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How to make the perfect coffee

How to make the perfect coffee

Coffee Maker Red


…with the ultimate coffee machine

No coffee connoisseur should be without a state of the art machine, to deliver them the perfect cup, every morning. A good machine makes economic sense (don’t even count those daily trips to the coffee shop), it will last for years - and sit pride of place on the kitchen worktop, for all to admire…

Before you start

Consider what kind of machine you’re after. Some machines have built in coffee grinders, which allow real aficionados to make espressos straight from the bean. Meanwhile, a pod coffee maker is just about the fastest brew in town and the perfect choice for time poor commuters and workaholics.

There are 3 main types of machine to consider – each with their own pros and cons, these are: bean-to-cup machines, pod coffee machines and traditional espresso machines.

Here’s the low-down on each:

Bean to cup

The pros
If you love to make the freshest coffee straight from your chosen coffee beans, then this is the machine for you. It’s built-in grinder means less effort is expended manually grinding your coffee - and you’re not compromised on coffee flavour, by having to buy a less fresh blend.
Also – many of these machines are automatic so they do the work for you, like grinding the beans, tamping the right amount and filtering, without need for a porta filter.

The cons
They can be pricier than traditional coffee makers and a touch noisy to operate.

Pod coffee machines

The pros
If you’re short on time but must have your morning cup, a pod machine is a great option. Rather than faffing about with loose coffee, you use specially bought coffee pods, drop them in and at a press of a button, your espresso appears! Ta-dah!
They’re also extremely easy to use, don’t cause mess and are a cheaper alternative to a bean to cup coffee machine.
The pods you buy are essentially ground coffee hermetically sealed in a filter paper for freshness. These are pierced by the machine once dropped in and boiling water is forced through to produce your cup.
Although these machines usually only take one type of pod, you can benefit from the choices offered by pod machines by established coffee experts, like Nespresso.

The cons
If you’re a coffee purist then you’re restricted to buying pods, which limits your choice of coffee. Most capsule or pod machines only take one kind of pod, so you need to buy them from this brand.

Traditional Espresso Makers

The pros
These are great if you want a straightforward machine that makes coffee to suit your taste. This is because, the in-built water pump forces the exact amount of water needed through a thermo-block which in turn heats the water and filters it through the ground coffee.
Often the price of one of these machines depends on the pressure level of the pump, with 12-19 bars of pressure standard and cheaper machines offering 3-5 bars, but they can work out cheaper on balance than using pods.

The cons
They can be quite fiddly to use and clean. You’re also not able to use coffee beans like the bean to cup machines.

Shoppers’ Checklist

Before you set out and splash the cash, take a quick scan of our checklist…

Consider how many people you’re making coffee for? If you’re serving several espressos at a time, consider a double spout and bigger capacity.

Size & weight:
Make sure you match the size of your machine with your available kitchen space. And if keeping it hidden, you’ll need to lift it, so check the weight too.

Brand & style:
Go for a brand you trust, like DeLonghi, Gaggia, Cuisinart and Magimix and pick a style that will look good in your space – whether it’s stainless steel or bright and breezy.

Espresso speed:
Good coffee machines take less than 15 seconds to make a great espresso and if you’re time poor checking speed is important.

And finally…

Read reviews & ask questions: On our site you can read reviews from other customers - and ask us questions if there’s anything you need to know. So if you’re unsure of anything, you know what to do!

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