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Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Ideal espresso...  
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 3,113
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Sun Sep 15, 2013, 5:37am
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

Your grinder seems up to the task.

Your budget allows you to get a pretty high end prosumer lever, HX or DB machine. Your intended use suggests that one of those will suit your needs well. You'll need to look in to features available and rate them by importance (must have, want, don't care, don't want, unacceptable). Some features to consider, boiler size(s), wand positions, type of valve operation, group design, volumetric dosing, etc. This will require research and reading on your part, but we are here to answer questions, help you find resources and such. We do this because we love espresso and talking about it. We also learn from it.

For your power supply, first look at the outlets where you'll be using the machine. Standard two prongs are generally 15amp. If your house is newer, you may still have 20 amp supplying them. Easy to check this by looking at the circuit breakers in your breaker box. If the outlet looks funny with one opening turned sideways, then you probably have 20 amp. Higher power than that will be for appliances and is probably already in use. Anyhow, if you have 20amps to your outlets, you may need to check what else is on the circuit so it's not overdrawn by too much stuff. If still in doubt, get a consultation from an electrician...may as well have him see if it's feasible to run another line to your coffee bar too.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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Worldman
Senior Member
Worldman
Joined: 16 Nov 2004
Posts: 1,820
Location: Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Expobar Office Control
Grinder: Cimbali 6/S
Posted Sun Sep 15, 2013, 6:35am
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

Indeed, Rod - congrats on the new house!

I find that it is ALWAYS handy to have a sink nearby for the endless rinsing of spent cups, PF, pitchers, et al. I don't know if your new kitchen will allow it...but you will be well served if you can put your set-up very close, if not next to a sink.

My set-up has the Cimballi 6/S grinder within 1" of the left sink and my ancient Expobar within an inch to the left of the grinder. This is followed by a 1.5 gallon water tank that feeds directly into the Expobar and which is easily pulled out for filling.

Ahhhhhh...it takes up >2.5' of running counter with coffee storage bins and knock box.

 
Len
Len's Espresso Blends
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JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,391
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 Sun Sep 15, 2013, 8:59am
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

Rod,  

To start with, I would urge you to re-read what Ron (emradguy) and Len (Worldman) have said, and take it to heart.

Your needs, and desired capabilities, have led you to the "high end prosumer" (consumer + professional = "prosumer") class of machine.  Whether you opt for an HX, or a DB is up to you -- I would just avoid an SBDU if I were you.  Similarly, you can opt for a manual lever machine, a semi-automatic, or a full-automatic machine -- I'd just avoid a super-auto.  (If you are unsure of these terms, I'd suggest you take a look at this.)

Remember that we each have our own preferences and experiences, and -- as I said above -- no one answer/set-up is right for everyone.  

At home, I have an Elektra T1 full-automatic HX machine; a Mahlkönig K30 Vario and Baratza Vario grinders; and Cafelat knockbox and tampers.

JasonBrandtLewis: New Home Setup.jpg
(Click for larger image)

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
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JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,391
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 Sun Sep 15, 2013, 8:59am
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

In my office, I have a Ala di Vittoria La Valentina full-auto HX machine (the same machine as this Grimac Royal Falcon-branded machine); Cimbali Max Hybrid and Nuova Simonelli MCF grinders; and Bumper knockbox and tampers (Bumper was the predecessor to Cafelat).

JasonBrandtLewis: office.jpg
(Click for larger image)

 
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JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,391
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 Sun Sep 15, 2013, 9:25am
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

Now what will work best for you is an entirely different matter.  

Machines that I would look at in the <$3,000 range are (alphabetically):

Heat Exchangers:
-- Cimbali Junior Casa JT
-- Quickmill Andreja Premium
-- Quickmill Vetrano
-- Rocket Evoluzione v2

Dual Boilers:
-- Izzo Alex Duetto 3
-- La Spaziale Vivaldi S1 Dream
-- Quickmill Ventrano 2B

This is by no means a complete list, nor is it meant to be. Two things to remember -- if you can plumb, it's better to do it; and if you can get a machine with a rotary pump (rather than a vibe), you won't regret it!

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
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shnxx
Senior Member
shnxx
Joined: 3 Jul 2009
Posts: 128
Location: Pasadena
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun Sep 15, 2013, 11:02am
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

Thanks for the responses.

Is it a good idea in general to look at used machines?
There seem to be a lot of them posted here and some mispriced ones on eBay and craigslist sold by people who run coffee shops, restaurants etc.


But regarding kitchen cart setups, I think I might have enough space to purchase a restaurant kitchen prep table with a sink.
I found some restaurant suppliers around the area as well as some used restaurant resellers on craigslist.
Alternatively, I could hire a contractor to build a stainless cart for me although I don't know how much such a thing would cost.
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JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,391
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 Sun Sep 15, 2013, 1:14pm
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

My advice is to always learn how to walk before you run . . .

Used machines can be fine, IF . . . you get it from a reliable source.  Look at the B/S/T forum here first.  Beware of craigslist -- try out the machine first!

I don't think you need to go so far as to have a contractor build a stainless steel cart -- that can get very expensive, very quickly.  Look to places like Bed, Bath and Beyond, The Container Store, and even Ikea . . .

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
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shnxx
Senior Member
shnxx
Joined: 3 Jul 2009
Posts: 128
Location: Pasadena
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun Sep 15, 2013, 1:21pm
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

JasonBrandtLewis Said:

My advice is to always learn how to walk before you run . . .

Used machines can be fine, IF . . . you get it from a reliable source.  Look at the B/S/T forum here first.  Beware of craigslist -- try out the machine first!

I don't think you need to go so far as to have a contractor build a stainless steel cart -- that can get very expensive, very quickly.  Look to places like Bed, Bath and Beyond, The Container Store, and even Ikea . . .

Posted September 15, 2013 link

IKEA's standalone stainless steel setup seems to cost about 1000 including install.
It's not too bad but I'm going to shop around to see if I can do better.
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JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,391
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 Sun Sep 15, 2013, 1:27pm
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

$135.25

$199.99 (the Flojet can be stored underneath)

Indeed, just look here -- $129.99-$529.99

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
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shnxx
Senior Member
shnxx
Joined: 3 Jul 2009
Posts: 128
Location: Pasadena
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun Sep 15, 2013, 1:32pm
Subject: Re: Ideal espresso corner setup in your kitchen
 

JasonBrandtLewis Said:

$135.25

$199.99 (the Flojet can be stored underneath)

Indeed, just look here -- $129.99-$529.99

Posted September 15, 2013 link

I am looking for stainless steel with cabinets.
Something like that wouldn't work for a heavy duty machine.

I don't mind spending 500 or more on a quality cart with good work space.
I've seen the standalone carts at IKEA and other stores and they usually don't have door cabinets, which are essential for hiding plumbing and other things.
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