Coffee Machines South Africa: The Ultimate Guide
There’s no arguing that the coffee culture in South Africa is in the midst of a boom. We’ve seen two major coffee-culture related launches – both Coffee In A Cone as well as the certified Worlds Strongest Coffee both stamped as proudly South African – but what about the coffee machines that are responsible for making that delicious dark nectar?
If you’re on the market for a coffee machine, or simply want the most comprehensive guide to what coffee machines are available in South Africa – you’ve come to the right place.
The Best Automatic Coffee Machines in South Africa
We’re shifting things up a little and going straight to the top on this one; but just to be clear – the “best automatic coffee machine’ category can be limiting. We’ll be listing the best coffee machines available in South Africa by these sub-categories: The Best Coffee Machine on a Budget, The Best Automatic Coffee Machine For A Large Office as well as The Best Coffee Machines to Make an Impression.
We got ya.
The Best Coffee Machine on a Budget
Your criteria is short and sweet. You want fresh milk, freshly ground beans and for the machine to do the dirty work. Remember that usually with a lower available budget, you can expect a smaller sized machine – so this is really only applicable if you’re looking for a solution for your home space or a small office environment of up to at most 10 people. (Bean to Cup on a budget for an office is an entirely different ball game, which we’ll touch on later).
Now, there are going to be some factors that push up the price of a coffee maker:
Materials used (imagine ceramic vs stainless steel grinder)
Bean hopper size and water tank size
One-touch or two-touch functionality (sometimes, by opting for a one-touch version of a machine can drive up the price by over 20%)
The “bells and whistles” like touch-screen or programmable drink options
Output capabilities (things like being able to make hot chocolate or flat white’s can sometimes drive the price up by large amounts)
Brand. Many of us are committed to a brand and at times, the price-tag associated with said brand can be much higher, simply because it’s popular.
What should you look for when you’re shopping for an automatic coffee machine on a budget?
Compare the price difference a machine with an internal milk frother would be, or if it would make more financial sense to buy a basic coffee machine and then a free-standing milk frother.
If you’re entirely new to the coffee machine world, don’t be fooled into thinking that just because a capsule coffee machine is much cheaper to buy than any other type of automatic machine, that it will be cheaper in the long run. Factor in the price of your coffee product from the beginning – as this running cost will add up over the years.
When choosing a home coffee machine, even if the price is right – make sure the machine is capable of making the drinks you want. No point in getting a machine that cannot make latte’s when that’s the main reason behind you wanting a machine in the first place.
Get rid of anything fancy looking; let’s face the facts, if you’re on a budget – anything like illuminated back lights, self-cleaning systems, programmable memory or even speciality drinks can (and will) drive the price through the roof. Stay clear.
So, this brings us to the point where you’re reading through this, thinking – “so… what friggin machine am I supposed to get?” Again, we got ya!
Fully Automatic Options on a Budget
For less than R 10 000.00, try the Saeco Minuto. It makes your favourite milk-based drinks, contains a milk carafe and has a decent size bean hopper and water tank.
For the very same price range, consider a Jura A1 and a stand-alone milk frother. What’s the catch? Jura has the big name, but has a very basic display and might be a little hard for first time users. Saeco, also under Phillips, doesn’t carry the Jura name tag, but is far easier to use.
Semi-Manual Options on a Budget
Saeco Poemia – for about R 2 500.00, also with a stand alone milk frother is going to bring you to around R 4 500.00 (depending also in the type of milk frother you want).
The Russell Hobbs Café Barista One goes for around R 4000.00 and has a built-in milk carafe. Both require pre-ground coffee or a separate bean grinder – but are great for homes and users who prefer a more hands-on experience ion their coffee making ritual.
Fully automatic vs semi-manual – what’s up with that?
You can see there’s about R 5 000.00 difference between fully automatic and semi-manual machines. This comes down to two things – convenience and ease of use.
Convenient in the fact that you (in the case of a fully automatic machine) simply have to push one button and have your drink dispensed, and easy to use in that there’s no having to first learn how to grind and tamp your coffee properly before brewing it.
The Best Automatic Coffee Machine For A Large Office
I told you we’d get here, didn’t I? In the previous section we discussed the best options for a tight budget – which included the option to grind and tamp your coffee yourself. In a large office environment, where speed is the name of the game, this is never, ever going to work.
Unless you have a dedicated Barista using a manual machine, opting for this type of coffee solution for regular staff is just going to cause frustration and probably wastage. The average Joe doesn’t know how to use a traditional machine, let alone get a “good” cup of coffee out of it.
You simply need to go for a bean-to-cup solution in this instance.
This is also a choice between top-notch quality and a mix of quality and quantity. Your two main options when needing an automatic coffee machine for your large office are either a fully automatic, fresh-milk bean to cup solution, or a powdered milk bean to cup vending solution.
Who is a fresh milk automatic coffee machine good for? Those looking to make more of an impression and provide the highest quality coffee at all times. Fresh milk lends an edge that cannot be met by any other type of milk. Also, most large bean to cup coffee machines have one-touch capabilities (yay for first-timers) as well as an easy to understand screen display.
Alternately, those wanting the quality of freshly ground beans, but not wanting to incorporate a (usually) costly fresh-milk spend, may want to opt for a vending solution. Yes, it uses powdered milk, but you can expect to save (probably) half your monthly coffee spend by eliminating fresh milk.
What machine fits this criteria?
For an office in excess of 100 people – the Bravilor Esprecious 12 is going to knock your socks off. It makes any drink you can imagine, with freshly ground beans and powdered milk. It’s modern and easy to use, and can easily see to a staff complement of that size.
For a medium sized office of up to approximately 100 people, why not consider the Jura XS9? Sure. it’s not in the running for a beauty prize of the century, but it’s going to get the job done. Fresh milk means no compromise on quality and taste, combined with freshly ground beans and the Jura stamp of quality, this machine ticks all the boxes when you’re in search of affordable quality.
In an environment where you want the convenience, ease-of use and speed only a vending machine can offer, look at the Rheadvendor Bean to Cup vending solution,. Again, powdered milk, but fresh beans mean quality without the price tag. It’s far smaller than the Bravilor Esprecious 12, and is also best suited for offices needing up to 200 cups of coffee per day.
The Best Coffee Machine to Make an Impression
You’re playing in the big leagues and you want your clients to know it.
If you’re an office – go for a machine that’s going to demand attention – AND make a superb cup of coffee. For this – you know you need fresh milk and fresh beans. The aesthetic is just as important as the product – so special features, programmable settings, two bean hoppers and maybe even app-compatibilty are going to give your machine the edge you need it to have.
To make a smaller impression, through, is far simpler. Simply brewing a pot of coffee and allowing the aroma to gently waft through a room makes more of an impression than we can imagine. Make sure, though, that your filter coffee machine is capable of still making, well, good coffee. How do you ensure this? Look for a machine that has a self-regulating heating plate. This stops your coffee from over-heating, and eliminates the risk of burning your coffee. Another nifty feature to keep an eye out for is two jug-capacity, i.e. – brew one pot, place it on a heating plate and brew another.
Which machines fit these bills?
To make a striking impression, have a look at the Jura WE8 or even the Jura GIGA range. They do come with a price tag, starting off at around R 30 000.00 all the way up to R 80 0000.00, but larger corporates who will settle for nothing less might just be looking for this droid.
Need that filter machine with the self-regulating hot plate and double-pot capacity? The Bravilor Bonomat has you covered – for less than R 4 000.00
Now that we know the best types of machines to suit the pocket, let’s look at reviews on all the monsters we mentioned (plus a few more!)
Bravilor Bonamat Novo Review – Make an Impression without Overspending
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oQpi6A_3-c
Jura WE8 Review – Large Office Needing Quality and an Impression Piece
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_V2B6yfZgiU
Jura XS9 Review – Large Office Needing Quality without a hefty Price Tag
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vS637Mri2QU
Can’t decide between these two? Jura WE8 vs Jura XS9
Jura GIGA Range Review – The Corporate Impression Maker
Read it – Jura GIGA Range Reviewed
Or watch it :
- Jura Giga X8 Review
2. Jura GIGA X3 vs Jura GIGA X7
Saeco Minuto Review (Aqua Mini) – The Home and Small Office Quality Coffee Machine
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHd-UYgGlHw
Saeco Poemia Review – The Home Users Budget Friendly Option
Read it here – Saeco Poemia Review
Russell Hobbs Café Barista One Review – Convenience and Quality for a Home User
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IpQx4i3OHKM
Rheavendor Bean Vending Machines – Medium to Large Office needing quality AND Quantity
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gAswfpdQdQ4
Saeco Lirika – Big Office Needing Quality
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEBJZPQj5OU
Saeco Pirco Baristo – Big Office Needing an Impression
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LMsEXtfmmVc
DeLonghi Prima Donna – Large Office Needing Convenience, Quality and Style
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ip-XJeIYFo
DeLonghi Magnifica – Medium to Large Office Needing Affordable Quality
Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AB5rmrytR6c
If you’ve reached this point in our post, you’re probably (and hopefully) feeling a lot more confident in what coffee machine you might want to pursue. But, where do you find them?!
Here is a comprehensive list of all coffee machine suppliers in South Africa! Click the link next to their name to navigate through their website to see if they stock the machine you want, and make sure to tell them why you want the machine.
Consulting with a company before committing is such an important process – because even if you have an idea of the perfect machine in your head – the might be able to offer a better suited solution.
Similarly, they might not have what you’re looking for – so it pays to do your homework. They should be able to offer expert advice and insight into why that machine is a good fit for you, and if it’s not – they should be able to find the right machine to fulfil all of your needs.
Coffee Machine Companies Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town
Well, there’s us – Aquaspresso – https://www.aquaspresso.co.za
Italian Lifestyle – http://www.italianlifestyle.co.za/
Rialto Foods – http://www.rialtofoods.co.za/
Ital Espresso Worx – http://www.italespressoworx.co.za/
Kold Serve – http://koldserve.co.za/coffee/
Coffee Unplugged – http://www.coffeeunplugged.co.za/
Tsebo Beverage Solutions – http://www.tsebobeverages.com
The Coffee Co. – https://thecoffeeco.co.za/
Frontier Coffee – http://www.frontiercoffee.co.za/
Ciro Full Service Coffee Co. – http://www.ciro.co.za/
Of course, you can also look at major retail outlets, like Game, Dion Wired and Makro. Wherever you choose to source your coffee machine from, make sure you are happy with the package offer. Research, compare and educate yourself before committing. Happy sipping!
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