Best Prosumer Coffee Machines 2019 – Prosumer Coffee Machines 101
Best Prosumer Coffee Machines 2019 – Prosumer Coffee Machines 101
Ahhh. The joys of knowing your flat white from your latte – a party trick known to few. A party trick that not only makes you sound really smart – but also allows you to enjoy the very best coffee every time you make or order a cup.
We’ve always said there are three main schools of coffee drinkers; those who enjoy a simple cup of instant coffee and wish for nothing more, nothing less. Those who enjoy freshly ground, bean coffee and would settle for nothing less. Those who have coffee as a by-product of their drink – think “No Fat Soy Latte, Extra Syrup, decaf with extra pumpkin spice”; and lastly, those who are discerned coffee drinkers. They not only know their beans, they know their machines, too. Chances are, this last category of coffee drinkers has no trace of instant coffee or otherwise in their homes; they likely have a coffee machine at hand on which they can prepare coffee to their taste, their liking, at their leisure. There’s something about drinking good coffee in the comfort of your own home – a solace brought about by very, very few things. We like to unofficially categorise these coffee drinkers as “prosumers” – a term dubbed for regular consumers or customers who have taken their love and passion for a specific product to a higher level, educated themselves on it and become somewhat of a fundi.
These are unashamedly our favourite type of coffee consumers!
When it comes to coffee machines – especially for the home of a coffee prosumer – quality always trumps quantity. Understanding that you need not spend a fortune to have a superb coffee machine in your home lends further to the understanding that you do still need to invest in a quality, branded coffee machine to get the type of results you want.
Not all coffee machines are created equal; for this reason, we are narrowing down our coffee machine prosumer choice to the top automatic espresso machines. We have no hard feelings towards filter coffee machines or capsule coffee machines, but they do not produce the freshest, customisable coffee possible.
Best Prosumer Coffee Machines 2019
Before we explore the top machines coffee prosumers should be looking out for in 2019, let’s understand what it takes to make the best possible coffee:
“The million dollar question that all coffee lovers find themselves asking is what coffee machine makes the best coffee? The answer always starts with the quality of the coffee that is going to be brewed, since even the best coffee machine cannot improve taste that was never there to begin with. Quality coffee beans go hand and hand with a quality roast to provide the best flavour starting point.
Other important factors include the freshness of the coffee beans and the grind itself. A fresh grind will produce better tasting coffee than stale grinds that have lost most of their aroma. Additionally, the water quality plays a large role in the equation itself since odd flavoured water is hard to mask. Filtered water is usually preferred instead of tap water when trying to brew the best tasting coffee possible.
After accounting for coffee bean quality, the roast, freshness of the grinds, and filtered water, the last aspect in the equation is the brewing style. The total immersion method is the best coffee preparation technique to brew the best tasting coffee. This method maximizes the surface area that the hot water is able to penetrate and increases the flavour profile.”
Bearing these points in mind, we narrow down our search even more. Our “Best Prosumer Coffee Machine Checklist” includes considerations on the following:
- Coffee bean grinders: adjustability, presence or absence
- Water tank filtration systems and boiler capacity / output
- Brewing method and immersion method
- Machine functionality based on level of experience and desired daily input
Without further ado:
Best Prosumer Coffee Machine 2019 – For the Eclectic Coffee Drinker
The Ground Control Cyclops was debuted as a new single-group iteration of its Ground Control batch brewer—called the Cyclops—at Expo 2018.
The sleek machine uses a multi-stage extraction process that includes drawing coffee to the top of the brewer via a powerful vacuum, where it’s swirled in hand-blown glass bulbs, providing an enticing visual experience for the user and customer. Users can navigate through the machine’s touch screen to adjust time, temperate, and water to hone in on their preferred brew.
“This machine works unlike any other on the market,” explains Voga Coffee CEO Eli Salomon. “It’s the only immersion brewer that makes coffee through a series of mini brews, and the result is the ultimate consistency from brew to brew.”
The Voga Coffee Ground Control Cyclops can benefit the coffee prosumers coffee making in the following ways:
Flavour extraction on the Ground Control® patented brewing method effortlessly produces coffee that is exquisite and nuanced. Selectively extract the precise flavours you want, with total control
over each step. Brew the memorably sweet, clean cup that you crave.
The actual brewing process on the Ground Control® minimizes training requirements or the need for an existing skillset, and further simplifies cleaning. A novice Barista is able to learn to operate
Ground Control® in under ten minutes – so if you’re willing to invest a small amount of time to get to know your way around this machine – you may be in for a treat. The touchscreen interface makes it easy for you to control the entire brewing process. Cleaning is at the touch of a button.
The consistency of your coffee is now guaranteed; this machine offers one of the most consistent coffee brewing systems. Brew your target coffee profile each time, and see yourself return more frequently (and perhaps your guests, too) for a reliably sweet, exceptional cup.
To summarise; for the coffee enthusiast who wishes to have the newest, ultra-modern coffee brewing device in his or her home may want to consider this machine. It allows for in-depth control over the majority of the processes involved in making great coffee, but inter-laps those exact processes with an ease-of-use many would appreciate – especially in a setting where time (or want) to train is low. It also provides consistency – which – once mastered – is the key to a great coffee legacy.
For more info:
Best Prosumer Coffee Machines 2019 –Brand Loyalty
Humans, us humans, we’re a strange bunch, aren’t we? When it comes to brand loyalty – there are those of us who will remain true loyalists until our very last sip. Sometime this can be a great thing – if the brand itself evolves with its customer base and makes continual strides towards improvement, innovation and excellence. This has been the story of Jura coffee machines for as long as they have been around. We have seen Jura come from humble, digital display beginnings to their current state. That current state includes machines which are not only highly visually appealing, but also leaps and bounds ahead in their processes.
For instance, the JURA App is one of the first of its kind, allowing you to prepare your favourite coffee, save the details thereof and have access to the preparation f that exact same cup at the
touch of a button on your phone or tablet.
For those Jura loyalists out there, we recommend the Jura WE8 for the coffee Prosumer. Why, you ask?
It’s not the newest Jura machine, it’s not as big as the newest Giga X9c (read more about that machine here, though) – but it is the best fit for someone who wants the best from the brand they love.
What sets Jura apart from the sea of other Automatic Coffee Machine suppliers is their commitment to continuously improving on their existing range, strategically “replacing the old with the new” and making seemingly insignificant tweaks and changes to their existing coffee machine formats.
What Jura has done, (in my opinion) ingeniously, is collated their Bean Hopper capacity with their water tank capacity. See, the WE8 is the officially-unofficial replacement for the famous Jura XS9.
While the XS9 has set a world-wide industry standard for large automatic coffee machines, there are a few minor setbacks and inconsistencies in it’s format.
The Jura WE8 has a 500g bean hopper (which yields about 80 cups worth of coffee per full hopper) and a water tank capacity of 3 litres. This may seem inversely intuitive (given that the Jura XS9 has a 6l water tank capacity, but only a 250g bran hopper) – but it is actually a spark of insane genius. The suggested maximum output of this machine is 30 cups per day, which directly correlates to the 3l water tank capacity (when using, for example, two shots of Espresso per drink).
Worried that the 500g bean hopper may offer convenience, but your beans are going to go stale? They’ve got you covered there, too, with the Aroma Preservation Cover – which seals the bean container to ensure optimal freshness is locked in
I would recommend this machine be placed in an area where “Superlative Coffee’ is a must. Where your “run of the mill” Jura F8 will just not do. Place it somewhere that you want to make an impression – or up to 30 impressions per day
While it is not the best bet for “regular” home coffee-drinkers, it is right up the alley for the coffee connoisseur.
Best Prosumer Coffee Machine 2019 – The Hands-On Brewer
Is coffee-making more of a science to you than a pastime, hobby or refreshment preparation? The Expobar Lever Semi-Auto Espresso Machine looks to be way ahead of its time. You know that Victoria Arduino you longingly glance at every time you visit your favourite coffee hangout? Yes, the one that would never in a million years fit into your kitchen (or your budget, for that matter)?
Well, the Expobar is the smallest, most-hands-on coffee machine you could wish for.
Yes, we did say that we would only be featuring automatic coffee machines, however, this one is semi-automatic, so we’re only taking half a step out of the way!
The Expobar Lever Semi-Auto Espresso Machine uses the E61 Brew Group, and runs on a boiler system that uses heat exchange, so you don’t have to ever wait for steam. It is made completely out of stainless steel that is strong and durable to last a long time in your home. It is installed with an elite porta-filter to give you the best way to extract an espresso. The boiler, made out of brass, measures 12 ounces so you can brew a lot of shots of espresso with a small recovery time.
The hot water dispenser is very nice to have on the machine for use in pre-heating the cups prior to pulling a shot. Otherwise, an electric kettle is typically needed to pre-heat water since most other semi-automatic coffee machines have dispensers. Now you can get all the tasks done from one machine.
The drip tray on the Expobar is huge – which is great because that means you don’t have to empty it as often, or worry about over filling it when pulling shots and cleaning the machine. This would be especially useful for the home user who might only see to the emptying or deep-cleaning of their machine once or twice a week.
The gauges on the Expobar help you ensure you’re pulling the appropriate amount of pressure through the brew group, approximately 9 BARS of pressure is what you want. Lesser machines don’t have this to show and will leave you wondering if you’re getting the right amount of pressure through the porta-filter.
So, if you’ve got a hidden passion for making coffee and having full control over the entire process, this may be an excellent choice!
Best Prosumer Coffee machine 2019 – All Rounder
While the Jura WE8 is an excellent choice, it may still be a little too big for some home applications. Also, the WE8 does not have a self-contained milk canister. The DeLonghi ESAM3300 Magnifica Super-Automatic fills in where the WE8 left off.
The Delonghi Magnifica ESAM 3500 is a great coffee machine. Simply set it to auto-start as it takes about 5 minutes to “warm up” and it’s ready and waiting. It also has an auto-off if it’s not used after 1, 2, or 3 hours, which you extend by just pressing any button within that time frame and the countdown clock resets – Just do it! You know you want a coffee later in the day…
You can set your coffee strength – we prefer strong – and the amount of “shots” that you make at a time – single or double – but we really love the preset latte button. You can memorise your settings for your favourite coffee (strong, three shots, xxx amount of milk/froth), and then it’s just one button to press & it does it all.
It’s so easy. You don’t have to do anything other than put your cup under the spout & hit buttons. You don’t even have to hold the milk container when frothing! This may be the deciding factor – especially if you are undoubtedly a lover of top-quality coffee without the need to “guide” the process all the way through.
The milk never seems to get that hot even though you set it to the highest temperature, because the milk is coming directly from the fridge (nice and cold) and the automatic frother/steamer just doesn’t get it hot enough. However, if the milk is at room temperature, then the result is a nice hot cup of coffee. That being said – true coffee lovers will be astutely aware of the fact that over-heating your milk can lead to incorrect or unwanted flavour profiles proliferating the coffee you have made. Also, if you’ll be using it in a home setup, you’ll likely have the chance to drink your milk-based coffee drink while it’s still hot, so no need for it to be prepared to the heat you’ve come to know – similar to that of a parked car in midday heat.
The decalcifying process is a little cumbersome, even if the machine keeps itself nice & clean. You can never seem to find a container big enough to fit on the little shelf to hold all the water that gets passed through – watch & do a quick switcheroo when the container fills. However, most semi-automatic of manual machines requires manual decalcification, so this is in and of itself a huge bonus.
Cleaning out all the coffee grounds is a pain! A few times a year you have to give your machine a thorough scrub-down and vacuum, but those grounds get in everywhere! Get yourself a little brush, a wire cleaner, and a small vacuum with small “nose” attachment”. The machine is heavy, so tipping it won’t work well – so all the little cleaning gadgets will really come in handy
It’s loud. Of course, there’s no way to grind beans quietly! But after your baby is born you realized that making a latte after the baby went down for a nap isn’t always a good idea! Otherwise we don’t care about the noise. For someone looking for a machine that has it all in one spot – take this guy out and get to know him a little better!
Whether you’re a person who enjoys the occasional cup of fresh coffee, someone who can’t live without a predetermined amount of Espresso shots per day, a Barista or simply a coffee enthusiast – there is a coffee machine out there that can and will suit your needs, your interest and your lifestyle.
We might not have included your top pick for the Best Prosumer Coffee machine for 2019 – and we want you to tell us about it. This is, after all, a very informal “Best Of” list – so let us know what machine you love the most and why.