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Coffee n00b, advice wanted

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  • Coffee n00b, advice wanted

    My needs may be different from most, so please be nice and don't judge or post advice I'm not asking for, unless you REEEEALLY think it's important.

    I'm looking for a good breakfast coffee experience. In a mug. From a machine that hopefully will do everything, and consistently. The sticker is that I'm (comparatively) poor, so need to do things as inexpensively as possible. I'm not at all interested in recreating fancy café lattes, cappuccinos, whatever, all I want is a tasty fresh ground mug of coffee with milk to go with the bacon and scrambled egg toastie, using local recently roasted ethical beans. I'm single and make one coffee in the morning just for me.

    A while back I tried to achieve this with a Porlex hand grinder and an Aeropress. Yes it's most likely my fault for not knowing what I was doing, but I found it next to impossible to get good results at all, let alone consistently. I bought a used Breville something-or-other espresso machine from Gumtree, but without much success there either. So I gave up for a while and got a pod machine. Please don't stop reading, come back! I'm disgusted with the whole idea of pods, for all the reasons you already know, and want better.

    So now I'm looking at trying again. I like Breville stuff, I have a lot of their other kitchen appliances, but I'm open to suggestions. So far I see coffee machines at $200 and others at $400, and automatic electric conical burr ceramic grinders for $200-$300, and I see coffee machines with grinders built in for $700 upwards. I really don't want to spend any more than that, and much less than that if at all possible. it's just breakfast coffee after all. I've spent pretty much the whole last week reading review sites on various models, but now it's time to bring the question to people who know what they're talking about.

    At the budget end of things, is an all-in-one machine a better solution than having a separate grinder? Do grinders work well for single mug servings? Is there a particular machine/combo you recommend? This bit is not essential, but the ability to pump out hot water for tea would be a bonus.

  • #2
    Easily solved...Cafflano Klassic
    Click image for larger version

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    • #3
      Thanks for your quick reply, I had a look at the video on their website and it doesn't really look like what I'm after. Manually grinding the beans, separate heating of the water in a kettle, decanting the brew into the mug to combine with milk. A great solution for coffee on the go, but not for me thanks anyway.

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      • #4
        Simple advice: learn to use the Aeropress properly. Some of the best coffee I've ever was made with an Aeropress.

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        • #5
          Have a look at the Behmor Brazen. And buy a cheap small conical burr grinder like the Breville Dose Control. Problem solved.

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          • #6
            Well that's where I was going wrong, I had an Aeropress, I watched the everliving heck out of every Youtube video I could find that showed how to use the Aeropress, I even purchased aftermarket filter disks, and yet it was never-ending disappointment. I'm grateful for your feedback, but can I please direct you to my original post, in which I ask for advice about which electric espresso machine and/or grinder I should buy?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by LeroyC View Post
              And buy a cheap small conical burr grinder like the Breville Dose Control.
              I am grateful for your feedback, but did you read my OP? That's not exactly a 'cheap' grinder for me.

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              • #8
                While I'm grateful for everyone's time in responding to this, can I please ask that people read the original post and make your replies relevant to the questions I'm asking?

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                • #9
                  In your op you said up to $700, the dose control pro can be had for around 150ish (or buy the smart grinder in the coffee hardware for sale forum) and the brazen is 250???

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by magnafunk View Post
                    In your op you said up to $700, the dose control pro can be had for around 150ish (or buy the smart grinder in the coffee hardware for sale forum) and the brazen is 250???
                    Does the Brazen make single mugs of coffee efficiently? From the on-site video it looks like a larger machine.

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                    • #11
                      What an appropriate user name!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by HenrytheTurnip View Post
                        Does the Brazen make single mugs of coffee efficiently? From the on-site video it looks like a larger machine.
                        Yes it does.

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                        • #13
                          What an interesting thread...

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by HenrytheTurnip View Post
                            Does the Brazen make single mugs of coffee efficiently? From the on-site video it looks like a larger machine.
                            How big is a mug? Espresso machines can be huge but will pull you a 60ml shot...

                            I'd be going a Brazen if I was in your situation. Or save more money.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by HenrytheTurnip View Post
                              Does the Brazen make single mugs of coffee efficiently? From the on-site video it looks like a larger machine.
                              Good point, that I am not sure about. You aren't explicit about what you're after in your post, but upon reading your replies, it looks like you want an espresso machine and a dirt cheap one.
                              If you couldn't get a good cup out of the aeropress I'm guessing that you don't like the style of coffee it produces, in which case I don't see a Brazen being much help either.
                              You could quite easily pick up a second hand single boiler machine and grinder for a reasonable price and with a little training, you will be able to make knock out coffees as long as you have good beans.
                              If this is too much work, try making cold brew concentrate, cut it 50/50 with milk and nuking it, or perhaps buying a stovetop steamer, nuke the cold brew and top up with steamed mill.
                              Beyond that, I don't see any other option, maybe nescafe red?!

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