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Food & Wine Ground >> Help Me Buy an (Inexpensive) Espresso Maker


12/14/09 12:21 PM
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savage animal
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 not a coffee drinker, no idea about these things, would like to get the girlfriend an espresso maker/machine for Christmas. I am getting her other things, so not planning on going all out on this one, recession, blah, blah, blah

Is a stovetop espresso maker a good purchase, or is an electric machine the only way to go?

For $40, you can get a nice looking simple stainless steel stovetop espresso maker at Bed Bath and Beyond or Target. I am hoping that one of these stovetop units is akin to a french press, that it is classic and some people actually prefer the old school method.

But, if buying a stovetop unit for a gift is like giving her a black and white tv, I'll pass.

Totally open to any brands, stores, suggestions. It seems like any electric machine is either crappy or around $100-$1000. If I can't do somethind decent for $50, I'll prob forget about it.

Thanks in advance for any insight, here are the ones I've glanced at

stovetops

http://www.target.com/Ilsa-Stovetop-Espresso-Maker-3-cup/dp/B000BIA62I/ref=br_1_3?ie=UTF8&frombrowse=1&searchView=grid5&searchNodeID=13386061&node=13386061&searchRank=pmrank&searchPage=2&searchSize=30&id=Ilsa%20Stovetop%20Espresso%20Maker%203-cup

http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?order_num=-1&SKU=11305466&RN=831

electrics

http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?order_num=-1&SKU=15868996&RN=278

http://www.target.com/Mr-Coffee-Steam-Espresso-Machine/dp/B000U6BSI2/ref=br_1_4?ie=UTF8&frombrowse=1&searchView=grid5&searchNodeID=13386061&node=13386061&searchRank=pmrank&searchPage=1&searchSize=30&id=Mr%20Coffee%20Steam%20Espresso%20Machine

http://www.target.com/Mr-Coffee-Pump-Espresso-Maker/dp/B001EU9UTM/ref=br_1_2?ie=UTF8&frombrowse=1&searchView=grid5&searchNodeID=13386061&node=13386061&searchRank=pmrank&searchPage=1&searchSize=30&id=Mr%20Coffee%20Pump%20Espresso%20Maker

12/15/09 8:40 AM
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Honeypot
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Admari Tea, Owner
 Ok- I have asked the coffee expert - AKA my Dada (who has been in the coffee industry for the last 35 years) and his response was...
"I would recommend a nice looking stovetop. An inexpensive electric is not going to work well. The stovetop espresso maker is standard in Italy and latin American."

He will be happy to go into it further if you need more info..

12/15/09 9:27 AM
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savage animal
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Thanks darlin!

1/2/10 8:23 PM
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onefromnone
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I've read good reviews on this...

http://www.aerobie.com/Products/aeropress_story.htm
5/27/10 8:02 PM
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socal
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actually what you can do is get a very inexpensive italian style maker...


like this, wont cost you that much and make decent expression

http://www.espressoplanet.com/images/P/bialettialumlg-04.gif

6/8/10 5:56 PM
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onefromnone
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Unless you are willing to spend 500+ on an espresso maker then go for a Bialetti Brikka

http://www.bialettishop.com/BrikkaMain.htm

or an Aeropress.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9siQ2y_sM9E

Although they do not technically make espresso, they are reasonable for the all but the hardcore espresso drinkers. A few things that are important for coffee making is using filtered water, and freshly roasted beans that are ground in a burr grinder just before brewing coffee.

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