Beginner's Guide to Coffee Machines & Grinders
With the cold weather setting in for winter, there is nothing better than warming up with a decent cup of coffee or two to get you through the day. You can now bring the taste of your local cafe, into your kitchen with e&s’s great range of coffee makers and grinders now available on the market. If you’re about to take the ‘plunge’ into your first coffee maker purchase, take a look at our handy buyer’s tips:
Type of machine: Figure out in advance if you want an espresso machine that does it all for you, or if you prefer to get hands-on by grinding and frothing your own coffee. This will help you decide if you’re after a manual, capsule, semi-automatic or fully-automatic coffee machine.
– Manual machine: For the coffee-lovers who want to be involved in every step of the process, a manual machine is for you. From loading the coffee beans, to operating the water pump and frothing the milk, this is the most involved process when making your coffee, at home.
– Capsule machine: Newer to the scene is the capsule coffee machine, which is growing in popularity. Great for those who want a fuss-free experience with minimal mess, they are a good option for smaller kitchens due to their compact size. You simply need to place in a capsule in the machine and with a press of a button, your coffee is made.
– Semi and fully-automatic machine: Ideal for people who want to press a button and have a coffee made for them. With a semi-automatic machine, it switches off the water after a set amount goes through the coffee. You still have to load the ground coffee, heat the milk and empty the portafilter. A fully-automatic coffee machine will do everything for you, except wash up your coffee cup afterwards! These machines are great for offices, or if you’re looking for a luxury coffee experience at home. All that is required is to load the coffee beans, supply the milk and water. Some machines will also perform self-maintenance.
- Easy to use? Before purchasing a coffee machine, find out whether the model comes with an comprehensive, easy-to-follow instruction manual.
- Aesthetics: Take into consideration the look of the machine, and whether you prefer plastic, stainless steel, brushed aluminum, or a shiny black machine. Is the surface going to be easy to clean?
- Brand: Be sure to choose a machine from a reputable manufacturer that offers good after-sales service.
- Warranty: Investigate the warranty to find out if it includes replacement for a faulty machine, covers all spare parts, and if there is an option for an extended warranty.
- Research: Don’t be afraid to ask a salesperson for their advice. If you are unsure whether you will be able to operate and clean a machine, try to attend a product demonstration or coffee expo/event prior to purchasing, visit websites and read customer reviews on forums.