Minimal fuss/expertise results in truly great shots and lattes. Tip: froth your milk before pulling shot.
Positive Product Points
- Well built: has not worn at all after 1.5 years of daily use.
- Price/value is biggest plus. With a $100 Gaggia burr grinder, I am getting solid results nearly 100% of the time.
- Size: fits just under my counter cabinets!
Negative Product Points
It's a thermoblock. Texturizing milk first and pulling one double shot works well. Trying to froth another pitcher soon after doesn't work.
The PF has a cheater in it to 'enhance' crema. It works, but does not train one to grind and tamp well - perfect for a beginner, but a person with intermediate or above skills will get bored.
Steam wand does not move. It also is on/off only - cannot dial in the amount of steam you want released.
The water level is hard to view - dark.
A decent post-novice machine that will not break the bank. Brevelle makes decent equipment (I also have their slow cooker) and love the brushed metal look & feel.
Some reviewers are saying 'save up and get something better,' but the next level up in value and noticeably better results is at 3 or 4 times the price (remember, the better the espresso machine, the more you'll have to pay for a grinder). A friend of mine has the Brevelle with both boiler and thermoblock (the Ikon?), and he has to be much fussier with grinding & tamping.
I would keep this machine 5 years if I could do back to back double shots and milk foaming at the same level as doing only one double with milk. This is the biggest disappointment. I will pony up to a better set up within 12 months, but no regrets or major suffering while I wait!
Note: To clarify, I say I will not buy again, because it is a transition machine for me (i.e. I'll be going in the direction of a major boiler machine like the Silvia for next purchase). If I was, again, looking at options 18 months ago, when I bought the Brevelle, I WOULD buy it again.
London Drugs is easy. Return in 15 days, no questions asked. I did not approach their staff with questions (expected them to not be knowledgeable).