Lockdown life has us all brewing more coffee at home than ever and trying to match the efforts of our favourite cafe. But the commercial gear used to make your morning latte can run over $20K with a good grinder. A little steep for most home baristas!
Lucky for us, Breville has been making fantastic, well-priced equipment for years. They have a strong (and affordable) contender on the home espresso machine front with the Breville Bambino Plus at $550.
The stainless steel Bambino looks smart, and its small footprint doesn’t take up much precious bench space.
Once on your bench, setting it up is super easy. The manual is easy to read and tells you just what to do. Plug it in, fill the reservoir with water and you are on the way.
Breville’s Thermojet system heats your water in three seconds so you avoid the long wait times of older domestic machines.
For pulling espresso shots, the Bambino has enough pressure and power to extract all the flavour you need from the coffee and create exceptional crema. The 54mm baskets hold 18 to 22 grams of ground coffee and it brews at 9 bars of pressure. Each shot begins with a low-pressure pre-infusion cycle to ensure even extraction of the coffee.
It amazed our baristas at how good the milk frothing was and how easily you could use it for latte art. Milk steaming can be tricky, and this is where the automatic steam wand shines. You set your milk temperature and how much froth you want to generate, and the Bambino whips up a jug of silky milk with ease.
Now, you’ll need a grinder and we’ve long recommended the Breville Smart Grinder Pro. It’s a fast and consistent grinder and is fantastic value at $299.
But don’t just take our word for it. The Wirecutter from the New York Times loves it as well and named it their best espresso machine for beginners in 2021.
We sell the Breville Bambino Plus on our website here.
Don't forget, all wonderful coffee starts with the beans. We recommend any of our espresso blends (Shadow Boxer, Haymaker and Street Fighter) to start with. If you want to expand your palate, then check out our espresso roast single-origins.