But it’s also problematic because the heating element and the battery pack both screw onto the mug in the same direction so it’s possible to accidentally unscrew the heating element and dump your beverage all over yourself while trying to remove the battery pack. I did get the battery to last 8-ish hours at drinking temperature of my drink was already hot when I turned on the battery. But the battery dies super quickly if you’re trying to heat a cold drink and may not last long enough to boil cold water. You can charge the battery while using it to power the mug but the battery will drain faster than it charges. The battery and the desktop base both use the same power cord and you only get one of them in the box. You can only buy a spare power cord with an extra desktop base, no cord by itself, which is extra annoying because the cords seem to die in less than a year (I’ve been through two). You’d think that’s be covered under the product’s warranty, right? Good luck. I lost count of the number of times I’ve tried to contact the company and gotten no response. Customer service appears to be non-existent. Thankfully, an old laptop’s power cord fits and seems to work so that’s what I’m using now.
My version of the Cauldryn seems to be discontinued now and it looks like the company has an updated version in the works. Part of me wants to upgrade when it’s available because it’s still the only battery powered mug I know of that can get hot enough to brew tea or coffee and holds more than the other brands. But my model’s quirks and the company’s refusal to honor their warranty (or even acknowledge that you’re contacting them!) are a bit off-putting.