So then, what this forum was originally designed for: Coffee…

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  • So then, what this forum was originally designed for: Coffee…
  • zokes
    Member

    Yes, we have one of those. Now I want something that makes coffee taste somewhat nicer than nescafe.

    slugwash
    Member

    I don’t really like our new Gaggia (Revolution Espresso). It’s messy, dribbly and moves around the worktop when you try to put the coffee holder thingy into it. I much prefered our old cheapo espresso machine.

    I’m currently drinking a cup made with a Sainsbury’s Columbian coffee bag as I type this. The Gaggia sits on the worktop a short distance behind me unplugged and unloved 🙁

    Premier Icon BigJohn
    Subscriber

    Most of the cheap espresso machines with a pump will make good espresso. The main difference between cheap and expensive is their durability and robustness.

    I’ve had a few over the last 30 years and the thing I like about my Gaggia Classic Caffe is the chunkiness and usability of the filter carrier. Much nicer than messing about with a flimsy little thing that doesn’t hold quite enough coffee (for me) and burns your fingers when trying to knock out the grounds.

    But as far as taste goes, a £30 Krupps Vivo produces a cup that’s no different.

    zokes
    Member

    Well, I’m in the market for an expresso machine.

    This is an area I know very little about, although I do hear the brand Gaggia mentioned on occasion. What’s to look out for / not? I tend to drink flat whites (aussie for a latte without much throth), but also just shots. Doubt I’ll ever be that bothered about steaming the milk – the micrwave warms it easily enough.

    shoei
    Member

    Im on the hunt for a decent espresso machine.
    Rancilio is current fave, though hoping i can get a SanRemo ex-demo unit at a reasonable price.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I tried a cheap machine from some home appliance company (I forget) and a Gaggia – the Gaggia made nicer coffee (and yes I know that in theory with the same pump pressure the coffee should be identical, but it wasn’t, ok? It was clearly very different, and I wanted the cheap one to be better so don’t call me gullible and all that crap please).

    I didn’t want to spend £350 but then I found out that all the cheaper Gaggias above the very cheapest one (Cube) have the same internals, so I got a Dose for £150. I bought my parents an excellent one too from a different company which was cheap and better than my Dose in terms of the shot measuring capability but I can’t remember the make.. 🙂

    titusrider
    Member

    this might be sacrilige but the nespressos are actually very good and far far less hassle and mess than a traditional

    +1 for Gaggias being worth it. For good Espresso you need good pressure, and a machine that will continue delivering good pressure for 5 years, not 5 months. A decent flat white is frothed, but not as much as a cappuchino, so you will need a frother. Just heating milk in the microwave is NOT the same. Buy a maching without a frother and guaranteed within a month you will wish you had one

    Have had our Gaggia Baby Class for about 3 years. Great coffee, well made, looks good. The frother is pivoted so you can get a jug under it, and the water refill system is really neat.

    Previously had the Gaggia classic which was also good, but you cannot froth a jug, the water refill is more of a faff, and it doesn’t look as good

    titusrider – Member
    this might be sacrilige but the nespressos are actually very good and far far less hassle and mess than a traditional

    Sorry, but IMO it is sacrilige. They are very convenient but the pods are hugely more expensive than loose coffee, you are very restricted on coffees and suppliers and there is all the plastic waste which is an environmental no-no

    titusrider
    Member

    I take your point but it definatly works for me, and the range of available coffees is very good

    jp-t853
    Member

    +1 for nespresso’s. Really lovely coffee unfortunately I am always dissappointed when I buy a coffee now. The machine cleans itself.

    It is the only machine we have had (including a gaggia) where the coffee is spot on every single time.

    There is no plastic waste as far as I am aware unless you buy the supermarket pods in France. I recycle the aluminium pods.

    If you drink a lot of coffee you may consider it expensive.

    Premier Icon simon_g
    Subscriber

    Another for Nespresso here. The pods aren’t cheap but it’s still about a tenth of the cost of going out and getting one from the chains. Loose coffee inevitably goes off by the time I can be bothered to use it and the times I want coffee I don’t have the time to faff about grinding, tamping, then operating several buttons on a machine to heat and pressurise and produce my coffee.

    Machine on, wait for light to go steady, empty shot through to warm pipes and cup, pod in, press button, one more empty shot to clean, machine off. All done in 2 mins tops.

    BFITH
    Member

    My Gran Gaggia is 10 years old now and still makes perfect coffee…..I seem to remember it being one of the cheapest gaggias around at the time….

    BF

    Premier Icon bruneep
    Subscriber

    Jura

    kin ace.

    Android
    Member

    Another vote for the Nespresso, excellent costomer service if you have any problems.

    Surf-Mat
    Member

    Can’t bring myself to spend 100s on a coffee machine but I do get annoyed by how inconsistent cafetiere coffee is – one pot will be spot on, the next will be watery, bitter muck despite using the same “conditions” every time.

    Would beans and a grinder help? I use the usual vacuum packed ground coffee and store it in the fridge. I guess it goes off/dries out pretty quickly?

    couby
    Member

    this is mine- was given it by the in-laws as they didn’t use it. I’m having a cuppa from it right now. Brilliant

    Monkeeknutz
    Member

    I suppose the question is do you want an espresso machine or an ‘espresso-a-like’? All the Nespresso’s and all that rubbish are…er…rubbish and I don’t have any truck with the ‘well I like it’ argument either. Some people like X-Factor but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a foul pox on the face of music.

    A decent machine with a quality pump and metal construction, including heat stable boiler etc is the best way forward; Rancilio, Gaggia etc and a decent burr grinder plus lots of practice.

    Do the right thing, get a good machine (or if you want your espresso in about 10 years a hand pump machine that you can learn to use in said 10 years….)

    nonk
    Member

    Would beans and a grinder help?

    oh yes…get into it.

    JonEdwards
    Member

    I’ve got a Gaggia Classic which I picked up second hand for £100 5 years ago. Paired with a GOOD grinder, it’s not perfect, but if I’m on form I can get a top notch espresso out of it. Rancilio Silvia is the other good “decent beginner” machine.

    Pro’s over cheaper machines – all metal construction – big weighty brass portafilter to keep the pour warm before it hits the cup. Decent sized pump and boiler, three way solenoid valve to depressurize the brew head once the pour is done – stops the dreaded “portafilter sneeze” which sprays scalding hot coffee grounds all over the kitchen. There’s room on top for warming cups. Steam capability is OK, but not as good as proper dual boiler or heat exchange machines.

    Real world though, its the grinder and good fresh beans that make the difference. Spend there and you’ll get a better cuppa.

    Nespresso – based on the comments on previous STW threads, the missus and I went for a demo at Selfridges a few weeks back. Very easy and convenient, but the coffee produced was absolute, utter shite. Thin, watery and massively overextracted. We tried about 6 different varieties of capsule and it was the same all round. Really unimpressed. I think there’s simply not enough coffee in the capsules to make a decent shot.

    If you are always in a tearing hurry when making your coffee then I agree the pods are great but it only takes one to two minutes longer to use a normal machine.

    Buy ground coffee from a specialist (lots on line) and keep it in small plastic bags in the freezer. Will not go off for a couple of weeks and spot on every time. Huge choice of coffees and suppliers.

    Even if people do recycle the pods, there is still the recycling overhead, plus the packaging, and that’s also why they are much more expensive.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Search on here for the thread about coffee storage too.

    Quick calculation. Looks like pods are about 40p-50p per cup delivered. Ground coffee about 15p per cup delivered.

    IMO there is also something about the ritual of using a normal machine that adds to the whole experience of enjoying the coffee but I’m sure the Netspresso fans will just shoot that down

    ScottChegg
    Member

    Is it worth mentioning the Aeropress at this point?

    Quick, clean and consistent. Not as good as a full-on espresso, but better than a press coffee. Use a bean of your choice and a fresh grind. And much advanced on that premade rubbish.

    coffeeking
    Member

    Does me fine.

    jp-t853
    Member

    Nespresso 28p per cup delivered on average if you buy 200 at a time (which I do), less if you get them from an outlet.

    There is venom here against nespresso.

    Everyone with a nespresso buys coffee at shops, has had other machines. If they are happy with their purchase then they are happy and therefore likely to recommend them.

    Surf-Mat
    Member

    I’d love to try a Nespresso coffee but that’s easier said than done.

    Got a Krups espresso machine but like most of them, it’s a faff and a half to use so I tend to take the easier cafetiere option with mixed and random results.

    And the coffee I’ve just made (new batch of coffee) is perfect – lovely crema, nice and strong, ideal. Yet yesterdays was horrible.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    IMO there is also something about the ritual faff of using a normal machine that adds to the whole experience of enjoying the coffee is a pain in the arse

    Fixed it for ya 🙂

    Nespresso coffee is good to be honest, but a little.. generic, really. The reason I didn’t get one is that I couldn’t choose what coffee I was drinking. I like to get beans from a single origin, so I can taste the place and the qualities. Blends can be delicious but it’s all so fuzzy on the palette I think. And with Nespresso you will be drinking the same blends for years and years.. I’d get bored.

    But yes it is good stuff.

    jp-t853
    Member

    Getting away from machines I use a Bialetti in the camper and it makes very good coffee.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    The stove-top machines btw can make fantastic coffee but it’s a bit slow and takes a very careful hand to get it right. And it’s easy to get wrong and mess up.

    Divagirl
    Member

    +1 Nespresso <3

    Hairychested
    Member

    CoffeeKing’s idea is the only one worth exploring. Cheap, easy to use, reliable. End of.

    +1 for Cofeekings percolator.

    After working opposite the nestle factory for years the smell of roasting coffee put me off the stuff for life, I can barely walk into costa without either gagging on the smell or remembering the secretary…………..

    Anyway, bought my parents one for christmass seeing as Dad’s cutting down on caffine by not drinking instant anymore (more effort per cup therefore less coffee). They use it on the boat, the house, camping, everywhere and even I have to admit it makes a nice cup.

    slugwash
    Member

    Getting away from machines I use a Bialetti in the camper and it makes very good coffee.

    Yep, +1 for them cracking little espresso makers when out in the wilds….

    And +2 on behalf of shinythings whose currently unable to access the forum (he dosen’t have an desk based job)….

    Divagirl
    Member

    slugwash, I want to come riding with you <drools> 🙂

    Surf-Mat
    Member

    Slugwash – now that is proper coffee drinkers kit! All that effort with lightweight tents, cookers, etc and you still bring a relatively heavy/bulky stove top coffee maker – love it!

    slugwash
    Member

    slugwash, I want to come riding with you <drools>

    Ooh aye ? 😉

    zokes
    Member

    I suppose the question is do you want an espresso machine or an ‘espresso-a-like’?

    An expresso machine, of the gaggia ilk. I knew here would be the place to come for advice!

    The stove-top machines btw can make fantastic coffee but it’s a bit slow and takes a very careful hand to get it right. And it’s easy to get wrong and mess up.

    I already have 2 of the mini-expresso stove thingys, but one is so big it’s real pain to get tight enough to seal without being so tight you can’t undo it again after, whilst the other is too small, and obviously you have to wait a while to make a second cup as it’s too hot. I already have a good burr-grinder, and in Adelaide, there are 101 places to get 1001 different varieties of beans 🙂

    I guess I just need to get some plastic moneys out now and makes my choice…

    Divagirl
    Member

    Divagirl – Member
    slugwash, I want to come riding with you <drools>

    Ooh aye ?

    bring yer espresso kit !! <cupboard love>

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