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Discussion Starter #1
I know a lot of the Sydney crew have great taste in coffee...in fact, some of you guys could be fairly labeled espresso geeks [thumbsup] So I'm coming to you for advice.

I want to get a home Espresso machine. Since the cafe on my corner closed, I need to be able to self-enable my own addiction ;D Counter space is at a premium in my place, so it's got to be fairly small. I love dry cappuccinos so it has to have a great steamer wand. Some things I'm looking for:
  • Must have a small counter footprint...roughly 48cm x 60cm
  • Steamer wand must make great dry foam
  • Good, consistent crema on the espresso
  • Must have a water tank, since a water supply valve is not available
  • 110 volt...I'm in the US so no 220v ;D
So do you guys have any recommendations or tips? Many thanks in advance.
 

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What sort of budget do you have? That will drive the answer.

I have a Rancillio Silvia, which is one of the most decent low end machines around. I also have a Rancillio Rocky grinder, but if you are not going to grind your own you may get by without one. All up I spent about $1000 on the pair.

If you have 2-3K to spend there are a lot more option available to you.

Cheers
Palooka
 

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I'm not in Oz, but thought I'd chime in anyway since I love espresso ;D.

If you haven't been, this website is great for info - http://www.coffeegeek.com/reviews

I have an Isomac Zaffiro, http://www.coffeegeek.com/proreviews/detailed/isomaczaffiro.
Aside from a pump replacement, it's been fantastic. Excellent crema, solid build, pro quality portafilters. I too have a Rancilio Rocky grinder (doserless). I think I paid somewhere over $1K for the pair. Don't forget to find a good source for fresh roasted beans, that makes a big difference too.

If you're looking at purchasing online (as finding a retail outlet is next to impossible), http://www.chriscoffee.com/ has good prices and good customer service too.
 

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One word of warning - be prepared to do regular cleaning and de-calcifying. I found I was having to descale once a month (our watch is a bit hard). I eventually switched to a stove top perculator, as all the extra work got on top of me (and I am not fussed about steamed milk).
 

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So the word is out 'Oz Monsters' ... World Famous Espresso Geeks? ;D
Been there, I just don't do coffee at home, If your local closed down, isn't easier to move house?
Try the Grace Hotel, King & York Sts, Sydney. 8)
 

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<also not from OZ but butting in> [cheeky]


also look at the reviews and stuff for sale at wholelattelove.com
good source for stuff
i was hot to trot to get either a La Pavoni or Gaggia Classic...but i've been pretty content with my burr grinder/french press for morning coffee....
this one would look good with a ducati sticker on it 8)

 

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Discussion Starter #9
alifecoach said:
So the word is out 'Oz Monsters' ... World Famous Espresso Geeks? ;D
Been there, I just don't do coffee at home, If your local closed down, isn't easier to move house?
Try the Grace Hotel, King & York Sts, Sydney. 8)
;D Been there, mate ;D

And if I didn't live 7400 miles (11840km) away from Alex's little bit of paradise I'd be there every day [thumbsup]
 

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Palooka said:
What sort of budget do you have? That will drive the answer.

I have a Rancillio Silvia, which is one of the most decent low end machines around. I also have a Rancillio Rocky grinder, but if you are not going to grind your own you may get by without one. All up I spent about $1000 on the pair.

If you have 2-3K to spend there are a lot more option available to you.

Cheers
Palooka
Listen to this man, we call him Palooka, others call him 'the owl' or quite simply "the knowledge" for he is wise and knowledgeable.

The Silvia is considered by a lot of aficionado's and coffee purists to be the best valuse under $2000 (it is around $700 down under)....after that you go to ECM etc and have it plumbed in.

The matching grinder is great, I have the Mazza Mini and cannot fault it, however the Mazza is what is in cafe's (usually the jolly roger but some use the Mini for decaf blend) and the footprint is quite large.

Good beans are important too. garbage in, garbage out.
 

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The Spider said:
The Silvia is considered by a lot of aficionado's and coffee purists to be the best valuse under $2000 (it is around $700 down under)....after that you go to ECM etc and have it plumbed in.

The matching grinder is great
So ypou've got all the good advice already Joe, I'll just add...

Don't skimp on the grinder. (and _certainly_ don't use preground beans).

Like others have said, the Rocky/Silvia combo is pretty much considered the "standard" home espresso setup - with good beans and once you get used to using it, you'll pretty quickly be making better cappuccinos than 99% of the cafes in the world. That combo will come pretty close to fitting in to your space requirements (if those numbers are critical let me know and I can get them measured up accurately for you).

Also +1 to hanging around on coffeegeek.com for advice (and since you feel free posting up in Oz Monsters, I'll throw in a good word for coffeesnobs.com.au too...)

big (looking forward to hearing reviews of Stumptown, Bluebottle and Rituals latest single origins...)
 

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Hey Desmo4,
You have come to thr right place for coffee lovers but your mates in the US should be able to assist on locally available coffee makers.
I too had the Rancillio Miss Silvia but sold it last last year as I wanted to go the next step in my coffee geekness....
I now have a Bazzera BZ99 (http://barazi.com.au/content/view/29/129/) and a Mini Mazzer grinder and it is a great unit - I managed to get the Bazzerz on flea bay for less than $1000 so I was pretty happy. If you want really good consistent steam then you need to go up from the Miss Silvia - it is good but it does not give you really good froth unless you get a PID unit for it and generally practice, practice, practice, etc....
Another good site is http://www.coffeesnobs.com.au/ and you can learn what to buy - Generally most of teh good stuff comes via the States so you should be able to source everything cheaper than we can anyway.
I agree with others in that you need to get a good grinder - doser or doserless does not matter, just good. Then you need to find a food local bean roaster and buy your beans there in small amounts (250 - 500 grms) so that you use fresh beans all the time.
Clean your coffee machine regularly and enjoy great coffee every time.
Oh and lastly, treat yourself to a Barista course so that you get to learn what to do and when!
Ciao,
R_usty
 

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i'm in brissie not sydney, does my opinion still count?? oh stuff it, i don't really care anyway!!!
my wife has a delonghi primadonna, and it makes good coffee! fully automatic too, which is good cause i'm useless in the kitchen. [thumbsup]


paul.
 

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I have tried the primadonna it is ok but it now sits in the garaage gathering dust ???

If you want the best, I have 2 of them 1 in my office and 1 im my home this is the ultimate if you want true cafe style [clap]
look no further its not cheep but IMO its the best [clap]


http://www.szcoffeesystem.com/
 

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Dockstrada said:
this is the ultimate if you want true cafe style [clap]
look no further its not cheep but IMO its the best [clap]


http://www.szcoffeesystem.com/
See also:

http://www.lamarzocco.it/gs3.html
and
http://www.fivesensescoffee.com.au/synesso/synesso-sabre-espresso-machine

for the I-just-won-the-lottery" "home" machine options...

(A friend of mine didn't _quite_ manage to convince his wife that the single group GS3 was a *bargain* for only $7000AUD, they _retail_ for $7500US...)

big
 
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Super T.I.B said:
Paging GoldFish ;D [cheeky]
yeah, sorry had to work today ;D

All good advice.

Me, I have an ECM Giotto, and big is 100% right - don't skimp on the grinder...
I've just moved up to a 18g basket for a double shot, and have been seriously toying with the idea of doing a bit of home roasting. It's an addiction in more ways than one!



DUCMONROB said:
Bloody Hell! :eek: :eek: :eek:
get that man a nescafe >:D
 

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Hey Goldfish,

That is one great coffee machine you have there [thumbsup]

If you get into roasting let us know how you go and I have been toying with the idea as well. And hey, lets have a coffee ride and then tasting at your place! 8)

Ciao,

R_usty
 

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DUCMONROB said:
Bloody Hell! :eek: :eek: :eek:
I have found water is actually good for you - don't drink coffee :-X *ducks for cover* so that is the best I could come up with.

I even know the odd bike riders that like the occassional beer :eek:
 
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