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Steve Maskery

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Hi all,
I currently have a little stove-top percolator, which is fine as far as it goes, but I'm thinking of asking Santa for a coffee machine, the fancy sort that makes espresso and cappuccino.

Does anyone have any recommendations or horror stories? They are expensive, so I want to get it right or not do it at all.

Cheers
Steve, buzzin'.
 

Taffy Turner

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Argee

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Wow, Taffy, that's some piece of kit! I clicked on the "Demonstration" button on the site and was impressed with the trouble they'd taken to get that so slick too.

Are the capsules much more expensive, compared to buying ground coffee, do you know? Might have to have a closer look at one of these. :)

Ray.
 

gidon

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Steve - I have a Gran Gaggia - the cheapest (< £100) is the Gaggia line but perfect for me. More plastic than its more expensive brothers, but I've used it daily for 2 years with few problems - and the coffee it makes is still meant to be as good. The only problem I had was not really a problem - but Gaggia service was fantasic. They collected the coffee machine and got it back to me within a week or so.
It does take a titchy bit of practice to get the espresso or cappa to your liking. You need the right pressure when the press the coffee down. Of course with a nespresso machine you don't have to worry about this. But it's not hard and you can experiment more with different coffee (and cheaper to run). The coffee is important. I have yet to purchase a grinder - but this apparently gives the best results (but a decent grinder is another £100+). Second to that I use Illy coffee which is superb in the GG.
Either way you still need to froth the milk. Takes practice too but I enjoy the whole process of making a coffee - I work from home so this is a nice forced break - away from the computer!
You won't regret the purchase - whatever you get. If you have a John Lewis near you they usually have a good range and good advice.
Cheers
Gidon
 

Taffy Turner

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Ray,

The capsules work out at about 23p each. I don't know how that compares with instant - more expensive I would guess, but in my opinion, definately worth the extra.

Regards

Gary
 

Steve Maskery

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Thanks, gents.
I must admit I'd heard good things about Gaggia, but am interested in alternatives too.
It's going to Italy for a fortnight that does it, I come home and coffee tastes like mud. Yes I know the jokes.
Thanks for the opinions
Cheers
Steve
 

Bean

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Steve the Dutch Company I work for has a Senseo (I think) by Phillips uses small bags of coffee, I cannot comment on how good it is as I dont drink the stuff but it smells good.

Bean
 

Jake

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If you really like coffee, the best way to make it is with a filter bag over a jug, ground fresh from beans. Cheap, too http://www.anothercoffee.co.uk/products/item110102.aspx

If you want a machine like thing, this is the best way to make and keep really good tasting coffee.

http://www.anothercoffee.co.uk/products/item109300.aspx

Steam is bad for coffee, it is too hot and breaks down the more subtle flavour molecules. Never pour boiling water on ground coffee for the same reason. Espresso-style coffee is a unique kind of drink but relies on sugar and/or addition of milk, it is far too highly roasted to allow anything but the most basic bitter tastes to survive, and it is then subjected to steam. Think of boiling a cheap bitter teabag or ten in the kettle for half an hour and sucking it up with loads of sugar and/or milk, and that would be a fairish analogy. What do I really hate most? Crappy newfangled coffee bars with fancy barristas that give you a blank look when you ask for a black filter coffee and then hand you an 'americano' - watered down espresso is the worst muck, you can actually taste how rubbish it is.

I love coffee. Good coffee.
 

Howjoe

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I'm a bit of a coffee freak and currently use one of the Dualit machines. Top quality! Gaggia are one of the percieved quality make but it's the industrial (restaurant/cafe commercial coffee makers) that give them their market rep - home use machines aren't as good, so I 'm told by one of their brand managers as these are made / branded by one on of the electronic big boys .

Cheers

Howard
 

Mcluma

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I have the miele build in coffee machine which is the top of the range, which makes real coffee out of whole beans

Know i would go for the miele nespresso machine.

but what ever you buy make sure it take the nespresso capsules, as these will give you the widest range of choice

McLuma
 

RogerS

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To make the perfect expresso you need (apparently):

the right beans
the right degree of roasting and how recent
the right type of grinding
the right quantity in the little thingie
the right amount of tamping down
the right water temperature
the right flow rate

and probably the right water.

I thought there were nine key requirements but am stuck on seven. :lol:
 

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