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Espresso Machine?

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Hello,

Can someone recommend a store where I can buy a good quality espresso machine in the Markham/Scarborough area?

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  1. Not the area you're asking for, but Faema on Davenport is kinda fun (www.faematoronto.com). You might want to check out online vendors as well. I've personally had success with Espressotec in Vancouver (http://www.espressotec.com/).

    Good luck!

    1 Reply
    1. re: artgeek

      Thanks for the help!

    2. When I was shopping for a good machine a couple years ago I went to the Faema shop and wasn't all that impressed. Their machines are comparatively very, very expensive, the service was pretty much nonexistent, and they didn't sell tampers. You can't make great espresso without a tamper.
      I'd recommend starting with http://www.coffeegeek.com/. It's a website run by a guy in Richmond, B.C. who is considered in many circles to be the expert on home and professional espresso machines. It can be a little overwhelming at first, but stick with it and you'll find great reviews on machines and recommendations for what to buy for a decent price.
      And as Artgeek said, don't neglect to look online. You'll find a far better selection of machines for far better prices than if you limit yourself to a few Toronto shops.
      A couple more things: be sure to get a good burr grinder with your machine. A great machine can't do anything if your grinder's no good. And use fresh coffee—ie. stuff that's marked with the roasting date. More than a week old, and you're shortchanging yourself. Moonbeam and Ideal are fantastic roasters around town.

      2 Replies
      1. re: pimentdespelette

        Try Seaco-store on Steeles,great machines,prices and good service.

        1. re: FlyingChef

          Maybe good prices but bad phone manners. After speaking with the person didn't even want to go there.I'll pay more somewhere else like William Sonnoma at least the service and return policy exists.

      2. If you still want an espresso machine check out Dr. Espresso on Kingston Rd. they have new and used machines and their service is incredible, here's the number you should call 647 477-5630

        6 Replies
        1. re: rama96

          Went by this store(Dr. Espresso) yesterday but it was closed. Do you know what days they are open?

          1. re: straum

            Google is your friend.

            They have a pretty minimal website at: http://www.drespresso.net/

            It hasn't got a phone number or hours, but their e-mail appears to be: robert@drespresso.net

            Good luck.

            1. re: detritus

              I was just doing a search for Dr Espresso and discovered this post... I left my machine with them in August or September of 2006. They had it for a month or two, then brought it back 'repaired'. It has exactly the same problem as it had when I sent it in! So they took it away again and after numerous phone calls on my part and excuses on their part, they brought out a loaner machine. I decided not to call them again but wait for them to get back to me... It's now been a YEAR! I still have the loaner... they still have my machine... c'est la vie.

          2. re: rama96

            I left my old espresso machine at Dr Espresso in early December 2006 and they still have it (almost 3 months later) I have left 4 messages for them in the past 4 weeks and have not heard back from them. Luckily I bought a new machine so am not without espresso, but my old machine is a good machine and did not need any major repair. I don't recommend this company. If I hear back and get my machine, I'll post here.

            1. re: foodyDudey

              FYI, I have never seen them open, their telephone number is, if not unlisted, impossible to find, their website gives no useful information, and they have never returned a phone call (I tried the number posted here in November) or answered an email. I don't know what kind of business they are running there. I hope you can retrieve your machine.

              (Fortunately, I was just trying to locate a part.)

              1. re: embee

                I'm having trouble reaching them also. It's a bit of a drive to go there just to check on the machine. The owner told me he checked it and it just needed a cleaing, then 2 months back someone caled and said it needed a pump. So I asked to have the owner call but he never did. I would never reccomend this place to anyone.

                I left the machine there around December 7, 2007.

          3. Again, not in your area but a great shop:

            http://www.gaggiahouse.com/

            The owner was actually a Gaggia distributor for years (I think he still is) before he opened this retail location up. I bought my first super automatic from him and couldn't be happier. It's not too far off the 401 (south) on Avenue Road.

            1. The Green Beanery, on Brunswick, near Bloor and Spadina, carries great machines and does mail order. It's a fair-trade non-profit run by the same people as Energy Probe. Good selection, including some great brands. Bought a burr grinder there a couple of weeks ago. http://www.greenbeanery.ca

              1. Try Saeco Store on Steeles west.
                Great selection and service.

                1. I haven't been to the Saeco store on Steeles, but I have owned the Saeco Professional automatic espresso machine for about 2 years, and love it. My sister has the Saeco Vienna Digital Deluxe and is really happy, too.

                  Bought my machine at Word of Mouth kitchenware store. Home Hardware on Dufferin south of Lawrence sells them, as does Nella Cutlery on Norfinch.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: FlavoursGal

                    We have a great machine purchased from alpha Cappucino. They send all my beans to me monthly..and I am clsoe to Algonquin Park. They deal with many brands. Web site is: http://www.espresso.com/home_office.html

                  2. Hate to admit it, but the Starbucks machine is made by Saeco and is a great value (esp. when they put it on sale). It has constistantly good ratings on coffeegeek etc. http://www.coffeegeek.com/reviews/con...

                    I've had mine for 4 years -needed one repair and still going strong. Kicks butt compared to most of the machines in this price range - I can easily do 2 jugs of milk and I know people whose machines conk out on one.....

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: jcanncuk

                      Just followed your link, and it says that the Starbucks machine is made by a company called "Estro", not Saeco.

                    2. If you look around a little further, you'll see that some list the Barista as Saeco & some as "Estro". I researched this a while back and I assure you, it's made by Saeco.

                      1. FYI - was in a Starbucks today. The sale is on & the Barista is on for ~$400. A good deal IMO.

                        1. Yes, the Barista is indeed made by Saeco.... verified with the Saeco reps. They also do most of the repairs.

                          There are extensive discussions on the merits of this machine, including using a "non-pressurized" portafilters....

                          IMHO, as I also own the machine, it makes a decent espresso for its price. The key is getting the grind of the beans right, otherwise the water just shoots through the grounds resulting in a thin brew.

                          Apparently the "gold standard" for home machines is the Rancilio Silvia with a thermacouple mod, along with a Rancilio Rocky Burr grinder.

                          Unless you're a real espresso veteran, for the casual drinker the Starbucks Barista will probably suffice (until you become totally obsessed with getting that god-shot, in which case you'll covet the Silvia).

                          Don't bother with any of the cheap Krups steam driven machines, they're a complete waste of money.

                          22 Replies
                          1. re: doctorandchef

                            ... then as soon as you've got the Silvia, you'll want an HX (heat exchanger) machine.

                            As soon as you get used that, you'll want a double boiler machine.

                            1. re: doctorandchef

                              actually i have a nespresso machine. And it is the best, i believe bar none (also got excellent rating from CoffeeGeek).

                              1. re: galambo

                                YOU BELIEVE IS RIGHT..& that's all it ever will be. Nespresso is bar none the best? you are deluded. I had to reply because of the sheer stupidity of the statement.

                                1. re: pravspresso

                                  i it is to taste, and that is my opinion.

                                  two your insults just because we don't agree only reflects on you.

                                2. re: galambo

                                  Finally got a chance to go to the Nespresso Bar at the Bay Store. Did try a couple of varieties there. The shots were just right. I am seriously considering getting one as they have a promo now that you get 50$ store credit for any machine over $300. Did like the Frothing device as I do use a electric frother rather than the Steaming arm myself with my Bodum machine for cappuccino. I guess I should start preparing xmas list early :)

                                  1. re: elvisahmed

                                    Get the Nespresso. It is amazing! I discovered it in Europe and haven't been able to turn back. So quick and easy... and not to mention delicious!

                                    However, I wouldn't bother with their frothers. They don't work that great.

                                    1. re: elvisahmed

                                      Store credit to be used in few days, no doubt. There is a $295 Breville with steam frother at Costco.

                                      1. re: jayt90

                                        Hondapendragon what is wrong with the aerrocino forther that comes with the machine I have only seen good review.
                                        Jayt90 I have a Bodum Granos Espresso Machine that has served me well for the last few years I did compare shop but I found this one to be the best in my price range. It does have very good bar pressure (19) and helps me make my cappuccino the way I like it and does have good steam frother but I prefer the hand froth with hot milk to get a good froth. I was looking to upgrade and then saw the reviews for Nespresso and seemed too good to be true. Store credit I guess will be used up instantly with all the pods I will have to buy :) as that like 2 month supply.

                                        1. re: elvisahmed

                                          I *love* my nespresso machine. Mine has a steaming arm for frothing -- do they now have a different type of frother?

                                          1. re: TorontoJo

                                            Well I haven't been following Nespresso for a while so really can't say this Aerroccino thing is new.
                                            Here is link
                                            http://www.nespresso.com/#/ca/en/coff...
                                            This thing apparently can heat the milk or you can have cold milk froth as per their explanation at the store. I guess its a matter of preference I just like the mechanical frother than steam arm one.

                                          2. re: elvisahmed

                                            I have gone through 3 aerocinnos in the past year. The concept is great, but the thing has to work in order to be good! All of the aerocino's I've had bust after 2 months.
                                            Nespresso's great though. They've replaced all of the aerocino's for me at their own cost. I follow the instructions and everything so I have no idea what the problem is. Design flaw?

                                            Hey, it's definately NOT the user!

                                            :)

                                            1. re: Hondapendragon

                                              Odd - I've had my aerocino for about 2 years now and it has been fine but I have to say I don't use it every day. I have the single one - what size is yours?

                                        2. re: elvisahmed

                                          Is the Nespresso Bar a permanent thing at The Bay? And I assume this is the Yonge and Queen location? I was thinking of getting one of these for our cottage as I want a lower-priced, no fuss option - I'm giving up on my little Bialetti as the americanos are so inconsistent and the crema is underwhelming. But the idea of pod coffee kind of freaks me out a bit so I'd like to try it and see for myself. Thanks.

                                          1. re: peppermint pate

                                            Yes, it's permanent. It's their first store in Canada, I believe. We get great crema from our machine.

                                            1. re: peppermint pate

                                              Nespresso is definately no fuss. We pack ours in the car everytime we go to the cottage.
                                              You can also buy the pods online, in a pinch.
                                              And they have excellent customer service.

                                              1. re: Hondapendragon

                                                I've tasted pod coffee just once.
                                                I've watched people buy $35 boxes of months old pods that weigh almost nothing, for their $300 machines.
                                                I'm not convinced, and I'm happy to stay with green beans, a roaster, a Chemex or Bialetti, which is very consistent, and not meant to produce crema. The crema usually served to me is horribly bitter.

                                                1. re: jayt90

                                                  Well you have to give it a try before shooting of like that. There is a huge following for Nespresso in Europe and now in US. I tried a few samples and the espresso was just right. I am waiting for my Bodum to die down and say ode to my burr grinder and my next purchase will be without a doubt a Nespresso. They give out free samples at the Nespresso bar give it a try first and then set your opinion its not about having the most expensive equipment or most expensive beans its about a good consistency and Nespresso just does that.

                                                  1. re: elvisahmed

                                                    Yeah, you're right. I'm definitely old school. I won't go downtown for a free coffee, but if a nearby Bay has the offer I will check it out.

                                                    1. re: jayt90

                                                      You can also sample it at Williams/Sonoma. They're always pulling shots for their customers (aka browsers).

                                                      1. re: jayt90

                                                        Well I like grinding fresh beans and would like to roast them myself too for I guess what you call an overall more fulfilling experience and customisation to your taste (I like a long shot doppio in my cappuccino and lotsa froth) . But its a lot about consistency a reasonable quality (a niche that Starbucks has successfully capitalized) I tried 3 varieties and the espresso shots at the Nespresso bar were good and more importantly consistent. Since I have very little time in the morning now I don't feel like going through the whole process anymore and would like a clean solution. Now if I had time and money I would go the other way but I think for the price/value Nespresso is hard to beat.

                                                        1. re: jayt90

                                                          I hear what all the naysayers are saying and I'm somewhat in their camp - I'll cross this city (and often do) for a good americano. And our regular coffee pot at the cottage is very old school, a tin stove-top drip coffee maker that's at least 50 years old. BUT for up there, I don't want to be fiddling with a fancy machine and I do love my crema - it's all about the crema for me. I wanted to love my Bialetti, I love the look and experience and sound of it sputtering up but the coffee just isn't wowing me.

                                                          I never would have thought about these Nespressos but people, including a bunch of 'hounds, keep raving about them (and especially the crema) so I figured I'd at least try once. Plus we often have a crowd up there and the Bialetti shots are tough to do in larger numbers. I thought it was The Bay itself doing demos, didn't realize they had opened their own store. I'm going to try it and see for myself.

                                                        2. re: elvisahmed

                                                          I roast my beans and it's very consistent. I have never had a bad batch of home roasted beans. And I've never tasted coffe from those pod machines that was as good as what I drink at home.