I wonder how many homes in the United States have automatic espresso machines? I’d hazard a guess that maybe one third to one half of those homes that have coffee makers have an automatic espresso machine. But I could be too generous. I’m just going on my own personal observations, and isn’t it true that we generally have a social circle that is similar to us? And seeing as how I like coffee, many of my friends like coffee too, and many of them have automatic espresso machines. That’s just an aside. Today we’ll talk all about automatic espresso machines at the exclusion of their humble country cousins the manual espresso machines. To be honest and up front, I don’t yet have an automatic espresso machine myself as an automatic espresso machine is colloquially understood. I much prefer roasting my own wholesale coffee beans, green coffee beans that is, and playing around with the coffee grind and tamping of the espresso coffee beans that I like to use. However, I’ve tasted some really delicious espresso cappuccino from friends’ automatic espresso machines, and these are really super automatic espresso machines. I know it’s a bit confusing but it won’t be for long. So let’s dig in.
What are automatic espresso machines?
I want to talk generally about what automatic espresso machines are and then we’ll get into some more specifics about the different types of automatic espresso machines and hopefully when we’re done you’ll have a great understanding of the type of espresso machine that is best for you if you are in the market for one.
Okay, so generally, an automatic espresso machine is a cappuccino machine that has pumps, grinders, valves to automate the brewing process . Specifically, they are then divided into 3 types of automatic espresso machines. This is the challenge. I can call my manual espresso machine an automatic espresso machine and it technically is. Though specifically it is considered one of the semi automatic espresso machines. Let me explain.
A semi automatic espresso machine is one that uses a pump rather than manual pressure or a lever as in the days of old to force the water through the espresso pod or ground espresso beans. So in this type of automatic espresso machine, the grinding and tamping of the espresso is still done manually. Weird huh? But it gets even a bit more confusing.
Next up are those automatic espresso machines that are called automatic espresso machine in the specific sense rather than the general sense which we spoke about earlier. Specifically, an automatic espresso machine is one that has a pump to force water through the beans, but it also controls the amount of water that is forced through the beans. In the semi automatic espresso machine, you turn off the machine to stop the flow of water. In these automatic espresso machines, they stop the flow of water themselves. Smarty pants!
Last of the automatic espresso machines
The last bunch of automatic espresso machines are known as super automatic espresso machines. The super automatic espresso machine is usually the kind that most folks I know speak of when they mention the term automatic espresso machine. These fully automatic espresso machines will do everything that the other two do, but they will also grind and tamp the beans into the portafilter for you. Additionally, some of the higher end machines of this nature will also steam and froth your milk automatically and add it to your glass coffee cups after it has poured the shot. So it is totally hands off. A fully automatic espresso machine. However, this last bit is only available in the higher end machines like the Saeco Talea Giro and the Saeco Talea Touch with the added milk island.
A super automatic espresso machine that excludes the automated frothing and pouring of milk is the Gaggia Syncrony Logic amongst others. So there you have it my friends. 3 types of automatic espresso machines for you to choose from. And 2 of them are not really automatic as we understand them to be in social use. Nevertheless, there are 3 options for you to choose from depending on how automated you want your coffee experience to be from your automatic espresso machines.