Espresso machine

Discussion in 'The Cafe'' started by kowalzekc, Mar 23, 2019.

    Hey all, been a while since I posted here. I am looking at getting an espresso machine. I want to keep it at best value for the dollar so the super high end ones are out. I use am aero press which is good but not exactly the same. Any suggestions?

  1. I often debate whether or not an espresso machine is worth it. However, on the top of my list is a LaPavoni. It has a great reputation and is very serviceable.

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  2. Would you entertain used models?
  3. Probably depending on how used and what it is.
  4. I found a rok on fb sales for $60 only used a few times
  5. mishkaya

    mishkaya Contributor

    I would say a ROK hardly qualifies as an espresso machine...
    If you don't mind a purely manual machine, the Flair, a Robot or an Espresso Forge will all make real espresso. I little more more prep, but you can keep costs down and still make some amazing espresso. I use the Espresso Forge when traveling all the time...
    Also, don't forget that the grinder is at least as important as the espresso machine.
  6. I thought the flair looked fairly similar in concept to the Rok, but I am new to this so that could be amature thought I'll look into the espresso forge. Thanks.
  7. Are you looking for sub $100 "espresso" machine or are you also looking at entry level units like $700 budget?
  8. I was eyeing up a 400$ to 500$ machine a small batch coffee roaster suggested. But I was cruising fb sales and found that rok for $60 which spiraled me into manual espresso makers

    I dont mind the work. I hand grind my beans daily for my aero press.
  9. what did the roaster suggest?
  10. BREVILLE BES810BSS Duo Temp Pro Espresso Machine,


    DeLonghi ECAM22110SB Compact Automatic Cappuccino, Latte and Espresso Machine

    Lastly a 3 shot moka to keep it cheap and save for an electric
  11. A ROK is not different in principle than a Robot or Flair, all of which are manual lever espresso machines.

    @mishkaya I would certainly recommend a lightly used ROK at $60. They make very good coffee, but the manual steps involved do require the user to pay more attention to the process and have a good grinder. There is a new GC (glass composite) plunger upgrade kit which looks interesting but I have not tried one yet.
  12. mishkaya

    mishkaya Contributor

    Biggest issue I have heard with the ROK is the near impossibility of getting proper temps for a pull. I followed very closely the discussion over at H-B, and they came to the conclusion that it was pretty much a hopeless cause.
    I do have a Robot that I am playing with, and my friend has a Flair. I will say that the Flair is more work to use than the Robot, but both can pull an amazing cuppa.
    I may have to pick up a ROK just for grins...
  13. TexLaw

    TexLaw Contributor

    I can't comment directly on that model, but we have enjoyed the heck out of its predecessor for about two and a half years.
  14. Perhaps I should read some recent threads on H-B, but I am a little suspicious of the relative difficulty of a ROK vs a Robot regarding water temperatures. Both require the user to preheat water to the desired temperature and deal with a metal machine sitting out at room temperature. The plastic chamber/plunger within the ROK should be less thermally conductive than metal. The most problematic issue I have with the ROK is the tendency to hold some residual water from the previous pull which drops brewing temperature in an inconsistent manner. Which requires a flush (empty pull) of hot water to get out in order to reach a more consistent starting point. I could be a naive user, but otherwise I have not had issues with temperature. I find that I don't need boiling water to get a good cup, preferring to use something off the boil.
  15. mishkaya

    mishkaya Contributor

    Interesting. I would be curious to check the differences. I do know that the Flair is much harder to get good temperature control from than the Robot. Both the Robot and the Espresso Forge have an easier preheat routine than the Flair; of the three I would say the Robot has the easiest routine by far for pulling a shot, although I really like the compact form factor and the simplicity of the Espresso Forge. I suppose that is the reason I travel with it.
  16. I just ordered an entry level Nespresso machine from Amazon, and I'm looking forward to when it gets delivered. I realize that serious espresso aficionados scoff at this sort of thing, but it seems to be the right choice for me. You drop a pod in, press a button, and out pops a consistent brew. No mess, no fuss, and no bells and whistles that I'll never use. What's not to like?

    I was given an Aeroccino milk frother a few years ago, and it mostly just sits in a cabinet, unused. I'm hoping to make a few cappuccinos when the Nespresso machine comes. :)
  17. TexLaw

    TexLaw Contributor

    I've had some fine coffee from a Nespresso, @TropicalHotDogNight. If it makes you happy, then you've done well. Congratulations!
  18. Champion of Capua

    Champion of Capua Contributor

    If you’re making cappuccinos or lattes, your Nespresso will work great.
    To me a high quality espresso machine is for those who enjoy shots. You can customize a shot nicely with a quality espresso machine with pressure(bar) & time, but if that’s not you, you will enjoy the confidence of your Nespresso.
    Would you mix Pappy Van Winkle & Coke??
  19. I'm truly surprised Breville got such short run time in this discussion. If you'll look at a Breville BES920XL I think you'll find what will satisfy you for many years to come. First, I fully understand the point about the general machine expense being double what the stated price of admission was to be. Yet, and even though it is a modernist take on old traditional steel and heavy copper, it is durable and expressly consistent/accurate in producing a cuppa expresso and or any milk mixed drink you might seek. You will also come to appreciate drawing shots or steaming liquids without having switch thermostats and waiting for the boiler to come to temperature for your hotter pursuits. I did start out with a dual purpose pull and then steam. (We'll not even talk about "boilers" which boil over to draw through your charge.) If you have a chance to see these in action, I highly recommend it. You might find the difference worth a short wait before you bring it home.

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