If you love your daily latte but hate the idea of spending $4 per cup, you might want to consider purchasing a home espresso machine. Before taking the plunge you should be aware that in order to replicate the taste of your favorite café espresso beverage you are going to have to invest in a high-end machine. However if you make good use of it you will find it pays for itself in no time.
Espresso machines come in four specific types: Stove top, manual, semi-automatic, and fully automatic.
We would suggest investing in a semi-automatic or fully automatic machine, as stovetop espresso lacks crema—an essential part of any espresso shot. While manual espresso machines although capable of producing amazing espresso, require a certain amount of experience and training prior to use.
Semi-automatic machines eliminate the tedium associated with pulling delicious espresso shots. These machines provide automated temperature, pump, and boiler controls.
Fully automatic machines—as the name suggests—do it all. These machines automate the temperature, pump, and boiler controls; grind your beans; tamp the grinds; set the water dosage; and even eject the espresso puck at the end of the process. All the device requires from you is a constant supply of coffee beans, fresh water, milk, and a sizable financial investment. Sadly this level of convenience does not come cheap with most (non-pod) fully automatic machines, which start at $1000.