Espresso Machines: Gaggia
Fine espresso is nearly synonymous with Italy, and espresso machines are just the same. Italian espresso machines are almost always considered to be very high-quality, and their price tags usually reflect that. While some companies do offer less expensive models, they are not usually designed for the beginner.
One particular company with a world-class line of home and commercial espresso machines is Gaggia. They have been making quality espresso machines for more than 50 years, and the founder of the company holds the patent for one of the first coffee machines of this type.
Today, all of their products are still manufactured in Italy, in the city of Milan, to be exact.
They make too many models to list them all specifically, but they cover the full range of home espresso machine styles. Their automatic espresso machines are an absolute luxury, with integrated grinders to grind just the right amount of beans prior to brewing. Gaggia also makes a whole collection of more typical espresso machines, which they refer to as “manual” machines. The “manual” part comes in because you have to fill the portafilter with coffee yourself, not that you have to pump the machine yourself.
Gaggia’s Caffitaly machines are based on the latest capsule system, where you just pop in a little pod of ground coffee. Very simple and cleaner to use than the manual machines. And a bit more expensive.
Other than espresso makers, Gaggia also have a number of other related products. They make coffee grinders, juicers, ice cream makers and even vacuums.
Gaggia espresso machines are also available for commercial uses, which makes them larger, faster and most certainly quite a bit more expensive. Great for anyone starting a coffee shop, but really excessive for home use. Most commercial Gaggia machines can brew 4 or more shots of espresso at a time. Not exactly typical home use.
Though manufactured in Italy, Gaggia machines are available all through North America. There are numerous online vendors who sell these machines, and high-end gourmet food or coffee shops may have them in stock as well.