Which coffee machine is right for you?

A coffee machine can be quite an investment but if you choose the right coffee machine it will change your life! Make sure your money is well spent with our quick guide.

Choose the right coffee machine

When picking a coffee machine you will usually be picking between a traditional espresso machine , bean to cup or a capsule coffee machine.

If you want to get the most for your money then a traditional espresso/ bean to cup machine will give you more cups for your cash. If you’re looking for time and convenience then a capsule machine is perfect. For those who want to explore coffee flavours and perfect the art of coffee making then we would recommend a manual espresso machine every time.

manual coffee machine
Sage BES980BKS ‘The Oracle’ espresso coffee machine in black sesame down to £1449.
coffee grinder for manual machines
Sage BCG820BSSUK Smart Grinder Pro Stainless Steel £199.99

Will you need a grinder?

For a manual coffee machine you will need to purchase a good quality grinder. Having your grinder separate to the machine allows you to get the extraction time to an art. You can tailor make your grind to the coffee that you’re making and get the most out of your beans. With a bean to cup machine there is no need to purchase a grinder as the machine will do the grinding for you. Most bean to cup machines will still allow you to select which type of grind you would like for your coffee.

Using pre ground coffee will never release the optimum flavours from your coffee. For maximum flavour invest in a quality burr grinder which will create an even texture. Think about your priorities when choosing the right coffee machine.

You’ll also need a knock box…

A knock box is a handy gadget where you can knock out the used coffee grounds. Less mess ! You don’t have to traipse backwards and forwards to the bin. Simply empty it when it’s full.

A few quick tips to get the most out of making your own coffee

I think we can agree that you just can’t beat the flavour of the freshly roasted beans that go into making a proper cuppa’ coffee. Whether yours is a latte, mocha, flat white or americano the base is always the same – it begins with the espresso. Thinking about what kind of coffee you want to make will help you choose the right coffee machine. If you opt for a capsule coffee machine then you don’t need to worry about the espresso. Simply choose the pod that you want and let the machine do the rest.

capsule coffee machine.
The Sage Creatista Plus in Black Truffle SNE800BTR is at the top of it’s game in Capsule Coffee machines buy it now at £449.95 with free delivery.

For a glorious cup of coffee begin with an exemplary espresso. Start with premium quality coffee beans and take care to store them in a cool, dry place. Having them in an airtight container can extend their shelf life up to 3 months.

Firstly decide what kind of coffee you are making, the size of your espresso will carry the all of the flavour and you don’t want it to be too overpowering. Generally you will choose from the following espresso measures;

  • Ristretto – 24ml
  • Espresso – 36ml
  • Lungo – 45ml

When you choose the right coffee machine decide how much you want to experiment. A manual machine will always give you the most scope for creativity.

Good beans are the key

A good coffee will allow you to taste the fruitful flavour of the beans through the milk. Choose coffee grinds which are graded over 80/100 to ensure that you are getting the finest, speciality coffee. When you roast your beans, you must be wary of roasting out the flavours within the bean. Getting the roast profile and extraction right on the machine is going to provide you with #coffeegoals.

Storage

Leaving your beans in the open air will detiorate their quality quicker than anything, if you keep them in a airtight container then you can prolong their life from 1-3 months. Ensuring that your coffee beans are stored in a dry environment is key – they don’t need to be kept in the fridge.  

row of different types of coffee. created from using a manual coffee machine

The Importance of stretching milk

If you love frothy coffees then you will need to make sure that you invest in a coffee machine that allows you to steam & stretch the milk. Do you know what we mean when we say stretching milk? It simply means the process of bringing air into the milk for that lovely frothy effect. Take the milk nozzle and position it just outside of the milk. Then texturise it by spinning the milk in circles for a nice creamy/frothy texture.

Grinding to perfection – choose the right coffee machine

To achieve perfect extraction you need to make sure your grind is not too coarse in order for the water not to flow through too quickly because this makes for tasteless coffee. On the same hand if your beans are too fine then you can be too slow, making it overly bitter. Aim for 36ml in about 30 seconds from 13g.

coffee burr grinder for manual coffee machines

Cuisinart DBM8U Professional Coffee Burr Grinder Mill – down to just £51.99

Considering your budget, time and how much passion you have for making coffee should ultimately help you chose the right coffee machine.