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Bezzera Espresso Machines - Darren A's Review
Posted: December 14, 2006, 6:32pm
review rating: 7.0
feedback: (3) comments | read | write
Bezzera Espresso Machines
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More About This Product
Arrow The Bezzera Espresso Machines has 21 Reviews
Arrow The Bezzera Espresso Machines has been rated 9.08 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since February 3, 2003.
Arrow Bezzera Espresso Machines reviews have been viewed 228,746 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Ed Bourgeois 9.50
Mike Dahlor 8.50
Kirk Iverson 8.33
Daniel Spiegel 8.33
Tim Lake 8.00

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 8.8
Product Reviewed: BZ02S
Manufacturer: Bezzera Quality: 9
Average Price: Varies Usability: 8
Price Paid: $750.00 Cost vs. Value 10
Where Bought: 1st-line Aesthetics 8
Owned for: 2 months Overall 9
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: Starbucks Athena
Bottom Line: Good machine at an unbeatable price.
Positive Product Points

Professional machine for a consumer model price
Quick startup (20 min)
Steams milk quickly

Negative Product Points

Steaming bit that comes with machine is useless
Only one portafilter incuded and baskets are very hard to change
Drip try could be deeper

Detailed Commentary

I had a Starbucks Athena which was starting to show its age (8 yrs).  Milk was taking a long time to froth so I could not make coffee for guests.

I spent at least one month scouring the internet looking at espresso machines.  Originally, I was looking at the QuickMill Anita.  I like the price ($1000 US) and the insulated boiler.  However, I found out that this product is only sold through one exclusive dealer in Canada, whose price was rather high at $1400 CDN (it should only be around $1100 CDN).  Since they never responded to my emails and their grinder prices were high too, I looked at other products on the market.  I was looking at the Livia and discovered that the BZ02S was essential the same unit (according to other reviews anyways).  Its price was good and 1st-line shipped to Canada.  I also ordered a Rocky Dozerless along with it at got $50 off.

One thing that I like about the BZ02S is that the group is not as exposed at most e61 machines.  Since I make coffee with my 3 year old, this is a nice safety feature.  I was attracted the large boiler since we mostly drink milk drinks.  However, I found out quickly that the steam tip that comes with the unit is useless and bleeds too much steam off.  This causes the pressure to drop, while also making a complete mess.  Luckily, I ordered the 2-hole tip from 1-st line too.  This seams well, but something in between would be nice for steaming larger amounts of milk.

We also make a 12g shot, which falls in between a single and a double.  Luckily, I also ordered a second portafilter from Espresso Part Source since we make both singles and doubles.  They had a 12 g double basket.  I spent a week trying to make good shots with the portafilter that came with the BZ02S with no luck.  It was not until I used this new basket that it all came together.  The shots are still a bit quick at 15-20 s, but I am working to them longer and not leave the coffee bitter.  In addition, I find that I need to let about 2 oz out after the machine sits and 1-1.5 oz in between shots.

Originally, I was planning on putting the machine on a timer, but it heats up relatively quickly and I just turn it own in the morning when I get up.  About 20 minutes later it is ready to make its first cup.  We shut it off in the afternoon after the last cup.

Overall, I am very happy with the machine.  It is easy to use and our coffee quality has improved dramatically.  I also switched grinders at the same time, so I think this has much to do with this improvement.  Nevertheless, the simplicity of the HX machine makes it so much more enjoyable and faster to make our Lattes.  I do feel guilty about the machine staying on all day, but I found a German site that indicated that it used about 100 w in steady state, which is about the same as the Junior (which has an insulated boiler).  I think of this like leaving a light on. However, we drink several coffees and teas throughout the day, and to me anyway it justifies this.

Buying Experience

Excellent!  1st-line was great to deal with, shipped quickly and responded to my questions very fast.

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review rating: 7.0
Posted: December 14, 2006, 6:32pm
feedback: (3) comments | read | write
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