Breville BES870XL Barista Express

Breville BES870XL Barista Express

5 / 5 stars      

If you’re looking to buy an espresso machine, Breville’s BES870XL Barista Express was the winner of the SCAA’s (Specialty Coffee Association of America) Best New Product award in the Coffee or Tea Equipment category in 2013!

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If the above isn’t enough to convince you, then let’s deal with a few more details, to see if we can help you make a decision.  First, at the time of writing this, Amazon is offering a huge discount on the BES870XL.  Add that to the fact that it’s an award winning espresso maker makes buying this a no brainer for a lot of people.

The BES870XL is a semi automatic espresso machine, meaning you still have a measure of control when it comes to brewing your coffee.  You’ll be able to do some tinkering, something that you wouldn’t be able to do with a super automatic.

 

Barista Express BES870XL Pros & Cons

Pros: PID temp control – Auto purge – Dry puck – Integrated grinder – Award winner

Cons:  Learning curve.  You’ll need some time until you get it perfect.

 

One of my favorite features is the fact that it has its own conical burr grinder.  That, paired with a ½ pound bean hopper, means that you can grind and extract within seconds – and if you know you’re coffee, you know that’s a significant detail. The grinder is also adjustable, so you can fiddle with the size until you find one that produces the taste you want.

While the BES870XL is geared toward the consumer, it does have some features that you would normally expect on a professional model – another thing making this model a great choice!  Those features include a PID digital temperature control, which assures that the right water temperature is maintained throughout the extraction process.  It also has an auto purge feature.  This process purges water into the drip tray, after the hot water and steam functions.  This also helps in maintaining optimal temps.   And I love the dry puck feature!  No more messy, watery pucks to dispose of.  This feature removes the excess water, making for an easier cleanup.

Some people have complained that despite the measures in place that should guarantee a hot cup of espresso, they’re just not getting it.  Well, this might be due to environmental issues, and not the machine itself.  If you keep your home cool, or let it cool down overnight, this will have an impact on your appliance, not just the air.  It could be that the brew head, portafilter or filter basket is cold.  It could be that your cup is cold.  Any one of these will cool down your coffee, so take measures to warm them up first by with hot water before pulling your first shot.

I wouldn’t hesitate to buy this semi auto espresso maker.  It’s reasonably priced and comes with features you’d normally find on a much more expensive or professional model.  It will take some time and experimentation, but you should be able to brew a perfect shot once you’ve given yourself time to get past the learning curve.

 

 

Features & Dimensions

  • BPA free (any parts that come in contact with water, coffee or milk)
  • 15 Bar / 1600 watt Thermo Coil with PID temperature control
  • Purge Function
  • Integrated burr grinder paired with ½ bean hopper
  • Adjustable grind size
  • Adjustable grind amount
  • Automatic dosing
  • 360° swivel steam wand
  • Instant hot water
  • Pre-Infusion
  • Dry puck
  • 67 oz removable reservoir
  • 1 year warranty
  • 13.2 x 12.5 x 15.8 inches and 23 pounds

Queue the Reviews rates the Breville BES870XL Barista Express as a 5/5.

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