Top 7: Best Super Automatic Espresso Machines of 2018
It's hard to beat a finely-crafted espresso or cappuccino from a barista who knows what they're doing. But making regular trips to the local coffee bar takes time, energy, and money. If you've found yourself standing in another long line wishing there was an alternative, you might want to check out the elegance of the super automatic espresso machines.
These high-end, elegant marvels bring the convenience and quality of a professional barista into your home. And you don't have to spend time perfecting your craft because automated coffee machines do the work for you.
Top Rated Super Automatic Espresso Machines
|Super Automatic Model||Dimensions||Grinder||Price|
|19.5″ x 11″ x 18″||Ceramic - Flat|
Jura WE8 Professional
|17.5″ x 11.6″ x 16.5″||Stainless Steel - Conical|
|16.1″ x 11″ x 13.6″||Ceramic - Conical|
|11.0″ x 15.3″ x 14.4″||Stainless Steel - Conical|
Gaggia Velasca Prestige
|17″ x 10.25″ x 13.5″||Ceramic - Flat|
Jura Ena Micro
|17.5″ x 9.1″ x 12.7″||Ceramic - Conical|
Nespresso Lattissima Pro
|10.8″ x 7.6″ x 13″||No Grinder (Nespresso Capsules)|
Why Purchase a Super Automatic Espresso Machine
You appreciate a great espresso, cappuccino, or latte. You crave the intoxicating aroma and smooth, soothing textures of espresso drinks, and you want to be able to enjoy that at home, whenever the craving hits.
The wait for your drink at your favorite coffee bar may be just a few minutes, but they add up, along with the time getting there and returning home. If you don't want to look back on your life and realize that you've spent hours (days?) waiting in line for espresso, then a fully automated system could be the answer.
Of course, you could opt for a manual espresso machine. You'll save some money, but you will also end up doing all the work. Every bit of minutia in the process is up to you, which means you're to blame for sub-par coffee. If the goal is to simplify and speed up your day, this is not the way to go.
Semi-automatic machines are a step in the right direction, but they still require time, focus, and effort. What you're seeking is a true set-it-and-forget-it approach. That's what you get with a super automatic.
Once you've completed some initial setup (which isn't difficult), you're free to live your life and let the machine take care of the work.
They are expensive, but they also save you time, money, and frustration, whether you entertain guests at home or want to keep your colleagues fully caffeinated from the office kitchenette.
How to Choose a Super Automatic Espresso Machine
While you often have to worry about pressure and temperature with manual or semi-automatic coffee makers, most fully automated systems provide consistent results. All of the units in this review will give you a great espresso, but they are still all different from each other. Pay attention to the following details to find the best setup for you.
Almost all super-automatics use reservoirs to have water on hand whenever you are ready to brew. While a 40 oz tank is probably the minimum, volume is not the only issue. You also want to think about accessibility. Depending on where you put the machine, you may have preferences on how you put water into it.
A removable tank comes off easily and can be filled in anywhere, including under the tap. They can also be a bit troublesome and lead to water sloshed everywhere if you're not careful. And they tend to be smaller because they are removable
The other method is the top-filled, built-in tank. These tanks have openings at the top or back of the machines with spouted areas to fill them. They are easily filled with a pitcher, but you have to consider the placement of the machine.
You may not want to put a back-filled tank against a wall or a top-filled tank under a cabinet because it's inconvenient to move the machine every time you need more water.
Along with the reservoir, the size of the entire machine is important. You shouldn't expect to get so many functions in a package the same size as a basic drip coffee maker. But that doesn't mean it has to take up your entire counter or island.
Think about the space you have and where you plan to house your unit. You donít want one that is too tall to fit under the cabinets or one that is too wide for the counter space you plan to put it on. This is a totally personal choice, but be sure it is the one you will be happy with.
Most super automatics come in a black or stainless finish (or some combination of the two). And they tend to fall somewhere on the classic to futuristic spectrum. Think about the decor of your home (or office) when deciding which machine fits you best.
With so many options for how to interact with the machine, you'll want to find a system that works for you.Some use touch-screens, others buttons with displays, and some others knobs or dials.You'll probably get used to whatever interface is used. Don't choose a frustrating interface, though, because you'll likely use it everyday. (That's why you bought it, right?)
This is where super automatics really shine. Consider which features are must-have for you and which would just be nice. Here are few features to think about:
If you just want a hot cup of coffee, you don't really need a fully automated system. But if you like to mix it up with a cappuccino, latte, macchiato, ristretto, or lungo, you need to have your bases covered. So be sure that your favorite drink is possible with the machine you choose.
You should look at your super automatic espresso machine as an investment because it will certainly feel like one. While there are a few options in the under $1000 range, don't be surprised to see plenty above that as well.
When you consider how much equipment you can replace with a super automatic (grinder, frother, etc.) the price starts to make more sense, especially when you remember the convenience and quality.
Best Super Automatic Espresso Machines
Saeco HD8924/47 PicoBaristo Automatic Espresso Machine
The PicaBaristo, produced by Phillips, has a modern appearance, but the backlit buttons and LCD screen give it more of a classic feel than ordinary stainless steel appliances. It is easy to use and set up, and it makes excellent espresso drinks.
With 5 strength and 10 grinder settings for the long-lasting ceramic grinder, this automated coffee machine gives plenty of choices and combinations to work with as you experiment to find your perfect cup.
The best part? Once you have found the strength you prefer, the system remembers your settings and runs it from memory.
The PicaBaristo uses a decent size water tank (61 oz.), which is removable for easy filling. An easy-to-clean drip-tray sits beneath up the adjustable spout, which can brew two shots at once.
Possible drinks include espresso, espresso lungo, ristretto, café crema, and espresso double, as well as having options for hot water and frothed milk alone. The automatic milk frother uses a tube to suck milk from whatever container it is placed in. That means you can use a glass, carafe, or even the milk carton straight from the store.
Maintenance and clean-up are fairly simple.
The drip tray and water reservoir require a weekly cleaning, and the bean hopper should be wiped out upon refilling in order to remove any excess oils and help to keep that next load as fresh and pure as possible. The built-in water filter helps fight scaling, allowing users to make around 5,000 cups before a descaling cycle must be run.
As for size, the dimensions of the PicaBaristo are 19.5″ x 11″ x 18″. It is on the tall side, so be sure you have enough cabinet clearance or a nice open space to keep it.
Overall, this super automatic strikes a good balance of quality, convenience, and value. It's an excellent option for coffee drinkers who want a guaranteed great cup every time.
Jura WE8 Professional Automatic Coffee Machine
The WE8 Professional brings barista quality to the workplace in an elegant, futuristic design. The TFT (thin film transistor) screen with push-button interface makes for an easy-to-brew set-up that is simple to understand and operate.
With its size and limited maintenance, the WE8 Professional is a great fit for an office that requires a lot of caffeine to keep the gears running.
The built-in burr grinder is a conical, stainless steel model with a large, 17.6 oz. bean hopper and a sealed lid. The large capacity means minimal refilling, and the sealed lid keeps your coffee fresh between uses. This coffee capacity is supported by the huge 101 oz. removable water tank, which keeps the brew coming without frequent trips to the tap.
The milk frothing system uses a carafe with a siphoning system that is adjustable to make different consistencies of foam for a variety of drinks and tastes to add to the 8 different strengths of coffee that are available.
An additional 12 programmable drink options provide plenty of choices so that everyone can find their perfect drink without having to fiddle with the settings every day. And Jura's Pulse Extraction Process (aptly named the PEP Brewing system), produces a balanced shot by varying pressure in the brew unit.
For a brewer in the office, you want to minimize headaches.
The WE8 does that with its water system that can tell when a filter is present and alert the user when cleaning is needed. Also, the smart filter cartridges keep descaling times low. The frotherís carafe is removable for easy cleaning, and the milk spout is dishwasher safe.
The WE8 is a medium-sized unit 17.5″ x 11.6″ x 16.5″, so it won't require a renovation to fit in an office break room. But you probably won't be hiding it in your cubicle either. The spouts are height adjustable to accommodate various mug sizes.
If you need quality coffee at work but can't afford to keep a barista on call, the WE8 Professional could fill that void. It also works well at home if you drink as much coffee as a small business by yourself.
Jura 15068 IMPRESSA C65 Automatic Coffee Machine
Clean and modern. That's the general feel of the Jura IMPRESSA C65. Another fine brewer from Jura, this machine has a simple, rotary switch control with a plain-text interface, so it doesn't feel like it's trying to impress by looking like a unit from the future.
The Jura is a great fit for the coffee enthusiast who wants variety. It makes espresso, cappuccino, and other espresso drinks like lattes and macchiatos. The grinder will keep your coffee fresh, but you can also use the bypass to brew ground coffee, which is perfect for the occasional cup of decaf.
The one-switch controls allow you to change settings for four strengths and two programmable temperatures for customizing your cups. The height-adjustable spout accommodates short, traditional espresso cups and taller milk-based drinks without splashing.
The IMPRESSA C65 uses the the same CLEARYL water filter found in many Jura machines, which helps keep your water pure and your system clean.
A 16.1″ x 11″ x 13.6″ frame make it perfect for spaces with overhanging cabinets. This smaller size is accompanied by a 63.6 oz. removable water tank. A 7.1 oz. bean container feeds a multi-level conical grinder.
A professional fine foam frother uses an external carafe to fill it. This requires daily cleaning when used regularly. The entire system needs a full cleaning and descaling every 200 preparations, but the cleaning mode is easy to run.
For coffee drinkers who want the quality of coffee house drinks without wanting to mess around with lots of settings, the IMPRESSA delivers on convenience, putting a lot into a small package.
DeLonghi ESAM3300 Magnifica Super-Automatic Espresso/Coffee Machine
The Magnifica has a classic look, created by its push-button and rotary control panel and single-light interface. You won't get bored with this machine since you can prepare espresso, cappuccino, cafÈ latte, cafÈ mocha, Italian macchiato, espresso lungo, Americano, and caramel macchiato in five different strengths.
And like with many classics, the Magnifica is reliable and practical.
Rather than cram features, bells, and whistles in the unit, DeLonghi has tried to provide a super auto that just works, and works every time. The result is a fully automated coffee maker with a bypass doser that won't break the bank.
An integrated stainless-steel conical burr grinder provides 13 adjustable settings to help you get exactly the flavor you desire. Itís fed by an 8.8 oz. bean container with aroma control to help get the maximum flavor of your beans into your coffee.
The Magnifica also utilizes a patented manual "Cappuccino System" frother, which combines milk and steam into a rich, creamy froth that creates drinks with the texture that you want.
Even though it's compact (11.0″ x 15.3″ x 14.4″) and easy to move, you won't need to worry about it often. The 60 oz. water tank is removable from the front for easy filling and cleaning, as are the drip tray and used coffee container. It also has a decalcification indicator to let you know when to descale your device.
The unit's "Rapid Cappucino System" maintains temperature so you don't have to wait around between brews. And with the bypass doser, you can provide after-dinner drinks for a party and still be ready for a quick morning brew the next day.
Gaggia RI8263/47 Velasca Prestige Espresso Machine
Push a button and watch the magic. That's what we hope for in a super automatic cappuccino maker. And the Gaggia Velasca Prestige comes as close as any to delivering that result.
With a sleek, modern design, the Valasca utilizes a one-touch button LED screen interface to make espresso, espresso lungo, cappuccino, and frothed milk with minimal effort.
Its automatic milk frother has a built-in, removable carafe, which can be stored in the refrigerator when not in use. It also has a button to rinse the circuit after each use for easy cleaning.
For a foamy, rich experience, just push the "cappuccino" or "latte macchiato" button on the right of the machine. It will perfectly froth the milk and transfer it to your mug. The Velasca will then pull just the right shot directly into your mug.
The bean hopper has a 10.6 oz. capacity, which isn't huge. It doesn't seal that well, though, so you wouldn't want to keep a ton of beans in there anyway. The hopper feeds a 10-setting ceramic flat grinder.
There are three temperature settings and five strength settings, making for plenty of options to hone your taste.
Cleaning is easy with the auto rinse, carafe cleaning, and descale cycles. The brew unit is removable for easy cleaning, and the 54-oz. water reservoir is convenient to remove and refill.
At 17″ x 10.25″ x 13.5″, the Velasca should fit easily under most any cabinet, and it won't take up too much space on the counter.
Jura 13626 Ena Micro 1 Automatic Coffee Machine, Micro Black
If space is at a premium and you don't need many frills, you might take a look at Jura's Ena Micro 1. The Ena is an ultra-compact espresso machine, coming in at 17.5″ x 9.1″ x 12.7″.
The simple, black, forward-leaning physique tells you all you need to know. The Ena is all business, and its business is making the perfect espresso.
The touch interface has three cup size settings and two aroma settings for simple, quick choices. By utilizing a multi-level conical grinder fed by a 4.4 oz. aroma sealed bean container, this micro maker creates a fresh, delicious cup every time.
If you're looking for a great cappuccino or latte, the Ena might not be for you. While a milk frother may be added as an accessory, it does not come with the machine. And it won't be as automatic as some of the other machines in the rundown.
For quick filling and cleaning, the 36.8 oz. water tank can easily be removed. A water filter with a two-month/2000-oz. life comes with it in order to reduce cleanings and keep out impurities. You will still need to clean the machine about every 180 preparations, though.
Apartment and condo dwellers, or those with a small kitchenette at the office, don't have to forgo quick, convenient espresso thanks to the Jura Ena Micro 1.
De'Longhi America EN750MB Nespresso Lattissima Pro Machine
While it's true that the De'Longhi Nespresso unit is not a traditional super automatic, it's worth including here because it does what we want out of this category: provides quality espresso in a rich foam with convenience and speed.
With a simple yet elegant design, the Nepresso Lattissima utilizes a one-press touch-screen interface to control a user-friendly, functional operation.
By taking advantage of the Nespresso capsule system, this unit takes the guess work out of espresso. Simply pop in a patented aluminum capsule and choose whether you want to brew lungo, espresso, ristretto, cappuccino, latte macchiato, hot water, or warm milk.
No beans. No grinder. Very little fuss.
The 16 oz. milk carafe delivers luscious foam through De'Longhi's "Automatic Cappuccino System," and they designed it so that milk doesn't come in contact with or clog up the rest of the machine. It also detaches easily for storage in the refrigerator or cleaning in the dishwasher.
An automatic rinsing function works well as part of the unitís cleaning process. The removable drip tray and 44 oz. water tank make for easy cleaning as well.
Thanks to the Thermoblock heating system, you'll go from cold to brewing in seconds, and you won't need to wait between cups.
If space is an issue, this machine is hard to ignore. At 10.8″ x 7.6″ x 13″, it is relatively tiny and fits almost anywhere you can wish to brew.
A super automatic espresso machine is not for everyone. For some, the investment is just too steep. For others, they want a more hands-on experience where they can actually practice their barista skills while enjoying great coffee.
But if your goal is fresh, high-quality espresso drinks with the convenience of one-touch operation, it's hard to pass up the magic of the best lattes and cappuccinos in the comfort of your own home.