At the price I paid, it is a fabulous steal. Even at $100 more, I'd be pretty darn happy. And great coffee makes me very happy!
Positive Product Points
first time I've owned a pump maker and it lives up to all my expectations. fast to brew, easy to use, makes great crema, easy to froth milk, cleanup no problem.
Negative Product Points
a bit noisy, not too handsome but not an eyesore either, wish there were more controls (especially water temp), filter is a bit tight fitting in the handle and is hard to get out for cleaning.
My first pump machine and it is great. After two weeks, I've mostly mastered the cappuccino process. My wife only drinks one cup of coffee in the morning and as her personal barista, I'm always on the spot. No matter if it's drip, press or an espresso, I know my job is to serve up the best. I have yet to fail with the Aroma. I've learned to take my time and work with the machine. I don't rush the water warming, the priming requirements, the draining of the paranello....And it pays off.
Another point about priming, which has been stated in other reviews. Do it whether you're sure you need it or not. And it is especially important before you steam to drain any remaining water out of the steam tube. Made the mistake of not draining it the first two times I used the steamer and of course, I was disappointed. I was just watering down the milk.
All in all, I highly recommend the machine and look forward to using it most every morning. It's worth getting up 10 minutes earlier to brew a great espresso.
great. Bloomingdales (who'd thunk that?) had a one day sale on the Aroma for $170 and I just couldn't resist. The salesperson was great although not especially knowledgeable about this particular espresso maker. However, she had done research and knew that the online reviews were very positive.
Three Month Followup
It's now about 3 months since I purchased the Aroma and my review remains the same. Great value for the dollar. Has not given me one bit of trouble and the results are always good. I've gotten the process of latte making down pat and can perform my husbandly coffee duties with my eyes closed (which they usually are at 5:30 when I start to fill the container.) Would still recommend the unit (and I have) and don't anticipate having to change out. Only wish is for a little more control of the water temp.