After a couple of requests for this comparison model, Gail breaks it down for us: features, pros, cons, performance, etc. While the Barista Express includes a built-in grinder and a lower price tag, the Silvia + Rocky combo is a time honored tradition.
Watch Gail go through their specs and whip up a latte on each of these machines to show you how they compare in terms of performance and end product.
You know that since we are part of the goblin class, we love short things, right? It took us awhile to strong arm Gail into doing a ristretto comparison on several different machines, but we finally wore her down and here is the proof of our labors!
There’s a new kid in town and we’ve been asked by folks how the practical results compare with one of its primary competitors — so we put them to the test! Watch as Gail pulls espresso shots from the Rancilio Silvia and the Crossland CC1, offers them up to Rob, Jess and Allison and finds out which they prefer in this blind, side-by-side taste test.
If you’ve got a party rockin’ hard, you don’t really want to be away from it too long, do you? That’s the question posed to us by several of our YouTube viewers: How long does it take to make 4 lattes on a few different machines?
For those of you looking to pick up a mid-range single boiler espresso machine, the Rancilio Silvia and the Ascaso Dream UP are two models worth investigating. Similar in function and price range, Gail walks us through their features and functionality, as well as what she likes and doesn’t like about them.
We asked a selection of our crew to tell us what machines they dig in the single boiler and heat exchange/double boiler class. Watch Rob, Jessica, Allison, Radoje and Gail talk to us about what their favorite gear is, why they like it and if it has any drawbacks.
In our next round of updated buying guides, Gail takes us through several single boiler espresso machines under the $1k mark, giving us a basic overview and comparison of their features. She talks about the Saeco Aroma, Via Venezia & Sirena, the Francis Francis X7, the Rancilio Silvia, the Ascaso Dream & Uno Pro with PID and the Crossland CC1. If you’re in the market for a machine, this is a great primer on some of the available options.
We love this little workhorse, but one of the baddest raps she gets is in regard to her temperature instability. It’s the way the cookie crumbles when you’re working with a small single boiler using a bi-metal thermostat to manage its temp. Folks have been tricking out their Silvias pretty much since day one, and the most popular modification is to add a PID, which will maintain the boiler’s temperature within one degree of a setpoint you select. We tested several models and finally settled on these by Auber, which you can pick up and install on your own or add during purchase and have us install for you before the machine leaves our warehouse.
Watch Gail talk about what a PID is and walk us through its functionality. These will be available for sale within the next couple of weeks.
Keeping your equipment sparkling clean is just as important as the freshness of your coffee and dialing in your grind & tamp — in fact, without the former, the latter will be an exercise in futility. If we have to tell you that rancid coffee oils will adversely impact the quality of your shot, we’re sorry. But if we have to be the first, then we might as well do it right, right? So we asked Louie Poore, who specializes in educating professional baristas on proper equipment care for Urnex, to give us the rundown.
First, he introduces us to Urnex’s new Full Circle, sustainably-produced cleaning products — including a toe-to-toe comparison of Cafiza and Full Circle’s coffee equipment wash.
Next, he walks us through using tablets to backflush the La Marzocco GS/3.
Finally, Gail shows us the newly arrived 1, 2, Brew Kit for Espresso Machines, which features the goodies you need to keep your machine in tip-top shape (plus a bag of Velton’s Coffee of your choice!).
If you drop $1k more on your espresso machine, is there a discernible difference and / or improvement in the shot quality and flavor? We dialed in the Rocket Giotto Evoluzione and the Rancilio Silvia, pulled shots simultaneously and asked three of our fearless compatriots to taste them. Watch as they tell us which they prefer and why.