The bean to cup espresso machine is a fairly newcomer to the market, and allows the budding barista to pour the coffee beans into the top of the machine and control all manner of things from the singular control of the machine. But are they any good? What are their advantages? What type of money do you have to spend to get a decent one? And are you just better off buying a grinder and an espresso machine? Let’s explore;
What is a Bean to Cup Coffee Machine?
A bean-to-cup espresso machine is a type of coffee machine that grinds coffee beans and prepares espresso shots automatically, without the need for manual grinding. The machine typically has a built-in grinder that grinds the coffee beans and then automatically doses the ground coffee into the portafilter. You’ll move the portafilter to the group head and the machine then brews the espresso shot.
Who should get a bean to cup coffee machine?
Bean-to-cup coffee machines are popular among coffee enthusiasts and those who are looking for a convenient and high-quality coffee making experience at home, but don’t want to, or maybe don’t have the room for multiple pieces of equipment.
What are the best Bean to Cup Machines Available?
Here are a few of the best options, along with their target audience and budget range:
What are the downsides of a bean to cup machine?
Now it’s not all bells and roses, they aren’t for everyone and there are some reasons that may mean the whole concept of a bean to cup machine is a non-starter for you;
- Cost: Bean-to-cup coffee machines are not by any means the most budget friendly, and obviously as it is doing the entire process it requires many different components which also increases the cost.
- Maintenance: Bean-to-cup coffee machines require regular cleaning and maintenance to keep them in good working order. Because if one part goes wrong or breaks beyond repair, then you may have to get rid of the whole thing, whereas if you had separate machines you would only have to replace one.
- Limited control: While bean-to-cup coffee machines are specifically designed to be easy to use, many limit your control over the brewing process. Fine-tuning and dialling in your espresso shots is an important part of the process and some machines have limited or frankly no control.
- Space: Bean-to-cup coffee machines can be large and take up a significant amount of counter space. If you have limited kitchen space, you might prefer a more compact coffee-making solution.
- Not serious enough for a hobbyist: Bean-to-cup machines don't really offer enough control for the serious home barista, who may be better off with a combination of equipment like an espresso machine with a steam wand, and a proper grinder.
Bean-to-cup machines are a great choice for those looking to enjoy barista-style coffee conveniently at home, while also saving on counter space. However, because of their cost and limited control, they may not be suitable for coffee enthusiasts or those wanting to take up coffee-making as a hobby. It’s important to consider your specific needs and the features you’re looking for in a machine to decide if a bean-to-cup machine would be the right choice for you and your family.