Staying at home has become the thing to do, but if you find you need to run out to your local for coffee, a new machine might be worth checking out.
A good cup of coffee can go a long way to waking you up in the morning, while a bad cup of coffee can merely make you long for a good cup all the same. End up with the latter and you’ll spend every sip asking yourself why you didn’t just go for a better cup more like the kind your local barista might make.
While you can obviously venture out for something from your local cafe, if you’re more in the mood to have it from the kitchen, you might want to look for something that can replicate the coffee shop feeling without leaving the home. There are many machines that can get close, and while we’re partial to the pod machines from Nespresso, if you want beans with personality, you kind of need to go to a proper coffee machine.
A proper manual espresso maker is something that can take some time to use, but the technology is getting better, so much that it’s closer to being a one-touch kind of affair.
DeLonghi has introduced something catered specifically for that this week, launching a manual machine with automatic controls in the La Specialista Prestigio, a combination of the two ideas — manual and automatic — that can make one of three coffee types with one press, but also handle the manual style where you froth and texturise the milk.
Different from the fully automatic machines like the Primadonna, the Prestigio is focused on both the art and science of cuppa making, working like an old school machine, but still needing some manual love.
It comes with eight grinding levels for some BYO beans and a built-in tamping lever to apply pressure to ground beans, as well as a temperature control technology to heat the water between 90 and 96 Celsius dependent on the bean variety used in the machine. Much of the approach here is focused on manual coffee making, complete with a steam wand to create textured milk with micro foam, but if you just want the system to extract your beans and guide you into producing liquid gold crema, there’s the button.
Three buttons, to be exact, with “one touch” recipes sitting behind them, catering for espresso, coffee, and a long black. These are without the milk, but allow you to simply get the beans ground and tamped inside the portafilter, move it over to the group head, and then let the machine do its magic.
That makes it sound a little like a cross between manual and automatic, though it’s a little more manual than your standard Nespresso machine because you’re working with beans, not pods.
However it’s also geared a people looking for a cup more like what their local might produce, and might just inspire you to dabble and experiment, making something as good as your local, as well.
DeLonghi’s La Specialista Prestigio is available now in electronics and appliance stores across Australia, priced at $1149 in both black and silver metal.