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Topic # 229184 11-Feb-2018 16:31
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I'm in the market for a new espresso machine. The only thread i cld find on geek zone was the Nespresso Lovers one so i'll start by saying I won't be touching one of those, they make the worst god-awful coffee i've ever tasted and I don't understand how anyone can compare them to cafe coffee (maybe in Christchurch - but not in Welly!).

 

So now i've offended half the people on here - I"m looking at the gaggia classic or rancilio silvia. The prices are similar, the gaggia has the advantage of being able to take coffee that's not ground immediately prior (a pressurised basket vs the unpressurised on the silvia) - or at least that's what my research seems to tell me. I know that "the grinder is the most important part" and all that, but I had a La Pavoni EBR until recently, never had a grinder and it made great coffee - just can't get another one. I'm not saying never to the grinder, but more likely i'll go buy coffee every few days as they are so messy!

 

So recommendations/comments? Other suggestions? I have heard that gaggia are not well supported in NZ but that was from the rancilio supplier....\

 

TIA


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BDFL - Memuneh
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  Reply # 1955304 11-Feb-2018 17:23
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Not a suggestion but a comment on your comment. Nespresso makes consistently good cofee. Not the best coffee in the world but not the worst. I live in Wellington and you can find good coffee here but more often than not you will find the coffee is over extracted, bitter and tastes wrong. So if you find a good cafe in Wellington, stick with it.

 

Having said that I used to have an espresso machine but got a bit tired of all the cleaning, trying to find the right coffee, the variations that happened - and frankly unless you have some training the coffee will not be as good as a good barista can make. I bought a Nespresso machine years ago and happy with the results. If you really have reservations about the taste you can now find five or more different brands in the supermarkets that sell compatible pods with their own blends - including some well known New Zealand brands.





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  Reply # 1955306 11-Feb-2018 17:24
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I've had a Rocket Evoluzione VII for the past 6 years, the new version of which is about $4k, which seems to be about the going rate in NZ for a Hx machine with rotary vane pump.  Of course you can pay a lot more than that for machines if you wish. I imported mine directly from Italy - but of course that means there's no practical warranty.  I've replaced an element about a year ago - which I'm told is a random thing - sometimes they outlast the machine, sometimes they fail quite soon. I've also done usual maintenance, replace group seal, as well as internal seals in the group head, I haven't needed to descale it, it's used every day but Chch water is reasonably soft, so there was minimal scale inside the boiler as seen when I replaced the element, none at all in the group when I replaced the seals etc.  How often you need to do this will depend on your water.

 

For lower cost machine I suggest you perhaps look at the Bezzera BZ10.  Quite compact, seem to work well - downside they can't be plumbed in as they've got a vibration pump.  They also have lever handles rather than a knob for steam, and the one I used had a steam nozzle with too-large diameter holes which made steaming milk a bit tricky two-handed operation, and too fast for precision, but I expect the nozzle could be changed - or you'll get used to it.  I see they're available for retail price of about $2.5k, the one I used was in Aus, purchased on special for A$1.5k - which in my opinion was good value for something which seemed well made, looked nice and made good coffee.

 

Don't forget to get a good quality grinder - or you'll be f&rting against thunder when learning to make high quality espresso consistently.

 

Also don't get a machine using "pressurised" baskets - that method used in cheap machines is not consistent with good quality espresso - Nespresso will be better.

 

 

 


 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1955314 11-Feb-2018 17:33
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I’m another rocket user. But I also agree with Freitasm. If you want consistent good coffee (but not great coffee) and less cleanup and hassle. Get a nespresso.

If, however, you want to get right into it, And you want to learn to make great coffee and latte art and play with beans and grinds, then get a rocket. I’ve got an older one, it’s almost 10 years old now. I get it serviced by ripe yearly. They still comment on how clean it is.

My grinder isn’t a mazer, but a cheaper one. But still h rt good result and are very happy with it. We bought if for our ten year wedding anniversary. And now will purposely avoid cafe coffees as we can genrwllly make better at home. And so just take our keep cups if going out.




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  Reply # 1955315 11-Feb-2018 17:34
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Another Nespresso user here (and also a coffee snob). I agree with @freitasm. A well maintained Nespresso machine can produce some decent coffees. I normally only drink either long or short blacks and the Nespresso is totally fine for that. If you do want to spend some serious money however the Rocket is a very good buy!





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  Reply # 1955342 11-Feb-2018 17:55
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As for mess etc, this is my setup:

 

 

Machine is plumbed in using the same filter/pressure reducer system as the fridge - just a t-join in the small diameter low pressure line.  Waste from the drip tray is also plumbed.   Assorted coffees, tools, supplies etc in the drawer beneath.  At the time I took that photo, the knock box was in the drawer, but every now and then I'd drop a puck in the bottom of the drawer, so keep it up on the bench now. I've used a rubber mat under the machine and grinder, it's easy to wipe the lot down with a damp microfibre.  The main kitchen bench is next to the coffee bench above. I use a battery dust-buster occasionally to suck up spilled coffee grinds.  The setup works well - but obviously the whole thing is a bit of a commitment. 


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  Reply # 1955344 11-Feb-2018 17:56
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I've had this Rocket e61 for 12 + years,

 

 

Wouldn't be without it, it's part of the family.  Had plenty of parts replaced in it over the years, I forgo regular maintenance getting it serviced when something goes wrong.

 

I would recommend a grinder though, not all espresso grinds from different coffee brands you buy in the shops are the same. 

 

Although you can always buy beans from a shop that can grind them for you,  that way you can get a grind suitable for your machine.

 

 


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  Reply # 1955396 11-Feb-2018 19:39
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I have a Rancilio Silvia and Rocky grinder. The Silvia is a good machine, obviously not in the same league as the E61 examples other members have shared above but a good solid machine none the less. If there is a drawback to the machine it is temperature stability, so mine is modified with a PID controller. It ensures much more consistent coffee without having to temperature surf.

 

I would (obviously) rate the Rancilio above the Gaggia. Solid brass boiler, non-pressurised basket, commercial group handle etc....

 

 

 

Full disclosure. Self described coffee snob here. I won't go near a nespresso machine, glorified instant coffee. I roast and blend my own beans from green beans.


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  Reply # 1955397 11-Feb-2018 19:39
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If you are an espresso nut and have enough time (some "change" as well): La Cimbali "M21 Junior DT" + separate grinder.

 

If you have a lot of guests and/or you have need in a short timeframe: Nespresso.

 

If you are basic but still an espresso nut: Bialetti Venus + hand grinder.

 

 

 

:-)





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  Reply # 1955410 11-Feb-2018 19:55
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My vote is for Delonghi Beans to Cup machines, I bought one 8 years ago (basic model on special) - best thing I have ever owned! Load beans in the top and fill the tank with water, place a cup and push the button, 30 seconds later a perfect cup. Get about 8 cups per water fill and maybe 1 week per fill of beans. The only day to day effort is to fill the water and empty the used grounds every 8 cups. Makes even average beans taste pretty good. perfect crema every time too. Has steam for milk, but I don't usually bother these days, go for long black or add un-frothed milk (saves on the milk cleanup).


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  Reply # 1955414 11-Feb-2018 20:01
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Personally at home I drink espressos only, with a cafe au lait in the morning before leaving. Coke zero, single malt and espresso make most of my day...




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  Reply # 1955428 11-Feb-2018 20:42
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We have a Rancilio Silvia and Ascaso grinder for about a year, It did take some time initially (and a fair bit of coffee) to get good brew, but now we couldn't be happier. Luckily, we've had no problems with temperature stability. We also have an Ascaso Dream which is more forgiving, makes good (but not quite so good as the Rancilio) coffee, but we have had reliability issues.

 

We have a Nespresso machine at work and I have to disagree with many of the earlier comments. IMHO, it's over-hyped, overpriced and not great coffee.

 


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  Reply # 1955443 11-Feb-2018 21:50
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dafman:

 

We have a Nespresso machine at work and I have to disagree with many of the earlier comments. IMHO, it's over-hyped, overpriced and not great coffee.

 

 

 

 

Are you using the 'lungo' pods for a large cup or trying to fill a cup using somthing designed for short blacks?


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  Reply # 1955446 11-Feb-2018 21:52
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freitasm: Personally at home I drink espressos only, with a cafe au lait in the morning before leaving. Coke zero, single malt and espresso make most of my day...

 

 

 

Is that the cafe au lait before leaving and the malt when you open the inbox at work?! surprised






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  Reply # 1955447 11-Feb-2018 21:54
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Goosey:

 

dafman:

 

We have a Nespresso machine at work and I have to disagree with many of the earlier comments. IMHO, it's over-hyped, overpriced and not great coffee.

 

 

 

 

Are you using the 'lungo' pods for a large cup or trying to fill a cup using somthing designed for short blacks?

 

 

 

 

Oddly I use the lungo pods to make espresso. Double Envivo lungo espressos (I do one with no milk then one with the smallest milk setting our machine has) are a great start to the day.






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  Reply # 1955462 11-Feb-2018 22:40
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I get whatever the green lungo pods. They are great. Most of the others are pretty trash.

 

I usually run it for the right volume, and then eject the pod and hit the button again to get just hot water into the cup for a bit.

 

I have a jura self grinding machine, but the time between my coffees is about the time it takes to declare it needs the milk frother cleaned, and I dont like black coffees from it as much as the nespresso, so with not wanting to always be cleaning the frother to get another coffee, not wanting its black coffees, and the general ease of the nespresso the nespresso wins out when Im home alone. If people are over I will chuck some beans in the jura and get the milk out (assuming I have any in the house) but otherwise too much effort.





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