Third rack, bottle jets, and smart features
The outside of the Café CDT875M5NS5 dishwasher is mostly a featureless expanse of Café's signature Platinum Glass finish, a glass-coated brushed steel. While it's not exactly fingerprint-proof, it looks great and wipes down easily.
Below its pocket handle you'll find a small LCD that displays a cycle's status, letting you know at a glance when your dishes are done. This is a helpful feature considering how quiet this dishwasher runs: Its whisper-soft 39dB cycles could operate in a library without alerting anyone.
Opening up the door reveals the CDT875M5NS5's interior, which consists of three black plastic racks and a three-part cutlery bin. The middle rack is outfitted with a row of bottle jets and has a row of adjustable tines.
About the Café CDT875M5NS5 dishwasher
Dimensions: 34" x 23.8" x 24"(H x W x D)
Capacity: 16 place settings
Finishes: Platinum glass
Cycles: Pots, Normal, Express, China, Auto
Cycle options: Wash Zone Upper/Lower Only, Sabbath Mode, Presoak + Sanitize (Certified to NSF Standard 184), Hi-Temp Wash, Heated Dry, Dual Convection Ultra Dry, Delay Start, Bottle Wash
User manual: Café CDT875M5NS5 user manual
What we like
It does a decent job drying dishes
Café really goes all-in on making sure the CDT875M5NS5 gets dishes dry enough to go straight from the dishwasher to your cupboard. While the drying isn't the best we've seen, it is solidly above average: Most dishes come out of the dishwasher bone dry, and, at worst, only need a light toweling. The CDT875M5NS5 is even able to get plastics mostly dry: We didn't see any water pooling on top of our reusable containers.
Given that the Dual Convection Ultra Dry feature is one of this Café's flagship features, we're happy with the results here. If you're frustrated with your dishwasher delivering damp dishes, the CDT875M5NS5 is one of the few models offering an alternative.
High-end aesthetics make your kitchen even classier
Café is GE's line of upmarket home appliances, and while we do have gripes with the CDT875M5NS5, its looks aren't among them. The Platinum Glass finish is both attractive and easy to clean. The pocket handle helps keep the device compact, with nothing protruding past your cabinetry. It also feature top-facing controls, with only a small LCD readout on the front of the device to allow owners to easily check on a cycle's status.
All in all, it's a clean-looking dishwasher with only the essentials visible to an outside observer. Based on its looks alone, this dishwasher will wind up in many buyers' dream kitchens.
It boasts lots of excellent extras
The CDT875M5NS5 comes with just about all the high-end features you'd expect from such an expensive dishwasher. It has a third rack, adjustable tines and bottle jets on its middle rack, and comes with the standard suite of smart features, courtesy of SmartHQ. Just download the app onto your smartphone and you can control the unit remotely, monitor cycle progress, or set up the device to automatically order more detergent when it runs low.
What we don’t like
Most cycles struggle with stubborn stains
This is the main complaint we have with this dishwasher: Every cycle we tested had significant difficulty cleaning our puréed spinach stain in one way or another. Yes, puréed spinach is our toughest stain, and that's because of two reasons: it requires the dishwasher to have good spray coverage and its tiny, non-water-soluble particles really test the filter. If you've ever used a vegetable powder in a post-workout smoothie, you likely already know how persistent those fibrous flecks can be.
The Normal cycle left behind 75% of these stains, and while the Express and Pots cycles cleaned away over 90% of the spinach stains most of the time, one or two bowls each cycle were only getting 5%-10% clean. Keep in mind these dishes go in absolutely covered in stains, and people generally consider a plate dirty if there's more than a few specks of food remaining on them. Nobody would look at a dish with 75%–90% of its surface covered in food and think it was clean.
We would've liked to see better performance from such an expensive machine, but the spinach stain is a bit niche. Many buyers may not have anything in their diets that will trip up the CDT875M5NS5 like this, and given its otherwise stellar performance, it should suit those families just fine.
What owners are saying
Owners generally love their CDT875M5NS5, awarding it an average of 4.1 stars out of 5 across major retailers. Common points of praise included its great, easy-to-clean exterior and general cleaning performance. There are, however, quite a few negative reviews that echo our lab results. Many users report seeing redeposit on their dishes, inconsistent cleaning quality, or dripping condensate due to the design of the steam vent (we didn't see this in the lab, but we do see how this could be an issue when it's colder).
The Café CDT875M5NS5 is covered by a one-year warranty that covers parts and labor. While this is the industry standard guarantee, it's disappointing that owners aren't given more leeway, given how large of an investment this appliance is. Other companies like LG and Samsung will guarantee certain parts of their appliances for up to 10 years.
Should you buy the Café CDT875M5NS5?
When you're spending $1,600 on an appliance, you expect the manufacturer to have perfected all the little details that help provide a high-end experience. While the CDT875M5NS5 checks off many of these boxes—a great look, mostly excellent cleaning, intuitive controls, a third rack, bottle jets, and decent drying—its inconsistency is what has us worried. Even if we're assuming you don't eat anything resembling puréed spinach, no dish should only be getting 5% cleaned, regardless of the stain involved.
This is a tough one. We considered leaving our decision at a "maybe" because many of the CDT875M5NS5's shortcomings fall within a relatively narrow vector: It's possible the issues we experienced may not be significant for your family, at least not enough to be a dealbreaker.
But at the end of the day, this is a very expensive dishwasher. Just as extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof, the CDT875M5NS5 needs to do a lot of work to justify its high purchase price. And we don't think it does.
If you're buying this dishwasher mostly for its looks, don't think you'll run into any problems with fibrous foods, and money is no object, it's possible the CDT875M5NS5 will treat you well. For everyone else, however, we can't recommend the CDT875M5NS5.
If you're in the market for a high-end dishwasher, check out the Bosch SHPM88Z75N instead. It has excellent cleaning and drying performance and also has a premium appearance.
If you're looking for the best value, the dishwasher for you is the LG LDF5545ST. This dishwasher is, surprisingly, one of the best we've tested, with top-tier cleaning and exemplary drying at just over $400.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.
Meet the testers
Mark Brezinski is a senior writer with over ten years of experience reviewing consumer tech and home appliances.
Senior Manager of Lab Operations@ReviewedHome
Jonathan Chan currently serves as the Lab Manager at Reviewed. If you clean with it, it's likely that Jon oversees its testing. Since joining the Reviewed in 2012, Jon has helped launch the company's efforts in reviewing laptops, vacuums, and outdoor gear. He thinks he's a pretty big deal. In the pursuit of data, he's plunged his hands into freezing cold water, consented to be literally dragged through the mud, and watched paint dry. Jon demands you have a nice day.
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