Espresso Machines: Defined and Dissected
The proliferation of coffee shops on every street corner may be quite obvious to most people. Indeed, coffee shops have come a long way, now brewing different types of coffee beans into a number of coffee concoctions that people enjoy. Espresso is one of the most popular choices for people to order and savor in coffee shops, although the cost can become quite exorbitant for the frequent visitors. Espresso machines are used to produce the traditional Italian coffee drinks, often prepared by trained baristas to balance the flavor, aroma and acidity of the espresso. The popularity of the said drink may be the reason behind the presence of espresso machines not only in coffee shops but in more and more coffee lovers' homes.
Perfect espresso captures the richness of the coffee beans, preserving its robust aroma and flavor with the right acidity, bitterness and punch. Traditionally produced using lever-style espresso devices, there are now countless varieties of espresso machines that will suit every consumer's needs and budget to produce a flavorful shot of espresso. Rich, almost syrupy espresso may then be taken as is or may be used as the base for almost all coffee concoctions.
What Espresso Devices do
Espresso machines are specially designed to capture the full flavor of coffee in one shot. Freshly ground coffee is put into a metal filter basket which is then tamped or compressed to make a dense coffee puck. Pressurized water of the proper temperature is then forced into the coffee puck, and secured by a locked portafilter. Most machines available also have steam wands to steam and froth milk for espresso beverages such as lattes and cappuccinos. Although initially manufactured for commercial use, espresso machines have found their way into more and more homes, with smaller versions of the larger commercial machines.
Types of Espresso Machines
There are different types of espresso machines that can satisfy the needs, whims and budget considerations of consumers. Stovetop espresso makers and steam espresso pots are considered little, portable machines that can produce a rich espresso. Piston-driven espresso makers, the original blueprint for current espresso machines, are also popular since they can produce high quality espresso and may be decorative showpieces that add a homey touch to country kitchens. Traditional pump-driven espresso makers which inspired commercial espresso machines are also popular, practical and affordable choices. For those who are after comfort and quickness in preparing their espressos, semi-automatic or automatic espresso machines are equipped with water pumps and manually controlled grind, brew and tamp levers. Super automatic espresso machines, although expensive, may be the best choice for people who lack the time or expertise to make the perfect espresso. These devices are self-contained, and only require owners to fill the water reservoir and the bean hopper. The amazing machine will do the rest of the work in brewing the perfect cup of espresso every time.