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Espresso for under $300
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Espresso for...  
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andersonle09
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Mar 2012
Posts: 4
Location: california
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Mar 27, 2012, 5:12pm
Subject: Espresso for under $300
 

This is my first post on this forum!  My recent fiance and I both love espresso drinks, and we also love to make them.  My fiance is a barista at a coffee shop and we want to invest in our own espresso machine.  We have a limited budget, but we want a solid machine that will last a while (and most importantly will make good shots with that all that tasty crema :) ).  Our budget is 300 dollars. Secondly, I was wondering if the porlex, will cut it for espresso grinding.

Thanks in advance.
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yiplong
Senior Member


Joined: 19 Feb 2012
Posts: 80
Location: EU
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Tue Mar 27, 2012, 5:23pm
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

If you are also buying a grinder, you can get the following:

- Seaco aroma for about $230
and
- Bodum bistro for about $80

That should work for your budget.  

If only buying a machine, then get the Gaggia New Baby, I think it may be a little over $300, but not by much.

You surely won't get the best (both in terms of taste + durability) for a budget of $300, but this should get you going.
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yiplong
Senior Member


Joined: 19 Feb 2012
Posts: 80
Location: EU
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed Mar 28, 2012, 7:02pm
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

Alternatively, you can get a refurbished Giggia Espresso for $150 and Baratza Encore for $130.  

Click Here (www.wholelattelove.com)

http://www.wholelattelove.com/Baratza/baratza-encore.cfm
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JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,278
Location: Berkeley, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Elektra T1 - La Valentina -...
Grinder: Mahlkönig K30 Vario -...
Vac Pot: Yama 5-cup
Drip: CCD, Chemex
Roaster: No, no, not another...
Posted Thu Mar 29, 2012, 7:12am
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

Great espresso does not have to cost thousands of dollars, but it does have to cost something!  With a budget so low, the ONLY thing I can suggest is to buy used or refurbished.  NOTHING is out there (IMHO) in the under $300 range . . .

New, the lowest priced machine I feel comfortable recommending is the Gaggia New Baby, which is on sale for $339.  Your present budget is blown right there, and you haven't even begun with a grinder!  You need a grinder if you hope to have any chance at making good espresso.

Sorry.

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
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sn_85
Senior Member


Joined: 1 Dec 2011
Posts: 134
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Quick Mill Andreja Premium
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Thu Mar 29, 2012, 8:10am
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

This is probably not what you are looking for but in that price range you're talking about handheld.  You can get the Mypressi twist for $150 and an Orphan Espresso LIDO grinder for $165.  If you like lattes you can get one of those hand pump milk frothers for like $20.  It's not the most attractive route but with your budget it's your best ticket to cheap but very good espresso.  

If you are set on having a machine, I would suggest Craigslist.  People routinely put up Starbuck Barista machines anywhere from $100 - $150.  You can pair that with the LIDO above or try your the new Baratza Encore for $129.   The Encore might be passable for grinding espresso and for the Barista's pressurized baskets I think it should work fine.  Yiplong also gave a pretty good recommendation as well.
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andersonle09
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Mar 2012
Posts: 4
Location: california
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Mar 29, 2012, 12:05pm
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

Thank you yiplong and sn_85 for working with my budget a little bit.  I am not expecting to get a serious set up with this budget, but I still want to be able to make some decent espresso at home.  I will probably end up going the craigslist or refurbished route, it seems the most promising.  I am still wondering about the porlex/hario/kyocera grinders.  Does anyone know if it works reasonably well for espresso grinding?
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DoubleVanos
Senior Member
DoubleVanos
Joined: 29 Nov 2011
Posts: 34
Location: GTA, Ontario
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Lelit PL41, DeLonghi EC155
Grinder: Mazzer Mini, Ascaso mini,...
Drip: Chemex, Kone
Posted Fri Mar 30, 2012, 5:51pm
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

andersonle09 Said:

 I am still wondering about the porlex/hario/kyocera grinders.  Does anyone know if it works reasonably well for espresso grinding?

Posted March 29, 2012 link

I've used the Hario slim for espresso and it can definitely grind fine enough to choke most machines. It creates nice consistent grinds but I find the adjustment steps too widely spaced. It is quite a bit of work too, might not seem like it at first but cranking that handle everytime you want a shot grows old fast. The orphan seems like a much better start. I've never used one but it has much, much larger burrs and should be able to grind much faster.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,475
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major
Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Fri Mar 30, 2012, 11:08pm
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

Click Here (www.home-barista.com)

Our lowest priced grinder that we advise getting, new is http://www.wholelattelove.com/Baratza/baratza_preciso.cfm which eats up your entire budget. The Baratza Encore is a VERY new grinder and at that price point for a powered grinder, I really would NOT expect it to do a reasonable job for espresso, regardless of the advertising copy says until several people try it out.

I must agree with Jason, it does not need to cost a fortune but you DO need to spend some money. The grinder is KING and the espresso machine only processes what the grinder feeds it. If the grinder is sub par, so will be the espresso.

To stay in your price range, skip an espresso "machine". Buy a GOOD hand grinder and the My Pressi Twist. Froth your milk with a hand whip and warm it in the microwave. That will achieve the best bang for your starting budget buck. Any "machine" that is priced low enough to fall into your budget WITH a grinder included, really isn't worth having. Sorry to be the bearer of the truth.

You said but I still want to be able to make some decent espresso at home Sadly your budget will not allow you to buy any "machine" new. The twist and a hand grinder YES and it will meet all your requirements.

Used, for a machine and a hand grinder, you still MIGHT get away with $300 but it would be rough.

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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aecletec
Senior Member


Joined: 10 Dec 2010
Posts: 195
Location: Australia
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Presso
Grinder: Faema A6
Drip: Chemex
Posted Sat Mar 31, 2012, 5:17am
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

I have used a Hario mini slim for espresso and wasn't impressed. Too much dust and quite a bitter extraction at anything that wasn't a gusher.
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CoffeeRuss
Senior Member


Joined: 1 Jan 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Sheffield
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sat Mar 31, 2012, 7:36am
Subject: Re: Espresso for under $300
 

Hi,
I'm fairly new to this espresso business myself but I found with my gaggia cubika plus and a hand grinder whilst it may not be the 'bee's knees' in espresso taste it still produces a good tasting espresso that can be drunk solo and that I personally feel tastes better than the chain stores.

The cubika plus is around 100 in the UK and the Zassenhaus grinder I used was around 70. I then invested in a good tamper too at around 20.  I also recently picked up a used cunill tauro grinder on eBay for 59 which was a speedy upgrade and works nicely.

Like I say I'm no espresso expert and I'm still learning a lot but if you have a budget and just want decent, drinkable espresso I found this works nicely for me and keeps me happy every morning.

Hope that's a little help.
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