Target's Bellini Multifunction kitchen machine (Intelli kitchen Master) versus Thermomixes/Thermochefs

Thermomixes have been one of those machines that sounds really good but are too expensive for me to buy to try at $2k although I have heard that they replace so much etc and make it so easy, they pay for themselves.

Target has released what looks a lot like a rip-off Thermomix called the Bellini Multi-function kitchen machine also known as Intelli Kitchen master at $269 (i wonder if you can also get the bonus homewares $10 voucher.)

Anyone used it or know anything about it?? From whirlpool forum, it sounds like the bellini receipe book is a copy of the thermomix one (apparently they even forgot to change thermomix to bellini in the book).
Gimmick that will break and not function as promised???

Sounds much more affordable than Thermomix if it does the same thing, but still expensive if it end up being junk!

Comments

  •  

    Are thermomox really $2k?
    My sister has one bought for her by her Mother-In-Law, but I thought she said they were $400 (which still sounded expensive)

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    Thermomixes are definitely almost $2000 (maybe like 1700-1900)….they have released some newer cheaper domestic version called thermochef that is maybe half the price, but still i think 600-700 (not sure if the thermochef is avail here)! I made enquires here and overseas (when our dollar was good).

    I want to swap mother in laws…..mine gave me earrings as a wedding present that were so gorgeous, my husband who usually makes no comment on taste/appearance, saw them and said those are ugly where did they come from (and i could smile and say your mother, dear). I'm struggling to think of anything else she has gifted me in the 5 years since :P

    • +1 vote

      Hi, the thermochef is from a different mob and is made somewhere in Asia. Thermomix is made in Europe.

      I have read reviews of both and it seems that other than a number of people preferring the Thermochef's scales, there is much of a muchness.

      It was so funny. I was at a GF's house for a drinks thing and a Thermomix sales hag was there talking about how she just wanted to help families, etc. I asked her how the Thermochef's debut had affected sales. Oh, she went off! She said that Thermomix was the original and everything else could therefore only be poor copies, because the originals were always better than any imitators that came along. I couldn't believe the venom and anger (must really be cutting into sales - you can also buy a Thermochef without having to arrange a demo with one of the demo hags). I was only sad that it was my GFs party and I couldn't have a go at this woman about where did she get her Model T. Obviously, it must have been the superior vehicle for all time. BMW, Toyota, Mercedes, Honda, Range Rover, etc. eat your hearts out. No way you could ever be as good as the original, no matter what innovations you come up with.

      I am looking forward to seeing this Target machine. Very very excited. No doubt there will be sales going forward, as long as they aren't so popular that they can't keep up with supply…..

      Thanks for telling us about this OP.

      •  

        To be fair the demos run by the "Demo Hags" are Free and they provide a lot of the ingredients at their own expense. Though going on a tirade about the cheaper alternatives is a tad unprofessional lol It's a pretty interesting demo and the food tastes good.

        • +1 vote

          When I enquired about doing a demo, I was told that I would have to wait at least 6 weeks. They would give me a list of ingredients to buy, right down to the rice, butter and oil, and that I had to have at least 4 other people there in order to make it worth their while. If my kitchen wasn't big enough, I needed to find a friend's house to have it at. I have met two thermohags. Both extolled the virtues of healthy eating., Both were obese.

          I won't buy a thermomix because I think the distributor here in Oz is a primadonna andI do not appreciate their attitude towards customer service.

          When the aussie dollar was dropping years ago, they raised their prices. Now that it has completely shot up, the price has remained the same. It should be about 30 - 40% less based on currency movements.

          If you want a thermomix, there are legitimate dealers in europe who are selling on ebay. You get the value of our strong currency that way.

        •  

          You must have gotten a dodgy one..:( Why do they need a big kitchen lol it's a little machine! hahaha.. (well in comparison anyway).
          Yeah well some of the demo people have become demo people to pay off their thermomix. So there is that problem. (because you would know its one of the options :P) Probably got those ones.. lol The one we got provided everything themselves except for little things the house has already like butter sugar etc..

      •  

        In your post above, you mention the possibility of buying from overseas. I was in Donaldson's electrical in Stepney, SA yesterday & we were having a general chat about purchase of kitchen appliances. She said a common mistake people make is buying an appliance (kitchen aid is the popular one) from overseas and they blow the motor the 1st time they try to use it (this can't be fixed and is a total loss). You would need to convert the appliance to work on our power supply & the lady said it's not worth the cost, just buy one here. The people who don't convert them would be using a travel adaptor to run these appliances, which are ok for hair dryers but not something like a kitchen appliance. just a word a word of warning for anyone considering this option.

        •  

          Europe is on the same voltage, unlike the US. The only thing that is different is the plug. I've known people who have done this with a Thermomix. Of course the appliance lady is going to tell you it's not worth it and you should buy it here.

          I love it when other people think they should have a say in how I spend my money. What is worth it and what isn't.

  • +1 vote

    Yeah, can confirm Thermomix are ~$2k. Friend's sister is one of those demoer/resellers, who hold events similar to Tupperware parties.

    While the machine is impressive, I wasn't convinced it was $2k impressive…

  •  

    Yes, they are almost $2000! I think $1930 + $50 'delivery'. I attended a demo last year and have been hassling hubby for one ever since. The thermomix is definitely better as it has scales, and the temperature and speed is set by specific buttons not a dial, but that is certainly not worth the extra $1700! I'll be at Target tomorrow at 8:30am to get my Bellini that's for sure!

  •  

    A reminder that most major credit cards include up to an additional one year warranty when you use the card to buy……

    That would bring this warranty up to two years.

  •  

    All sold out in most stores :(

  • +2 votes

    Had my Thermomix for nearly 4 years now and love it. It's not a panacea for every kitchen situation but what it does it does really well. It's incredibly well made and thought out and… it's a lot of fun.

    My sister has wanted one, but wouldn't shell out for it and she pointed out the Bellini to me yesterday, so we got one to try (at that price we had to check it out so). Pulled it out to have a qucik look but haven't cooked anythng in it yet, we're going to have a play this weekend and see how it compares.

    First impressions… As a thermomix owner I'm pleased to say there are some obvious quality differences between the Bellini and the Thermomix (and with that kind of price difference so there should be).

    While the bowl of the Bellini seems to made of decent stainless steel it doesn't come apart the same way for cleaning. The motor in the Bellini is not in the same league as the thermomix and the blade is definitely lower quality (and not sealed, there's oil dripping out of it).

    At the end of the day though it comes down to a question of value…@ $269 first impressions say there is some value there in the Bellini. At ~$400 I'm not sure - too soon to tell. Got to see how it handles hard items like ice, and hard stale bread. Also couldn't see a reverse fucntion so don't know if can produce a risotto in the same way as the Thermomix.

    What I can say is that we've unequivocoally got the proverbial $2000 worth out of our Thermomix over the last 4 years (probabaly double that), but as people have noted the Thermomix is very expensive. I'm sure part of the price point of the Bellini is that it's made in China and shipped direct to Target. The thermomix sales model obviosuly adds a margin to the price as comissions have to be paid to the demo/sales people. That being said we've had fantastic and professional (ongoing) service from the person that demoed and sold us our one. If I'm disapointed about anything it's that the price hasn't come down a bit with the dollar being so much stronger against the Euro than it was when we bought ours.

    I'm going to do some cooking in the Bellini this weekend and will let you know how it compares.

  •  

    I have one on hold and am picking it up this weekend. I won;t be cooking this w/e as I am away, but am going to try it out next week.

    Maybe Marias Select can get back to us so if it is complete crap I can return it before I open it.

    Thanks again OP.

  •  

    Looking forward to hearing your comments too mariasselect. If it is good, I'll be searching local targets.

    •  

      It'll go on sale in the future anyway, so I no doubt you'll end up being better off by waiting.

      •  

        oops, didn't read the posts correctly - COMMENT DELETED

      •  

        AND they may bring out a "deluxe" version with reverse stirring and scales.

  •  

    Voteoften, I am just letting people know about a possible pitfall in buying appliances from overseas based on a conversation I had yesterday with someone who works in electrical repairs. I don't care what you do with your money or what you think is worthwhile or not, I'm just thinking of the people who read your "advice" and may make that mistake when purchasing from overseas.

    • +2 votes

      As someone who works in electrical repairs, I'll back up that you can certainly use UK/European appliances here with nothing less than a power point adaptor - or get an electrician to replace the plug.
      Many immigrants bring their washers etc. with them and apart from the issue of getting the correct spare parts, there is no problems. Bringing in appliances from US & Canada is a different story though and is sometimes more effort than it is worth

    •  

      Rachel5152, it is the statement "the lady said it's not worth the cost, just buy one here" that I am referring to when I talk about people telling others how to spend their money. Just like any form of selling, you get true believers who think that whatever they are selling is the most important thing in life. Women selling upscale handbags would be happy to see buyers default on their mortgage, as long as they have a collection of expensive handbags. Same is true with true believers selling shoes, makeup, cars, any kind of consumer item. It is NOT their place to tell people what is worth it and what is not. I feel both sorry for and contempuous of anyone who blindly listens to salespeople.

      Your sales person has a vested interest in getting people to be scared of buying from overseas, whereas SteveM (below) knows what he is talking about and has no vested interest.

      My advice is to consider buying overseas where you get the benefit of the high auusie dollar. Your "advice" is to blindly accept scaremongering by people with a patently obvious vested interest who have decided for you already that it is "not worth the cost". Worth is in the eye of the spender, not some woman trying to sell you something for more than you can get ot elsewhere.

  • +1 vote

    So folks, have done a few things with the Bellini.

    First thing I noticed was the display is hard to see. This might be partly becuase I'm 184cm tall, but every time I wanted to see it I had to bob down.

    The Thermomix controls are definitely better (and I'm also more used to them). Unless you are using the turbo button you have to set a time to make the unit run. I find this annoying.

    I started with something simple - Garlic Mayo.
    The machine made this without a problem, but it was at this stage I noticed the inside of the lid on the Bellini is segmented (wheras the the Thermomix lid is flat and smooth). This makes scraping food off the inside of the lid annoying and defintiely means more waste.

    Next we did mash. I was surprised not to find a mash recipe in the receie book so followed the TM one. This was where a couple of more setrious issues became apparent.

    For best results with mash you need the mixing tool (butterfly attachment in Thermomix parlance). The Bellini manual says you can't go past speed 3 with this tool in place.

    For those that don't know, you chop your spuds into big pieces and cook it in the device with some milk and salt for ~15min. Once cooked you turn the speed up to mash and fluff it.

    At speed 3 it couldn't cope, (motor cuts in and out) so I turned it up to speed 4 and despite it's suction cup feet on the bench it broke free and started jumping around so I had to hold it down till it settled through the "rough patch". Still hadn't creamed nicely so put it on again and pushed it up to speed 5 which did a much better job.

    The mash itself turned out fine, but my method was clearly in breach of the operating rules.

    While you can choose to go faster with the mixing tool on (because it has no way of knowing that the tool if fitted or not) the machine has a programmed restriction not go past speed 3 when cooking. This could be annoying for certain things like pureeing soup. Of course you can turn the heat off and use whatever speed you want, but also be careful here. The Thermomix senses the heat and will not go to straight to full speed (it winds up slowly for saftey). The Bellini allows instant full speed even if the thing is full of hot liquid. The turbo button here becomes a risk factor especially if, like me, you have young kids that like to cook.

    This morning I whipped up a batch of panackes. With the TM I can push this to a completly full bowl (the recipe uses 5 cups of flour). The motor in the Bellini was audibly pushing hard with the recipe based on 3 cups of flour. I added a little more liquid and it got happier, but I suspect 5 cups would be too much for it.

    So a verdict… Obviously I love my Thermomix and I can assure you no one who has a Thermomix is going to wish they had a Bellini instead. But what about the question of value? Hmmm…at $269 it's defintiely not a rip off. At full price I'm not so sure.

    If I can have a "soap box" moment it's to ask the question of how we measure value? I get concerned about our throw away society. I have a Sunbeam toaster that was my Grandmaother's - it's more than 40 years old, gets used most days and will probably go another 20 years without a problem. My teenage daughter has had her eye on the Thermomix since we got it. I've no doubt that in a few years time when she's ready to move out of home she'll be telling me I need to get a new one so she can take the existing one. And I fully expect the exisitng one will still be going strong. While I can't make a fair comment on how the Bellini will be performing in 4 years time, I don't expect it to last 4 years (let alone 8). Instead of a carbon tax I think we should have a waste or disposal tax that is part of the purchase price of anything that doesn't have at least a 3 year warranty.

    Anyway, I'll hop of the soap box now. Hope this has helped some of you. Didn't get a chance to use the steaming gear on the Bellini if we do anything later today I'll post again.

    Happy cooking.

    :)

    •  

      Thanks so much Maria for taking the time to test, and to write up such a comprehensive report on the machine. Really value your fair assessment and comparison between this and the ThermoMix.

  •  

    I've got this question in my head…for $269, can it match 70% of a Thermomix in terms of functionality, usability with ease?

    •  

      or reading MariasSelect comparison about, are its obvious limitations in comparison to the Thermomix going to mean that it will get used only occasionally, and simply clutter up the cupboard?

      It depends on the individual's needs as to which is the better way to go though. It's probably akin to buying Aldi elcheapo versions of gadgets - if you're not likely to use it all the time, and it does the job adequately for your needs, then the tradeoffs for the savings can be worthwhile.

    •  

      Only matters if that 70% is the partiular 70% you wanted!

  •  

    Marias Slect - Thanks for your report. I was discussing it with a friend this w/e and decided that the only thing I would probably use the Bellini or a Thermomix for is Risotto. I love my stick blenders a LOT and most of the other things can be made in the h/d blender - like sorbet, etc. I would like to be able to put a Risotto on and walk away from it. Not have to do something to it every 2 or 3 minutes. I literally want to put it on and not worry about it until it is time to serve. Maybe stick the onion and oil in and then the rice later and then the stock. but if I am using a device like these, I don't want to monitor stock level and continually add more. I want to be taking care of my guests or other aspects of the meal. Do either the Bellini or the Thermomix have the capability of just dumping the stock in and walking away or do you have to hang around putting more in.

    Could you please let me know if my desired outcome is available with either of the machines? Thanks!

    •  

      Can't speak for the Bellini. but for the thermomix rissoto you can just put the stuff in and set the timer and walk away. It's good like that you don't have to sit there watching it.

      Judging from Marias Select's post the Bellini looks like it has the same timer function so it could be worth it for you? definitely if you're only using it for risotto (though who knows how the motor will hold up pushing all the rice around :P)

      •  

        I thought risotto required the reverse function - which bellini does not have?

        • +1 vote

          Maybe Thermomix says put it on reverse because it has the reverse function. Maybe it would not make a discernable difference.

          If you dump all the stock in at once with the thermomix, I am wondering whether it is a true risotto or just a wet rice dish.

          Perhaps I will just perfect my paella. You can't stir that. It is the lazy wo/man's risotto.

        •  

          You select the reverse function on a Thermomix when cooking a risotto so you don't damage with rice with the sharp side of the blade. The blade is only sharp on one side. You can also insert the butterfly attachment. There is no stirring or burning. The consistency is great.
          You do not need to change the blade in a Thermomix (as you do in others like the Beliini), the one blade does it all.

  •  

    Not a great recipe book, but I have started follwing a blog called The Managing Mum, which is an unofficial blog with recipes developed for the Bellini Kitchen Master. It's great! www.themanagingmum.blogspot.com.au

  •  

    I have looked for these at Target a couple of times recently and have not seen them. Has anyone seen them at Target since the launch?

    •  

      Currently on sale for $279

      •  

        Thanks I bought one months ago. Had issues and returned it.

  •  

    I happened to be in Perth CBD and figured I'd cut through Target. These were available at $299 (w/ $10 voucher for future purchase) on the Hay street end. I bought one.

    Apparently there were some issues with burning and that's why the machines were not available. I'll check it out.

  •  

    I know this is an old post but I could not read this with out commenting.
    I am a "demo hag" aka Thermomix Consultant. I need to get some facts straightened out.
    The price of a Thermomix in Australia is $1939 inc. GST. You do not need to pay for delivery because a Consultant will personally delivery it to your house and give you a cooking lesson (yes, you read that correctly, they give up their own time to deliver your machine and help you get used to the functions of your new Thermomix by cooking with you).
    We also offer on-going support which is second to non. We offer second demonstrations and cooking classes.
    While I understand that not everyone can afford a Thermomix, I do believe you get what you pay for.
    A lot of Thermomix owners start off with cheaper versions like a Bellini and then upgrade to a Thermomix at a later date when they can see their worth.
    The Consultant you speak of sounds unprofessional and I can assure you we are not all like that.
    A Host is asked to pick up less than $10 worth of ingredients (like eggs, cheese and milk that need to be kept cold) for a 5-6 course meal, the Consultant brings everything else. We do not ask for big groups, just a Host + 2-5 guests. To quality for a FREE ThermoServer when you host a demonstration and purchase a Thermomix, you need to have guests from two different addresses to the Host.
    If you had to wait 6 weeks for a demonstration she must have been a busy woman, she could have referred you on to another Consultant to get you a demo sooner.
    If you would like to import one I would research the taxes, delivery cost and find out what size currency converter you will need to ensure you don't do damage.
    I would also look in to the warranty, as I have not imported a Thermomix, I do not know?? I imported an Electric Fisher Price swing from USA for my baby a few months ago, when it arrived it was faulty. Even though it was brand new in the box, Fisher Price Australia would not acknowledge the warranty because it was purchased from USA and Fisher Price USA wouldn't help me because I was in AU. There was nothing I could do and was left with an expensive faulty swing.
    Lastly, I drive a Holden and a Dodge.

    •  

      You said " they give up their own time to deliver your machine and help you get used to the functions of your new Thermomix by cooking with you)."

      I assume you meant, " delivery and a demonstration are included in the price "
      or " they are paid by the company to deliver your machine and help you get used to the functions of your new Thermomix by cooking with you). "

  •  

    It's much the same, what the consultant is saying, unlike other machines you purchase, with the thermomix you get a consultant to deliver and demonstrate the product.

    I have a thermomix, or should I say I bought the wife one for Christmas. it's used everyday, heck I even use it.

    The consultant should feel no need to justify themselves, voteoften is way out of line referring the consultants as a "demo hag"

    When I enquired about doing a demo, I was told that I would have to wait at least 6 weeks. They would give me a list of ingredients to buy, right down to the rice, butter and oil, and that I had to have at least 4 other people there in order to make it worth their while. If my kitchen wasn't big enough, I needed to find a friend's house to have it at. I have met two thermohags. Both extolled the virtues of healthy eating., Both were obese.

    The only voteoften post worth reading in this discussion is

    

    voteoften on 07/03/2013 - 16:12

    Thanks I bought one months ago. Had issues and returned it. (In relation to the cheap alternative)

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