I bought the popular Breville Espresso Machine and can report that it allowed me to get my coffee fix right in the comfort of my own home.
FYI, prices and ratings are accurate as of time of writing.
Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine BES870BSXL
Top-rated: 21,396 ratings
Highlight: Silky, velvety mouthfeel.
Helpful review: "I have to preface this review by pointing out that I'm not a coffee guru. Not an expert barista. Not schooled in the art of espressos. So with that in mind, take this as pure opinion from a frugal consumer who loves coffee house coffees, cappuccinos and lattes, but hates coffee house prices.
I bought this machine because over the years I've purchased coffee makers, moka pots, etc., trying to up my coffee game but never quite getting the same result as those coffee house drinks. The closest I've come so far is the moka pot, but it's still not quite there yet. Granted, those coffee houses have espresso machines that cost thousands of dollars. Hey! I like coffee as much as anyone, but not THAT much. I refuse to pay that amount, even if I have the means. It's not how much you make. It's how much you keep. Right?
Anyway, I chose the Breville Barista Express because I love their products and they've been reliable for me over the years. And also, this model has enough power and features at a reasonable price for someone who is no expert. I have to say that it's been totally worth the money! I suspect even those who are anal about their coffee would love this machine as well.
My first cappuccino on this thing was not great. In fact, it was horrid! It may have had something to do with the fact that I dislike reading instructions and barely made it through the quick startup guide. When will I ever learn? But I have the patience of a five year old on Christmas morning. I couldn't wait to get to it. So, after that first disappointing cup I watched a few videos on YouTube. Fine. More than a few. And I finally thumbed through the manual. The videos were more helpful when it came to creating the best cup. All the tips were valuable. And gradually I saw improvement until I got to what seemed like a good cappuccino. So far so good. But still not quite there yet. So I followed another tip and got better coffee beans. Oh dear! Now comes more tweaking. Because when you change to another bean the entire process starts over. Until finally, the cup I wanted and craved. Wow! What a difference.
I'm improving with each cup and small tweak. The grind, the amount, the tamp pressure, the amount of milk (or almond milk or oat milk), the amount of sugar, cinnamon or no cinnamon, etc. I had no idea how much actually went into a good cup of coffee. But I'm appreciating it more and more. And I'm getting spoiled. So much so that my other coffee machines (standard, Keurig, moka pot) are all taking a back seat and getting less use.
Like none, lately. The other thing I appreciate more is the local barista in those coffee houses. I may not frequent them as much in the future. But I don't think I'll ever complain about the price again. I will gladly tip the barista. And I will simply enjoy the fruits of their labor.
KEY POINTS: The learning curve is real. Have patience. The end result is worth the effort and the cost of this machine. The absolute best tip I can give you is to wait the full 15-20 minutes it takes for all the elements of your machine to heat up before making your cup. It makes a huge difference if the coffee beans and portafilter are warm, but especially the water. Duh! The other tips are to read the manual and watch video tips from Breville and legit baristas. It all helps. Education is always good. This espresso machine is a great buy for both the novice and the more experienced barista. It will pay for itself in the long run. Now I'll go make myself a cappuccino." — Patty C.
Get it from Amazon now: $695.00 & FREE Returns