Breville Bambino Plus Espresso Machine Review
A Review of the Breville Bambino Plus Espresso Machine
The Breville Bambino Plus Espresso Machine has been a staple in my kitchen since I acquired it on Black Friday in 2022. After nearly a year of use, it's safe to say that my initial hesitation about its price tag has been replaced with unwavering satisfaction. As a complete beginner to espresso machines, having relied on a trusty moka pot for ages, I wasn't sure if this advanced machine would be too much for me to handle. However, I'm thrilled to report that it's one of the best purchases I made last year, and I would make the same choice again without hesitation.
One of the significant advantages of the Bambino Plus is its incredibly fast startup time. It takes a mere 3 seconds to be ready for both espresso brewing and milk steaming. This rapid startup is not only convenient but also environmentally friendly, as it eliminates the need to leave the machine powered on overnight, a common practice with many high-end espresso makers. The setup process is straightforward, and the instructions provided are clear and helpful, making it relatively easy for beginners to get the hang of it. The frother is a valuable addition, allowing me to create steamed milk for various coffee beverages, even before bed.
The Bambino Plus has simplified my daily coffee routine and significantly reduced my trips to coffee shops. It's worth noting a few minor drawbacks, such as the machine's height, which could be slightly taller to accommodate a wider range of cup sizes, especially for those who enjoy brewing shots for larger travel mugs. Additionally, there are a few quirks to be aware of, such as the need for some manual effort to secure the filter tightly, and occasional splattering during the self-cleaning process of the steamer wand. However, these issues are manageable and don't outweigh the machine's numerous benefits, including its ability to produce high-quality espresso, user-friendly design, ease of cleaning, and compact size. In summary, despite these minor quirks, the Breville Bambino Plus Espresso Machine is an excellent investment, offering a convenient and efficient way to enjoy espresso at home.
Update April 21, 2020: After a few months of use, the group head on the Bambino Plus has become less resistant to locking in, making the process easier. The initial friction between the filter and the machine has decreased. Additionally, it's worth mentioning that the machine's automatic milk-steaming feature is a standout feature, allowing for hands-free milk frothing. When compared to the Breville Barista Express, which I had the opportunity to use, the Bambino Plus offers an equally impressive coffee-making experience, and the choice between manual and automatic milk steaming ultimately comes down to personal preference. The machine's compact size, quick startup, and easy cleaning continue to make it a top choice for espresso enthusiasts. While I encountered a few minor hiccups, such as the need for a larger steaming pitcher and specialized shot glasses, these are manageable inconveniences that don't diminish the overall value of the Bambino Plus. I've also discovered the hidden cleaning tool for the steam wand, and it's essential to prevent any clogs. After multiple descaling cycles, following the manual's instructions for resetting factory espresso volume settings proved effective in resolving any issues. However, it's important to note that some users have experienced leaking problems, potentially indicating quality control issues with certain batches.
How Does This Set Compare to Others?
We compiled data from various sources to provide some ratings about how this particular item compares to others of the same brand, and other comparable items from other brands.
|All Coffee & Espresso
|Easy to Clean
|Quality of Material
|Value for Money
|Easy to Use
Coffee Maker Type:
What to Look for in a Quality Espresso Machine
What to Look for in a Quality Espresso Machine
Investing in a quality espresso machine can elevate your coffee experience and bring the cafe into your home. Whether you're a seasoned coffee connoisseur or just starting on your espresso journey, several key factors should guide your decision when selecting the perfect espresso machine.
1. Value for Money
When considering an espresso machine, think about the value it offers. While some high-end models come with impressive features, they might not always justify their price tags for everyone. Look for a machine that strikes a balance between cost and functionality, ensuring you get the features you need without overpaying.
2. Durability and Build Quality
A durable espresso machine is an investment that should last for years. Pay attention to the build quality, materials used, and the reputation of the manufacturer. Stainless steel components are known for their durability and resistance to corrosion, making them a popular choice in quality machines.
3. Flavor Quality
Ultimately, the taste of your espresso is paramount. The machine's ability to maintain precise temperature control and even extraction is crucial for delivering a balanced and flavorful cup. Look for machines with features like PID temperature control and low-pressure pre-infusion to enhance flavor quality.
4. Ease of Use
Espresso machines can range from fully manual to fully automatic. Choose one that suits your skill level and the amount of time you're willing to invest. Beginners might prefer machines with user-friendly interfaces, while experienced baristas might opt for more manual control.
5. Milk Frothing Capability
If you enjoy milk-based espresso beverages like lattes and cappuccinos, the machine's milk frothing capability is crucial. Look for machines with powerful steam wands or automatic frothing systems to achieve silky microfoam for latte art or creamy steamed milk.
6. Size and Space
Consider the available space in your kitchen when choosing an espresso machine. Some models are compact and suitable for smaller kitchens, while others may require more counter space. Ensure the machine fits comfortably and doesn't disrupt your kitchen setup.
7. Cleaning and Maintenance
Espresso machines require regular cleaning to maintain performance and flavor quality. Look for machines with removable and easy-to-clean components. Some models also have self-cleaning features to simplify maintenance.
8. Brand Reputation and Reviews
Research the reputation of the brand and read reviews from other users. A well-established brand with positive reviews often indicates reliability and customer satisfaction.
By carefully considering these factors, you can make an informed decision and select an espresso machine that meets your needs and delivers exceptional coffee every time.