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Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
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NobbyR
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NobbyR
Joined: 10 Jul 2011
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Location: Germany
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Espresso: Poccino Opus One, Ariete
Grinder: Eureka Mignon Istantaneo
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Drip: Melitta Linea Unica de Luxe
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Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 8:34am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

SeattleCoffeeGear is certainly a good place to shop, no matter what.

 
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scanfield
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Joined: 21 Nov 2011
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Location: Texas
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: La Nuovo Era Cuadra
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 8:40am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

NobbyR Said:

Easy? Sure thing. Fast? Yes, it is. Decent? Now, that's highly debatable, because Nespresso is not really espresso for several reasons, no matter what advertising tries to suggest. {Sorry, Mr Clooney!} It's only an approximation. The dose is wrong (only 5 g of coffee per capsule), the volume is wrong (40 ml for a single shot), it lacks body (having a more or less watery consistency), it's pre-ground (i.e. most probably stale), and I suspect the crema is only a fake (some kind of built-in pressurization device).

Posted September 4, 2012 link

It's interesting that you never mentioned flavor. I've only had a Nespresso based drink a few times, but each was pretty good (IMHO). I believe it is difficult to make a better espresso-ish drink with that budget.

If I'm enjoying a drink, I frankly don't care if the dose or volume is incorrect by SCAA standards.
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NobbyR
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NobbyR
Joined: 10 Jul 2011
Posts: 2,023
Location: Germany
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Poccino Opus One, Ariete
Grinder: Eureka Mignon Istantaneo
Vac Pot: N/A
Drip: Melitta Linea Unica de Luxe
Roaster: N/A
Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 8:45am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

Nespresso tastes okay, better than stale drip coffee or Senseo anyway, but it doesn't taste as good as real espresso to me. A Nespresso machine might be a good sollution for an office environment, for example. But personally I prefer the full body and full taste of a traditionally brewed espresso.

By the way, only a minority of CoffeeGeeks adheres the INEI or SCAA criteria.

 
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GVDub
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Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 8:46am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

wide_palate Said:

Thanks everyone.Guess I might as well just stick to drip at home till I get a larger budget.$200+ for a good grinder,$300+ for a "halfway decent" machine,$16 per lb beans.Seems like it really is cheaper & much quicker overall to just go buy a shot.I like coffee but I don't hold my pinky up that high

Posted September 4, 2012 link


So buy the refurbed Saeco Aroma from Seattle Coffee Gear and shop for either a hand grinder or a used electric grinder. You can still come in well under $300 total.
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NobbyR
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NobbyR
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Location: Germany
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Poccino Opus One, Ariete
Grinder: Eureka Mignon Istantaneo
Vac Pot: N/A
Drip: Melitta Linea Unica de Luxe
Roaster: N/A
Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 8:49am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

YMMV, but given a capable grinder you can pull decents shots with the Saeco Aroma.

 
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odysseas
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Joined: 25 Aug 2012
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Espresso: Quick Mill Anita
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Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 9:19am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

I am no expert but I felt I should comment on the "really is cheaper & much quicker overall to just go buy a shot" portion of your message.

I would say that this depends on how often you go out and get a shot. I was using Rancilio Silvia and a Rocky for a couple of years that combined would cost you now about $1000. These appliances are designed to last at least a decade if properly maintained. The espresso drinks I was able to produce were much better than what you can get at the popular espresso coffee chain and cost me about 1/6-1/8 of what I would have to pay to get the same drink at the store. So, depending on how often you need a drink, you may actually save yourself some money and enjoy a better coffee by investing in your own setup.
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Burner0000
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Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 10:44am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

frank828 Said:

agreeing with all that is was said and adding that in that price range, a used Saeco Barista/Aroma/Via Venezia or something similar with something like a hario skerton hand grinder MIGHT get you ok results.  You might need to stick to the pressurized portafilter in that case as the grinder will probably not get you where you need when using unpressurized.

Posted September 4, 2012 link

Agreed!  If you look around for a used Saeco Barista (Starbucks Barista SIN006) and get your hands on a that Baratza Virtuoso then you should be in business.  Lot's of starbucks barista's are circulation on the internet and have the single hole steam wands but if you wanna go new then go for a "Saeco Barista/Aroma/Via Venezia"  

Click Here (www.ebay.com)  Lot's on ebay right now.
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rayto
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rayto
Joined: 21 Feb 2010
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Espresso: Gaggia Classic
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Roaster: Behmor, Hottop
Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 10:54am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

Go with a used Gaggia off CL great beginner machines.
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Coffeenoobie
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Coffeenoobie
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Espresso: N S Oscar
Grinder: K30 & Vario W
Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 11:27am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

I think he would be better off with the one step up grinder, the preciso.  http://www.baratza.com/baratza-grinder-information/preciso-grinder/  I tried espresso with virtuoso and I ended up getting the top of that line the Vario W.  The virtuoso is now used for drip and cold brew only.  That is to say I don't use it much.

You can watch the trade forum here and the company website for used grinders.  The hand grinder is a good idea as well.  I often see used starbucks machines in the 100 dollar range. May say not used much and that may be true.  But it is not a bad place to start.  You might find it frustrating if it doesn't work or if you have to tweak it a lot to work.  If you are handy I would go the used route.  That is what I did.

 
Coffeenoobie

Buying advice: GRINDER GRINDER GRINDER. Don't cheap out on the grinder.

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Coffeenoobie
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Coffeenoobie
Joined: 11 Dec 2011
Posts: 3,014
Location: PNW
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: N S Oscar
Grinder: K30 & Vario W
Posted Tue Sep 4, 2012, 11:29am
Subject: Re: Whats a decent espresso for a novice in the $100-$200 range?
 

I would not buy from that overseas website.  I would get it from a company with a good reputation.

 
Coffeenoobie

Buying advice: GRINDER GRINDER GRINDER. Don't cheap out on the grinder.

My coffee treasure map...
Click Here (maps.google.com)

Oscar trick out: http://s156.photobucket.com/user/GandBteam/story/14231
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