Breville The Barista Express BES870XL 25-Shot Espresso Maker:Need a pick-me up? Make espresso or an espresso-based beverage using this maker, which features a 15-bar Italian pump and 25-shot capacity for reliable performance. Low-pressure pre-infusion expands grinds gently to deliver even extraction.
Excellent value, but...
Posted by: Phoenix599 from: Alexandria, VA on
...don't give up if your grinder doesn't work. Don't be concerned...read on! I've owned three other espresso machines, from manual to semi-automatic, to automatic, and I know how to operate these things. The grinder on my Barista Express did not work out of the box. It tried to grind, but the interior of the grinder became coated with bean residue, causing it to spin without being able to grind. I tried two different brands of beans, cleaned, retried, same result...grinder spins...no grounds.
I called Breville tech support, and Mike solved my problem by suggesting...believe it or not...that I cycle uncooked white rice through the grinder...about a handful. He explained that sometimes during shipment, the grinder may become misaligned, and running a cycle of white rice through the grinder would fix the problem 99% of the time. Although skeptical, I did as he suggested. Within 2 seconds of grinding the rice, fine rice grains came pouring out. I finished that grind cycle, immediately placed coffee beans in the grinder and...everything worked perfectly. Don't ask me how or why...it did...so remember this trick.
About the machine's ability to pull a great shot or shots...that is limited only by your ability to read and follow the comprehensive directions. Once you do that, you'll be making better espresso than your local coffee shop...and I'm not kidding. It takes some practice and a bit of fine tuning of the controls, but once set...you are good to go. Making great espresso is an art that no automatic machine can match. They can come close, but they won't be able to match what you can achieve with this machine once you practice enough to rival, and perhaps surpass, your local Barista. Go for it!
39 out of 39 found this review helpful.
Posted by: Tony from: on
I'm an at-home barista. Prior to this machine I had a delonghi espresso maker, and various traditional stove tops. I also had a hand pump milk frother and used to buy pre-ground coffee from a local coffee shop.
NOW.... this machine has replaced all of those. The difference in being able to brew the espresso intermediately after grinding is significant. The milk steamer, although it took a bit of practice, can churn out that paint-like milk to be used to in latte art. My tip is to chill the steel frothing jug in the fridge and use whole milk. I created my first latte art this past weekend!
It's ready to go about 30 seconds after you turn it on, which is obviously a better situation than waiting for a stove top. The adjustability in this machine from temperature, to grind size is awesome for honing in on your barista skills.
I highly recommend this machine to any at-home baristas. Breville makes excellent products. We also have one of their juicers and that, too, does not disappoint.
15 out of 15 found this review helpful.
You will not be disappointed!
Posted by: BaristaNewbie from: on
I reviewed/utube'd many Espresso models for 5 months and finally selected the Breville BES870xl. I purchased mine in Jan 2015 and let me tell you...this is truly a top notch espresso machine. My advise- follow the directions for "machine preparation/flushing the machine" when it arrives and read through the short manual. Some reviews I read questioned things/situations that were actually explained/resolved in the manual. With that said, take care of your machine & it will take care of you! If you have concerns or questions not in the manual, Breville's customer support is really helpful and sincere about it.
Tips: - placing your stainless steel milk jug in the freezer helps drop the temperature of whatever milk you choose even more, to aid you in "working the milk," with your steam wand (I learned from Breville's customer support)
- I am no expert Barista but I have now learned from careful study that "pulling the perfect shot of espresso" requires FIRST adequate DOSE of ground espresso beans in your portafilter. Focus on the dose THEN proceed to adjusting the grind. If you follow that you will guarantee reaching the "ideal espresso zone" on the Breville's espresso pressure gauge.
- I used Illy medium roast espresso beans when I first received the machine. Currently, I'm using Lavazza Super Crema beans (my current favorite!!) grind set at 5/grind amount set at 3/sometimes 4, using the (single walled) double shot basket.
I make 3-4 lattes per week and make my husband a Long Black (2oz of espresso poured into 4-8oz of water/makes different consistency than the Americano) on the weekends. I use almond milk and was able to make latte art for my first time today...still learning.
I LOVE this machine !!!!! :-) If you are torn between another model, choose this one...you will absolutely be satisfied!!
14 out of 16 found this review helpful.
Best Espresso Machine for this price range
Posted by: 29jennie from: Miami, FL on
I absolutely love the espresso I can make with this machine. Coffee beans are ground perfectly and the crema that is created once the coffee is extracted is fantastic. It is great for a novice espresso maker and also those who are more experienced. The steamer is also fantastic. I make lattes with a thick, decadent foam and am able to do latte art perfectly with the density of the foamed milk. It's a fun machine and easy to use. I no longer go to Starbucks, because the coffee I make at home is much better! If you don't know how to make fresh espresso I suggest doing a little research first (on pressure, the coarseness of the grind, etc.) that will perfect your technique. It's a beautiful looking machine as well. Totally love it.
14 out of 17 found this review helpful.
The absolute best espresso maker in the world
Posted by: Grace from: Anchorage, AK on
Ok, I have to say I was anxious when I saw all the features it had. But in a very short time, I have learned to make one out of this world espresso and latte macchiato. Its features include a coffee grinder that ranges from 1 (extra fine) -10 (course). It has a water filtration system that keeps water deposits from damaging your machine. The machine has a cleaning system. It comes with a built-in wand for frothing. And yum. Who doesn't love the froth? It has a pressure gauge that allows you to read and then make adjustments to achieve the right pressure to create the perfect shot. It is extremely well-designed and solid. Breville thinks of and includes everything you need like a tamper, single and double wall filters, a blade for assuring the exact amount of grounds in the basket, a milk pitcher, cleaning tablets, and a water filter. I really recommend watching the YouTube video Breville created about this machine. I know it's a little pricey but it is totally worth it. I figure it will pay for itself in less than 5 months since I no longer go to the local espresso joint for my daily cup of joe.
7 out of 7 found this review helpful.
GREAT Espresso Maching
Posted by: Steller0125 from: on
I first bought a DeLonghi and didn't like it. For the same price I bought the Breville and is excellent!! What I like best is the froth it makes. It is simple to use and you can change how fine you want the grinds, the amount of grinds for both 1 shot or 2 shots, and a gauge to let you know if your settings and tamping are good.
6 out of 6 found this review helpful.
Starbucks at home
Posted by: GM412 from: on
Bought it as a gift for my espresso loving boyfriend. Worth every penny.
Pros: bean hopper, easy to use, looks great
You just have to play around with it to get used to the correct pressure when packing the coffee grounds in the handle to get to the ideal espresso making range. They say to pack it 30-40 lbs of pressure but you can easily too hard. Comes with time and use. Perfect for everyday use but you can easily run a small coffee shop with it.
6 out of 6 found this review helpful.
Best Value Machine/ Great Coffee
Posted by: Alyssa2016 from: on
We purchased this coffee machine about two years ago. We are so happy with it that i am coming back to write this review. For the two years of using this machine daily we never had any issues with it, nothing broke, go stuck or needed extra care. This machine still works like brand new and looks great on our counter. The coffee is great, and once you master the semi automatic it takes no more than 60 seconds to get a perfect cup of coffee..
5 out of 5 found this review helpful.
Great Espresso Machine
Posted by: ExtraTall from: on
Having owned an "el cheapo" espresso machine before this was a giant leap because it's certainly a lot more expensive and a hard decision to make. For good espresso you need both a good coffee grinder and a good espresso machine that can handle the bar pressure needed to get that crema out of the coffee.
This machine does both and I feel that I did a good decision in trying it.
If you are an experienced espresso coffee maker, this should be easy, but a semi-newbie like me, it took some time to get it right where I like it.
Don't expect to make your perfect espresso at the first try!! You will need to play with the machine's adjustments to make your coffee as it should be.
I do hate the fact that to get the proper amount of grind, it will build a mountain and overflow. Apparently that's normal, but you can also do it two steps if you want and DON'T skimp on the amount of coffee you must put in there or you won't get the results you need.
Love the fact that it comes with a tamper already. The steamer works great and easy to clean if you do it right away!!.
Watch videos, over and over, to learn the what to do and not do.
I use the Starbucks Espresso (white bad) coffee bean and the Italian Roast (brown bag) which are both my favorite.
Expect small amount of coffee, not a cup full. it is an espresso and very concentrated.
I would recommend this machine for the step up or anyone who loves Americanos, lattes, straight espresso, etc...
It simplifies the need for an additional grinder where you should spend at least $200-$300 anyway.
So if you've been waiting to make that decision, do it. I don't regret it so far since I now have it for a month. Noise level is reasonable as you would expect from a coffee grinder.
Ok... time for coffee now that I've talked about it
5 out of 6 found this review helpful.
Exceptional espresso maker
Posted by: N8Howell from: Salem, OR on
We have had this about 6 weeks now and use it 3-4 times a day pulling shots. While the price is a bit to overcome, once you look past it you won't regret it. We use local beans and powders to create the same drink we were paying $4 to 5 at a pop. The machine itself is simple to use once you have the grind size and tamp down. It took us a day or two to get both dialed in. Once you have that down, you can literally pull perfect shots every single time. The exceptional taste and convenience of brewing at home is well worth the front end sticker shock that is quickly recovered by skipping your local barista.