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Nov 15, 2011 08:32 PM

Coffee and cappuccino maker

Does it exist? I want to buy my boyfriend a single machine that can make both regular coffee and cappuccino. Are there any models in particular that you'd recommend? And is an espresso and coffee combo machine the same thing as a cappuccino combo? Im not a coffee person so im unfamiliar with it all. Also, I'm a college kid so my budget is limited. Thanks!

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  1. Yes they do indeed exist but if you are a college student on a college student budget, think of something else to get him.

    1 Reply
    1. re: wattacetti

      agreed. for $100, you're better off getting something else. maybe a coffee club/gift card at your local coffee shop.

    2. It would also have to be something that he's comfortable using. The general rule is that the cheaper the machine the more user-intensive it is. The higher-end ($800 to much more) machines automate some of the process but at the low end, he'd have to grind, fill, brew, empty and clean the machine with every use and steam his milk as well.

      You can shortcut the process with a machine like a Nespresso, but it comes at a cost, it's about 55-60 cents per serving and you have to buy a milk frother too, so it ends up in the $350 range.

        1. re: chuckl

          Around $100, but it looks like from the other posts I should get him something else.

        2. Macy's, on sale for $99.99

          No idea how well it works, but it fits the criteria.

          1. Hi Julienned,

            I'm a bit of a coffee fanatic and even roast my own, so perhaps I can be of some help. First, in your budget you can forget about espresso - it can't be done without at least a $200 machine and $100 grinder - and that's a STARTING point.

            But ... you CAN provide your boyfriend with a WONDERFUL system for making coffee. Ideally, beans should be FRESH roasted and not ground until they are about to be used. A good system for $25 is called aeropress. Aside from the press itself, he'll need either some filters or a more permanent metal filter.

            You can get one of these for about $25 on amazon, plus $5 for paper filters or a bit more for a metal filter. He'll also need an inexpensive grinder. Capresso makes a nice little blade grinder for about $20 that'll do the trick.

            If you got him that, plus an inexpensive grinder and one nice bag of fresh whole bean coffee ... you'd be the best girlfriend ever to a coffee junkie. Here's one place to get truly fresh roasted whole bean coffee.

            He should heat water to 195 degrees for use in the aeropress. If he doesn't have a small thermometer, there are very nice digital Taylor models for $10 - also on amazon.

            5 Replies
            1. re: jkling17

              Interesting. I had already bought him a coffee grinder last year which he uses all the time. And he's always talking about how he wishes he could make his own cappuccino without having to go to the cafe all the time. I'll look into it.

              1. re: julienned

                Ah ok - in that case you may wish to get him a MILK FROTHER. Most of them require that he warm up the milk first and then use the frother to get the air into it. The better one's are electric and just do it all for you. Here are a few options to consider. I have no direct experience with any of these, but there are a lot of reviews on Amazon: Capresso tends to make pretty good stuff - I have their grinder. If you are willing to pay more, I'd say that that one would be a good bet.



                1. re: jkling17

                  We have the Nespresso frother which is effortless and cleans easily:


                  1. re: jkling17

                    You can also use a French press coffee maker to foam milk. Pour the warm milk in and pump the filter up and down briskly until foamy. Of course, there's cleaning the filter afterwards.

                2. re: jkling17

                  Have to agree with jkling17. The Aeropress can make everything from a regular coffee to a espresso like americano and isn't finicky with grind size. I often use mine to make my college aged kids coffeehouse like drinks when they are home even though I have an espresso machine. Quick, easy, doesn't need time to heat up and is very cheap. I would use my espresso maker to foam milk but they are into the big milk sweet drinks which are mislabeled as lattes in most of the coffee shops.