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I need a "first machine" at a reasonable price
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > I need a "first...  
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Bob_McBob
Senior Member
Bob_McBob
Joined: 30 Jan 2006
Posts: 455
Location: Waterloo, ON
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto, Strega, S1 Vivaldi
Grinder: Vario, K10, K30, Tanzania
Vac Pot: Yama SY-8
Drip: KB-741, V60, Wave, CCD, AP
Roaster: 2 broken Hottops
Posted Wed Jul 27, 2011, 1:38am
Subject: Re: I need a "first machine" at a reasonable price
 

You spend $1700/year at Starbucks, but you aren't willing to pay more than $250 for a machine to replace that habit?  For less than half your annual Starbucks budget you could have a LeLit PL041 and $360 refurbished Baratza Vario, which would be a great home espresso setup.

I assume that $4.55 is a grande latte or something similar.  Are you both spending this much at Starbucks every day?  A 16oz latte is about $1.25 in consumables cost ($4/gallon milk and $16/lb coffee) even if you waste a fair amount of coffee.   I know it's not popular to say it's cheaper to make espresso at home on CG, but well, it is.  It certainly adds up if you are going out for coffee every day.

If you genuinely don't want to spend more than $250 on an espresso machine, and/or you have no interest in making real espresso at home, then I suggest you get a pod machine or else a good grinder, press pot or pourover cone, and maybe one of those hand frothers.

 
Chris
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,499
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major
Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Wed Jul 27, 2011, 5:57am
Subject: Re: I need a "first machine" at a reasonable price
 

jamichau Said:

Ok, followed Jason's link to WLL, did some reading, and purchased the Gaggia Espresso Dose for my wife.  Need to find a manual grinder now.  Wish us good luck........

Thanks again to everyone who replied!

-J

Posted July 26, 2011 link

Your welcome, good move. I have not used that machine but it looks like it should be a good solid starter machine, something that will work to produce a good to great shot, depending on YOU and how you prep the shot, just like all espresso prep, you are the most important component.

For a hand grinder you can start by looking to Click Here (www.orphanespresso.com) for a starting place. Good equipment needs good coffee so please look to one of the proven sellers of good, quality fresh coffee on our starting list. Click Here (www.home-barista.com)

We look forward to helping you get the most from your new maker. Congrats to both you and your wife and welcome to good coffee and coffeegeek!

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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jamichau
Senior Member


Joined: 24 Jul 2011
Posts: 10
Location: USA
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2012, 6:33am
Subject: Re: I need a "first machine" at a reasonable price
 

It's been nearly a year since we purchased our Gaggia Espresso Dose and I thought I'd post an update.  The verdict is: Total and Complete Success!  Amy loves her machine and uses it all the time for herself, family, and friends!  It paid for itself in less than two months! Somewhat surprisingly, I'm even having an occasional coffee - especially on Monday mornings!  The machine is simple and works very well.  We always use distilled water.  AND, after having the machine for a few weeks, we ordered a Capresso burr grinder.  Love the grinder.  It's quiet and works well.  In fact, Amy's Dad liked out grinder so much, he bought one for his regular cofee.

Many thanks to everyone for all the time taken to offer advice, much appreciated.  I'll be back if our machine ever goes toast.

-J
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sweaner
Senior Member
sweaner
Joined: 16 Nov 2007
Posts: 1,108
Location: Yardley, PA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Vetrano, Arrarex Caravel, La...
Grinder: Mazzer SJ, OE Pharos
Drip: Bunn Trifecta MB
Roaster: Poppery II
Posted Fri Jun 29, 2012, 11:02am
Subject: Re: I need a "first machine" at a reasonable price
 

The only problem I see is using distilled water. You will not get ideal extraction with that, as you do need the minerals for the best taste. I suggest mixing distilled with tap water to produce water with the proper TDS to minimize scaling while giving good taste. I mix about 1/3 distilled with 2/3 tap.

Click Here (www.espressoplanet.com)

 
-Scott
“Coffee - the favorite drink of the civilized world.”
Thomas Jefferson
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,499
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major
Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Fri Jun 29, 2012, 11:14am
Subject: Re: I need a "first machine" at a reasonable price
 

Congrats!
I agree with scott tho. If you switched to drinking warer (I am guessing you are using bottled water if not add a little tap water to the distilled) you will taste an improvement in the shots.

I'm glad that everyone is enjoying the coffee!

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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