Post By Thundergod
Advise required in purchasing a Coffee machine for the first time ever!!!
Please can you help...I went to a Coffee Appreciation course a week ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. Didn't realised how much skill is involved in making it....and that's the Barista's skill i'm talking about.I would like to buy a beginners espresso machine with a single wall basket ( this advise i got from the tutor at the course). She recommended the Breville Fresca (BES860)for me as it already has the grinder attached. Do any of you guyz have good feedback relating to this machine or any you can recommend please?
I recently played with a 860. It has been replaced by the 870 though.
Makes good coffee. Easy to use. Quick to clean.
Only issue I can't comment on is the longevity of the machine. Regular users would need to be informed of what they need to do regularly to maintain the machine so it can last longer.
The 860 I picked up was really cheap as the previous owner thought it was broken and leaking so he got rid of it. After a proper clean inside and out, the machine was working like a charm.
Sleep is overrated
Sangy my advice is to buy a machine and separate grinder.
Secondly, what's your maximum spend?
In other words, how much does "thoroughly enjoyed it" translate to in dollars?
The more you can afford, the less frustrated you will be in trying to make good coffee and the less you'll spend on upgrading equipment in the long run.
I agree with Thundergod.
Buy a machine, and a grinder seperate.
There are alot of really good low priced machines out there.
Ditto on the separate grinder. Or if you did get one built-in, make sure it is easily adjustable. Many things mean you need to change the grind, including humidity changes, temperatures, new coffee beans versus older ones, different roasts and so on.
I've got a Sunbeam EM6910 and have found it good to use and 'interesting' enough to keep me learning. I read some of the threads of more expensive machines and realise I'm not really into performing complicated rituals every time I want to warm up my machine to get decent coffee. There's enough to learn about dosing and tamping without a 10-step dance around getting the right temperature.
If your budget will stretch you can get deals on SB EM7000 that come with a standalone grinder as a package - it's the upgrade to mine and both can be as automatic or as manual as you wish - e.g. once you get your procedure right, you can program it in so it is a one-touch pour.
Whichever way you choose, you've come to the right place for help and advice - there is more info on here about all kinds of coffee stuff than I could believe was possible before I started.
I used an 860 for some years until I bought my Breville Dual Boiler and Smart Grinder, when I gave the 860 to a friend and it is still going strong at about 5 years old.
I had to modify the grinder when it couldn’t grind fine enough. The method used is described elsewhere on this CS site.
I don’t know about the difference between the 860 and 670 other than the shape of the bean hopper and the price.
While it is not as good as the Dual Boiler it is a cheap way to get a capable machine with a small foot print.
Thanks guyz....really appreciate the advice. So should i get a dual or single wall machine.. Which are the best grinders that you can suggest?
The machine isn't single/double-wall; that refers to the baskets, which in a 58mm portafilter machine will easily be available in unpressurised (single wall). Pretty sure Chris from Talk Coffee is flogging them for next to nothing (though I'd recommend the EP Precision baskets; they're still cheap and do make a difference)
That depends very much on how much you appreciate coffee and how much of your income is disposable...
Originally Posted by Sangy
I've gone from a crappy Breville CG10 ($15 used) to a Baratza Preciso ($350, new, tastes great and perfect for single dose grinding but very plasticky where it counts) to a Compak K6 ($500 used, would be 900-1200 new, relatively horrible ergos as most commercial machines will have in a home environment but has improved markedly on the taste/texture of shots over the Preciso, which I thought was incredible and still do).
It really depends on your needs, wants, likelihood to upgrade over time and available cash. If you're absolutely sure you'll stick with it I'd really be inclined to look for a second-hand top/high-tier grinder (Mazzer/Compak/etc) because the difference really is there.