Espresso Tools to Help You Brew & Enjoy Your Best Cup - Imbibe Magazine Subscribe + Save

Yes, espresso machines can be expensive, and yes, there’s a learning curve involved. But for those people whose days aren’t complete without a morning latte or an after-dinner espresso, investing in a quality, at-home espresso system pays off in the long run. We tapped the equipment pros at Clive Coffee to round up some of the best tools to get you started.

Lelit Victoria Espresso Machine The perfect home espresso machine will vary depending on your needs and budget, but for those just getting started, Clive Coffee recommends the Italian-made Lelit Victoria. “It’s perfect for beginners to start experimenting with espresso at home, since it has a generous amount of temperature control,” says Amanda Craft, content manager and product expert at Clive. This compact, single- boiler machine has a quick warm-up time; sleek, intuitive controls; and a digital temperature setting that allows extra precision. If steamed milk is a must and you want to eliminate any lag time between shot and steam, consider a double- boiler model. $1099,

Baratza Sette 270 Espresso Grinder To unlock flavor in your coffee beans, a quality grinder is non-negotiable, especially for espresso, where a fine, uniform grind is essential. The Baratza Sette 270 proves that high performance doesn’t have to break the bank. Macro and micro grind settings allow for infinite adjustments, conical steel burrs grind quickly and evenly, and superbly accurate single dosing lets you pull the perfect shot in a snap. And with the home barista in mind, the hopper twists off easily to switch between beans, while the burrs can be cleaned without disassembling. $399,

Acaia Lunar Scale “A scale is easily one of the most useful tools for espresso, especially for new home baristas,” says Craft. “When it comes to perfecting good coffee, finding the right ratio of ground coffee to water is going to improve not only repeatability from shot to shot but also the quality of your espresso.” The sleek, rechargeable Acaia Lunar Scale is designed to fit on your espresso machine drip tray, has a variety of auto-modes to time and tare weight as you go, and has a scale readability accurate to 0.1 grams. $225,

Espresso Parts Design 5 Walnut Tamper A simple but essential tool, a tamper does exactly what it says—it tamps down the ground coffee in the portafilter prior to brewing. This crucial step eliminates air pockets to promote full and even saturation of the coffee, resulting in a proper, full-flavored shot. Most espresso machines come with a temporary plastic tamper, so it’s worth investing in a quality tamper for the long haul. This solid option from Espresso Parts’ Design 5 line strikes the bullseye between form and function, with a stainless steel base weighing in at a little less than a pound, and an ergonomic walnut handle. $58,

Eddy Steaming Pitcher Though professional baristas make it look easy, there’s an art to steaming milk, and using a proper vessel is key. To achieve even heating and aeration with a velvety foam, you want a pitcher large enough to create a whirlpool effect, but not too large for your quantity of milk. The stainless steel Eddy Steaming Pitcher by Fellow comes in 12- or 18-ounce sizes, and has a tapered shape to create a more consistent spin. A sharp front crease and fluted spout allow for seamless pouring and control when you’re ready to experiment with latte art. $35,

KINTO OCT Cup & Saucer Enjoy the fruits of your labor in style with designated espresso cups. Japanese brand KINTO brings chic café style home with their minimalist aesthetic and easy-to- use (i.e., dishwasher and microwave safe) porcelain pieces. At 3 ounces, the OCT cup with matching saucer is the perfect size for a single or double shot of espresso, plus a splash of steamed milk, should you so desire. $18.80,

Enjoy This Article?

Sign up for our newsletter and get biweekly recipes and articles delivered to your inbox.

Send this to a friend