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Samsquanch
06-23-2012, 12:03 PM
Any recommendations for a good espresso machine? I've never owned one or used one but drink plenty of espresso. After spending some time in Europe last year, where it seemed like every house we were in had one, my wife and I are ready to purchase one.

Would be happy to hear your opinions on your favorite machines and the best places to buy them. We are looking to spend less than $1,000, preferably more around $500 or so if a good one can be had for that. I'm not opposed to the fully automatic machines but think I would rather have a separate grinder for regular coffee too.

Thanks for your input!

ChicagoWhiteSox
06-23-2012, 12:28 PM
Rancilio Silvia
Gaggia Classic

I bought a Classic about a year ago, used it for a while and I LOVED it. Made great coffee, but I sold it to my sister and her husband because I wanted more cigars:r

I'll be buying a Rancilio next time though, I want to buy one this fall/winter

CigarNut
06-23-2012, 12:38 PM
This may be different from your expectations but you might want to look at Nespresso (http://www.nespresso.com/us/en/). This is an expresso machine that uses capsules -- which cost around .55 cents per shot (capsule) These machines are easy to use and produce an excellent shot with the best crema. And, it's fast!

The machines are small so they don't take up a lot of counter space. They are much easier to use than standard machines when you need to make shots or drinks for a group of people. It's also pretty hard to beat the price per shot.

A downside is that the prepackaged capsules may not have the coffee you are looking for. You can get kits that allow you to make your own capsules, but that seems like a PIA.

I like a number of the coffees provided by Nespresso so I have no problems. They also have milk frothers if you are looking for that as well.

The machines range from $200-$600.

Black Coral
06-23-2012, 05:21 PM
nespresso machine, I think it is the citgo

The small unit for pods on top, great coffee, I buy the pods 100 sampler.

Easy to use and It has the warmer or foamer for milk that either comes with or add on for latte.

No space on counter and with 2 minutes of turning power hot enough for shots.

Blueface
06-23-2012, 08:41 PM
Love my Rancilio.

MarkinCA
06-23-2012, 10:12 PM
I use a Krups Allegro Espresso Maker that I've had for many years:

http://www.espresso-machines-and-coffee-makers.com/images/krups-allegro.jpg

Makes a great cup of espresso. I don't use the glass container shown. I simply insert my slim 10oz cup underneath and watch it fill up with some nice espresso and crema.

Sort of a "triple espresso" you might say...:cf1

emopunker2004
06-24-2012, 03:45 AM
I know nothing about this one but it's on sale on woot.com today ironically

http://home.woot.com/

Blak Smyth
06-25-2012, 06:26 AM
I am currentley looking into the Gaggia Brera Super-auto.
A couple people on here have them and "Whole Latte Love" is telling me it is my best bet for the price range.
I want a super-auto so I can press a single button in the morning when I am a zombie and have a great espresso, no seperate grinding and tamping and cleaning.

Blak Smyth
06-25-2012, 06:41 AM
Here is a picture and a link $649.00:
http://www.wholelattelove.com/ItemImages/1911/3600XLarge.gif (http://www.wholelattelove.com/Gaggia/gaggia_brera_blk.cfm)

This may be a better option for you at $568.00 shipped with doser grinder:
http://www.wholelattelove.com/ItemImages/1802/3437XLarge.gif (http://www.wholelattelove.com/Gaggia/classic_mdf_brewready.cfm)

GreekGodX
06-25-2012, 07:11 AM
I would probably go with that refurbished Jura J6 from the link emopunker posted. Jura makes a great espresso machine. Also there is still a one year warranty even though it is refurbished.

floydpink
06-25-2012, 10:22 AM
Here is a picture and a link $649.00:
http://www.wholelattelove.com/ItemImages/1911/3600XLarge.gif (http://www.wholelattelove.com/Gaggia/gaggia_brera_blk.cfm)

This may be a better option for you at $568.00 shipped with doser grinder:
http://www.wholelattelove.com/ItemImages/1802/3437XLarge.gif (http://www.wholelattelove.com/Gaggia/classic_mdf_brewready.cfm)

That bottom setup is the exact setup I started with.

Not a bad way to get into the game, but some issues and limitations left me with serious upgraditis in a short time.

The MDF grinder is really noisy and nearly impossible to disassemble for cleaning.

If I was shopping in the price range mentioned, it would be a Rocky/Silvia combo, although I'd still be a couple hundred short I think.

Samsquanch
06-30-2012, 12:25 PM
Thanks for all the tips everyone. I have a lot of research and more reading to do but these are some great ideas. :tu

never_enough
07-12-2012, 11:54 PM
While on vacation I used a nespresso several times and now I'm hooked on espresso's. Now to decide what espresso maker to get. Maybe the Citiz with the aeroccino plus?

CigarNut
07-13-2012, 09:30 AM
While on vacation I used a nespresso several times and now I'm hooked on espresso's. Now to decide what espresso maker to get. Maybe the Citiz with the aeroccino plus?That is the machine that we got and we love it! We don't use the Aeroccino as much as we thought we would. It works fine, but my wife and I find that we just love the espresso without the frothed milk. It's our kids that like the milk drinks and they both moved out :)

never_enough
07-13-2012, 08:54 PM
That is the machine that we got and we love it! We don't use the Aeroccino as much as we thought we would. It works fine, but my wife and I find that we just love the espresso without the frothed milk. It's our kids that like the milk drinks and they both moved out :)

Awesome! I think I will pick the combo up at Williams Sonoma for $300. Seems like a good deal. I was drinking the espressos with nothing in them, but I figure for the price, might as well get the areoccino in case I want it sometime.

CigarNut
07-13-2012, 10:55 PM
Awesome! I think I will pick the combo up at Williams Sonoma for $300. Seems like a good deal. I was drinking the espressos with nothing in them, but I figure for the price, might as well get the areoccino in case I want it sometime.We initially looked at them in W&S -- but on a lark I checked out Amazon and the price (at that time) was $150 less than W&S so we ended up purchasing from Amazon.

htown
07-14-2012, 06:16 AM
This is what I bought a year ago. My wife and I use it on average twice a day, have had no problems, it comes with a pod insert, and it makes a good cup of espresso.

http://www.amazon.com/Saeco-00354-Espresso-Machine-Stainless/dp/B00141AZOA/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1342264400&sr=8-2&keywords=saeco

Mitch
08-06-2012, 06:04 PM
Rancilio Silvia and Rancilio Rocky are great places to start.

363
09-23-2012, 07:54 AM
this (http://home.woot.com/) just came up on woot today
TODAY'S WOOT
Jura J5B Auto Coffee Center
$799.99 Refurbished
not sure if it is a great deal just thought I'd share

Mister Moo
09-24-2012, 06:10 AM
If not superauto, don't forget the best brewer is useless without a capable grinder. Grinder really should come first - the better, the better, one for life.

longknocker
09-24-2012, 06:14 AM
If not superauto, don't forget the best brewer is useless without a capable grinder. Grinder really should come first - the better, the better, one for life.

What Grinders Do You Recommend, Dan?:)

mosesbotbol
09-24-2012, 07:36 AM
Love my Rancilio.

Had my Rancilio set up going on 15 years and it's still running strong. All I have replaced is a thremostat and group head gasket (done that a few times).

Rancilio is as cheap as I would buy if I were doing it again. There is a certain level of base cost to really do it well, or you'll never be happy and end up buying it over... Espresso is an expensive game to get into, but once you have the set up, you are good to go for many years.

Brutus2600
09-24-2012, 10:13 AM
If you're looking to spend ~$500 you can get a great machine for sure. Having said that, I was NOT looking to spend that. I looked at some cheaper options and the best one I think you can buy for under $100 is this one:

Mr. Coffee ECMP50 (http://www.amazon.com/Mr-Coffee-ECMP50-Espresso-Cappuccino/dp/B001EU9UTM/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1348498098&sr=8-2&keywords=mr+coffee+espresso)

It's a pump (as opposed to steam) and makes a pretty dang good cup of espresso with an excellent crema. The only problems are it's very automatic and you can't really tailor it to your taste. On the other hand, it's very automatic and easy to use ;) lol.

OLS
09-24-2012, 10:24 AM
Espresso is an expensive game to get into, but once you have the set up, you are good to go for many years.

This is the best point of all. ON THE FRONT END, you can't convince a brother NOT to spend a
hundred bucks on an Espresso machine, and not talking specifically about anyone here,
since it was only just brought up. But I am talking about the buying something three times
instead of once. Bottom line is espresso is good and espresso is expensive, for a reason. It's not
a cheap game, so looking for cheap buy-ins to an expensive game is a no-win sitcho. I think
its at least one of those deals where you can taste the money. When I first read this thread,
I went and shopped a bit. I realized by the time I had done as much research as I would have needed
to do, that I was being priced out. I LOVE espresso, but I do not drink coffee daily, much less visit
St@arbucks enough to make a machine practical. In fact never been into a St@rbucks. So if I wanted
strong coffee I would have to MAKE it strong. Now, maybe one day when I have a house and am old...
For now, saving money as hard as I am, I will just have to cold brew some strong coffee and pretend.

Brutus2600
09-24-2012, 10:28 AM
This is the best point of all. ON THE FRONT END, you can't convince a brother NOT to spend a
hundred bucks on an Espresso machine, and not talking specifically about anyone here,
since it was only just brought up. But I am talking about the buying something three times
instead of once. Bottom line is espresso is good and espresso is expensive, for a reason. It's not
a cheap game, so looking for cheap buy-ins to an expensive game is a no-win sitcho. I think
its at least one of those deals where you can taste the money. When I first read this thread,
I went and shopped a bit. I realized by the time I had done as much research as I would have needed
to do, that I was being priced out. I LOVE espresso, but I do not drink coffee daily, much less visit
St@arbucks enough to make a machine practical. In fact never been into a St@rbucks. So if I wanted
strong coffee I would have to MAKE it strong. Now, maybe one day when I have a house and am old...
For now, saving money as hard as I am, I will just have to cold brew some strong coffee and pretend.

I completely agree with this. If you do have the money (which it sounds like you do want to spend enough), get a good machine. I know mine will break sooner rather than later, at which point I will hopefully be able to get a nicer machine :)

mosesbotbol
09-24-2012, 10:49 AM
After being in the espresso game for a while, the Rancilio is the minimum I would suggest to anyone wanting to get into making it a home.

Remember, that even in Europe, these machines are not cheap so it's not a "because it's imported..." or something like that.

The super automatics are cool, but never make as good espresso as you could do with semi-automatic machine and when they break is a lot more complicated to fix.

floydpink
09-24-2012, 12:08 PM
What Grinders Do You Recommend, Dan?:)

He's probably going to tell you Mazzer Mini, which would be yet another tidbit of wisdom from Mr. Moo as they are hard to beat.

Personally, I'm a happy owner of the Macap M4.

Since we're all agreeing it's not cheap, I'd encourage the buyer to look seriously into a machine with an E61 grouphead and say goodbye to temp surfing.

jldude12345
01-20-2013, 03:49 PM
I have just about every type of coffee maker including 4 different espresso machines. My favorite is my Nespresso espresso machine! It's the simplest to use and they have a variety of pods to choose from and they are really good quality coffees which make a great shot of espresso. The only drawback is you have to buy pods from nespresso which only take a day or two to deliver.:tu

tchariya
01-21-2013, 12:57 AM
I love my Capresso Infinity Burr Grinder. It doesn't come with a doser though.

http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?SKU=14902422