A hardcore espresso workhorse a Barista can even appreciate. This machine is built to last!
Positive Product Points
Easy to Use Easy Milk Frother for beginners (make beautiful foam even if you've never steamed milk) Well built Heats up almost instantly Large water reservoir allows you to pull several shots and steam a few pitchers of milk before refilling Consistently good machine
Negative Product Points
The steam wand could be designed so it comes out more, making it easier/more accessible to steam milk. The way it is now, you have to position the machine on the corner edge of the counter in order to hold the steaming pitcher while steaming (I learned how to steam milk old school where you use one hand to hold the steaming pitcher of cold WHOLE milk ;) at an angle while using the steaming wand, and you rest the other hand on the side of the pitcher so that you can FEEL when the milk is steamed to the perfect temperature). So this machine doesn't allow for this to happen very easily unless its on corner edge. But this is a tiny tiny detail that I am happy to overlook because this machine rocks!!!! I have nothing negative to say about it really....
I bought this machine over 10 years ago when I was a Barista at Peet's Coffee and Tea before they went "commercial". Coffee was different back then. It's still very good now...but it was amazing back then..... I sold a number of machines over the years I was there, so I had a pretty good idea of what I was looking for when I bought the Saeco. This machine has served me well for over 10 years now. I have made coffee drink after coffee drink with it while friends waited (not unlike the lines that went out the door at Peet's). This machine is tough. It's a workhorse for sure. In all the time I've had it, I haven't even so much as had to replace an indicator light. I have only in the past couple of days experienced a problem with the machine, but again, it's 10+ years old and this is the first problem I've ever had with it. It's why I'm here on CoffeeGeek actually. I came here looking for information on having my machine serviced, or at the very least to try and understand what's going wrong with it because I don't want to buy a new one. Not because I don't want to spend the money, but because I don't believe I will find a new one comparable to my Saeco...This is simply a fantastic machine. I'd recommend it to anybody.
As a former Peet's Coffee & Tea employee, I have extensive experience with espresso machines of all makes and models from at least back when I worked there. I wouldn't say I know everything - there's always something to learn in the coffee world...but I know the basics to know what to look for when buying a new machine I guess you can say.