How to Choose the Best Espresso Machine?
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Top Best Espresso Machine
How to Choose an Espresso Machine
Making a choice when it comes to choosing an espresso machine hinges on your needs. You might want to start asking yourself what you want to be sure your choice aligns with what you’re looking for. Choosing a good espresso machine is determined by a lot of factors that this guide aims to address.
Considering the measure of standard espresso machine requires, you will want to avoid going for the wrong one. Determining the right fit for you could be challenging, but it gets a lot easier coasting through your personal preference. But before you go for any, you will want to analyze the features they come with.
10 Factors to Consider When Buying an Espresso Machine
Have it in mind that all espresso machine styles comes with its own pros and cons. At the end of this guide, you will have a clearer picture of what an ideal espresso machine should be and the features to consider for long term use.
1. Types of Machines Available
There are several types of espresso machines. Your choice ranges from manual, electric or automatic.
- Manual espresso machines were popular decades back. It requires some skills and practice to pull off. But, it’s great for those who want to control everything from start to finish.
- Electric espresso machines are another option to choose from. Here, everything is all about consistency. Your electric espresso maintains the same consistency when brewing. All you have to do is get your coffee measurement right, and the machine takes care of every other thing.
- Semi-automatic machines are quite popular these days for good reasons. It comes with all the features electric espresso possesses as well as additional features like being able to control the ground pressure, the pump, and the amount that goes into the filter basket.
- Super-automatic machines, on the other hand, control the process from start to finish. Including the amount of coffee required. All you have to do is place your cup below the spout and press a button while you wait for the machine to pour in your beverage.
One of the factors you will want to consider is the type of pressurization your machine comes with. Is it steam-powered or pump-power?
- Steam-powered espresso makers are less expensive, but they come with some limitations, which include inconsistent pressure. Most modern machines that come with this pressurization type suffer from subpar pressure. Hence, avoid going for steam-powered machines as you will have a hard time producing a perfect shot.
- Pump-powered machines are more consistent and have better temperature management. It gives you more freedom to tweak the settings when brewing. But, pump-powered machines are more expensive.
3. Size of Your Kitchen
Most espresso machines are portable except in the case of manual espresso. Your kitchen size will largely influence your choice of machine. Fortunately, you will find a lot of espresso with compact designs out there. If you go for an electric machine, ensure it’s installed in an area where there’s a power socket to plug it in.
But, if you have limited space in your kitchen, or a compact espresso machine. This type does not depend on electricity and is easy to move around.
4. Drinking Habit
Do you like to invite a few friends over or love your personal space? As silly as this question might sound, it will actually help you make the right choice concerning your espresso machine. Think about your daily routine – do you rush out in the morning and come back late at night? Or you like to eat breakfast while ditching dinner. Answering these questions will determine how your machine will be utilized as well as the style to go for.
For Super-automatic Espresso Machine
For instance, if you go for a super-automatic machine, you should know beforehand that this machine type is automated and can be operated with little or no skill. It’s suitable for those who are always rushing out as all they have to do is press a button to set the machine into motion.
Depending on the model you go for, some super-automatic espresso machines offer drink options ranging from Americano to espresso. Still, advanced machines will allow you the option of customizing to your preferred temperature.
For Semi-automatic Espresso Machine
The semi-automatic model, on the other hand, gives you some amount of control. Allowing you to customize every aspect of your drink manually- this includes the espresso shot and milk.
This semi-automatic espresso machine type requires some level of skills as well as technical know-how. For instance, if you use a high-level machine that comes with a non-pressurized portafilter, you will need to grind consistently to arrive at the required taste and appearance.
For Latte and Cappuccino Lovers
For those who prefer a latte or Cappuccino, you will need the extra help of a steam wand to make your drink dense and achieve a paint-like consistency.
Of course! There are some features abound in both semi-automatic and a super-automatic espresso machine. But there are key differences that limit usage.
5. Choice of Drink
How do you want your coffee to taste? Creamy? Dark? Or foamy? If you love Italian or French blends, you will want to stay away from super-automatic espresso machines. This is because the oil emitting from the coffee beans will constantly stick to the grinder, thereby making a mess. If you want something creamy, and smokey, a super-automatic machine won’t be the right fit for you as you will look to avoid any oily coffee beans.
Semi-automatic machines don’t naturally help you create a dark roast but the fact that they’re easier to clean, allows you to grind oily beans with less concern.
6. Personal Preference
Your preference will have a huge impact when it comes to choosing an espresso machine. If you like to change the temperature and grind of your machine to produce a unique taste, the semi-automatic machine will be the right fit for you.
What kind of drinks will you be making with it? Do you love single origins? Keep in mind that semi-automatic machines allow you to configure the machine to your taste, helping you to find the perfect shot.
Drinks that utilize hot water are easier to prepare on semi-automatic machines while those that use a blend are perfect for super-automatic machines.
7. Electronic Display
There are a lot of machines with just a single display which is the temperature gauge. These machines don’t tell you the present pressure and how long it will take to pull a shot. These machines will come cheap, but without a display, you will have to time everything manually.
Having machines with a built-in display makes it a lot easier. It’s more convenient and allow you to make a few changes that will ensure you get a perfect shot. A machine with an extra display will cost extra, but this feature is worth it.
8. Dispenser Spout
Apart from the drinking spout, some machines come with a secondary spout which is termed the “water tea dispenser” spout. This extra spout allows you to fill your cup with hot tea and they’re useful if you want to fill your mug with quick shots from your teabag.
It’s convenient to go for a machine with an extra spout, but if your machine doesn’t come with this, there’s no issue.
9. Steam Wands
Steam wands are extra features that enhance the functionality of a machine. Having steam wands allow your machine to steam your drinks at just the right temperature. If you want your milk to be super bubbly and hot, you will want to go for a device with a steam wand.
However, this feature mostly comes with machines you control manually, unlike the case of semi-automatic machines.
10. Water Source
Before going for an espresso machine, you should know that you will have to satisfy its constant water needs. You can install your machine to a water line or station where there will be plumbing access.
However, connecting to a water line means you don’t have to worry about your brewer running out of water since your water line will constantly provide water for your machine.
Most homeowners fail to analyze this factor before buying a machine. Sometimes, they’re limited by the available space in their kitchen that they resort to moving the machine around whenever they need to.
Rather than going through this, it’s better to connect your machine to a water reservoir. You can conveniently move the water reservoir and even refill manually whenever it runs out of water.
Wrapping It Up
Trying to figure out the best espresso machine on your own could be a huge challenge. Rather than analyzing the features the machine comes with, you should consider its perks. The perfect machine isn’t one with a classic design but one that’s able to produce drinks just the way you want it.
Before committing yourself to an espresso, think about your daily routine, drinking habit as well as taste. Ask yourself what your favorite drink is and if the existing features a machine comes with aligns with your preference. The right espresso machines will make you feel more comfortable staying at home, enjoying a warm cup of coffee.