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Starbucks Barista - Jennifer M's Review
Posted: September 5, 2007, 9:44am
review rating: 7.0
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Starbucks Barista
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More About This Product
Arrow The Starbucks Barista has 163 Reviews
Arrow The Starbucks Barista has been rated 8.23 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Starbucks Barista reviews have been viewed 1,010,472 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Bam T 9.50
Carl Lobitz 8.67
Rick Wayne 8.22
Dave Jahsman 8.00
Kevin Bailey 8.00

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 9.0
Manufacturer: Estro Quality: 8
Average Price: $350.00 Usability: 8
Price Paid: $99.99 Cost vs. Value 10
Where Bought: Starbucks Aesthetics 10
Owned for: 1 week Overall 9
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: Krups Steam Machine
Bottom Line: This is a must have if you can find one. Even for $199, it is a great machine.
Positive Product Points

$99
Consistent shots
Large H20 tank
User friendly
Did I mention $99 for this kick-a&@ machine?

Negative Product Points

Mucky grounds after pulling a shot (messy to clean),
Low steam wan makes it challenging for larger steam pots.

Detailed Commentary

As with the other poster, I got this machine for 99.00! For 99.00, anything is better then the Krups steam machine I was using. They can't even be compared.  I tried to find another machine for a family member and Starbucks is completely out of stock.

This machine is fantastic (again I had a steam machine).  Since I purchased it, there has been a lot of test shots and trying to get things just right.  It did take some adjustments and learning, but once I got the hang of it, it produced great quality coffee.    My complaints are minor, and are more adjusting to a much better quality machine (making two shots at a time instead of 4, priming and cleaning the machine after each use).  I do wish the steam wand was a bit higher to accommodate larger steam pots.

The grind of the coffee makes a big difference. I have a Cuisinart Burr Mill and it is not great since it does not grind finely enough for espresso. I took the advice from one reviewer and added the 3 #6 lock washers and it has made a huge difference. Now that I have the grind right, the shots are that much better.   I also modified a bit from the directions in the manual and tamp the coffee - it makes a difference.

I am still working on fitting the new machine into my morning ritual, but I have no doubts I will master the procedure to be efficient to get out the door on time! This was a fantastic buy and is great for an entry level barista. I highly recommend this machine.

Buying Experience

Great. The employees were as excited as me when they saw the pricetag. It was an exciting experience as I had been looking for a new machine. I also considered the Gaggia Baby and Classic machines.  In the end, you cannot beat the price tag on this and  the quality you get.

Did I mention $99.00 for this machine?

Three Month Followup

3 months later and I still love this machine. The shots are consistent each time (provided the grind of the coffee is consistent).  It is better to let the machine warm up for a bit. Even if the light is on, I wait about 15 minutes as it makes a difference.  The coffee itself, as most of you know, is key too.  

Steaming milk is not as consistent as the coffee shots and I have a hard time getting the same froth each time. It does well with 8 oz of milk, but if you are doing more than one coffee at a time, it does not have the strength for 16-20 oz and the froth is minimal.  I've followed all of the instructions for frothing and still find it challenging.

Although the H20 tank is big, it decreases quickly with the recommended 4 oz to clean the steam wand and the clean the brew head.  I usually only use 2oz.  

This is a great machine if you can still find them. I just picked one up last week for a family member.   I love it and still have the same positive view of it as I did 3 months ago.

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review rating: 7.0
Posted: September 5, 2007, 9:44am
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
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