If you want a good espresso, you have to get a good Italian made espresso machine. One of the best known Italian brands known for making quality manual and automatic, espresso and cappuccino machines is Gaggia.
One of the most popular offerings from Italy is the . This is the best espresso machine under 500 and is perfect for people who are looking for a superior espresso machine with high-end features that will not burn a hole in your pocket.
Technical Specifications table
Marine Grade Brass with Chrome Plating
|Dimensions||14¼ inches x 8 inches x 9½ inches|
|Water Reservoir||72 Ounces|
|Pump Pressure||17 ½ bar|
|Boiler||High-voltage, Twin Exterior 3.5 oz boiler|
|Power||1350 -1450 Watts|
Some of the features of this machine are
- Its body is a brushed stainless steel which gives it a classic elegant look on any countertop.
- The marine grade brass portafilters and groupheads have a chrome finish. Because they are made of brass you get a steady temperature which remains constant during the extraction and brewing process ensuring a high quality espresso. They are also corrosion resistant.
- The machine has a commercial grade portafilter handle and the 58mm filter, which is the standard for the industry, ensures that there is an even distribution of water.
- It has a high voltage aluminum boiler which is heated by 2 exterior elements and is fixed on either side of the boiler for a more even heating. Aluminum is a highly conductive metal which ensures quick heating at lower power usage and better temperature stability.
- It has a 72 ounce water reservoir which can be refilled from the top and lasts for 6 cups of espresso.
- A three way solenoid valve which releases pressure as soon as the pump is turned off.
- This machine includes a Pannarello steam wand for perfect frothing milk, hot water dispenser for those who might prefer tea and a passive cup warmer which can warm 5 cups at a time.
- The package also includes a single and a double shot filter, a scoop and a tamper.
- Priced between $300 -$350.
- Comes with a one year warranty and a 30 day money back guarantee.
What we like:
- A semi-automatic Machine with high end features at a budget price.
- Thanks to the brushed stainless steel housing which has a silver finish, the machine looks high end and is highly durable.
- It heats the water to just below boiling point, delivers the coffee powder at the correct pressure of over 200 psi (15 bars) and has a consistent brew temperature all of which leads to a perfect shot of espresso. Do remember to preheat the machine for a minimum of 7 minutes.
- The pump is quick and requires very little time between brews.
- For good quality cappuccino and latte, the pannarello stem wand delivers the steam at the tight temperature and pressure for perfectly frothy milk within 35 seconds.
- It is easy to clean with most of the removable parts being dishwasher friendly. For the rest just wipe with a damp cloth. The extra water is directed to the drip tray, which also makes the entire machine easier to clean.
- The rocker style switches are easy to operate.
- You can use both pods and ground coffee.
What we don’t like:
- The aluminum boiler can corrode.
- You need to buy a separate coffee grinder for the best espresso experience. But this is true for most espresso machines in the market except for the extremely high end and expensive machines.
- The warranty does not include postage costs, which can be an issue.
- Comes only in one color.
If you are looking for a decent espresso machine with high end features then the Gaggia 14101 Classic Espresso is exactly what you need. It looks good, is made of high end materials and has fantastic features, and all this priced at lower than$500. No wonder the customers on Amazon.com have rated it 4 stars with over 50% of them rating it as excellent. This is simply the best espresso machine under 500 in the market today.