I am one lucky gal … Christmas of 2011 Santa put a Breville Die Cast Espresso Machine in my stocking. Well, OK, OK, be technical. Yeah, it absolutely was too big to fit in my stocking (I wear a size 10 but my stockings aren't THAT big! :-). But it was under the tree and I've loved it ever since. There's nothing like a rich, warm cup of luscious espresso, 24/7, any time you want it.
In Italy, coffee lovers stop by their local espresso bar two or three times a day. I understand. My machine is as good as the day I unwrapped it.
I have the Breville 800ESXL Commercial 15-Bar Triple-Priming Die-Cast Espresso Machine which is a heavy duty, gorgeous stainless machine is easy to clean and will last … well, forever.
* The machine is double-walled and your coffee will be really hot! My first cup or two was only luke-warm, until I discovered that I needed to turn the machine on and wait 5-10 minutes before brewing.
* The 15-bar Triple Prime pump automatically squirts out three shots of water in the filter head so that the coffee or espresso pod will expand which allows a rich, smooth texture and taste.
* This machine doesn't scald the coffee grounds (which can result in a really bitter cup).
* If you like foamed milk on your espresso or latte as I do, know that the milk steamer in the Breville 800ESXL Commercial 15-Bar Triple-Priming Die-Cast Espresso makes foam that is more like the egg whites in meringue than the foam I get at Starbucks.
* When cleaning up, the first couple of times were messy. Some espresso lovers insist that the coffee become a "hockey puck" to avoid sloshing grounds. I learned that if I let it sit a few minutes it became quite dry. Hockey puck dry.
* Most importantly – you don't need any skill at all to make fabulous coffee. Simply follow the directions in the manual, rather than 'winging it', and you'll have smooth, luscious coffee.
* The only problem I had with my Breville 800ESXL Commercial 15-Bar Triple-Priming Die-Cast Espresso Machine is that at first I clogged up my filter. But no worries. Now I clean the filter after each use – just like I do my juicer – and it takes less than 60 seconds. There is a tool to clean out the hole in the filter. Every once in a while I soak it in vinegar to eliminate the calcium build up. Simple and quick.