Are you looking to upgrade your Barista skills to the next level with a more sophisticated semi-automatic espresso maker? Read this Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine review. Find out if it may be right machine for you.
- 1 Who is Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine for?
- 2 Who is Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine not for?
- 3 Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine Review – Features
- 4 Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine Review – Pros
- 5 Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine Review – Cons
- 6 Alternative Products
- 7 Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine Review – My Final Opinion
Who is Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine for?
The Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine is ideal for espresso lovers who have experimented with making their own espresso at home and wish to up their game.
You want the steady low pressure pre-infusion process to fully extract the flavours and aromas from the coffee grinds. You also want your machine to keep the water temperature stable at the optimal temperature for extracting espresso.
Compared to other espresso makers at the price range of under 500 dollars, the Infuser Espresso Machine separates itself from its competition with these pre-infusion and temperature stability control features.
The Infuser Espresso Machine is certainly a value buy for aspiring Baristas on a budget.
Who is Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine not for?
The Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine is an advanced espresso machine with many external and internal features. While the novice can prepare an espresso shot with ease and speed on this espresso maker, you certainly have to spend some time reading the manual to understand how to operate this machine.
If what you want is a one-touch espresso maker to make coffee automatically instead, consider the lower end automatic cappuccino and latte makers such as Mr. Coffee Café Barista or the higher end super automatic espresso machines such as the Gaggia Brera Superautomatic espresso machine and Jura Ena Micro.
Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine Review – Features
The Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine’s pre-infusion technology ensure that you get a full-flavoured espresso for every shot.
Any espresso experts know that to pull a well balanced flavoured espresso shot, the flavours has to be extracted evenly from the entire coffee grinds.
Here’s how the pre-infusion technology works to ensure an even extraction. It applies a steady low pressure to gently soak the coffee grinds with water before any high pressure is applied. This will ensure that the water fills in any gaps in the coffee puck.
If there are gaps, the high pressure hot water will flow in such paths of least resistance and result in an uneven extraction. By filling up the gaps, the coffee puck can be evenly and thoroughly extracted when high pressure is subsequently applied.
1600W Thermocoil Heating System
Brewing temperature is a key factor to pulling a good espresso shot. The Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine’s 1600 watts thermocoil heating system ensure the temperature consistency throughout the water by circulating the water around a heated coil.
Built-in PID Temperature Control
The Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine regulates the water temperature to ensure temperature stability using an integrated PID control system.
Together with its thermocoil heating system, these two features work together to automatically control the water temperature with precision and thus resulting in faster temperature recovery times.
Auto Purge Function
The water temperature for steaming milk is much higher than that for espresso extraction. However, both espresso extraction and steaming milk are relying on the same water from a single boiler. Hence, water temperature requires to be adjusted as you switch between the two tasks.
With the Breville Infuser, this cooling of the boiler to the optimal temperature after steaming milk is done automatically with its auto purge feature. This will ensure that you get the optimal temperature for extracting espresso.
Espresso Pressure Gauge
Brew pressure is another key factor to pulling a good espresso shot. The Breville BES840XL espresso maker comes with an espresso pressure gauge which allows you to check on the brew pressure throughout the espresso extraction process.
The brew pressure is a result of the speed of water flow through the ground coffee. The speed is in turn affected by various factors such as the coffee grind size, the amount of coffee in the filter basket and the extent of tamping.
With the pressure gauge, you can know whether the espresso is being over- or under-extracted. It is certainly a great feature for those who like to experiment and improve their Barista skills.
Volumetric Control Function
The volumetric control function allows you to vary the water volume, thus getting your preferred espresso intensity.
The function comes with pre-programmed drink volumes. But you can manually override and store your own preferences.
It is a great feature for the experienced baristas who wants to play around with the volume flow and brew time to refine their espresso shot.
Large Detachable Water Tank With Replaceable Filter
The Breville Infuser espresso maker comes with a large 61 ounces (1.8 L) detachable top-fill water tank at the back of the machine, complete with a handle.
A replaceable water filter cartridge is also provided to reduce impurities and scale in the water.
Instant Hot Water Outlet
Besides espresso, the instant hot water feature allows you to make other drinks such as Americanos and hot chocolate. It can also be used to pre-warm your cup so that the temperature of the extracted espresso will not lose heat upon hitting the cold cup.
In addition to the features mentioned above, other features include:
Rotating Steam Wand – If you wish to make cappuccinos or lattes, you could make use of the steam wand. This stainless steel wand is able to rotate 360 degrees to accommodate different milk pitcher sizes.
Portafilter and Tamper – This 54mm stainless steel portafilter with commercial style sprouts comes together with a 54mm tamper. The tamper can also be attached onto a magnetic tamper holder on the machine to save counter space.
Removable drip tray – comes an ‘Empty me!’ indicator to alert you when it is full.
Storage: A storage drawer is hidden behind the drip tray for storing your cleaning equipments.
Energy Saving: Machine will go to ‘Sleep Mode’ after 1 hour and ‘Auto Off Mode’ after 3 hours.
Cup Warming Tray: The cup warming tray is located on top of the machine. The tray is passively heated by the heat generated from the machine and can be used to warm your cups.
Accessories – includes stainless steel jug, coffee scoop, single & dual wall filter baskets, cleaning tool, cleaning disc & tablets
Check out the video for a quick preview of the machine in action.
Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine Review – Pros
Able to Make Quality Espresso Every Time
With the Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine, you are able to get high quality espresso through a combination of its various features.
The pre-infusion feature maximizes the even extraction of flavours from the coffee beans to get a tasty espresso with a rich crema.
The brewing temperature is kept stable automatically with its thermocoil heating system and PID control. The auto-purge feature ensures optimal temperature for espresso extraction after steaming milk.
Control Over Espresso Making Process
The espresso pressure guage gives you feedback while you experiment with various factors of the espresso making process such as coffee grind sizes, coffee dosage, tamping pressures. In addition, you can also adjust the intensity of your espresso by varying the water volume using its volumetric control function.
Ease of Cleaning
Typically not seen in lower end machines, the Breville Infuser comes with a dry puck feature to drain excess water from the ground coffee inside the filter basket. Hence, you will not get the mucky, sticky puck which is difficult to knock out of the basket for disposal.
The drip tray and water tank are removable for cleaning. The clean lines of the machine also makes wiping its exterior easy.
For a machine with these advanced features, it is considered to have a compact footprint since it is just over ten inches wide.
For those who are concerned about BPA, the Breville Infuser Espresso Maker is BPA Free for all parts that are in contact with the water and coffee.
Breville BES840XL the Infuser Espresso Machine Review – Cons
No Built-in Grinder
This machine does not come with a built-in coffee bean grinder. If you do not already have one, you will have to purchase one.
Alternatively, you could use pre-processed coffee powder. However, it will not be as good as using freshly grinded coffee and this will defeat the purpose of getting such a good espresso machine in the first place.
Unable to Steam Milk and Brew Espresso Simultaneously
This machine has a single boiler. Hence, you won’t be able to steam milk and brew espresso simultaneously.
If you do not already have a grinder, consider investing in this Baratza Virtuoso Conical Burr Coffee Grinder . This high end grinder is able to produce consistent sized coffee particles for both coarse and grind levels. And it does so with very little heat, thus retaining maximum flavours in the coffee beans.
Alternatively, you can also consider the Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine. This machine comes with an integrated grinder.
Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine Review – My Final Opinion
For its price of under 500 dollars, the Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine is value for money for its many internal and external features.
But what stands out is that this machine is able to deliver excellent tasty espresso, thanks to its pre-infusion and temperature control features which are typically available only in more expensive espresso makers.
Additionally, while you play around the various factors affecting the espresso taste, you can get precise feedback on your Barista skills with the espresso pressure gauge. The exact pressure measurements make it easier for you to pinpoint the amount of adjustments to be made to achieve your ideal espresso shot. This is surely better from just judging from the taste of the espresso.
Aesthetically, its stainless steel casing, smooth edges and clean lines make it a real beauty in the kitchen.
At just under 500 dollars, the Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine is certainly a great deal for any aspiring Baristas!
There is no doubt this machine is highly rated in Amazon. Check out the Breville BES840XL Infuser Espresso Machine Reviews on Amazon and decide if it is the right machine for you.