Sage Barista Express and Grinder

Sage Barista Express Coffee Machine

Sage Barista Express Coffee Machine
7.84

Value for Money

7/10

    Feature Range

    9/10

      Ease of Use

      9/10

        Design

        8/10

          Performance

          6/10

            The Good

            • Coffee has good mellow tones with no bitterness and a rich aroma.
            • Instructions are clear with in-depth guidelines for making espresso.
            • Well built
            • Lots of features
            • 2 year guarantee

            The Bad

            • Frothing milk doesn't produce much volume.
            • Steam wand gets very hot so the milk sticks onto it.
            • Quite expensive
            Sage Barista Express Coffee Machine

            Create great tasting espresso – from bean to coffee– in no more than a minute. The Sage Barista Express coffee machine allows you to grind the beans right before extraction, and its interchangeable filters and a large range of automatic or manual operations ensure quality coffee shop-style results quicker than you can drink!

            Dose-Control Grinding –  The integrated conical burr grinder with dose control delivers the perfect amount of coffee on demand, ensuring maximum flavour. Its adjustable grind size and dose let you customise to suit your tastes.

             Find best pricePrecise Espresso Extraction –  Digital temperature control (PID) delivers water at exactly the right temperature, ensuring the finest espresso extraction. The Sage Razor™ dosing tool trims the puck for a perfect dose and extraction

            Micro-foam Milk. The steam wand performs at the highest level which allows you to hand-texture the micro-foam needed to enhance the flavour of the coffee and sculpt latte art.

            Winner of Best New Product—Coffee or Tea Preparation and Serving Equipment (Consumer) —Specialty Coffee Association of America 2013

            • Inbuilt grinder takes you from whole beans to espresso in less than a minute.
            • Automatic hands free dosing delivers a consistent volume of consistently ground coffee into your filter with a single touch.
            • Low pressure pre-infusion gently soaks the coffee, thus allowing it to expand prior to its high pressure extraction for a balanced taste.
            • High pressure steam output for barista quality milk texturing.
            • Separate hot water wand for pre-heating cups or making a long black or an Americano.

            “Almost every ingredient tastes better when it’s fresh and coffee is no exception.”

            The natural oils that give espressos and cappuccinos their rich, creamy flavours start to quickly degrade as soon as the bean is ground. The Sage Barista Express coffee machine not only grinds it fresh straight into the filter for you, it delivers the right amount of coffee too, all at the push of a single button.

            There are 18 grind settings from course to fine for optimal espresso extraction as well as instant hot water for making long black coffees and pre-heating your cups.

            Heston’s Tip: Check the ‘roasted on’ date on the bag and if it doesn’t have one don’t buy it as it’s almost certainly not fresh (your best chance is at your local café,– the one with the queue out the door). Try to buy one small bag at a time so that you can use it all within a few weeks. You won’t believe how much difference freshly roasted beans make.

            Inbuilt Grinder for Speed
            Sage Barista Express Coffee Machine

            A barista will readily tell you that the most important ingredient to deliver an amazing espresso is to use fresh beans and to grind them as close to the time of use as possible. Actually, it’s best to limit the time between grinding and extraction to seconds instead of minutes. That’s why Sage have built a grinder into the Sage Barista Express coffee machine.

             Find best priceThe in-built conical burr grinder allows you to grind only what you need straight into the portafilter. It’s completely adjustable in grind size and dose, so you can tweak to taste. The patented Razor dosing tool trims the puck for reliable extraction, while PID digital temperature control delivers precise water temperature during the extraction.

            With a dedicated hot water outlet, impressive steam pressure and dual and single wall filters, you’ll move from novice to barista in no time at all.

            Sage believe that the only way to design the most innovative and useful kitchen appliances is to understand the food that they help you prepare. What better way to innovate and develop, than to collaborate with one of the world’s most celebrated food thinkers – Heston Blumenthal.

            Maintenance of the Sage Barista Express Coffee Machine

            There’s little in the way of maintenance on this machine, apart from the usual requirement to clean it regularly (there’s a dedicated cleaning filter that accepts cleaning tablets), and descaling it every once in a while. While neither job is tricky, the simple manual explains how to do everything. You also get a pin for cleaning the steaming wand, which you can store with all of your other cleaning equipment in the storage box accessed by pulling out the drip tray at the front.

            Conclusion

             Find best priceThe Sage Barista Express coffee machine is quite a bit more expensive than most single-boiler manual expresso machines, there are two things that help justify the price: it has a built in burr grinder and it gives you a lot more manual control than cheaper machines. The results speak for themselves, with excellent espresso and brilliant textured milk. The grinder’s a little inflexible in that you can’t use it easily with other machines, but if that’s not a concern, this all-in-one package is a great choice. If this machine isn’t quite what you’re looking for, our best coffee machine article will have something that is.

            FAQ

            Does the Sage Barista Express coffee machine have a water tank or do you need to plumb it in to the water supply?

            It has a detachable water tank with an inbuilt charcoal filter, natty carry handle and clever valve to prevent dripping. It hold enough water for about 10-15 cups

            What is the distance between the drip tray and the spout, i.e. how big a mug can you use?

            The distance is about 10.5cm. You could hold the mug at an angle if it is too tall.

            Where is the Sage Barista Express Coffee Machine made?

            Sage is the European front for Breville (Australia).  The machine manufacturing is probably contracted out to China under Breville’s quality control specifications.  The build quality is mostly excellent.

            Does this have a 3 pin plug?

            Yes the UK product ships with a UK plug for a UK power supply!

            Does the Sage by Heston Blumenthal Barista Express Coffee Machine have two boilers for milk frothing?

            No, it’s a single boiler machine, even though it’s impressively fast to reach temperature.  If you want a dual boiler machine, have a look at Heston’s Dual Boiler model in the range.

            Can I use the Sage Barista Express Coffee Machine in a kiosk to make around 100 drinks a day?

            Definately ‘no’! It is brilliant at making 1 – 4 cups over 20 mins or so, but it is not powerful enough for bulk orders. It only has one boiler so this in itself will make for slow processing – no espresso pouring and milk frothing at the same time. But it isn’t designed for commercial use – it is a brilliant home machine and makes the best coffee I have ever tasted but you will have queues out the door if you tried to make to order! Sorry!