Test Kitchen: The Delonghi EC860 Pump Espresso Maker

by Laura on July 21, 2013

in Test Kitchen

De'Lomghi EC860

De’Longhi EC860

Enjoying coffee is a daily ritual for so many of us, and for most of us (80%) we are enjoying that daily ritual at home. (As I write this, I’m enjoying some El Salvador Finca Las Delicias coffee from Water Avenue Coffee)

I love my coffee, and have my own my own ritual of brewing using a Capresso drip coffee maker during the week, and on the weekends, I often make a Chemex brewed coffee.

Unknown-1Sure, there may be the growing trend towards single-serve makers, but I still like the routine, or grinding and brewing my own cup (or pot) of coffee. Recently I had the chance to test out the De’Longhi EC860, and I’ve come to enjoy the ritual of making my own espresso, cappuccino and latte as well. It is a change in my routine, which usually consists of me brewing a full pot of coffee then sitting down at my computer to work – and drink, and drink and drink. At times, I know I drink way too much coffee (Greg’s first question when he wakes is: “Is there any coffee left?”). But now that I’ve had the De’Longhi in my kitchen, I just might be getting my over-indulgent morning coffee in control, and taking the time to savor each cup. (It also allows Greg to prepare his cup whenever he finally makes it out of bed . . . ensuring  it’s hot and to his specifications.)

In the world of single cup coffee makers, I find that there is a simple joy in the hands-on preparation of coffee or espresso, which is why I have been enjoying the De’Longhi. photo-1

As Enrico Maso, senior product manager at De’Longhi says, “Today, convenience is king!” And, I couldn’t agree more. That’s what makes the EC860 so wonderful. It gives me the opportunity to create a ritual of preparing my morning beverage – a ritual that I believe is just as important as drinking it. But,  the EC860 is also designed to provide for professional quality espresso – you know, the kind that your barista can prepare for you.

The easy-to-use interface, and ability to customize beverages makes it even more practical for my coffee-consuming habits. I can choose my favorite drink – one or two cups of espresso or cappuccino, as well as hot water or hot milk. The simple and intuitive system lets me prepare it in a flash. Since I have been using the EC860, I have expanded my repertoire of coffee beverages — with special thanks to the One Touch Cappuccino System (I can enjoy a cappuccino, latte and Italian macchiato with the touch of a button.) Now, my morning cup of choice is the cappuccino. And, in the late afternoon, it’s a straight up double shot of espresso.

This machine is a convenient and cost-effective way to enjoy coffee and espresso at home. The pre-programmed interface gives me several options for brewing, and the ability to easily tinker with my own settings if desired. And, when it comes to steaming and frothing milk, I never have to worry, it is prepared perfectly every time – I don’t need to be a trained barista to get some pretty good milk and froth for my cappuccino. It is brewed directly into the cup – the milk and the espresso. The simplicity of it’s interface makes me content!

The machine also is equipped with illuminated flow stop buttons to choose your favorite drink; adjustable cup height; three filters (for 1 or 2 cups ground coffee and E.S.E. Pods); and many more features.

De’Longhi has a collection of easy to use machines that meet needs of many coffee consumers. For instance, the De’Longhi DCF212T drip coffee maker has frontal access so its easy-to-clean, while the De’Longhi Prima Donna S boasts a self-priming system, meaning it takes care of itself, including its long-term care.

For more information, visit the company website.

Must-Have Features on Home Espresso Machines

Thoughts from Enrico Maso of De’Longhi

  • For the pump espresso machine, look for a machine that has various basket attachments. De’Longhi’s machines come with: a single basket, double, and a basket specifically designed for espresso pods. This will give you the versatility to use your own coffee grounds or use a packaged e.s.e (easy serving espresso) pod when you have less time to spare.
  • For a super automatic espresso machine, a connected milk carafe that will froth your milk automatically. An integrated burr grinder guarantees freshness, and at the price point of a fully automatic machine, this should be expected.
  • Espresso machines are outfitted with thermoblocks or boilers and good machines will have two, so that heat is distributed at the right temperature specifically for milk or coffee.




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