The Smeg KLF05 is a kettle from one of the most desirable kitchen brands around. What makes this one different is that it's a mini kettle. That means it has about half the capacity of Smeg's full-size kettles, and is a little more affordable as a result. If you're wanting to add some of that classic Smeg style to your kitchen on a budget, then this could be a good option. But is it worth it, or would you be better off spending more on a full-size one- or less on a kettle from another brand? To find out, our experts put it to the test in another of our in-depth reviews.
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Design & build
If you're thinking of buying a Smeg product, then the design is probably the main reason. It's easy to see why these products are so desirable, with their timeless Italian style. Just like the rest of Smeg's range, it comes in a wide variety of different colours: black, cream, pastel blue, pastel green, pink, red, and white.
Inside, the KLF05 is stainless steel for easy cleaning. However, the outside only looks metal- it's actually plastic. This stops it from scalding you when the kettle has boiled, since an all-metal kettle would get extremely hot, and it stops it from being too heavy, too. In fact, the weight was something our experts noted during testing. While Smeg's larger KLF03 and KLF04 are quite heavy even when empty, the KLF05 is a bit more comfortable to use.
The handle is only attached at the top, unlike some kettles where it's attached top and bottom. We found this made it easier to pick up, and simpler to pour as well. Smeg say that it’s been balanced to make it easier to pour- to be honest, we couldn't really feel this balance while the kettle was empty, but it is easy to pour. There’s an anti-drip spout so it doesn’t get water all over the countertop, and an integrated limescale filter in the spout too.
The KLF05 has quite a snazzy little power switch, which just goes to show that Smeg have thought about everything when designing their products. Finally, there's a 360-degree swivel base, so the kettle can be used left- or right-handed, and placed anywhere in your kitchen while still remaining easily accessible.
Of course, the big thing to note here is that this is a "mini" kettle. It has a 0.8L capacity, whereas most larger models have a 1.7L capacity. This could be good or bad depending on the user, but we'll come onto in a moment. There's also no external water gauge. This means you have to look inside the kettle to see how full it is. There's an indicator inside for min (one cup) and max (three cups).
So, back to the “mini” part. Now why would you want a mini kettle? Well, a full-size kettle will boil enough water for about seven or eight cups at full capacity. Most people likely only boil enough for a few cups at most- but we're all guilty of filling the kettle with more water than we need. If you do this every time you make a cuppa, it adds up to a fair bit of wasted energy and water over time. Since the KLF05 only holds enough for about three cups at full capacity, there's less chance for any wastage here. For smaller homes with two people living there, the capacity will be plenty for everyday use.
The KLF05 has a 1400W output, compared to the 3000W you'd find on a larger kettle. Thanks to superfast boiling technology, though, we found that it boils enough for one or two cups in a similar sort of time to its bigger siblings- but only using half the energy. The heating element is concealed, which makes cleaning much easier in hard water areas since limescale tends to build up around the element if it's exposed. Lastly, boil-dry protection ensures that the kettle shuts off if activated with no water in it for added safety.
Smeg KLF05: The Verdict
The Smeg KLF05 kettle may be mini, but it's still packed with Smeg's signature style. If you only need a kettle to serve one or two people, then we'd heartily recommend it. On the other hand, larger households might be better off looking at the Smeg KLF03, which has a larger capacity.