New Espresso Machine

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b. c@stner
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#101 Post by b. c@stner » February 4th, 2015, 11:26 am

Brent C l a y t o n wrote:
Todd F r e n c h wrote:
ybarselah wrote: why would you look for an alternative if you're satisfied with nespresso?
don't get a machine just to have a machine. that's silly
Satisfied and excited about are two different things altogether, of course. I'm not the type of guy who is ok with 'ok'...
Todd,

A friend has this machine and uses great beans, I am very happy with what comes out of it.

http://www.wholelattelove.com/products/ ... d1a59fe4c0

For a couple hundred more you could upgrade to the Gaggia Titanium.

A primer:
[youtube][youtube]
I'm no expert at all, but the two superautomatics I tried I returned. Both kind of pricey Jura's.
That being said wholelattelove has the refurb version of the brera for $259.00 and you can get another 5% off using coupon code WLLFIVE:

https://www.wholelattelove.com/products ... so-machine
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#102 Post by Brent C l a y t o n » February 4th, 2015, 1:52 pm

The Gaggia Baby is a great starter machine, I bought Yaacov's from him as my first dive into this thing of ours, between the two of us it probably ran about 10 years and I think it's still in my parents' basement gathering dust. However, you'd have to drop another $400 on a grinder to go with it.
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#103 Post by b. c@stner » February 4th, 2015, 2:13 pm

Brent C l a y t o n wrote:The Gaggia Baby is a great starter machine, I bought Yaacov's from him as my first dive into this thing of ours, between the two of us it probably ran about 10 years and I think it's still in my parents' basement gathering dust. However, you'd have to drop another $400 on a grinder to go with it.
I'm going to get kicked out of the coffee club(not that I'm in it really) for admitting this, but I'm using a Breville SmartGrinder with a Sylvia at home now. It's a newer one with the modified burrs and I'm pretty darn happy with it. Bought the grinder as a refurb for $119.00.

Sounds like you've had good luck with the Baby. Was just getting ready to pull the trigger on the refurb at Wholelattelove, $169 and another refurb Breville grinder for a second home. I'm cheap, what can I say!? I've read it's not recommended to backflush the Baby because of the aluminum boiler. Any thoughts or experience on that?
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#104 Post by M Hudson » February 4th, 2015, 3:27 pm

AlbertH wrote:That grinder is absolutely beautiful!

I'm loathe to give up my mazzer mini, but this would be a nice second machine to dial in for espresso based drinks while the automated grinder could be used for pourovers.

You find the cleaning of the HG1 pretty easy?

I dont see having to clean it. It all falls straight through.

I mean sure maybe one day I will need to take the burrs out and give them a scrub, but not very often and it all comes apart like a simple puzzle.
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#105 Post by Larry P » February 4th, 2015, 6:40 pm

A side note on cleaning grinders - after getting the Baratza Vario I turned my old Krups grinder over to my wife who wanted to try using it for whole spices. She's been running a mix of rice and baking soda through it trying to clean out the coffee oils, and I can't tell you how disgusting the resulting rice powder smells - stale, nasty, stale stale coffee. I can't believe I had been brewing anything that came through that machine. Anyway I'm sold on cleaning the grinder regularly!
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#106 Post by Larry P » February 4th, 2015, 6:42 pm

Brent C l a y t o n wrote:The Gaggia Baby is a great starter machine, I bought Yaacov's from him as my first dive into this thing of ours, between the two of us it probably ran about 10 years and I think it's still in my parents' basement gathering dust. However, you'd have to drop another $400 on a grinder to go with it.
True, but that's $400 you'll be up when it's time to upgrade the espresso maker!
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#107 Post by ybarselah » February 4th, 2015, 6:44 pm

Larry P wrote:A side note on cleaning grinders - after getting the Baratza Vario I turned my old Krups grinder over to my wife who wanted to try using it for whole spices. She's been running a mix of rice and baking soda through it trying to clean out the coffee oils, and I can't tell you how disgusting the resulting rice powder smells - stale, nasty, stale stale coffee. I can't believe I had been brewing anything that came through that machine. Anyway I'm sold on cleaning the grinder regularly!
yep - cleaning the grinder and the the espresso machine on a regular basis is crucial. i do a backflush on my breville 2/week and the grinder monthly - grindz, take a part the whole thing and clean it out. portafiter gets soaked with the basket 2x/week too.
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#108 Post by Dave Solomon » February 4th, 2015, 7:07 pm

What's the advantage to using grindz and taking the whole thing apart and cleaning it? I disassemble my grinder and clean everything about once a month but haven't used grindz or any other grinder cleaner... Should I be?

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#109 Post by M Hudson » February 4th, 2015, 8:06 pm

Larry they make a cleaner...comes in a white pebble consistently Think its called grindz
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#110 Post by ybarselah » February 5th, 2015, 8:00 am

Dave Solomon wrote:What's the advantage to using grindz and taking the whole thing apart and cleaning it? I disassemble my grinder and clean everything about once a month but haven't used grindz or any other grinder cleaner... Should I be?
grindz or instant rice (never used) cleans the burrs - removes the oils and other resinous material.
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#111 Post by Larry P » February 5th, 2015, 1:22 pm

M Hudson wrote:Larry they make a cleaner...comes in a white pebble consistently Think its called grindz
Oh I've got Grindz for my Baratza, I just didn't want my wife burning through my stash to clean the old Krups. And honestly I'm skeptical it would have taken less than a dumptruck full of grindz to clean that old thing.
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#112 Post by Brent C l a y t o n » February 14th, 2015, 8:30 pm

Dave Solomon wrote:What's the advantage to using grindz and taking the whole thing apart and cleaning it? I disassemble my grinder and clean everything about once a month but haven't used grindz or any other grinder cleaner... Should I be?
I think your technical ability makes all the difference, the last time I took my grinder apart myself it was definitely 'off' in terms of the settings, although it was well cleaned. I would rather have it out of commission for a week and send it to Porto Rico for a professional cleaning and adjustment. It costs $50 but I have to drop off/pick up at one of their locations.
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#113 Post by Andrew W. » November 7th, 2015, 12:29 pm




Just got one of these today, took a bit to adjust strength, grind, and size. But it does a great job... I'm very impressed. I'm no espresso geek, more a black coffee geek (my daily cup is a Technivorm). The wife wanted espresso that she could make, so as much as I wanted a fully manual machine that was a no-go, so it was this or nespresso. I'm very glad with the decision!
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#114 Post by Ian Sutton » November 8th, 2015, 5:55 am

Brent C l a y t o n wrote:The Gaggia Baby is a great starter machine, I bought Yaacov's from him as my first dive into this thing of ours, between the two of us it probably ran about 10 years and I think it's still in my parents' basement gathering dust. However, you'd have to drop another $400 on a grinder to go with it.
That was what we got about 6-7 years ago (actually it's the Baby Class D IIRC, with water filter in the reservoir). We got that one because our water supply here is basically a limescale transportation mechanism, and we figured double filtering would help. About 2 years ago the machine stopped working, so we sent it off for an overhaul. They did a good job, including fitting a new tank - because the original was
a) carrying more limescale than they'd EVER seen before, and
b) when the limescale was remove there were a number of holes that had been sealed by the limescale
Their advice - don'tput any more Norfolk water in the machine, always use bottled water.

We're now at a point where we need to get a new machine, so I'll have a good look at the Breville. It's also time to go for a better grinder - our Krups Burr grinder is the most basic model.

Suggestions welcomed for both machine and grinder, with the constraints that the grinder should ideally be 15 inches or less in height, so we can store it away easily after use, and the machine should have a modest footprint (say max 12 inches across) as there is a constant battle in our household over functionality vs. minimalism - or more fundamentally a difference of opinion over whether a kitchen is there to look neat & tidy or to actually be used [wink.gif]

[EDIT] In terms of price, not looking to go silly, and practicality of cleaning / servicing would be a positive feature. IIRC the Gaggia was around $400 equivalent, so happy to stretch to $1000-1200 for machine & grinder

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#115 Post by slada » November 27th, 2015, 9:45 am

Any good Black Friday deals out there for espresso machines?
cheers, sam lada

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#116 Post by Sean Moore » November 30th, 2015, 11:42 am


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#117 Post by Larry P » December 4th, 2015, 5:43 pm

I'm almost a year in with the Breville + Baratza Vario and couldn't be happier. Not only is it easily and consistently the best espresso I've brewed at home, but I don't even enjoy much the coffee from the better local coffee shops around here anymore. I wouldn't mind having the double boiler, just to have faster steam and prevent wasting water by purging after running the steam, but it's not bad for how I use the machine.
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#118 Post by Gary Zimberg » December 10th, 2015, 3:19 pm

Thinking of getting this for my wife.....

Any opinions?

Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine

thanks,,,,

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#119 Post by brianmcbrearty » December 11th, 2015, 5:00 pm

I have the double boiler, and obviously this is a lot less money. So it's apples and oranges. But since you've asked...
firstly, I'm on my second Breville grinder two xmas's in, and secondly, my next espresso purchase won't be a better machine, but a Forté or a mini mazzer. Both of which to say, I wouldn't want my grinder built into my machine.

And... you said you're getting it for your wife, which none of us are buying unless you tell us you really don't like coffee. If you DO like coffee and the two of you will start every day of the rest of your lives with a couple double espressos, who wants to wait for the machine? Get the double if you can.

Actually that reminds me... my next purchase is the second portafilter to further streamline the process. Admittedly my patience could use a little work. But know thyself. My patience is not improving with time.

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#120 Post by Gary Zimberg » December 13th, 2015, 4:24 am

brianmcbrearty wrote:I have the double boiler, and obviously this is a lot less money. So it's apples and oranges. But since you've asked...
firstly, I'm on my second Breville grinder two xmas's in, and secondly, my next espresso purchase won't be a better machine, but a Forté or a mini mazzer. Both of which to say, I wouldn't want my grinder built into my machine.

And... you said you're getting it for your wife, which none of us are buying unless you tell us you really don't like coffee. If you DO like coffee and the two of you will start every day of the rest of your lives with a couple double espressos, who wants to wait for the machine? Get the double if you can.

Actually that reminds me... my next purchase is the second portafilter to further streamline the process. Admittedly my patience could use a little work. But know thyself. My patience is not improving with time.
Yes, we start every day with a Nespresso. We spend a TON on the pods each year... My wife probably has 3 or 4 a day, , I'm good for 2.... niether of us do cappuccino, so having a frother would only be for guests. I understand your thoughts for having the grinder seperate, makes sense, it just seemed having it built in was convienient. I guess a lot of my concern is about convienience and ease of use. Nespresso is so super simple, and takes less than a minute to warm up.

How long does the Breville take to warm up before a good espresso can be made?
I will go back and look for one without the grinder built in,,, but am very open to suggestions here for a machine under $1,000

Thanks

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#121 Post by M Hudson » December 14th, 2015, 2:40 pm

do yourself a favor and get a silvia and rocky combo for under that price point and have infinitely better espresso than any automatic

https://www.seattlecoffeegear.com/ranci ... fgodjukAyg
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#122 Post by Larry P » December 15th, 2015, 11:06 am

I agree with Brian, avoid the build-in grinder. The Breville grinder is really not that good, and you don't want to tie the two pieces together.

When I was shopping a year ago, I started with the Silvia and decided against it due to lack of a PID temperature control. Read reviews of people "temperature surfing" trying to get it dialed in. It looks like they have an optional PID now, but what was a great buy 10 years ago isn't so much today.

I'd recommend looking at the Crosslands CC1:
https://www.seattlecoffeegear.com/crossland-coffee-cc1

...or Breville BES40XL:
https://www.seattlecoffeegear.com/brevi ... so-machine

...with a Baratza Vario grinder.
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#123 Post by M Hudson » December 16th, 2015, 10:31 am

Larry, thats a valid point but I owned a silvia and used it for a summer. There is much posted about the complexities of temp management, however after using it for a few weeks / a month, I never thought about it again. I just used it every day and did fine.

Used silvias hold their value so they make it easy to upgrade if you so desire.

the crossland has had good reviews too, but all I am saying is dont rest your hat on a pid, its not all that and a bag of tricks, just more cost and still not by any means automatic. Even with my pid machine now, I have to try a few temps on pulls for new beans, and even then, it would have been easier with the silvia as I didn't have to program the pid each time.

On a sad note my rocket has an issue, I am losing water on the high pressure side, just this week I am having to refill the tank dialy as opposed to several times a week.

I will be tearing it apart this weekend looking for that leak, and I hope its a simple fix.
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#124 Post by Larry P » December 16th, 2015, 3:52 pm

That fair enough Mark. My approach is more of an engineering one - from a guy who works on control systems for a living, I feel that putting a PID control in a product does not in any way equate to the kind of cost that you see translated into the price of an espresso machine, so I applaud Breville for doing it on a $500 machine, and think it's absurd it isn't standard on the Silvia.

I take your word though, that for a practical matter, it doesn't actually amount to much.
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#125 Post by carlabarbosarocha » December 19th, 2015, 12:24 am

Gary Zimberg wrote:Thinking of getting this for my wife.....

Any opinions?

Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine

thanks,,,,
Yes, You can buy this one. I saw it in my uncle's house. It also has a good customer review.

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#126 Post by Ian Sutton » January 4th, 2016, 1:40 pm

Ended up with a Silvia plus Eureka mignon grinder. Delivery tomorrow.
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#127 Post by Scott Sutherland » May 26th, 2017, 10:38 am

I have some united miles that I have to use up and saw on their merchandise website that I can get either the breville infuser or breville barista express espresso machines. It sounds like the espresso part of the two machines is identical and the express just adds a grinder.

I currently have a Baratza Virtuoso grinder and I can get a portaholder insert for it. So my question is, which grinder is going to be better? Can I just use my Virtuoso or will I get better grinds from the Breville one in the Express? How much more "effortless" will the express be? I do like the fact that I just press the button and the express grinds the right amount of coffee. That said, I have a scale which I use for my technivorm brewed coffee so I suspect I could just weigh the beans for the espresso.

I would rate my coffee geekiness as "sort of medium" if that helps :)

Thanks!

P.S. this is a fabulous thread.

Scott

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#128 Post by Darren Leininger » May 26th, 2017, 12:10 pm

Hi Scott - Happy to weigh in here. As an owner of a Breville espresso maker (Dual Boiler 920XL) I would recommend against an integrated machine. For espresso, I would argue, that the precision grind and dosing is more important than the machine. Using a stand alone grinder (I splurged for a Mini Mazzer) gives you far more control over grind and dosing and allows for easy manual adjustments as you change beans. As well, the stand alone grinder is far easier to clean and maintain and gives you the option to upgrade as your coffee "geekiness" increases with time (it will!) With an integrated grinder, you get far less control and it adds a level of complexity to the device itself that may not equal the ease of use. My machine is going on 4 years old and I have had to have it in for maintenance once to replace the pump. However, my old Breville grinder failed twice in that same span before I upgraded to the Mazzer. In both instances the gears stripped and while Breville replaced or repaired the grinder for free, it was a hassle. Imagine having to pack up the entire espresso machine just to have the grinder repaired. I love my espresso machine and use it everyday and I think you will too, but I'd stay away from an integrated machine.
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#129 Post by Scott Sutherland » May 26th, 2017, 12:45 pm

Darren Leininger wrote:Hi Scott - Happy to weigh in here. As an owner of a Breville espresso maker (Dual Boiler 920XL) I would recommend against an integrated machine. For espresso, I would argue, that the precision grind and dosing is more important than the machine. Using a stand alone grinder (I splurged for a Mini Mazzer) gives you far more control over grind and dosing and allows for easy manual adjustments as you change beans. As well, the stand alone grinder is far easier to clean and maintain and gives you the option to upgrade as your coffee "geekiness" increases with time (it will!) With an integrated grinder, you get far less control and it adds a level of complexity to the device itself that may not equal the ease of use. My machine is going on 4 years old and I have had to have it in for maintenance once to replace the pump. However, my old Breville grinder failed twice in that same span before I upgraded to the Mazzer. In both instances the gears stripped and while Breville replaced or repaired the grinder for free, it was a hassle. Imagine having to pack up the entire espresso machine just to have the grinder repaired. I love my espresso machine and use it everyday and I think you will too, but I'd stay away from an integrated machine.
Thats the general sense I got from the thread. If I am not going to buy a new grinder -- will the virtuoso be good enough? will it be better than the one in the integrated machine? I know the virtuoso isn't a vario or a mazzer, but good enough?

thanks a ton

scott

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#130 Post by Darren Leininger » May 26th, 2017, 2:46 pm

Scott Sutherland wrote:
Thats the general sense I got from the thread. If I am not going to buy a new grinder -- will the virtuoso be good enough? will it be better than the one in the integrated machine? I know the virtuoso isn't a vario or a mazzer, but good enough?

thanks a ton

scott
Yes. Good enough, or to put it another way, the integrated grinder will be no better than the Virtuoso. In fact, I believe that the Virtuoso is better. We have a Virtuoso in our house in Spain and while I do not have the duration of experience with it that I have with my Breville grinders (we still use one for pour over,) it seems to me to be a better machine. And....like I said, your going to get geekier and upgrade some day anyway so stick with the Virtuoso [basic-smile.gif]
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#131 Post by Larry P » May 29th, 2017, 3:55 pm

Darren Leininger wrote:
Scott Sutherland wrote:
Thats the general sense I got from the thread. If I am not going to buy a new grinder -- will the virtuoso be good enough? will it be better than the one in the integrated machine? I know the virtuoso isn't a vario or a mazzer, but good enough?

thanks a ton

scott
Yes. Good enough, or to put it another way, the integrated grinder will be no better than the Virtuoso. In fact, I believe that the Virtuoso is better. We have a Virtuoso in our house in Spain and while I do not have the duration of experience with it that I have with my Breville grinders (we still use one for pour over,) it seems to me to be a better machine. And....like I said, your going to get geekier and upgrade some day anyway so stick with the Virtuoso [basic-smile.gif]
I agree with Darren that the Virtuoso is likely as good if not better than the integrated grinder. If you're serious you'll want to upgrade that grinder eventually.
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#132 Post by Chris Blum » May 29th, 2017, 4:54 pm

Anybody want to talk me out of the breville double boiler?
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#133 Post by ybarselah » May 30th, 2017, 12:36 pm

Chris Blum wrote:Anybody want to talk me out of the breville double boiler?
have had for 3 years now and it's still pound-for-pound the best machine out there. amazing support also, which is key for these things.

as for the virtuoso, i found it very lacking and immediately upgraded to the vario. i think it's probably the cheapest grinder that's worth getting for espresso.
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#134 Post by Scott Sutherland » May 30th, 2017, 4:57 pm

Well my Breville infuser sans the automatic grinder is on the way. What actually sealed the deal was the fact that I was able to buy a sonos speaker with the difference in miles :)

I'm going to try and make do with my Virtuoso for now but I'll stay aware of it's limitations. I will say I brewed one spectacular pot of coffee this morning.

On a side note, is there a good amount of beans to start with for a single/double espresso? I've got a scale for my Technivorm and use 75-85g of beans when I brew a whole pot.

How many grams of beans should I grind for a double espresso, say?

Thanks

Scott

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#135 Post by ybarselah » May 30th, 2017, 5:53 pm

19 grams is about perfect for the breville double basket. you'll want a scale with 1/10 gram increments.
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#136 Post by Larry P » May 30th, 2017, 5:57 pm

Scott, same machine here, I can measure it for you tomorrow morning.
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New Espresso Machine

#137 Post by Larry P » May 31st, 2017, 9:42 am

Larry P wrote:Scott, same machine here, I can measure it for you tomorrow morning.
...and I'll defer to Yaacov - 19g on the nose.
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Scott Sutherland
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New Espresso Machine

#138 Post by Scott Sutherland » May 31st, 2017, 11:10 am

Oh man you all are my heros! Thanks for the help -- I'll report back on my initial results.

scott

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New Espresso Machine

#139 Post by Scott Sutherland » June 2nd, 2017, 9:56 pm

Alright the machine is here. Quick Breville Infuser question -- which filter should I use? The single thick one with all the holes (unpressurized) or the dual thick one with a single hole (pressurized)?

It says the dual thick one is for preground beans in the manual. But Seattle coffee gear says that's the one beginners should use because it helps if you don't grind and tamp right.

Thoughts?

Thanks

Scott

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New Espresso Machine

#140 Post by ybarselah » June 3rd, 2017, 8:20 am

use the standard double basket. you'll never use the others. if you're not used to tamping, it will be a learning curve. do not use the tamper that came with the machine as it's too light and small. get a reg barber tamper asap. they're weighted perfectly.

https://www.seattlecoffeegear.com/brands/reg-barber

also, weiss distribution technique is crucial.

https://www.home-barista.com/weiss-dist ... nique.html

the goal is to get everything consistent in the following list so that the grind is the only variable - that's the goal, it's rarely achieved, but that's how you should think about it:

1. brew temp (start with 200 f)

2. weight of grounds in double basket portafilter (start with 19g)

3. tamp pressure - 30 lbs (try a bathroom scale to see what it feels like) - weiss dist technique here.

4. brew pressure - peaks and stays around 9-10 bars on the guage - too low means grounds are too course, too high will mean too fine and will choke the machine (these have overpressure valves to protect the machine)

5. brew time (total time with pre-infusion on the breville roughly 30-40 seconds)

6. weight of finished espresso - put the cup on a digital scale (36-40 grams depending on how short or long you prefer)

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get urnex cafiza and backflush every few days depending on use. get the grinder pellets also.
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Nola Palomar
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Re: New Espresso Machine

#141 Post by Nola Palomar » October 6th, 2018, 5:06 am

I just bought my first all in one, Gaggia Titanium Super-Automatic Espresso Machine (refurb). I am still learning how to use it and have skimmed over this thread.
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Re: New Espresso Machine

#142 Post by b. c@stner » October 11th, 2018, 6:41 pm

As much as I love, or so I thought, my little Rancilio Silvia, I just spent some serious time with a La Marzocco Linea Mini flirtysmile
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Re: New Espresso Machine

#143 Post by EricE » October 11th, 2018, 9:27 pm

b. c@stner wrote:
October 11th, 2018, 6:41 pm
As much as I love, or so I thought, my little Rancilio Silvia, I just spent some serious time with a La Marzocco Linea Mini flirtysmile
It’s the real deal isn’t it. I also have the Silvia but just can’t seem to justify dropping that kind of money on the linea.
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Re: New Espresso Machine

#144 Post by b. c@stner » October 12th, 2018, 8:04 am

EricE wrote:
October 11th, 2018, 9:27 pm
It’s the real deal isn’t it. I also have the Silvia but just can’t seem to justify dropping that kind of money on the linea.
Maybe we find a dealer who will take wine in trade [snort.gif]
b 0 b

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Re: New Espresso Machine

#145 Post by Jason P1ckw1ck » October 12th, 2018, 11:02 am

b. c@stner wrote:
October 11th, 2018, 6:41 pm
As much as I love, or so I thought, my little Rancilio Silvia, I just spent some serious time with a La Marzocco Linea Mini flirtysmile
I'll chime in and say you should get a Profitec 700 (bigger brew boiler and ability to plumb in right out of the box) and then spend the $1000 saved on an ECM S-Automatik grinder, it's all about the grind quality!

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Re: New Espresso Machine

#146 Post by b. c@stner » October 12th, 2018, 6:25 pm

Jason P1ckw1ck wrote:
October 12th, 2018, 11:02 am
b. c@stner wrote:
October 11th, 2018, 6:41 pm
As much as I love, or so I thought, my little Rancilio Silvia, I just spent some serious time with a La Marzocco Linea Mini flirtysmile
I'll chime in and say you should get a Profitec 700 (bigger brew boiler and ability to plumb in right out of the box) and then spend the $1000 saved on an ECM S-Automatik grinder, it's all about the grind quality!
You think? I was using the Lux D and pretty happy. Price is comparable. On the grinder that is
b 0 b

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Re: New Espresso Machine

#147 Post by Phil Smith » October 12th, 2018, 8:52 pm

I don't think I have a material possession that gives me more daily pleasure than the combination of my Duetto 3 and Compak F10 conical. The latter developed a bit of a software bug so it's pretty much analog now, but still works really well (I had a previous small Macap and the upgrade was a revelation). I've been thinking about upgrading the machine... I'd be happy to look at a Slayer for pressure profiling or, even better, a Speedster, for just plain sexiness, but will probably go with a GS/3 because there's so little repair or maintenance framework outside of a few cities; at least La Marzocco has longevity and a U.S. presence. Even in Chicago there's really nowhere to go and shipping is an incredible pain. I'm reasonably handy but the Duetto is such a crazy tight space that nothing is really possible without dissembling a lot.

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Re: New Espresso Machine

#148 Post by Jason P1ckw1ck » October 13th, 2018, 7:30 am

b. c@stner wrote:
October 12th, 2018, 6:25 pm
Jason P1ckw1ck wrote:
October 12th, 2018, 11:02 am
b. c@stner wrote:
October 11th, 2018, 6:41 pm
As much as I love, or so I thought, my little Rancilio Silvia, I just spent some serious time with a La Marzocco Linea Mini flirtysmile
I'll chime in and say you should get a Profitec 700 (bigger brew boiler and ability to plumb in right out of the box) and then spend the $1000 saved on an ECM S-Automatik grinder, it's all about the grind quality!
You think? I was using the Lux D and pretty happy. Price is comparable. On the grinder that is
That's a beautiful grinder! My point was that spending more on the grind quality is going to have a bigger effect on the end product than a more expensive espresso machine, that and having the chops to properly dose, distribute and tamp the grinds. I buy into Tim Wendelboe's outlook on espresso and that all these pressure profiling and extended pre-soaks don't really have that much of an effect. With that being said, Slayer machines are pretty much the most amazing looking pieces of equipment I would love to own someday :)

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Re: New Espresso Machine

#149 Post by Darren Leininger » May 6th, 2019, 6:08 pm

Thread revival. On Saturday, I received my a new espresso machine as a replacement for my aging Breville. My Breville Dual Boiler (BES920XL) is 5 years old and has already had a pump replaced and is ready for another round of maintenance. The steam valve doesn't close all the way and the electronic switches are failing, so I decide to buy my "forever machine."

I was recently in Seattle and spent the better part of a day at Seattle Coffee Gear test driving the various options including the La Marzocco GS3, the Rocket R9 and the Rocket R60v. They do not have a Slayer onsite to test drive but I was quickly talked out of that option by the helpful coffee experts assisting me. The consensus was that it's cool, but over priced and super finicky, more then I'd ever need to make great espresso at home. The GS3 and Rockets were cool but too many gadgets and settings, "just more things to go wrong" is what I got from the gurus. I asked a thousand questions and pulled 20 plus shots and in the end it was an easy decision, a no brainer! I went with the classic, cool, "staff favorite" and consensus best, La Marzocco Linea Mini, and its is awesome!

It arrived on Saturday afternoon and I spent Sunday dialing in the grind (I have a Mazzer Mini grinder) and pulling various combinations of coffee weight, shot weight and shot time and I've already pulled some amazing shots! Even the first shot was better then anything I ever pulled from my Breville. I'm currently using Olympia Coffee's Ethiopia Jibicho Natural (I prefer super fruity coffee) pulling 48 grams of espresso through 19 grams of coffee in 32 seconds at 9 bars and it is glorious. I'll continue to tinker, but I already know I made a wise decision. The Linea Mini is highly recommended if you're in the market for a new "forever" machine.
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Re: New Espresso Machine

#150 Post by Rajesh P a r i k h » May 6th, 2019, 7:20 pm

deadhorse
Darren Leininger wrote:
May 6th, 2019, 6:08 pm
Thread revival. On Saturday, I received my a new espresso machine as a replacement for my aging Breville. My Breville Dual Boiler (BES920XL) is 5 years old and has already had a pump replaced and is ready for another round of maintenance. The steam valve doesn't close all the way and the electronic switches are failing, so I decide to buy my "forever machine."

I was recently in Seattle and spent the better part of a day at Seattle Coffee Gear test driving the various options including the La Marzocco GS3, the Rocket R9 and the Rocket R60v. They do not have a Slayer onsite to test drive but I was quickly talked out of that option by the helpful coffee experts assisting me. The consensus was that it's cool, but over priced and super finicky, more then I'd ever need to make great espresso at home. The GS3 and Rockets were cool but too many gadgets and settings, "just more things to go wrong" is what I got from the gurus. I asked a thousand questions and pulled 20 plus shots and in the end it was an easy decision, a no brainer! I went with the classic, cool, "staff favorite" and consensus best, La Marzocco Linea Mini, and its is awesome!

It arrived on Saturday afternoon and I spent Sunday dialing in the grind (I have a Mazzer Mini grinder) and pulling various combinations of coffee weight, shot weight and shot time and I've already pulled some amazing shots! Even the first shot was better then anything I ever pulled from my Breville. I'm currently using Olympia Coffee's Ethiopia Jibicho Natural (I prefer super fruity coffee) pulling 48 grams of espresso through 19 grams of coffee in 32 seconds at 9 bars and it is glorious. I'll continue to tinker, but I already know I made a wise decision. The Linea Mini is highly recommended if you're in the market for a new "forever" machine.
Great choice! I’ve had mine almost 2 years now and love it. The guys at La Marzocco home have been incredibly helpful with any questions I have. All the wood upgrades really make the machine look great too in my opinion.

I’ve also really enjoyed the La Marzocco espresso subscription service.

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