To Espresso Or Not To Espresso?

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We assure you that a profound YES is the option you need to consider to that question coming into 2016. Politely put, Espresso is now being considered the new moonshine.

But before you buy, remember that Texas Resturant Equipment will help educate you on a completely stunning piece of equipment to whip up and drip out a high grade buzz for your daily patrons. Now as to why consider serving espresso? Did we mention high profit margins, and happy patrons?  Your dining family deserves a wonderful meal, and dessert with quality coffee, espresso, or an elegant cappucino as they linger after that great meal. It make perfect sense.

If you are a novice looking to breaking into the shot pulling biz, you may find that buying the right piece of equipment for your cafe, restaurant or institution a little intimidating. In addition the increasing price tags, may put you off. Have no fear, remember the right espresso machine for you is out there. Texas Restaurant Equipment has some guides/materials below that will help a great deal in determining what will best fit the menu items you want to choose for your dining patrons.

These simply buying checklist for espresso machine will start the process, and Texas Restaurant Equipment will finish up with all the information you need to pick an ideal commercial espresso machine that works for your space, clientele, and budget...

Begin With The Selection Process:

Types of Espresso Machines

There are 4  main categories of espresso machines you need to be concerned about. Manual, semi auto, full auto, and super automatic. In today's markets, these types are and deciding on one of these types will greatly focus your search. The goal is the perfect espresso. Bottom line, this would be the one that requires the least effort to produce, budget aside.

Let's start with the most desirable and go from there. Depending on your clientele first, then budget for the equipment and products, then space and staff training, and how much business will you do; you must consider these factors with accuracy to help you make the best selection. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to call on us to help with this evaluation. It may be we can assist in help you determine other equipment factors based on when you are making the transition, and integrating this new equipment into your offerings:

  • Super Automatic - These awesome espresso machines have all the bells and whistles. More often than not they have a built-in grinding apparatus and other related gadgets. Right now, “caffe crema” which is a necessity for espresso-brewed coffee diluted to the strength of regular joe. These machines have come into vogue as a result of the prevalence of super automatic machines.
  • Fully-Auto - Similar to semi-auto machines, these espresso machines  include an electronic nanny to regulate the amount of water passing through the espresso. Very often these fully automatics include redundant semi-automatic controls.
  • Semi-Auto - In 1938, Achilles Gaggia patented this type of electric pump which makes for a even hands free water pressure system. As a operator, you can make the decision when to turn the pump on and off. Boiler temperature controls are automated on these makers and is the most popular type of traditional machine in use today. espresso makers came to be thanks to Achilles Gaggia’s 1938 patent, which introduced electric pumps to devices, resulting in even, hands-free water pressure. Because operators can decide when to turn the pump on and off (hence “semi” automatic), and because boiler temperature controls are automated on these makers, this is the most popular type of traditional machine in use today.
  • Manual - Unfortunately, most manual machines pay homage to their heritage, but can be complicated to technology out there right now.  There are no crank start mechanisms or chokes to contend with on manual espresso machines, but because they don’t maintain constant water pressure on their own, users must push water through the coffee manually, which can vary the quality of the final product. In short, these machines should be considered by experienced home baristas only.

Answer These Questions To  Determine How To Proceed

  • What Exactly Do You Want?
  • Straight espresso, cappuccino, or both?
  • How many drinks will you be serving at a time?
  • Sustained performance and durability are critical now
  • Direct plumbing connection into water pipes or manual fill for the water reservoir?
  • What type of electrical outlet does the machine have to have i.e. 110 or 220?
  • Consider cash options for better deals

Now, Let's Proceed To The Next Step. . .

First let’s talk boilers. There are three price points to consider in the buying process where boilers are concerned. Each of these offerings means a different boiler configuration with different accompanying mechanicals. Espresso Machines under $1,000 are usually a single-boiler, dual-use setups: because these use a single thermostat to control the water temp (switchable from one boiler to the other at the user’s behest). This type of machine can’t brew and steam milk simultaneously. Above the $1,000 mark, you’ll come across mostly single-boiler, heat-exchanger machines, which feature a larger boiler that keeps water at or around 240 degrees Fahrenheit and make it possible to brew and steam simultaneously. Dual-boiler machines tend to cost well over $2,000, and feature two separate boilers for simultaneous brewing and steaming. While “dualies” seem like the way to go for serious espresso nerds, keep in mind that North American 110V power outlets can’t always handle the needs of these machines.

Dripping Knowledge - Education ahead of time on your part is required. Dripping, extraction process, aroma, types of coffee, extraction time and water temperature are all key factors that dramatically affect the taste of this quality beverage. Harmony combinations of the above which can be controlled at a perfect level, mean you will be serving a fine coffee drink to your special dining patrons.

Why is crema important? - That luscious layer of thick foam that lies so beautifully on the top of the rich aromatic coffee liquid means every sip will be a true experience of all the different elements of flavor that go into the espresso. An emulsion of air, gases, water, flavors, and coffee are the very result of the pressurized extraction process. Aroma and body must be present.

How often must staff clean an espresso machine, and are there any best practices?

To avoid residue left behind, daily cleaning is always the best practice. Simply make it part of your nightly routine. You should never serve a stale espresso which will easily cause over extraction and have that burnt taste. Most espresso machines today are constructed for an easy clean, and some even have a clean button that performs a clean cycle on the milk tank to remove unwanted residue. Parts easy to remove and wipe down with a cloth mean proper care will enhance the espresso experience for sure as well as extend the life of the machine.

Time To Purchase That Perfect Machine For Your Business

Remember to pay particular attention to how intricate the machine is, and how easy it will be to maintain and clean whatever your selection may be. Max pump pressure, knowing about self priming, type of boiler setup and having a thermostat involved are all things that may determine how much personal effort you’ll need to put into each drink. Based on need, the water tank must be a good size  and selecting the exact size and design of the machine as a whole means your new espresso machines can be large and heavy, and they run the aesthetic gamut.

Finally, Take Some Straight Up Advice...

You must invest in a proper, high-quality bean grinder and learn how to use it. If you don’t properly grind, your espresso, it will be a disappointing, mediocre failure to your diners. If that is the case then don't bother. Today's espresso drinker already knows what is considered a great cup of Joe...  Bear in mind also that some optional espresso machine accouterments  need to be avoided altogether. Starting with crema enhancers... just don't bother. All to often these damage the espresso instead of bettering it. Machines that have high-bar pressure ratings — 15, 16 or 18 — don’t usually deliver those pressures anyway, due to restrictors or overflow valves, so anything claiming over 9 bars doesn’t make a lick of difference. Frothing aids may seem to be pretty handy, but the technique isn’t all that difficult to master without help, and these aids can reduce the natural sweetness of milk froth because they continuously administer heat,  Steam buttons are a no-go too: they’re binary, on-or-off affairs, whereas a steam knob offers steam power fine-tuning.

Now that we have laid some groundwork for you, it's time to take a shot at offering up an invitation to you to check out our next auction for some possibilities for that perfect espresso machine. No pun intended!  Take a look at the picture above. This beauty was in our last auction.  Depending on your needs and means, you can probably find something that suits you; regardless, these machines are a serious endeavor and make for an impressive, tasty, high-octane experience. At any rate, now that you are in the know about coffee technology, let’s get to making your dining guests extremely happy.

Texas Restaurant Equipment offers a wide variety of quality, new and used restaurant equipment, kitchen supplies, furniture and decor for your business or institution. We invite you to contact us here, call us right now. A qualified staff member is waiting to take your call right now.

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