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ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > ESE capable...  
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KJCaufield
Senior Member


Joined: 30 Jan 2013
Posts: 16
Location: Edwardsville
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013, 9:16am
Subject: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

Hello all,

I have been doing some research into replacing a dying cheapo espresso maker. The problem is the spouse and I have different wants from a machine. While we are both foodies, he likes to tinker & experiment. Me? While I appreciate the results of his tinkering, I usually just want to throw in a ESE pod and be done.

So far it seems there are 2 machines that can easily do both. The Ascaso Uno Professional and the Gaggia. The advantage of the Uno Pro is that is has an already installed PID, and most current owners seem to be happy with it; but, how does it compare to a Gaggia, which people have claimed can be used for making a 'god shot'? And for that matter, which Gaggia? There are so many models that it makes one's head spin. I was leaning towards the Classic as that seems to be the favored model.

Thoughts?

We would be open to different machines too. And yes, we will likely be getting a new grinder too.

Thank you!!!
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KJCaufield
Senior Member


Joined: 30 Jan 2013
Posts: 16
Location: Edwardsville
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013, 9:46am
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Or Lelit. Thoughts?
 

Mon Dieu. Apparently Lelit is another brand. I just discovered them. So add that to the list of possibilities :)
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1stline
Senior Member
1stline
Joined: 24 Jan 2002
Posts: 492
Location: Freehold, NJ USA
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Undisclosed
Grinder: Indisclosed
Vac Pot: Bodum Electric
Drip: None
Roaster: None
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013, 1:33pm
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

KJCaufield Said:

Hello all,

I have been doing some research into replacing a dying cheapo espresso maker. The problem is the spouse and I have different wants from a machine. While we are both foodies, he likes to tinker & experiment. Me? While I appreciate the results of his tinkering, I usually just want to throw in a ESE pod and be done.

So far it seems there are 2 machines that can easily do both. The Ascaso Uno Professional and the Gaggia. The advantage of the Uno Pro is that is has an already installed PID, and most current owners seem to be happy with it; but, how does it compare to a Gaggia, which people have claimed can be used for making a 'god shot'? And for that matter, which Gaggia? There are so many models that it makes one's head spin. I was leaning towards the Classic as that seems to be the favored model.

Thoughts?

We would be open to different machines too. And yes, we will likely be getting a new grinder too.

Thank you!!!

Posted February 1, 2013 link

Sorry, I can not comment on Gaggia as we do not sell them. However, the Steel Uno Professional V2 was tested with pods. It does ok with just changing the filter basket to the included pod basket. However, with most machines I tested, a machine (that does pods and ground coffee) fall into in one of the folowing categories:

a) Does a better job with ground coffee because the dispersion screen in the grouphead is for ground coffee, and pods are the afterthought, or
b) does a better job with pods becasue the grouphead and dispersion screen is designed for pods, but leaves too much air space for ground coffee. Thus, the regular filter screens are an afterthought.

This is why Rancilio sells the grouphead kit for the Silvia so ESE pods work much better, but then it becomes horrible on the ground coffee side when the kit is installed. This holds true for so many set ups I have experienced,

I have yet to see a solution that does ground coffee and pods at highly acceptable levels without having to change grouphead parts, etc. I have a fairly decent solution for E61 machines.

Personally, I would not get the Lelit for pods as the Ascaso Steel Uno Pro set up does a better job. Again, not as good as a machine better designed for pods.

I hope this helps!

 
Sincerely,
Jim Piccinich
Business Partner
1st-line Equipment, LLC
www.1st-line.com

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KJCaufield
Senior Member


Joined: 30 Jan 2013
Posts: 16
Location: Edwardsville
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013, 3:09pm
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

Thank you Jim, and point taken :)

Well, I have to say we would rather have a machine that did a better job with the grounds than the pods. The machine would only occasionally be used for pods.

We looked into the Silvia conversion, but it seems whenever you want to use a pod, you would have to empty the water tank, flip the machine over, remove the original filter and screw in the adapter. At that point it killed the simplicity behind using a pod.  We assumed you could not use the ESE adapter for pulling a normal shot.

The E61 is a Briccoletta?  Per your site, it is this machine "Lever Activated Grouphead with Water Reservoir"? It does pods too then?
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1stline
Senior Member
1stline
Joined: 24 Jan 2002
Posts: 492
Location: Freehold, NJ USA
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Undisclosed
Grinder: Indisclosed
Vac Pot: Bodum Electric
Drip: None
Roaster: None
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013, 4:33pm
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

KJCaufield Said:

Thank you Jim, and point taken :)
...The E61 is a Briccoletta?  Per your site, it is this machine "Lever Activated Grouphead with Water Reservoir"? It does pods too then?

Posted February 1, 2013 link

Yes, with the special red filter pod handle.

 
Sincerely,
Jim Piccinich
Business Partner
1st-line Equipment, LLC
www.1st-line.com

Follow us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/1stline
Twitter: http://twitter.com/1stline
Blog: http://1st-line.blogspot.com/
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/1stlineespresso
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Gig103
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Joined: 12 Feb 2012
Posts: 225
Location: Arizona
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: French press!
Posted Wed Feb 27, 2013, 3:20pm
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

I'd suggest a Saeco Aroma. For you and your pods you use the pressurized portafilter, and your husband can tinker with a quality grinder and unpressurized portafilter. Temperature surfing or adding a PID is important with both.
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JasonBrandtLewis
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JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,368
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 Wed Feb 27, 2013, 7:25pm
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

Welcome, Kristin, to CG . . .

KJCaufield Said:

I have been doing some research into replacing a dying cheapo espresso maker. The problem is the spouse and I have different wants from a machine. While we are both foodies, he likes to tinker & experiment. Me? While I appreciate the results of his tinkering, I usually just want to throw in a ESE pod and be done.

Posted February 1, 2013 link

Hmmmm . . . why ESE?

I understand the convenience factor, but there is no ESE pod that is as good as freshly roasted beans, freshly ground.

Standard Questions:
1)  What kind of drinks do you like/want to make?  (This will tell us what you need in terms of a machine's capabilities.)
2)  How many drinks, on average, do you see yourself needing to make at ay one time? (This will tell us what you need in terms of a machine's ability to work continuously.)
3)  How many drinks, on average, do you see yourself making in any given week?  (This will tell us what you need in terms of a machine's durability.)
4)  Can you plumb a machine directly into the water supply, or do you want/need a pourover machine with its own reservoir?
5)  Do you have a 20-amp circuit available, or only a (standard) 15-amp circuit?
6)  What is your budget for a new machine?  Does that also include a grinder?  If not, what is your budget for a grinder?

And a couple of things to keep in mind.

The Four M's of Espresso:
1) the Macinazione is the grinder, and with it, the correct grinding of the coffee beans;
2) the Miscela is the coffee beans/blend itself;
3) the Macchina is the espresso machine; and
4) the Mano is the skilled hand of the barista.  

All four are important.  Nothing is more important than the grinder.

/ / / / /

Babbie's Rule* of Fifteens:
-- Green (unroasted) coffee beans should be roasted within 15 months, or they go stale.
-- Roasted coffee beans should be ground within 15 days, or they go stale.
-- Ground coffee should be used within 15 minutes, or it goes stale.

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


Joined: 30 Jan 2013
Posts: 16
Location: Edwardsville
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sat Mar 9, 2013, 2:08pm
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

Gig103 Said:

I'd suggest a Saeco Aroma. For you and your pods you use the pressurized portafilter, and your husband can tinker with a quality grinder and unpressurized portafilter. Temperature surfing or adding a PID is important with both.

Posted February 27, 2013 link

LOL! Gig, that is my personal machine of choice, but the hubby snubbed anything that did an auto tamp ;b This is why I was looking at the Gaggia or the Aseco. Although Newegg has a Aroma for pretty cheap right now...
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KJCaufield
Senior Member


Joined: 30 Jan 2013
Posts: 16
Location: Edwardsville
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Mar 10, 2013, 7:47am
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

Jason. I understand, but they are better than Staryucks, and I just don't want to deal with the hassle.  I'm short to boot, so pressing pucks on the counter is not going to be easy for me. And the more we learn the more I go, ugh, hassle LOL. Now if we had a cafe and were dialing in our grind for out specific roast etc every morning, fine. But just for an occasional shot of espresso, meh. Indeed one reviewer sold his Rancillo & Gaggia to get a k-cup machine just for that reason. He just didn't have the time in the morning to make a shot and wanted something decent going out the door; thus, found he was not using his better machines. Now the spouse on the other hand does like to tinker and I know he will. Hence the search for the machines that will do both.

To answer your other questions:
1) Are you referring to milk based drinks (such as a latte) vs espresso shots? We drink both, but mostly milk based. We occasionally drink french press too.  
2) Usually one to two. Rare occasions maybe more, but we don't tend to host parties. So I don't think we need a double boiler. We have been eyeballing a heat exchange though. I think some of those can do ESE pods too? I have heard mixed information on that.
3) That depends on the spouse. I'm going to guess on average 5 times a week?
4) Not currently. We were not looking for a machine that plumbs, but if it can be moded, maybe in a later house. The machine is just for home use.  
5) No. Just a regular old house with 15amp.
6) No set budget. Essentially we want a good quality machine that will last a long time, is reasonably priced enough that it will offset going out to get coffee, pulls a tasty shot of coffee, does not take forever to warm up, and that is easy for me to use yet can also be tinkered with by the spouse. A PID would be nice too. So, in other words, as much as he wants one, I think the $6000 La Marzocco is a little overboard ;b A heat exchange however does looks nice, but that even may be overkill?

Re: grinder, we are leaning towards at the Baratza Vario after talking to some local baristas. The Mazzer mini is nice too, but we do occasionally drink French press

Heh, the more we learn, the harder it seems to be to decide...
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Coffeenoobie
Senior Member
Coffeenoobie
Joined: 11 Dec 2011
Posts: 3,014
Location: PNW
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: N S Oscar
Grinder: K30 & Vario W
Posted Sun Mar 10, 2013, 9:35am
Subject: Re: ESE capable machine: Ascaso Uno Pro vs Gaggia. Thoughts?
 

A few thoughts:

Oscar is a HX and can be fitted to pods and has tons of steam power for milk drinks.  I think a pod Oscar would be a great office machine.

Cold brew is also good in milk drinks and doesn't take fancy equipment.  If you are a foodie you probably already have strainers and stuff.  I use it for road trips and camping rather than depend on gas station coffee.  Thin with hot or cold water or milk.

If you like french press then why not do french press when you don't want to tamp/grind etc. and have a good regular espresso machine for when you do?  Otherwise you give up quality on one side or the other.

 
Coffeenoobie

Buying advice: GRINDER GRINDER GRINDER. Don't cheap out on the grinder.

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Click Here (maps.google.com)

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