The Good Stuff
- Simplicity. It works. Out of the box. You fill it with water, set the temperature and it goes. No need to do any calibration. You don't even really need the manual to operate the thing to get great results.
- Aesthetics. The SVS looks like a kitchen appliance. The meth cooker-y stylings of the PID controller do not work for everyone's kitchen. This can get further complicated if you are trying to control a large rice cooker.
- Rack. The rack is useful for keeping higher temperature, longer cooking time items submerged under water.
- Lid. The lid feels kind of cheap and water collects underneath creating a weird seal. The plus side of the lid is that when I was done cooking I could use the lid as a tray for whatever goodies I had cooked.
- Size. The SVS has a nice sized tank for the home kitchen. Overall the device is on the large size, which does come with some complications. Filling and removing the water is a little cumbersome. If you don't plan on keeping the appliance out, you need to find some space to store it. But, on the plus side, I can sous vide a human baby in hat tank.
The Could Be Better
- Slight hint of burning plastic smell. This could be the result of using a demo unit, but there was a slight burning smell. Ever-so-slightly. Like, is this a nasal hallucination? Also, this was an eval unit, so it might have gotten banged around a bit before I got it.
- Could possibly burn your countertop. The manual also mentioned that certain countertops (Corian brand) could be burned by the SVS. I had no idea prior to using it whether or not I had that kind of countertop. That's why I rent.
Wrap-UpShould you buy an SVS? I think that depends:
- If you already have a PID controller/Rice Cooker style setup, then you already have a functioning sous vide setup. It also means you are in the smaller subset of the cooking population that is a lot more comfortable getting your hands dirty and are probably happy about the tuning abilities of a PID controller setup. I don't really think the SousVide Supreme offers you too much.
- If you do not have any experience, and the idea of a PID controller doesn't appeal to you on aesthetics, usability or convenience then this is a great purchase. Yes, it will cost you more money. But, after you have your first sous vide ribeye or 72 Hour 136F short rib, you will forget about it. Also, I think it would make a great gift for someone who really loves to cook.