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GAGGIA CLASSIC 14101

A pump espresso machine that is not too cheap and flimsy, yet not too high end as to burn a hole in the pocket, Gaggia Classic is the best semi automatic espresso machine for a first time buyer. It gives much value for money and is sturdy enough to last you until...

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

Would you still spend $4 or more a day at Starbucks if you had a great espresso machine at home that saves you all the trouble? If a cup of espresso is what you need every morning but you hate having to grind, tamp, brew and wash up portafilters afterward, go for the...

JURA-CAPRESSO IMPRESSA J6

How can it be made easy for any office, cafe, hotel or buffet restaurant to serve free-flow espresso drinks quickly and in a fuss-free and mess-free manner? Simply get this super automatic espresso machine which is the best of its kind because with this Jura-Capresso...

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LA PAVONI EPC-8 EUROPICCOLA

LA PAVONI EPC-8 EUROPICCOLA

To certain people, a great cup of espresso is different from a good cup of espresso and don’t you try arguing with them about that. If you fall into that group, you may like to control every aspect of the process called espresso making and you’ll love the La Pavoni...

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

Would you still spend $4 or more a day at Starbucks if you had a great espresso machine at home that saves you all the trouble? If a cup of espresso is what you need every morning but you hate having to grind, tamp, brew and wash up portafilters afterward, go for the...

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GAGGIA CLASSIC 14101

GAGGIA CLASSIC 14101

A pump espresso machine that is not too cheap and flimsy, yet not too high end as to burn a hole in the pocket, Gaggia Classic is the best semi automatic espresso machine for a first time buyer. It gives much value for money and is sturdy enough to last you until...

BREVILLE BES870XL

Let’s get right into it. The Breville Barista Express BES870XL is the best espresso machine for all levels, and it’s a big bang for your buck. If you have more than one user at home who will be making espressos with the espresso machine, and who have varying...

GAGGIA CLASSIC 14101

A pump espresso machine that is not too cheap and flimsy, yet not too high end as to burn a hole in the pocket, Gaggia Classic is the best semi automatic espresso machine for a first time buyer. It gives much value for money and is sturdy enough to last you until...

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

Would you still spend $4 or more a day at Starbucks if you had a great espresso machine at home that saves you all the trouble? If a cup of espresso is what you need every morning but you hate having to grind, tamp, brew and wash up portafilters afterward, go for the...

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LA PAVONI EPC-8 EUROPICCOLA

To certain people, a great cup of espresso is different from a good cup of espresso and don’t you try arguing with them about that. If you fall into that group, you may like to control every aspect of the process called espresso making and you’ll love the La...

GAGGIA CLASSIC 14101

A pump espresso machine that is not too cheap and flimsy, yet not too high end as to burn a hole in the pocket, Gaggia Classic is the best semi automatic espresso machine for a first time buyer. It gives much value for money and is sturdy enough to last you until...

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

Would you still spend $4 or more a day at Starbucks if you had a great espresso machine at home that saves you all the trouble? If a cup of espresso is what you need every morning but you hate having to grind, tamp, brew and wash up portafilters afterward, go for the...

Recently Added

GAGGIA CLASSIC 14101

A pump espresso machine that is not too cheap and flimsy, yet not too high end as to burn a hole in the pocket, Gaggia Classic is the best semi automatic espresso machine for a first time buyer. It gives much value for money and is sturdy enough to last you until...

JURA-CAPRESSO IMPRESSA J6

How can it be made easy for any office, cafe, hotel or buffet restaurant to serve free-flow espresso drinks quickly and in a fuss-free and mess-free manner? Simply get this super automatic espresso machine which is the best of its kind because with this Jura-Capresso...

LA PAVONI EPC-8 EUROPICCOLA

To certain people, a great cup of espresso is different from a good cup of espresso and don’t you try arguing with them about that. If you fall into that group, you may like to control every aspect of the process called espresso making and you’ll love the La Pavoni...

BREVILLE BES870XL

Let’s get right into it. The Breville Barista Express BES870XL is the best espresso machine for all levels, and it’s a big bang for your buck. If you have more than one user at home who will be making espressos with the espresso machine, and who have varying degrees...

Editor Picks

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

Would you still spend $4 or more a day at Starbucks if you had a great espresso machine at home that saves you all the trouble? If a cup of espresso is what you need every morning but you hate having to grind, tamp, brew and wash up portafilters afterward, go for the...
NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

Would you still spend $4 or more a day at Starbucks if you had a great espresso machine at home that saves you all the trouble? If a cup of espresso is what you need every morning but you hate having to grind, tamp, brew and wash up portafilters afterward, go for the...

JURA-CAPRESSO IMPRESSA J6

JURA-CAPRESSO IMPRESSA J6

How can it be made easy for any office, cafe, hotel or buffet restaurant to serve free-flow espresso drinks quickly and in a fuss-free and mess-free manner? Simply get this super automatic espresso machine which is the best of its kind because with this Jura-Capresso...

LA PAVONI EPC-8 EUROPICCOLA

LA PAVONI EPC-8 EUROPICCOLA

To certain people, a great cup of espresso is different from a good cup of espresso and don’t you try arguing with them about that. If you fall into that group, you may like to control every aspect of the process called espresso making and you’ll love the La Pavoni...

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GAGGIA CLASSIC 14101

GAGGIA CLASSIC 14101

A pump espresso machine that is not too cheap and flimsy, yet not too high end as to burn a hole in the pocket, Gaggia Classic is the best semi automatic espresso machine for a first time buyer. It gives much value for money and is sturdy enough to last you until you’re ready to upgrade.

Very Solid and User Friendly

Gaggia Classic makes good espressos and is easier to use than the high end espresso machines. You may think it’s basic, but it serves its purpose and the build is solid with replaceable parts.

While the housing is stainless steel, the portafilters and grouphead are made of high grade brass plated with chrome.

“I’ve worked at two espresso shops with commercial machines, and the parts on this moderately priced Gaggia are nearly as heavy and substantial as the big multiple-thousands of dollars machines.” – Adapted from a review by Dominika Lepak.

Instantly Make Another Shot

The best feature of the Gaggia Classic is its 3-way valve, which practically makes this espresso machine a level above others!

Okay, I’ll explain. The one less attractive trait of a pump espresso machine is that it takes time to build up pressure after you have made one shot, but the Gaggia Classic solves this problem with the valve, allowing you to make another espresso shot right away.

The Gaggia Classic also heats up very quickly compared to many other espresso makers, which is great when time is ticking off the clock in the morning.

In any case, two shots can be made simultaneously with the Gaggia Classic if you like too. I have made as many as six shots of espresso in just five minutes.

Many have complained about the Gaggia Classic’s steam wand in the old version, but they have replaced it with a new design that is more consistent in its performance.

Use Bottled Water

The only downside to this espresso machine is the aluminum boiler. That’s not to say that it doesn’t perform well, but keep in mind that aluminum tend to corrode if you expose it to minerals in the water you’re using.

Try to avoid using hard tap water, and use bottled water instead. In any case, bottled water or distilled water makes your espressos taste better. To protect the boiler, the manufacturer says it’s better not to backflush the Gaggia Classic at all, and only to descale it annually.

Should You Buy It?

Go for this espresso machine if you are searching for a mid range, professional espresso machine to start off espresso making at home. It’s easy to use, makes great espresso and is not too expensive.

What are you waiting for? Check out the price here for the Gaggia Classic semi automatic espresso machine.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a budget espresso machine that is pump driven, you may like this espresso maker. Unless you are a serious aficionado, I wouldn’t recommend you a manual espresso machine.

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

NESPRESSO CITIZ D121-US-BK-NE1

Would you still spend $4 or more a day at Starbucks if you had a great espresso machine at home that saves you all the trouble? If a cup of espresso is what you need every morning but you hate having to grind, tamp, brew and wash up portafilters afterward, go for the NespressoCitiz.

This automatic espresso machine gives you your regular espresso or a lungo if you like in as little as 30 seconds, and you’ll only have your cup (plus the milk frother if you are using it) to wash up afterward.

The best thing about this espresso maker is that you don’t have to learn how to make espressos. Anyone can use this espresso maker to make a consistently tasty espresso because it uses pods or capsules. Simply make sure there is water in the container, insert the Nespresso capsule of your choice into the slot, then press the button for espresso or lungo when the lights come on.

The brew stops automatically and the machine transfers the used capsule (fully recyclable!) into a trash compartment that you may empty when it’s full. That’s it! That’s how simple it is to make an espresso shot with the Citiz.

You do have to use espresso pods from the Nespresso brand, but there’s nothing to worry about the quality or the taste of these pods. The Nespresso capsules are filled with real espresso grounds and come in a variety of aromatic profiles and intensity, all priced very reasonably from $.70 to $.75. This means that each cup of espresso made with the Nespresso machine will save you a few bucks!

A tip: It’s normally cheaper to purchase these pods from the Nespresso website itself but do check out the price on Amazon too. Also, the Nespresso site only sells the pods in bulk, you may want to buy smaller variety packs to try out the flavors and these are available on Amazon.

Cleaning the espresso machine is as easy as running a clear shot through it. There’s no need to descale or backflush this machine at all.

If you are making milk based espresso drinks such as lattes or cappuccinos, the Citiz’s milk frother is something revolutionary. It’s not a steam wand, nothing so messy at all, but a bottle-like container that works to steam or froth your milk at the press of a button.

The milk frother creates a thick froth quickly and quietly. There are indicator lines in the frother for either steamed milk or frothed milk and I love how the smooth interior is so easy to clean.

If you don’t need the milk frother at all you may like the Nespresso Pixie which is a similar espresso maker with a very small footprint. Or if counter top space is your concern but you’d like to have the frother, you could buy the Citiz or the Pixie and the frother separately, so that the frother could be kept in a drawer when not in use.

To conclude, the NespressoCitiz is an espresso maker that gives you convenience comparable to a super automatic but offered at a price of a mid-range semi automatic. What could be better than that?

 

JURA-CAPRESSO IMPRESSA J6

JURA-CAPRESSO IMPRESSA J6

How can it be made easy for any office, cafe, hotel or buffet restaurant to serve free-flow espresso drinks quickly and in a fuss-free and mess-free manner? Simply get this super automatic espresso machine which is the best of its kind because with this Jura-Capresso Impressa J6, all you have to do is press a couple of buttons to get delicious espresso.

The Impressa J6 brews really good espressos too, as long as you use fresh beans (stale beans won’t get you anywhere). I remember the dark, crema-topped espresso that swirled richly in my mouth. This is your perfect espresso to drink just like that or to make lattes with.

The great thing about super automatics is that they are so easy to use for persons of all age. This manufacturer of this super automatic espresso maker takes an extra step to make the design really mindful of the user.

Programmable and Very Simple Setup

The setup of this espresso machine is as simple as plugging it in, adding water and beans to the tank and container respectively, and finding out what each button does. There are buttons on top of the espresso machine and on the front panel.

The best thing about this espresso maker, is that you can program your favorite drink and save it, so that it’ll be easier to make that drink again next time! Don’t worry, it’s not difficult at all although you’ll need to read the included manual. Even after saving programmed drinks, you can make any espresso drink on the spot without losing those saved drinks.

I also loved how thoughtful it is that this espresso maker has its water tank and espresso bean vessel removable from its side instead of from the top. This eliminates the concern for placing this espresso machine under wall cabinets. The machine will tell you when it’s time to top up the water or beans.

High Quality Built-In Grinder

With an espresso machine at this price, I had high expectations of the grinder that comes with it, so I was pleased to find that it was a burr grinder that works efficiently and quietly. Remember that dry and fresh beans have to be used to make great espresso and it’s important too so that the grinder stays clean.

It’s also possible to make espressos using beans other than those in the container. Just grind them in a separate grinder and use the pre-ground coffee funnel. After making the brew, a rinse will remove all traces of the brew so feel free to use flavored beans anytime.

Fast Brewing

It’s really fast to brew the drinks too, as you can make a couple shots simultaneously. Tall drinks can also be made. The Impressa J6 comes with two boilers instead of one, so there is no need to wait for the pressure to build up again before you can steam or froth the milk. This is how quick espresso drinks can be made, one after another, to serve many people.

A tip for making a tastier espresso: warm your cup before you make a shot. Just add hot water into the cup from this espresso maker and let it warm up for a couple moments, drain the water and make the espresso. This ensures that no heat is lost from the espresso when it goes into the cup, and it also preheats the elements in the machine before the brew.

Our J6 is being used in the office every single working day since two years ago and it is still giving us great espresso shots and drinks today with the total shots counting up to nearly 3000. We all loved the machine and keep it as clean as we could by rinsing regularly and descaling it as soon as it tells us to. Maintenance is really just as simple as that.

If an espresso machine that does it all from bean to cup is what you are looking for, go for the Jura Capresso Impressa J6. This low maintenance machine is worth its high price because you will be able to serve great espressos to as many people as you want, quickly and without fuss. Even if you do come across any problems, which has been none for us so far, the customer service is highly commended as helpful and friendly.

Go ahead and get the J6 at Amazon now: click here.

Those who are looking for more budget-friendly espresso machines should look at Delonghi ESAM 3300 or the Nespresso machines which use pods.

LA PAVONI EPC-8 EUROPICCOLA

LA PAVONI EPC-8 EUROPICCOLA

To certain people, a great cup of espresso is different from a good cup of espresso and don’t you try arguing with them about that. If you fall into that group, you may like to control every aspect of the process called espresso making and you’ll love the La Pavoni Europiccola EPC-8 manual espresso maker for it.

Do It All Yourself

From selecting fresh beans to pulling the espresso shot with precisely applied pressure, are you sure you’re up to doing it all manually? There is a learning curve and quite a few wasted shots awaiting if this is the first time you’re attempting a manual espresso maker. Good thing it comes with an instructional video.

Exceptional Quality and Long Lasting Build

The quality of this beautiful Italian-made espresso maker is exceptional. It is heavy and sleek and everything else you may expect from a machine over $800. The chrome plating is so striking that you would without doubt want to leave this out on the counter top for all to see. Whenever you pull a shot you will feel with your hand the sturdy ease of a well-built machine.

The La Pavoni EPC-8 is not for just anyone who wants to drink espresso at home. You probably won’t get the perfect espresso with the first few shots unless you’re an experienced barista who has been pulling shots every day of his life. On the bright side, this means you may make espresso shots of different quality and intensity to find that perfect taste.

As an enthusiast of espresso machines myself, I own one of these beauties and you can bet every one of my guests is awestruck whenever I “perform” espresso making skills on it. But I must admit that I don’t use it to make my own espressos every day. I would settle for a good espresso using my reliable semi automatic or when I’m really pressed for time, an automatic.

I love how sturdy the parts are because that means the espresso machine isn’t going to break down any time soon. The EPC-8 can easily last for five years and more, and the best thing is that there are no electronics on it that will fail prematurely. You can be sure an espresso maker at this price has seals and miscellaneous parts that are wholly replaceable.

 

BREVILLE BES870XL

BREVILLE BES870XL

Let’s get right into it. The Breville Barista Express BES870XL is the best espresso machine for all levels, and it’s a big bang for your buck. If you have more than one user at home who will be making espressos with the espresso machine, and who have varying degrees of barista skills, you’ll love this semi automatic espresso maker.

Fabulous and Thoughtful Design

The design of this espresso machine is “fabulous”, as someone puts it. Here’s what he said:

“I personally think that this machine is gorgeous and looks great on my kitchen countertop. I love the stainless steel. I love the way it is laid out. I love the way the tamper is held. I love the way it looks when you turn it on and the lighting that it has. Everything is easy to access…I think the design is fabulous.” – Adapted from a review by Andrew

The single wall filter gives the barista of the family control over the tamp pressure and the grind size, while the barista-to-be will be assured that the espresso that comes out is perfectly acceptable by using the dual wall filter.

As with all semi automatic espresso machines, this one needs some getting used to. I had to adjust the grind size to get the pressure right for my shot. The amount of grinds also played a role in this. Once I’ve gotten the settings right for a certain bean, making shot after shot of delicious espresso is a breeze.

Built-In Grinder

The deal maker of this espresso machine is the built-in grinder. The Breville BES870XL has a professional burr grinder which is such a nice touch for a semi automatic espresso maker at this price range.

I must say I’m so pleased with the convenience of feeding grinds into the espresso machine directly because now I’m drinking espresso made with freshly ground beans instead of pre-ground beans! The difference may be slight but it certainly improved the taste.

One thing to be careful about the grinder is never to leave the lid open. That way you can be sure you’ll never accidentally drip water into it when refilling the water tank. One drop of water is enough to create a huge mess in the grinder that will take forever to clean and you don’t want that.

Keeping the lid on also keeps the beans from being exposed to air and humidity, and they will stay fresh longer.

I love how normal espresso lovers like us are willing to share their experiences and tips so that even if you’re not so sure you can handle this espresso machine, it is not hard to find a tip to help you along when you encounter a problem. Best of all, the Breville customer support has always been willing to answer my questions about using the espresso machine.

A helpful tip from another reviewer that I’d like to share here after experimenting it myself is that you can get a dry puck if these steps are followed: make espresso shot, don’t remove portafilter but proceed to steam milk, then remove portafilter to empty puck. Works every single time!

Although the Breville BES870XL is not entirely perfect (most people complain about having to fine tune the shots) I still highly recommend this machine if you have the budget to spend. It is good value for money to get a good semi automatic espresso maker with plenty of features to fiddle with and a good burr grinder thrown in the package. Definitely the best espresso machine to buy at this price range.

 

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