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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Looking for...  
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taomacuzuh
Senior Member


Joined: 16 Jul 2013
Posts: 16
Location: China or Nethetlands
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Tue Jul 16, 2013, 7:48pm
Subject: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

Hello.  I am new to the forum.  I already introduced myself in the introduce yourself topic as my first post.
I used to own a nespresso machine and a Moka express espresso stove pot.

Due to moving abroad I could not take all that with me and also were I live you cannot buy coffee beans (maybe on internet but not in stores).

So now I go back to my own country soon.  I want to buy a new machine for making Cappuccino's.

I am caffeine intolerant so if I drink more then 1 cup a day with caffeine in it I already jump through the roof.  I drink decaf also although is not always as good as the real stuff.

So what would be the best way to start buying a machine.

Budget 250 till 500 euro max.  
machine needs to make espresso and cappuccino.

Somehow a long term storage for coffee beans and or espresso grind as to be added into the mix to.  Because I live alone and don't want to buy beans and thrown 70% away after 2 weks.

What I had before was a Nespresso machine and the cups are vacuumed so the taste is very consistent and last for a long long time without noticing quality change (at least I did not notice).  My favourite nespresso cup was the arpeggio (strength 9) which reminded me to some of the cappuccino's I had in Italy with a complex flavour of cofffee with hints of nuts and chocolate.

Anyway I look for a machine that can match this taste for not to much money.  So I of course could go for another nespresso machine for 200 Euro with a nice milk foamer and then i get 80 euro's worth of cups with it.  good deal good price good qaulity.

But I am willing to spend more money if I can go beyond the Nespresso Arpeggio cappuccino results (but it is already pretty good cappuccino, I have tasted much worse in 5 star hotels, even in Italy).  But I am sure it can get better.

I hope people have good advice.  My main problem is that I don't drink to much coffee and don't want the bean to go stale.
So this has to be considered to.
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qualin
Senior Member
qualin
Joined: 30 Jun 2012
Posts: 665
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 Wed Jul 17, 2013, 1:13am
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

taomacuzuh Said:

So now I go back to my own country soon.

Posted July 16, 2013 link

Can you clarify where your country is? Better yet, where in that country you are moving to?

taomacuzuh Said:

Budget 250 till 500 euro max.

Posted July 16, 2013 link

Your budget should factor in a coffee grinder, not just the machine. You must grind fresh coffee for decent espresso, there is no other way to do it.
Pre-ground coffee sucks because it "dies" very quickly. The key to a decent espresso is ensuring that the coffee grounds are fresh!

What comes to mind right away is the Saeco Aroma, which will be within your budget, but you still need to buy a grinder for it!
For your budget, you can use a cheap burr grinder found at a department store to grind your coffee fine enough for a pressurized machine.
Don't buy a blade grinder, as they do not grind evenly enough for the kind of grind you are looking for.

taomacuzuh Said:

Somehow a long term storage for coffee beans and or espresso grind as to be added into the mix to.

Posted July 16, 2013 link

Storing coffee beans is as easy as buying mason jars or any air-tight and water-tight container. If you freeze the coffee beans, they can last up to
about 4 months, but they must never be re-frozen. Once they are dethawed, they must be used within about 7-10 days.

Unfrozen Coffee beans must be used no more than 21 days after roasting. You never store ground coffee because it will stale in as little as 15
minutes after you grind it and turns into toxic waste if you freeze then dethaw it. You only grind coffee as you need it.

taomacuzuh Said:

don't want to buy beans and thrown 70% away after 2 weks.

Posted July 16, 2013 link

I find that if I split up a kilogram of coffee into four 250 gram ziploc bags or air-tight containers, then freeze what I don't use and only use up one 250 gram container per week, I
can make a kilogram of coffee last me about a month. You should never re-freeze coffee beans, once you take them out of the bag, put them into a grinder hopper
and use them up over the span of the week. For your usage, I would recommend considering buying your coffee in 500 gram bags to start out.

taomacuzuh Said:

Anyway I look for a machine that can match this taste for not to much money.

Posted July 16, 2013 link

Well, the Nespresso acts like a pressurized portafilter machine, so the Saeco should be a good start.

taomacuzuh Said:

My main problem is that I don't drink to much coffee and don't want the bean to go stale. So this has to be considered to.

Posted July 16, 2013 link

Well, the suggestions I gave you above is really only good if you plan on drinking at least one coffee per day. If you plan on drinking coffee seldomly, then I would
recommend sticking with nespresso capsules or k-cups.

 
Garbage In, Garbage Out, for every step of the process. From Beans to grinder, grounds to machine, coffee to cup.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,947
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 17, 2013, 3:04am
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

In short, if you liked what you had, you may be best served by just buying a machine like you had. True espresso will cost more than your budget by the time you add in a grinder etc. While it is far from great espresso, it will take little space, solves your storage issues and travels well.

When you return home, then consider moving up to a quality machine and setup. YMMV.

 
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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Burner0000
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jul 2011
Posts: 1,090
Location: Cambridge, Ontario Canada
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia, VFA Expres...
Grinder: Macap MX/VFA N1464/Kyocera...
Drip: Manual Drip, French Press
Roaster: Behmor 1600 / Sonofresco
Posted Wed Jul 17, 2013, 7:40am
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

qualin Said:

Can you clarify where your country is? Better yet, where in that country you are moving to?



Your budget should factor in a coffee grinder, not just the machine. You must grind fresh coffee for decent espresso, there is no other way to do it.
Pre-ground coffee sucks because it "dies" very quickly. The key to a decent espresso is ensuring that the coffee grounds are fresh!

What comes to mind right away is the Saeco Aroma, which will be within your budget, but you still need to buy a grinder for it!
For your budget, you can use a cheap burr grinder found at a department store to grind your coffee fine enough for a pressurized machine.
Don't buy a blade grinder, as they do not grind evenly enough for the kind of grind you are looking for.



Storing coffee beans is as easy as buying mason jars or any air-tight and water-tight container. If you freeze the coffee beans, they can last up to
about 4 months, but they must never be re-frozen. Once they are dethawed, they must be used within about 7-10 days.

Unfrozen Coffee beans must be used no more than 21 days after roasting. You never store ground coffee because it will stale in as little as 15
minutes after you grind it and turns into toxic waste if you freeze then dethaw it. You only grind coffee as you need it.



I find that if I split up a kilogram of coffee into four 250 gram ziploc bags or air-tight containers, then freeze what I don't use and only use up one 250 gram container per week, I
can make a kilogram of coffee last me about a month. You should never re-freeze coffee beans, once you take them out of the bag, put them into a grinder hopper
and use them up over the span of the week. For your usage, I would recommend considering buying your coffee in 500 gram bags to start out.



Well, the Nespresso acts like a pressurized portafilter machine, so the Saeco should be a good start.



Well, the suggestions I gave you above is really only good if you plan on drinking at least one coffee per day. If you plan on drinking coffee seldomly, then I would
recommend sticking with nespresso capsules or k-cups.

Posted July 17, 2013 link

+1  Saeco machines are built well for the price point.   The Saeco Via Venezia  is what I recommend.  If you look around you should be able to get one for less than $300.  This machine has lot's of upgrades like unpresurized portafilter and latte are steam wand.  You could spend the rest on a Baratza or Ascaso grinder like THIS

Where are you located so I can see if I can find you a deal.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,947
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 17, 2013, 8:29am
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

China or Nethetlands

 
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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taomacuzuh
Senior Member


Joined: 16 Jul 2013
Posts: 16
Location: China or Nethetlands
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Thu Jul 18, 2013, 9:51pm
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

Ok thanks for the input.  I plan to buy the coffee machine in the Netherlands.  in about 2 months from now.
It does not matter where i move to in my country since it is a small country.  

If I buy an espresso machine are there any specific features i should look for, what specs or features are important?
And if i buy the grinder what should i look for in the grinder, what specs or features are important?

Thanks.

P.S.
Saeco is Philips and Philips makes really bad products that break easy and fast, often within warranty period.  I don't now about Saeco but everything else is not very high quality.   I rather buy Siemens, Bosch or Delonghi or something like that as The philips company disappointed me a lot over the years with many of there products.  Although I must admit that somebody served me a espresso from a saeco machine and that was tasting pretty good.  At least up to par with Nespresso or probably better.
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taomacuzuh
Senior Member


Joined: 16 Jul 2013
Posts: 16
Location: China or Nethetlands
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Fri Jul 19, 2013, 2:40am
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

Would something like this be a good start:

Espresso machine (piston):
DeLonghi Icona ECOV310BK Onyx Black  

Grinder:  Graeff CM800 (is probably one of the cheapest quality grinders).

Machine 200 euro
grinder  140 euro
Bag of beans 20 euro.

Total: 360 euro.

Is already almost twice as much as a Nespresso machine with milk frotter.
But will it be worth the money?

I think Saeco and Gaggia have similar espresso piston machines but a bit more expensive but to me it looks similar.

I just post two links here so people can see the product what i talk about.

Click Here (www.amazon.co.uk)

http://www.delonghi.com/us_en/products/icona-eco-310bk/
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,947
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 Jul 19, 2013, 4:59am
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

Both machines are department store fodder, mostly suitable for wedding presents where they are not expected to actually make good espresso.

Spend your money where you wish but I will echo my post above, for your budget, and that you are moving around, a pod or capsule machine is likely your best bet. It will not be great quality but it will be drinkable.


For a reasonable starter espresso setup, you need to add to your budget. You can get more for your money by going with used gear but then you are taking chances on how the equipment was cared for.

 
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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taomacuzuh
Senior Member


Joined: 16 Jul 2013
Posts: 16
Location: China or Nethetlands
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Fri Jul 19, 2013, 3:47pm
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

Ok so what will the minimum be to buy a grinder?  What brand and how much will that cost me?
I think I probably want to stick with Nespresso becuase i am done for 200 euro and get 80 euro worth of espresso cups with it.  And also I know what i get and it is not bad at all (in my opinion).

Can you guys naybe give me some examples or prices from machines I should buy and what grinder and what will this cost me.
I really don't know what to look for in a machine and what features are important.

Is this Saeco Venezia (that somebody mentioned earlier)a good machine or also not good enough?
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takeshi
Senior Member
takeshi
Joined: 12 Oct 2002
Posts: 999
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto 3.0
Grinder: Super Jolly
Roaster: Amaya Roasting
Posted Fri Jul 19, 2013, 7:51pm
Subject: Re: Looking for advice on new machine.
 

taomacuzuh Said:

Ok so what will the minimum be to buy a grinder?

Posted July 19, 2013 link

The standard recommendation is a Baratza Preciso or equivalent or better.  Or a good hand grinder if budget does is too restrictive and one is willing to deal with hand grinding.

I'd also suggest just getting a Nespresso if you're happy with what it produces.  It's not just a matter of buying equipment but the learning curve as well.

taomacuzuh Said:

Can you guys naybe give me some examples or prices from machines I should buy and what grinder and what will this cost me.
I really don't know what to look for in a machine and what features are important.

Posted July 19, 2013 link

Have you read the guide for recommendations at the top of the subforum?  What to look for depends a lot on what the buyer is looking for.
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