Takes Fancy to the Next Level

The more time I spend exploring the world of espresso makers, the more it seems that the super-automated ones that do most of the work for me is the way I want to go. Yes, they cost a heck of a lot more than other options, but they are so much easier to use and require so much less thinking on my part. They do all the grinding, measuring and pouring so all I have to do is push a couple buttons, froth up some milk and hit the road with my drink in hand.

Even better, a lot of them will make two cups simultaneously, so I can get my husband’s espresso ready before he heads to work as well. Major wife brownie points, you know?

In my quest to find the best machine with the most going for it (and the smallest possible price tag), I have come across a lot of different options that almost work, but are just missing a little something. They’re all pretty fancy, but I think the KRUPS EA8250 Espresseria Fully Automatic Espresso Machine takes fancy to the next level.

Technologically Savvy Coffee

I don’t think I knew it was possible, but now I’m entirely aware. The Espresseria actually has an LCD screen on the front that tells you what’s going on inside the machine and lets you select from a bunch of options to make sure your espresso is made exactly the way you want it. No muss, no fuss, no blinking lights without knowing what they mean. You get right to the point without any guessing.

Once you know how to read the LCD, the knob underneath it helps you navigate through the different screens so you can decide which settings you want to change. Once that’s all taken care of, you can use the intuitive suggestions and prompts to make your selections and move on. Also, it’s pretty.

I like pretty.

Grind From Inside

The Espresseria kind of looks like it’s wearing a hat, which is a little silly, but that hat is almost the best part of the whole machine. Really, it is. That silly hat-looking thing is the grinder that does the work of grinding the beans right when you’re ready to make your drink. You don’t have to use a separate machine and transport the grounds, and you don’t lose any flavor by grinding ahead of time and letting the air get to them.

Plenty Of Water To Go Around

With a 60 ounce water tank, you have almost as much water at your disposal as you would if you had a water line that continually filled it up. Ok, not really, but 60 ounces will let you make a whole lot of espresso without refilling the tank.

A Little Costly To Run

There is so much going for this espresso machine I almost feel bad criticizing it, but there are a few things I have to mention in order to be completely honest. First, it’s not a matter of just buying the machine and the espresso beans to go in it. There are other things you have to get for it that can really add up. Water filters cost about $20, and you’ll have to replace them every 1 to 2 months if you use the machine regularly (depending on the water hardness and quality you use).

In addition, there are the filters you have to use to keep your grounds from ending up in your drinks. There are machine specific cleaning products you can spring for, but you don’t necessarily have to. Personally, I always try to use the manufacturer’s recommendations so if there is a warranty issue, they cannot pin it on my having done something wrong.

That said, you’ll have the same type of costs with many of the other machines I reviewed here, but some run longer on one set of filters than others.

Not The Best For The Froth

If you ask coffee drink lovers, they’ll tell you the texture of the milk is almost as important as the beans used to make your drink. That’s why the lackluster frothing ability on this machine is a little disappointing. It has the frothing arm with the sleeve that helps make cappuccino foam, and it does a pretty good job of adding the volume you want, but it’s a little bit difficult to maneuver and hard to clean, which means it’s not convenient to use. If you can’t maneuver the frothing arm, you just won’t have enough control over what you’re making. It’s super important.

Not Always Great Materials

For the money this thing costs, I would expect it to be made with all the best materials in every instance, but that’s not always the case with this machine. There are some frequently used elements that are made of plastic and, while they can stand up to the heat, they may not be able to stand up to as much wear and tear as metal pieces would.

Not Quiet

This is a pretty common problem among the machines in this category. By adding the grinder onto the machine, additional noise is added to the process. This one is not the quietest when brewing, either. If you have to get going early in the morning and risk waking other people, this might not be the best choice for you.

Solid, Solid, Solid

I can’t say this machine is the most impressive option in this class, but it is a solid entrant into yet another class of espresso machines. I love the super-automated models because they take so much of the work off the person who is operating the machine, but you do have to pay for the difference. You really have to be sure you want it and you’re going to use it.