Gaggia Brera Bean To Cup Coffee Machine


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The Gaggia Brera is one of the best low cost bean to cup coffee machines on the market, and is the machine I usually recommend when I’m asked to suggest the best sub £500 bean to cup coffee machine.

It’s up there among my favourites for anyone looking for the best value for money, in terms of the best balance between price and performance, for a simple bean to cup espresso machine with manual milk frothing with the most important features.

Re the important features, where manual frothing bean to cup machines are concerned, for me it’s general ease of use, durability, true double shot , and having some intuitive control over dose and volume.

The Brera ticks all of these boxes, plus the brewing unit is very easy to get hold of and to replace if needs be, and the aftersales support from Gaggia Direct is brilliant, so I really don’t think anyone could go far wrong with the Brera if they’re looking for bean to cup.

Features and Benefits

• 1.2 L water tank
• Panarello steam wand
• Ceramic burr grinder with 5 grind settings
• Automatic pre-infusion
• Bypass chute for pre-ground coffee
• 3 dose options
• Max cup height of 10.5cm
• Stainless steel front panel and metal frame
• Compact size of 33cm wide, 26cm deep, 33cm tall
• Front accessed water tank
• Max internal waste bin of 8 used pucks of coffee

The Gaggia Brera is my favourite bean to cup machine on the market at under £500, all things considered.
It’s a lot of machine for that price tag. It looks and feels like a lot more than the cost, I said that the very first time I used this machine, and it has a lot more going for it than a lot of the similarly priced competition.

The closest competitor in terms of price and popularity are the multiple DeLonghi Magnifica machines, and they’re really good machines in terms of value for money, but there are just a few things that I prefer about the Brera and other Gaggia machines.

Firstly the build quality. The Brera is a solidly built little machine with a stainless steel front, some of the competing options from DeLonghi and others look and feel a bit plasticy by contrast.

Secondly, the Gaggia has really simple dose options, one, two or three beans providing 7, 9 or 11 gram doses (approx., the exact weight will differ depending on the bean and the roast level), and this combined with the simple volume programming means you can easily select your preferred ratio.

With the DeLonghi Magnifica Esam 4200 for example, there’s no real way of knowing what dose you’re selecting, and similar is true with the volume.

A key thing for me about the Brera which makes it (and other Gaggia bean to cup coffee machines) a winner, is the fact it’ll deliver a true double shot, simply by pressing the shot button twice in quick succession.

Some of the Delonghi machines, for example, only increase the dose slightly, so you end up with double the volume but not double the dose, which in many opinions (mine included) isn’t a double shot.

The Brera has a panarello steam wand, what some brands call “turbo” or “auto” milk frothers, which are fine for creating milk froth as long as you’re not bothered about having control over the texture.

If you want decent microfoam texture, though, just remove the panarello and use the pipe as if it were a single-hole-tipped steam wand, it basically works the same, although I believe that the pro steam wand found on some Gaggia bean to cup coffee machines will be an optional retro-fit upgrade on the Brera in the near future.

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