Are you one of those people who want a top quality espresso shot whenever they please, then you should continue reading this article with no questions asked! Why? Well, because in the next couple of paragraphs I am going to show you some of the most popular home espresso machines which will surely saturate your thirst for some good quality shots.
In the past, professional quality espresso machines were these big chunky devices that were way too expensive for households which meant you could only see them at coffee shops. Nowadays, things have drastically changes and you can get yourself a top notch espresso machine even if you are holding onto a strict budget. This led to lots of interesting new machines, some of which earned their spot on my Top 5 home espresso machines list! With this being said, let’s jump straight to business and take a closer look at some of them…
4. Gaggia 14101 Classic
As its name suggests, Gaggia 14101 is a classic espresso machine in every sense of that word. Back in 2009 it received an award for being the best home espresso machine by Money Magazine, award that clearly states the top quality of this product. When you combine this with its beautiful classical look, you will understand how it managed to find its place in thousands of homes worldwide.
There is no doubt that the key features of Gaggia 14101 Classic Espresso Machine are as follows:
- Temperature stability
- Excellent water distribution
- Brewing pressure
It also features a huge water tank that can hold up to 72 ounces of water and a drip try that can be easily removed, cleaned and slid right back in its place. What’s even better – its porta filters are made with chrome plated brass and it will produce an excellent espresso shot in just a few minutes.
On the upper front portion of this espresso machine you will find 3 buttons: the on/off switch, steam switch and brew switch. In addition to these buttons, there is also a steam knob on the far right side of the machine, which controls whether steam or hot water go into the brewing process; along with a moveable steam wand right underneath it.
3. Breville BES870XL Barista
Breville is a rather well-known espresso machines manufacturer. It has made a good name for itself on the market recently, and as such, this list could not go by without one of their newest products available on the market. With this being said, we are going to take a closer look into the Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine which aims to provide exceptional brewing quality for barista enthusiasts at a relatively modest price which makes it affordable for household use.
Believe it or not, it is actually a successor to Breville BES860XL with a couple of well-placed advantages, first being a bit bigger removable bean hopper that can be easily lifted off for cleaning purposes. Next up, it features a water tank that can hold up to 64 ounces of water… and has a built in charcoal filter which is something many of you will surely appreciate.
When it comes to advanced features, Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine offers a wide specter of customization; ranging from grind amount, grind size (all the way from fine to coarse) filter size, pressurized and non-pressurized porta filters… It is made out of stainless steel lined aluminum thermal coil which enables it to control the temperatures much better than a simple thermal block. With this being said, it looks unearthly… The brushed finish makes it stand out and will definitely attract lots of amazed looks from your friends.
Despite all those shiny features that will awake your inner barista, Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine manages to fancy a modest price. Well, perhaps modest is not exactly the best word for it because, after all, we are talking about a machine that costs a little over $500: but if you take the amount of adjustability, customization and top quality looks and performance into consideration, you will come to a conclusion that this is among the best price/performance espresso machines on the market!
2. Nespresso Pixie
As its name suggests, Nespresso Pixie Espresso Maker is an extremely compact espresso maker that will not take a lot of space on your kitchen counter as is the case with most other espresso machines on the market. With this being said, don’t let its small size fool you. It is still a quite powerful machine that can make top quality espresso with a few flicks of your fingers.
Its tank is able to hold up to 24 ounces of water and it sits firmly at the back of the machine. It is removable which means you can simply take it out and fill it with water from your sink. In other words, a full water tank will enable you to make up to 20 small (1 ounce) espresso’s without having to refill it.
Nespresso Pixie Espresso Maker also features an adjustable drip tray which will take care of all excess water and/or coffee that might overflow from your cup. In addition to this, there is also a used capsule container right next to the drip tray which can hold up to 10 used capsules.
On top of the Nespresso Pixie Espresso Maker there are just 3 practical buttons: the on/off switch along with 2 brewing functions. One is dedicated for regular espresso’s (1 to 1 and a half ounces) while the second one is meant for bigger servings (cca 3 ounces).
All in all, there is no doubt that the main selling point of this espresso maker is surely its compact size and low price which goes around $150. As you can see in the text above, it has no advanced brewing functions, but then again, it is not aimed at espresso enthusiasts – it is more of a family friendly compact machine that will brew great espresso in just a few minutes and without too much hassle.
1. Capresso 118.05 EC PRO
If you are looking for an extremely simple and beginner friendly espresso machine that will not only produce top quality hot beverages but also look awesome on your kitchen counter, then you should look no further because Capresso 118.05 EC PRO is everything you need!
It features 2 espresso filters (one for convenience and another one for control) and is able to brew up to two beverages at once. With a 15 bar pressure pump it is able to achieve the perfect rich and thick crema which is exactly what makes a top quality, barista-styled espresso.
In addition to this, Capresso 118.05 EC PRO is made entirely out of stainless steel with a few outstanding finishing touches that will surely make it the focal point of your kitchen counter.
When you combine all of these things with the fact that Capresso 118.05 EC PRO can be found for around $250, you will start to understand why it is considered as such a good bargain for home espresso enthusiasts and beginners alike.
Now that you have seen the main aspects of some of the best home espresso machine currently available on the market, I hope your inner barista is screaming with pleasure. Keep in mind that all those espresso machines that were featured in this list are home friendly which means they are not too chunky, heavy and cost over $1000.
With this being said, I have to add this; in the past, lots of people were skeptical when buying $100 – $300 espresso machines because they thought their pricing meant they were inferior to more expensive one. While that was most likely true (to an extent) a couple of years ago, nowadays many espresso machines manufacturers are creating products aimed specifically at regular households that are not in the position to spend a couple thousand bucks for a premium one that they see in coffee shops. All of this made quite a stir on the market which resulted in lots of top quality home espresso machines in recent days, and it’s basically the reason why more and more people each day are opting for one of these bad (brewing) boys… Pun intended! J