Our Valued Sponsor
OpinionsConsumer ReviewsGuides and How TosCoffeeGeek ReviewsResourcesForums
Espresso: Espresso Machines
Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
Rancilio Silvia - How to
Step by step guide for easy brewing and steaming with the Rancilio Silvia
www.seattlecoffeegear.com
 
Not Logged in: Log In to Postlog in
New Topics updated topics   New Posts new posts   Unanswered Posts new unanswered  
Search Discussion Board search   Discussion Board FAQ faq   Signup sign up  
Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Professional...  
view previous topic | view next topic | view all topics
showing page 1 of 3 last page next page
Author Messages
Insomniac20k
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Sep 2007
Posts: 35
Location: Maryland
Expertise: Pro Barista

Grinder: Capresso thing
Drip: I'm not an animal
Posted Mon Nov 19, 2012, 9:26pm
Subject: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

I work in a coffee shop and use machines that cost more than I make in 6 months to make coffee drinks for myself (and other people, I guess.) But I'm slashing my hours and going to school and I'd like some espresso in the morning. There's nothing on the way but Dunkin Donuts (no) and a Starbucks sorta out of the way (maybe acceptable in desperation)

The only coffee equipment I own is a cheap capresso burr grinder (I know) and some nice french presses. I could just press some coffee before school (my grinder situation is good enough for that), but it's a hassle and I'd really like to be able to take an americano with me. I've been looking at the De'Longhi BAR32 because I could pick one up for less than 100 bucks (although I could maybe spend as much as 150) and I have no budget for upgrading my sub-par thrift store grinder. I've noticed these cheap-o espresso machines have some pressurized voodoo going on that makes the crema happen even if the grind isn't good, which I don't know how I feel about. As a coffee professional, I think I should be appalled but I've never really tried espresso from one of these contraptions.

So, would i be insanely disappointed with this or is it serviceable? Are there some cheap mods I could do to make it okay? Any suggestions for better cheap models? I was looking at the Gaggia Color but the cheap De'Longhis seem to get better reviews (maybe because of the quality of the people reviewing them)

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks guys!
back to top
 View Profile Contact via AOL Instant Messenger Link to this post
qualin
Senior Member
qualin
Joined: 30 Jun 2012
Posts: 669
Location: Calgary, AB
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Alex Duetto 3
Grinder: Mazzer Mini Elect. Type A
Vac Pot: Looking to buy
Drip: Manual
Roaster: Considering?
Posted Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:06pm
Subject: Re: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

Before I go any further, make sure you read the reviews on this site.. There isn't very many positive reviews for this machine you mentioned.
"Delonghi Bar 32 Espresso Machine"

People ask on the forum all the time what is possibly the cheapest machine and grinder combo they can use to make espresso.. a lot of people recommend something like a Saeco Aroma with an unpressurized portafilter (Or a modified portafilter) and a Hario Skerton, which can actually do a proper espresso grind. but it is time consuming to grind a shot.

Here's a thread about it... http://coffeegeek.com/forums/espresso/grinders/484097

Insomniac20k Said:

I've been looking at the De'Longhi BAR32 ..... So, would i be insanely disappointed with this or is it serviceable?

Posted November 19, 2012 link

All I can say is that I think you would be seriously disappointed with it. You would probably use it to make one or two drinks and get frustrated with it. My thought is, the first time
you'd go to lock in the portafilter, you'd throw the machine across the room. :-)

If you want something which is even remotely close to your professional experiences, you should be considering a heat exchanging machine with a proper boiler in it. If you can find
a used La Cuadra Nuova for example, or even perhaps a Bezzera BZ09/BZ07, that would be a good start. Unfortunately, you are still somewhere in sub-$1000 land.

Insomniac20k Said:

I have no budget for upgrading my sub-par thrift store grinder.

Posted November 19, 2012 link

The Hario Skerton I believe is roughly around $40.. It probably could do a better grind than your existing grinder. :-)

I personally do not have experience with espresso machines with pressurized portafilters.. all I know is that if you are used to knocking out pucks, you won't with a cheap machine.

I think you'd be better off checking out the Buy & Sell on this board and seeing if you can pick up a used machine from someone on the cheap that has been looked after, rather than wasting your money. At least IMHO anyway.

 
Garbage In, Garbage Out, for every step of the process. From Beans to grinder, grounds to machine, coffee to cup.
back to top
 View Profile Contact via ICQ Contact via MSN Messenger Link to this post
frcn
Senior Member
frcn
Joined: 23 Dec 2001
Posts: 3,454
Location: Northern California
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Vibiemme Domobar Double
Grinder: Mazzer Kony, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Hario, 2 Cory pots, 1 Cory...
Drip: Behmor Brazen, Bunn A10 mod...
Roaster: computer controlled Hottop,...
Posted Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:29pm
Subject: Re: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

This question ahs been asked and answered so many times it should be handed down on stone tablets.

Why does it have to be espresso?
Would really excellent coffee do?
What is the budget?
If it is just for you, and two cups at a time is OK, then a hand grinder (like the Skerton) and an Espro Press. Total - about $125
Too expensive? Then use the grinder you have and get an Aeropress. $30.
Need to make more coffee at a go? Behmor Brazen, make the best of it with the grinder you have and upgrade that later.
There is also pour-over cones which are quite affordable (like $10-25 or so) and blow the wad on a Baratza Virtuoso grinder.
I would choose any of the above before wasting spending money on a cheap espresso machine... unless you really need a fancy paperweight.

 
Visit My Website
www.EspressoMyEspresso.com
back to top
 View Profile Visit website Link to this post
russel
Senior Member
russel
Joined: 12 Mar 2010
Posts: 464
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Conti Princess 2grp, GS/3...
Grinder: Super Caimanos x2, Forte BG,...
Drip: V60, Kalita Wave, Clever,...
Posted Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:50pm
Subject: Re: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

I don't usually recommend lever machines to people here...but as a coffee professional looking to make some really good espresso on a strictly personal basis and on a budget I would recommend that you look into a La Pavoni Europiccola or Professional and a grinder upgrade.  The quality of an LP's output is closely tied to the operators skill and experience, but they are quite capable of matching commercial machines (I'm pitting one against a GB/5 at the moment).  They are small and home friendly.  On the used market they can be picked up for less than $500.  They are simple and will last forever with basic maintenance.  More than anything, I find a direct lever to be joy to use.  There are a lot of ideas and mods and community resources for lever users (most over at HB), but that can come later should you choose the lever option.
back to top
 View Profile Visit website Link to this post
Markarian
Senior Member
Markarian
Joined: 27 Jun 2012
Posts: 658
Location: Seattle Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: ECM Technika IV Profi WT-WC
Grinder: Baratza Forte AP, HG One
Vac Pot: Bunn Trifecta MB
Drip: Moka, Aeropress, Hario V60
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Mon Nov 19, 2012, 11:10pm
Subject: Re: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

I want to also second the question "Why does it have to be espresso?" I've enjoyed exploring a lot of different brewing methods recently, such as pourover and Moka. Home espresso is a freaking expensive hobby, as I've discovered. It's why you see so many gleaming silver cubes sitting on granite countertops on this forum. You're talking to people who spend as much as a used car on a coffee machine and think nothing of spending $15-20 per pound for beans roasted by people with very tight shirts--that being said they definitely know what they're talking about and genuinely feel that good coffee should be had by all ;)

Anyway, pick this little guy up (provided it works):

http://annapolis.craigslist.org/app/3283265716.html

But first, I'd try and haggle them down to $80.

I had some wonderful lattes from this machine (look at my avatar, same machine) when I started a few months ago. The pressurized PF will be usable with your Capresso until you can save up for a better grinder. Then you can get a nonpressurized PF and still get good use out of the machine. I'd recommend this Saeco (SIN006/Starbucks Barista) over the Aroma, since the former has a real steam wand, vs. a panarello.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
RaymondParker
Senior Member


Joined: 10 Nov 2012
Posts: 41
Location: Vienna
Posted Tue Nov 20, 2012, 12:06am
Subject: Any professional barista will never be disappointed with a Pavoni at home
 

Try to find a good old used Pavoni hand-level machine on the internet. No matter how old. The older - the better!
Lazy folks are often ready to part with that machine for an apple and a egg because they are used to "instant Mozart", "Europe in a week" and "on demand satisfaction". Thats not the case with a Pavoni. A Pavoni needs true dedication to master, but returns a lot more then you invest: The stunning beauty will last forever and give (provided your ready for a learning curve) most of the time a shot rivalling and surpassing probably most of the time the one's your got out of expensive gear you'r worked with until now.

La Pavoni Professionale

Even if the machine is not in working order, get it. It can be fitted with minimal requirement and is a good investment too.
I have mine (Pavoni Europiccola Professionale) for 35 years now - still in perfect condition.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
Markarian
Senior Member
Markarian
Joined: 27 Jun 2012
Posts: 658
Location: Seattle Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: ECM Technika IV Profi WT-WC
Grinder: Baratza Forte AP, HG One
Vac Pot: Bunn Trifecta MB
Drip: Moka, Aeropress, Hario V60
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Tue Nov 20, 2012, 4:01am
Subject: Re: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

He said under a hundred bucks, guys. Let's try and keep things realistic. As a student, saving up right now may not be realistic (believe me, I am one). A pressurized PF on a Saeco is going to give him better than the super-auto swill Starbucks chugs out, at least.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 8,042
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 Tue Nov 20, 2012, 6:03am
Subject: Re: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

I might have missed it but I did not see anyone advise a Super auto????
If the budget is under $100, stay with what he has and buy some good fresh coffee, to quote Jason, "you don't need to spend a fortune on equipment but you DO need to spend something" and for espresso,  something is more than $100

 
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!
back to top
 View Profile Visit website Link to this post
faaparasite
Senior Member


Joined: 19 Jun 2003
Posts: 290
Location: Dallas Metroplex
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Bezzera BZ99
Grinder: Mazzer Super Jolly
Drip: Technivorm
Posted Tue Nov 20, 2012, 6:10am
Subject: Re: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

If I had a budget of $100 and I absolutely had to do espresso, I'd probably look for a used Gaggia.  If you are patient, you can find them on flea-bay for around $100.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 8,042
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 Tue Nov 20, 2012, 7:33am
Subject: Re: Professional barista, how disappointed will I be with a cheap home machine?
 

Plus a grinder......

 
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!
back to top
 View Profile Visit website Link to this post
showing page 1 of 3 last page next page
view previous topic | view next topic | view all topics
Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Professional...  
New Topics updated topics   New Posts new posts   Unanswered Posts new unanswered     Search Discussion Board search   Discussion Board FAQ faq   Signup sign up  
Not Logged in: Log In to Postlog in
Discussions Quick Jump:
Symbols: New Posts= New Posts since your last visit      No New Posts= No New Posts since last visit     Go to most recent post= Newest post
Forum Rules:
No profanity, illegal acts or personal attacks will be tolerated in these discussion boards.
No commercial posting of any nature will be tolerated; only private sales by private individuals, in the "Buy and Sell" forum.
No SEO style postings will be tolerated. SEO related posts will result in immediate ban from CoffeeGeek.
No cross posting allowed - do not post your topic to more than one forum, nor repost a topic to the same forum.
Who Can Read The Forum? Anyone can read posts in these discussion boards.
Who Can Post New Topics? Any registered CoffeeGeek member can post new topics.
Who Can Post Replies? Any registered CoffeeGeek member can post replies.
Can Photos be posted? Anyone can post photos in their new topics or replies.
Who can change or delete posts? Any CoffeeGeek member can edit their own posts. Only moderators can delete posts.
Probationary Period: If you are a new signup for CoffeeGeek, you cannot promote, endorse, criticise or otherwise post an unsolicited endorsement for any company, product or service in your first five postings.
Cafe Espresso Machines
Video reviews, nationwide installation, leasing options... Nuova Simonelli, Rancilio, La Marzocco.
www.seattlecoffeegear.com
Home | Opinions | Consumer Reviews | Guides & How Tos | CoffeeGeek Reviews | Resources | Forums | Contact Us
CoffeeGeek.com, CoffeeGeek, and Coffee Geek, along with all associated content & images are copyright ©2000-2014 by Mark Prince, all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. Content, code, and images may not be reused without permission. Usage of this website signifies agreement with our Terms and Conditions. (0.439783096313)
Privacy Policy | Copyright Info | Terms and Conditions | CoffeeGeek Advertisers | RSS | Find us on Google+