Product Type: Presso Philips Saeco
Newest Review: ... you have to remember, the better the coffee beans you use, the better the coffee! Sounds obvious, but i have read a few negative reviews re... more
Sorry Starbucks, I'm staying home for my espresso!!
Presso Espresso Maker
Member Name: sarahbromfield
Presso Espresso Maker
Advantages: Quicker than a machine, better than instant, cheaper than shop-bought!
Disadvantages: Only 2 shots at a time, quite expensive
HOW I CAME ACROSS PRESSO
I've been struck with quite a conundrum..... I love coffee. I LOVE espressos. I like to drink coffee throughout the day and my preference is espressos.
Up until I discovered Presso this left me with quite a problem - unless half of my countertop space was taken up by a huge coffee machine there was no way I could have home-made espressos throughout the day. A couple of years ago they brought out an 'instant' espresso which was fine. But really, just 'fine'.
A few months ago I was in my local charity shop when I saw this impressive piece of machinery. It was loose without packaging so I wasn't sure what it was at first but there was a small booklet which explained that it was an non-electronic espresso maker!
HOW THE PRESSO WORKS
The Presso machine is so easy I actually didn't believe it worked when I read the booklet but seeing as it was only £5 I decided to take the chance. Like a normal espresso maker you remove the coffee holder by gripping the handle and turning it to release. You then fill the container with ground coffee (usually about 1tbsp) and pour boiled water into the cylinder at the top of the machine. There are two levels marked on the clear plastic cylinder - one for a single shot, a higher level for a double. Once you have filled this with water you slowly lift the handles on the side and then press them back down. It really is as simple as that!
First and foremost this makes great coffee! You can use either espresso coffee or standard filter coffee and it still tastes good.
Cleaning is easy. Usually I just take out the coffee holder and dump it into my compost and it all comes out in one clump leaving little or no residue in the holder so I either put it right back in for the next use or periodically give it a quick rinse. I've used it for several months now and it still looks just as clean and shiny as when I first bought it!
Unlike some espresso machines this leaves a crema layer just like a proper espresso should have!
Appearance - it looks good sitting on your counter but also doesn't take up nearly as much space as a standard coffee maker. Because the handles fold in you can even store it in your cupboards if you prefer to have more counterspace.
(Slightly) more environmentally friendly. I've seen it featured on eco-friedly websites but to be honest, you're still having to boil the kettle so it's not perfect.
I hate the fact that I ALWAYS have to unplug something in the kitchen to plug in something else so its really refreshing to have a piece of equipment that doesn't need to be plugged in. This also means that you can have it on the dining room/kitchen table at breakfast or after dinner so you can make continuous coffee at the table instead of going back and forth to the kitchen or waiting until the first espresso gets cold waiting for the last one to be made.
I also read that it can be used for camping though if you're hiking i can't see you wanting to lug this in your backpack! (Though I suppose if you are in a caravan or driving then it's great!)
Before I bought the presso I would make strong stove-top coffee as the closesnt thing to espresso but this is SO much quicker, easier and less messy but more importantly - better tasting!
Lastly but definitely not least this is ridiculously easy to use - filling with coffee only takes a second, pour in the water, pull the handles up, push them down and you're done!
Whenever I order a coffee I make sure I get a double shot but at home I like to drink a whole cup of espresso with a bit of milk in it. When you pour the water into the Presso you can choose to make enough for a single shot or double shot (using the markings on the plastic opening at the top of the machine). For me a double shot is not usually enough but if you attempt to put another lot of boiling water through the machine it comes out pretty much like water, you therefore need to refill the holder with another lot of coffee grinds.
On top of the effort involved with refilling the holder it is also quite expensive to use several tablespoons of fresh coffee every time you want to make a cup however this is probably not a problem for most people who will be happy with two shots at a time!
Although I purchased mine second hand (though unused) and only paid £5 for it I looked it up when I got home and found that it costs upwards of about £80 on amazon and other retailers. I'm not at the point in my life where I can afford that but my Mom loves this machine so much that I'm sure when I leave home and take this with me she will certainly be shelling out for one!
Great coffee at minimal effort with little mess. Fun, easy to use and looks great. I HIGHLY recommend this to anybody who regularly drinks espressos or americanos.
For more information on the science behind it and a short demonstration of how to use it you can watch this brief but interest video: http://www.bytherefore.com/presso-video
To get a better crema layer its best to tamp (press) the coffee down quite tight.
I like to put my milk in first and then after I have pressed the coffee through I lift and pull down the levers one more time and the pressure of the air coming out froths the milk a little.
Summary: A good-looking electricity-free espresso maker that produces effortlessly great coffees!
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