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Thread: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

  1. #1
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    Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    We are stuck in the middle of the desert without the luxury of visiting a store of any kind. We are going to buy a coffee machine and think we have narrowed it down to either a:
    Giotto .... VBM .... Galatea Domus.
    We are also in the market for a good quality grinder.

    I suppose most people get to test drive machines before they buy but we are going to make the purchase pretty much based on what we have read on this site.

    We are basically novices but want this to become a hobby while we are stuck out here without a cafe. Training will be an issue as well without being able to attend clasees so we are looking for the best DVD or book.

    In short, we are about to buy and looking for the best package and final advice on the machines above !!!! :P :o

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Hi Jaselin,

    These are all great machines- though new Giotto stock will not be available for about another 2 months. There are a number of other options as well.

    Wed be delighted to assist with your purchase and have many machines in remote Australia. We have training materials to support you as well as unlimited after sales support via phone or email...

    Call or drop me a line if I can assist you...

    Chris

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Hi
    I cant comment on the comparison but as the proud new owner of a VBM Domobar Super and Mazzer Mini I am VERY happy. *Compared to my old IMAT Mokita the quality of coffee is a big leap forward but dialing in the grind, dosing etc is a challenge.
    I bought from Chris on the recommendation of a friend and cannot fault his service.

    Having said that Im sure that all the machines you list will perform well and really my choice came down to reputation of the seller and info from the web and friends.
    Happy decision making!!

    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/templates/forum/default/smiley.gif

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Hi,
    We moved to Rockhampton from NZ 6/12 ago and have similar distance issues.
    I have owned a variety of machines for 15 years.
    I wanted a good machine whilst in Australia that was - reliable, well constructed, and made good coffee
    Whilst here I bought a VBM Domobar Super and Mini Mazzer and am very happy with the purchase.
    I can highly recommend both
    Dave

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Hi Jaselin
    I was in a similar situ & have to agree with tedk, the Vibiemme is fantastic & i can highly recommend the service from Chris at Talk Coffee
    All 3 machines will be great, so do some internet research & pick the 1 you like
    At least the Vibiemme is avialable now:P
    Check this out: http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1189037005

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Thanks to all!
    Weve researched heaps and heaps !!! Not much to do in Roxby Downs!

    The more research we do the more confused we get. Cant fault Chris for lots of help and Ofra has been fantastic too.

    The VBM sounds the go but ......should we go with our initial gut feeling and stick with the Giotto!

    I was decided until Jase got home from work with lots more questions etc. *We are going to make our decision this Friday! Hopefully well be sipping some good stuff soon with lots of friends offering to be guinea pigs! Regardless anything will be better than what is on offer here. I have to get a mocca just to hide the taste of the burnt coffee! and micro foam? I wont get started!

    Thanks again..... Linda


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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Ive got a Domus Galatea and couldnt be happier. Renzo and Ofra at Di Bartoli really knew their stuff, and looked both my wife and I brilliantly. We were in almost exactly the same situtation as you, but browsed a lot on here and were able to spend two long aftenoons umming and aahing in the shop. Prior to visiting them wed looked around other places in Sydney and not been impressed, especially by Tobys estate where one of the staff tried to sell me a Sunbeam. Even so, we were somewhat nervous when we got it home and set it up......:)

    The machine.........is perfect.

    I get a nice dry puck with even extraction every time (although I think the espro tamper helps), the coffee comes out as crema and slowly settles, leaving a good head - much like a perfect pint of guinness. The steam arm produces perfect microfoam (operator error excepted) for me with great results, the water tank holds a comfortable amount of water (and is easy to get to), the cup rails hold my steam arm wiping cloth and my brown teatowel for cleaning the basket and they dry gently against the warm sides. Cleaning couldnt be easier and although complete beginners, my wife and I get a nicer espresso or latte (its about all we drink) than just about any cafe we can think of, including Cordial, Campos, and Mecca, which are meant to be some of the best in Australia! The machine feels beautifully built - while at first we were justifying it as a 10-year purchase, we can envision it lasting just as long as the 1940s gaggias you occasionally see today. It heats up quickly, seemingly needs no recovery time between shots......Im not sure what else I

    Renzo and Ofra had a Giotto on bench but out of stock (ECM have been so lax with getting stock into Australia, seems theyve been out of stock forever!), the Minore II, and the VBM as well as the Domus.

    We ended up choosing the Bezerra over the VBM for these reasons:

    + Tap star shaped dials were much more comfortable than the VBMs shiny triangular ones.
    + Nicer drip tray (the VBMs was huge but was an ugly wire mesh, while the Galateas was still large enough and much nicer to look at)
    + S shaped steam arm was much easier to maneuver into a comfortable position
    + S shaped water tap had a rubber cool grip and could be moved over the drip tray, while if i remember correctly the VBMs could not, so you had to hold cups or have bench space for them.
    + You could refill the water tank with a jug - it had an open top rather than the camping water tank type the Minore had. Not sure about the VBM one!
    + Galatea had a probe at the bottom of the water tank to automatically turn off the boiler in case we one day forgot to top it up! Seemed likely that it might happen one day, and boilers are expensive!
    + Cup Holder height seemed much better for stacking more than one cup on without being worried about it falling off!
    + It was shorter in depth. The VBM is a bit like a stretch coffee machine and it was the same distance away from the side wall while at a 30-45 degree angle in the corner. Weve not got massive benches.
    + The Galatea was steadier on its feet (didnt move, ever) while the VBM slipped slightly when we tried it with a fairly full double basket.

    None of these were individual deal-breakers for the VBM - it scored highly for looks, build etc and we were happy to buy it, but all-in-all, the Galatea stole the show for us. Paired with a Mini Mazzer, ECM KS or Macap M4 grinder, Im certain (and my wife would be too were she not at work) that youd be ecstatic with it.

    The Giotto......is just simply not in stock, anywhere, and as ECM havent had them in the country for maybe 6 months now, and wont for another month or two, it stuck in my head that when the Giotto is retired, this could happen on the parts. We also wanted a coffee machine now, and the Bezzera was everything the Giotto was. Our only worry was that it was slightly more bling or glitzy than the others, but it settled in very happily on the bench with cupboards above.

    And renzo and ofra.........I cant praise them highly enough. They sent follow-up emails to check how we were getting on and ask if we had any questions or needed help in any way. They gave us all the information we needed to make a comfortable purchasing decision, and showed full knowledge of the machines they sold. But perhaps most importantly, they gave their time freely and without limit! Not feeling rushed into the decision or encouraged to spend above budget, we knew and know that well be looked after for many years to come!

    Sorry if this post is overlong. Im ecstatic with the machine, and ecstatic with the service. The rambling is probably due to the four cups of coffee Ive had already today.

    If youve got any questions I can help with from a purchasers point of view, send me a private message and Ill be delighted to help!

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Identity link=1189435132/0#6 date=1189566061
    Ive got a Domus Galatea and couldnt be happier. Renzo and Ofra at Di Bartoli really knew their stuff, and looked both my wife and I brilliantly. We were in almost exactly the same situtation as you, but browsed a lot on here and were able to spend two long aftenoons umming and aahing in the shop.
    I havent played with all the machines queried about here, but I think, it really comes down to where you buy your machine from. My experience with Di Bartoli is the same as Identities. Good luck!

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Excellent summary Identity, clearly written for the multitude of different factors a prospective buyer has to consider. Im sure that will help jaselin a lot.

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    .....(ECM have been so lax with getting stock into Australia, seems theyve been out of stock forever!) .....

    The Giotto......is just simply not in stock, anywhere, and as ECM havent had them in the country for maybe 6 months now, and wont for another month or two, it stuck in my head that when the Giotto is retired, this could happen on the parts.
    There have been rumours throughout the year with Giotto....lets clarify some things to set the facts straight...

    -The bottleneck is in Italy, not Australia
    -The Giotto has not been discontinued, in fact hundreds of units WILL land prior to the end of the year
    -There is no issue with spare parts and ECA will continue to support the machine...

    Yes, supply has been difficult (and I for one should know it...), however there are some salespeople and companies propagating these rumours- most likely to obtain an "edge" - and that is distinctly on the nose...

    Bottom line is that unless you heard it from the mouth of ECA management, its probably been embellished!

    Chris

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Id like to add a comment...

    I could not have possibly had better customer service in relation to my purchase of a giotto (thanks Chris). *I have had the good fortune to use both machines discussed in this thread and really think any decision will come down to personal preference rather than what is or isnt available as both machines represent fine quality. *I ogled a giotto for more than 12 months before deciding on, and being able to afford, the purchase.

    I absolutely love the machine, and given its quality, am confident that it will provide me with good service for one hell of a long time before there is a need to replace any parts. *Considering this, stockpiles of parts should last to inifinity and beyond!

    Oh, and to further support to what Chris says...my experience with transacting with our wonderful Italian friends is that they will not be rushed - no way, no how. *Surely youve heard that Rome wasnt built in a day? *Ah, la dolce vita!

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis link=1189435132/0#10 date=1189581832
    stockpiles of parts should last to inifinity and beyond!
    So was the Buzz in Lightyear due to caffeine?


    P.S. jaselin, I looked up Roxby Downs on Google Maps and had to zoom a long way out before I could work out where you were.
    Boy its a long way to anywhere.

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    ;D ;D ;D TG!

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Im in love with my Domus and the after sales service from Di Bartoli has been supurb

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    thank you all for your help. Being out in "the centre of the universe" as we affectionately call Roxby Downs! has been hard as we couldnt touch and feel and smell! This forum has been our saviour.

    We are 95% on the stainless VBM super lever and Macap doser grinder. Though how good does that Galatea look!

    Anyhoo.............. thankyou all again for your advice and expertise in all areas and Im sure youll be hearing from us again for further advice!

    P.S Dennis, excuse my noviceness! but what does TG! stand for?!!!! :-?

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Quote Originally Posted by jaselin link=1189435132/0#14 date=1189635522
    excuse my noviceness! but what does TG! stand for?!!!! :-?
    AKA Thundergod who posted the earlier reply.
    ;)

    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?action=viewprofile;username=Thundergod

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Quote Originally Posted by askthecoffeeguy link=1189435132/0#13 date=1189594565
    Im in love with my Domus and the after sales service from Di Bartoli has been supurb
    Good stuff Pat...I always visit Ofra and Renzo when Im in Sydney. Theyre renown for their hospitality and service....Put them on your shortlist, CSers ;)

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    [QUOTE=2muchcoffeeman link=1189435132/0#9 date=1189580398]
    Chris said stuff about ECM being around for years to come, and some people spreading lies! Hes right in my experience!
    I agree with Chris here, I meant only to say that the Italian factory seem to think of Australia as a small and difficult market (volume is higher in the US, for example, and distance is much lower in Europe). This means that the excellent suppliers lke Talk Coffee and Di Bartoli get a bit stuffed over while waiting for production and shipping. Not the fault of them, or ECA, or even ECM really.

    On the flip side, think how many you can fit into an 18 shipping container, or even a 30" one *;D. It should be raining Giottos come late November!

    That the Giotto is so popular despite being fairly new is because it is a beautifully put together machine, and that there is no stock is because theyve sold beautifully! This a result of being fantastic, not because ECA didnt bring in lots. To build them (while not having their big market supply go to ruin), arrange shipping, ship, clear customs and get onto the shelves is a time consuming and difficult process, which actually stuffs ECM up more than anyone else, I think! I had a few people on my travels try and sell me a cheap thermoblock or Giotto alternative and bad-mouth ECM in the process, but the better the retailer, the more praise I heard for ECM (subjective experience!)

    I know that small countries or markets often get poorer service from the manufacturers - its something most try and avoid, but the example of Gaggia is perhaps the best, where their top bean-to-cup machines carry a delay of up to 3 months into the UK, because all the stock in their warehouse is pre-allocated *::) Stock of spare parts shouldnt be a problem really, good distributors keep enough stock to account for supply chain bumps. Italy (and France) take long port strikes, long public holidays, long union strikes and a long time thinking, generally. That we dont have to wait 6 weeks for any machine is often because the importers and retailers work so hard!

    ....more blurb finishes here.

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    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    jaselin I have a dosered Macap and love it.

    Regards
    TG

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Hi Jaselin,
    I have a VBM and can highly recommend them. I did manage to give a giotto a go for a few hours last week while doing a barista course. The giotto made terrific coffee and was every bit as good as the vbm in that regard. The giotto is also a fair bit more quiet than the vbm which in my opinion is a fairly noisy machine. Having said that I think that steam power is the major difference between the giotto and vbm. VBM steam power is far superior to the giotto.

    I also find that the larger reservior on the VBM means less filling than the giotto. Likewise the larger driptray on the VBM means less emptying than the giotto.

    Good luck with your purchase.
    andy

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Thanks to Ofra and Renzo for fantastic after-sales service!

    I had a minor fault with my Domus, which was easily remedied, and Di Bartoli had a repair person come all the way from Eltham, to my house in Hampton (about 40km away?), no questions asked, to take care of business.

    Now thats good old-fashioned customer service that you can rely upon!

    Nice to see that in the hustle and bustle of the modern world, some things dont change.

    Thanks again, guys, and yes, the machine makes beautiful coffee!

    Patrick :)

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    ITS HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!! ;D

    Now to work out how to use it! 500gs coffee practice and now getting mouse tails....... will work on everything else this weekend.

    We have a long way to go but our s**t coffee is still better than the what we pay for down the road....

    Thanks Chris! :-* Sorry to say that you will probably hear from us for advice when we work more with our machine though.

    Jaselin

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    What did you get?

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Quote Originally Posted by aedion link=1189435132/15#22 date=1190897141
    What did you get?
    The winner was a VBM Domobar SUper lever- stainless steel and a Macap M4 chrome....Bling city at Jaselins place! 8-)

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Nice machine! Takes a bit of practice with a new machine to get your eye in, eh?

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Bling city at Jaselins place! 8-)


    Great buy Jaselin, you will not be disappointed.

    Practice makes perfect, so heres a small tip, dont oversteam your milk as there is so much heat/volume in the steam from the VBM boiler take it up to 55C and turn steam off, the milk will keep going up to about 62 -65C.

    Have a great w/end with the new toy.

    Cheers Gazz

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Gazz link=1189435132/15#25 date=1190942371
    Bling city at Jaselins place! 8-)


    Great buy Jaselin, you will not be disappointed.

    Practice makes perfect, so heres a small tip, dont oversteam your milk as there is so much heat/volume in the steam from the VBM boiler take it up to 55C and turn steam off, the milk will keep going up to about 62 -65C.

    Have a great w/end with the new toy.

    Cheers Gazz
    Agree with all this, congrats and enjoy.

    Having just made two lattes, turned the steam off a fraction too late on the first, ie 60 and temp went to 75, second at 55 was about perfect. Only used the thermometer this morning just to give my hand a rest and see how accurate my touch was.

    You will love the machine, it is fantastic.

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    YAY! Another happy VBM/Macap owner! ;D
    Congrats Jaselin.
    You will sort it out pretty quickly, the coffees only get better & better.
    Well done!

  29. #29
    Senior Member topshot's Avatar
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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Hi All,

    I received my VBM Dobomar Super leaver stainless / Mazzer Mini combo today. :) After a well know national carrier missplaced it (left it on the dock)! 3 days insted of overnight. >:(

    Thanks to Chris from Talk Coffee, His advice is second to none! I would recomend him to anyone, anytime.

    My fist impession was, "shite its bigger than expected!" I upgraded from a Silvia / Rocky combo, who has a new owner, she went to a good home!

    Had a few practice shots to dial it in with some average beans, the results were great. Then got my faverite beans out dialed the grind to them, pulled the best shot I have ever pulled. Not to far from the fabled "God Shot" ;)

    Next steaming! This thing has an awsome amount and dry, streched the milk in about 10-15 seconds.
    I still have to learn to produce microfoam with it though! Im not too far from it now.

    Just had the best latte!
    It shouldnt be to long before Im in coffee nirvina! ;D

    Thanks to Chris, Im one happy coffee snob! :)

    Warren.

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    well.................!!!
    a couple of weeks later and we are having lots of fun with our new toys!

    Thanks for the steaming tips!! Youve saved us lots of spoilt milk!

    I am now getting more regular shots and very happy with our machines. Only throw out a few now! We bought some take away cups from the coffee hit website and the girls at work are enjoying (good) morning coffee now too!!

    We are now enjoying trying all the wonderful fresh brown beans out there! Thanks to Coffee Hit, the Coffee Barun and Coffeesnobs brown!!!

    Yum.......... almost in coffee heaven............... a bit more practice for that consistancy.........

    Jaselin

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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    great to hear you made the right choice in machines :)

  32. #32
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    Re: Giotto vs VBM vs Galatea Domus .. Help!!

    Hhmmm, Roxby Downs... You could roast your own beans up there eh? Just leave them outside for a bit... ;)

    Well done on your decision, enjoy your machine!



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