For most coffee enthusiasts, the word “espresso” naturally evokes ideas of Italian culture. So it isn’t a huge leap assume the best espresso machine out there is simply the best Italian espresso machine. We are here to show you the best of the best to help you find a top-notch espresso coffee machine for your home, straight from Italy.
At a Glance: Our Top 5 Picks For Best Italian Espresso Machines
Read on to find out a bit more about the top 7 best Italian espresso machines on the market. From the sleek, classic stainless steel profiles to the promise of professional-level concentrates, these brewers have it all. We’re confident that they can make an impression. Plus, we have a handy buyer’s guide to help you choose the best machine for your home.
Quick Summary: Best Italian Espresso Machine
|De'Longhi Super Automatic Espresso Machine
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|Gaggia Brera Espresso Machine With Pannarello Wand
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|Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine With Iron Frame
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|Gaggia Classic Pro Espresso Machine
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|Nuova Simonelli Oscar Espresso Machine
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|Quick Mill Silvano Evo Espresso Machine
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|Bialetti Express Moka Pot
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Why Go for Italian Espresso?
Espresso as we know it is rooted in the Italian tradition. The original espresso machine, patented by Angelo Moriondo, was birthed in 1884 in Turin, Italy. That design was then improved upon in 1901 by Luigi Bezzera in Milano, Italy. The latter machine, though it was designed over a century ago, remains the basic model for modern espresso machines.
Aside from the richness of Italian espresso history, the reason many users opt for an Italian espresso machine is for the build quality. The legacy of Italian espresso machines within Italy motivates a number of companies to continue to produce their products in-house rather than outsourcing them.
Best Italian Espresso Machines
So if buying Italian sounds like the right move for you, take a look at some of our favorite Italian espresso machines. We’ve included 7 machines from some top, trusted Italian brands. They run the gambit from a stovetop Moka pot espresso maker to a super-automatic espresso machine with a built-in burr grinder.
If you need help narrowing your search, skip down to our buying guide to get a better idea of what you should be looking for to fit your lifestyle.
De’Longhi Magnifica ESAM3300
One of the most popular super-automatic espresso machines on the market, the De’Longhi Magnifica, is unsurprisingly sold by a well-known Italian brand. The machine is made in Treviso, Italy.
The ESAM3300 espresso machine features a bean-to-cup system with an 8.8-ounce bean hopper, a 60 oz removable water reservoir, and a used coffee container. It also utilizes De’Longhi’s patented cappuccino system, which can easily prepare lattes and cappuccinos with rich, creamy freshly frothed steamed milk.
Additionally, the Magnifica is easy to use with a rotary and push-button control panel featuring programmable menu settings. You can choose from 5 coffee strengths and 4 cup sizes. Lastly, the 15 bar pressure pump, double boiler system, and cup warmer lend this machine a top-notch, professional feel.
Does the De’Longhi Magnifica sound like it might be the coffee maker for you? Read our full review here.
Gaggia Brera Super-Auto Espresso Machine
The Gaggia Brera of our favorite super-automatic espresso machines for beginners. It is made in Milan, Italy Robecco Sul Naviglio factory along with the rest of the Gaggia line.
This espresso machine is quite user-friendly with simple, straightforward operation and a clean, sleek look. Some of the highlights of this machine include the programmable espresso brewing, LED screen, rapid steam technology, bean-to-cup technology, and water filter compatibility.
The bean-to-cup system includes a built-in ceramic burr grinder that makes easy work of any medium roast coffee beans. Additionally, the removable components make for easy cleaning and maintenance. The Brera comes with a one year warranty.
If you are interested in learning more about the Gaggia Brera, check out our full review here.
Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine
Professional performance in a small package– that’s the Rancilio Silvia espresso machine. For some of the best coffee shop quality coming straight out of Milan, Italy, look no further than this coffee maker.
Featuring a newly updated brass and stainless steel boiler, the Silvia is built to stick around. We particularly like the milk frother on this machine because it is quite flexible and very effective to boot.
Additionally, the notable features of the Silvia include its ergonomic portafilter handle, commercial-grade group head, exceptionally sturdy construction, and a 2-quart water reservoir. Plus, if you are interested in single-serve brewing, there is a pod and capsule adaptor kit available, which is a game-changer for some.
Gaggia Classic Pro
If the Silvia got a “close but no cigar” in your book, you may also want to consider the Gaggia Classic Pro. While the previous classic was made in Romania, the New classic with its updated aluminum is now made in Italy along with the rest of Gaggia’s line.
The original Classic was well-loved, but don’t worry. The update did actually revamp and improve upon some features, including the pump mount, controls, and steam wand.
Beyond the updates, there are a number of features to appreciate about the machine. It has brushed stainless steel housing, a commercial three-way solenoid valve, easy-to-use switch controls, multiple portafilter baskets, and fast heat-up. Overall, this is a great choice for beginners and experienced home baristas alike.
Not sure about whether the Silvia or the Classic pro will suit you better? Check out our full side-by-side review of these two machines here.
Nuova Simonelli Oscar II Semi-Auto Espresso Machine
If you are looking for something that is more commercial-style, you can check out the Simonelli Oscar II semi-automatic espresso machine. Their machines are manufactured in the Nuova Simonelli Factory in the Marche region of Italy.
Originally released in 2008, this machine remains on of Nuova Simonelli’s top-selling espresso machines. This enduring popularity speaks volumes about the lasting impressiveness of the performance of the Oscar II.
The Oscar II features a pre-infusion function, a copper steam heat exchange boiler, touch volumetric programming for single and double shots, and an extra-long articulated steam wand. Just to add the finishing touches, they have also included a professional portafilter and a cup warmer. There are two versions of this machine, one with a direct water line-in another sold as a pour-over model with a water reservoir.
Quick Mill Silvano Evo Semi-Auto Espresso Machine
Next up, if you like the idea of a top-notch semi-automatic espresso machine, then the Silvano Evo from Quick Mill might be the one for you. It is made in Milan, Italy, and the boost in quality definitely shows. Finding a machine with PID and heat exchanger capabilities in this price range is a pretty sweet deal!
Additionally, this Italian espresso machine features a 3-way solenoid valve (to depressurize the group head), two vibratory pumps (for overheating protection), pump pressure gauge, a swivel steam wand, and a three-stage power switch. This machine is also considerably compact by espresso machine standards, measuring 16″x10.5″x13″.
Bialetti Express Moka Pot
Last but not least, we have an option from the complete opposite end of the price spectrum: a Moka Pot. Moka Pots are designed to make espresso-like brews that are strong, rich, and velvety. They are basically the predecessor of the modern espresso machines.
So while this isn’t technically a full-blown espresso machine, it is an espresso maker of sorts. Plus, it is made in Italy. This is the 6-cup model, which brews about 9.2 ounces of extra-strong coffee, perfect for one or two people.
This espresso maker takes less than 5 minutes to brew on your stovetop. It features high-quality polished aluminum in the classic Bialetti octagon shape, a patented safety valve, easy disassembly/clean-up, and a 2-year warranty.
Meet the Brands
Not quite sure which model to go with just yet? Let’s take a look at the brands backing each of these machines, so you can get a more complete picture of what exactly you are investing in.
If you’ve been lurking around the espresso machine scene for any length of time, you’ve probably heard of De’Longhi. This Italian company has been around since 1902, making a whole range of home appliances.
Their espresso machine line-up includes a little something for everybody. These Italian espresso machines range from budget-friendly, pod-compatible brewers to professional-style super and semi-automatic coffee makers.
Also, all De’Longhi machines come with a warranty of up to two years, so you know this company stands behind every single espresso machine they sell.
Interested in seeing more of the De’Longhi line-up? Check out our picks for their best brewer here.
Next up we have Gaggia, another household name for espresso fanatics. This Italian small appliance brand was officially founded in 1947 and is now owned by the Saeco International Group. However, Gaggia’s espresso machine line remains separate from Saeco’s.
Gaggia has been on the espresso machine scene for quite a while. In fact, Achille Gaggia is responsible for patenting the original, modern steamless espresso machine in 1938, effectively changing the espresso machine game by introducing crema.
Their machines are known for being some of the best espresso makers for both entry-level users and experienced pros alike.
If you are looking to bring something with a bit more restaurant-style professional flair into your home, then Rancilio is the brand for you. Roberto Rancilio initially founded the Italian company in 1927, and it entered the North American market in the 1960s.
Their compact commercial-style machines were initially given our as gifts for vendors and business partners but were eventually sold to the public with great success.
Before the Rancilio Silvia, the first machine that Rancilio released was the “La Regina,” which was made with a vertical boiler. After a series of innovations, this machine was able to pave the way for the modern horizontal boiler espresso machine.
If the commercial design is what got your coffee brewing on the last one, Nuova Simonelli’s line may also be of interest to you. A dominating force in both accessible and luxury products (since the absorption of Victoria Arduino), Nuova Simonelli has been a leading brand in commercial-style Italian espresso machines since 1936.
Whether it is situated in a coffee shop or a kitchen counter, a Nuova Simonelli espresso maker can stand the test of time. While most of their line-up is meant for higher-volume commercial use, the Oscar II (included on this list) is specifically designed for humbler operations without compromising on
Looking for a company that takes some serious pride not only in great espresso but also in making their products in-house? Consider buying from Quick Mill. Founded in 1945, the company firm is located in Senago in Northern Italy. They specialize specifically in coffee machines and accessories.
The Quick Mill motto is “Made to last for years,” and these machines certainly live up to that. You’ll be brewing high-quality Italian espresso and coffee drinks for years to come if you can make room in your budget for a Quick Mill espresso machine.
Last but not least we have Bialetti. This Italian brand specializes in a wide range of kitchenalia, from coffee products to cook and bakeware. However, they got their start with Alfonso Bialetti’s revolutionary Moka Express, and their Moka pot line remains one of their most popular product ranges.
If you are looking for something that captures the heart and soul of Italian coffee making, Bialetti is the way to go. Their products can be found in 9 out of every 10 Italian households, so it’s no surprise they have achieved global popularity.
Buyer’s Guide: Things to Consider
One of the first things you should decide on is whether you want a semi or super-automatic espresso machine. A semi-automatic coffee maker will typically allow for more fine-tuning. On the other hand, a super-automatic will likely have more preprogrammed options to choose from and may even have extra features such as a built-in burr grinder.
In general, super-automatic espresso makers tend to be a bit more user-friendly and are best suited for those looking to fit high-quality coffee into a busy lifestyle. They often include grinders to handle your coffee beans and an automatic milk frother; overall, they tend to make the brewing process a bit easier. on the user.
On the other hand, a semi-automatic espresso maker is best for those who prefer to make a moment of their coffee brewing. If you’re looking to slow down your mornings a bit, grind your own beans, experiment with your settings, etc. then semi-automatic Italian espresso machines are the way to go.
For those reasons, semi-automatic brewers tend to be favored by more experienced home baristas. Either way, you will be able to make coffee shop quality espresso in the comfort of your home.
All of the espresso machines (save for the Moka Pot) will brew with at least 9 bars of pressure in order to properly make shots of espresso. However, these espresso makers can handle varying volumes of shot pulling. Some take a few minutes to pull a single or double shot. Others can brew back to back doppios without flinching and steam your milk on the side.
The high-quality Italian build of each espresso machine on this list guarantees that their brews will be exactly what you’re craving. However, beyond the coffee itself, there are a number of other brewing factors to consider. The main ones to note are the automation of milk frothing, the size of the water tank, the angle of the milk frother, and the number of boilers.
Just about every espresso maker on this list is going to require a bit of an investment. Producing a coffee maker in Europe or North America tends to be significantly more expensive for the manufacturer than choosing to outsource production to other countries. However, this in-house production also tends to bring with it better build quality.
In the long run, an espresso machine will pay for itself by saving you the daily trips to the coffee shop. However, that trade-off happens sooner rather than later for some machines. The automatic brewers on this list range from about $450 to over $1000.
If you are more of a casual home barista, either the more affordable Gaggia Pro or Brera might be the best choice for you. On the other hand, if you’ve got some experience under your belt or are looking for something a bit closer to commercial-level performance, it may be worth investing in something like the Oscar II or Silvano Evo.
Now, if you aren’t married to the idea of automation, opting for the Bialetti could potentially save you a pretty penny, and it will last you just as long (if not longer).
So there you have it! Best of the best, the crema on top, these Italian espresso machines are truly some of the best coffee makers out there. And our easy buying guide is here to help you make a decision that works great for your lifestyle and your wallet.
Here is a quick overview of our recommendations:
De’Longhi Magnifica ESAM3300 (Super-Automatic): Looking for something that can handle milk like a pro without you lifting a finger? This is the one for you.
Gaggia Brera (Super-Automatic): Ultra user-friendly bean to cup machine, no stress, no mess, just excellent coffee.
Rancilio Silvia (Semi-Automatic): Massive bang for your buck (and space); large water tank and serious milk frother– this is a great mid-level machine.
Gaggia Classic Pro (Semi-Automatic): A tried and true, semi-automatic; an excellent choice to get you from the beginner stage and keep you satisfied beyond that.
Nuova Simonelli Oscar II (Semi-Automatic): Great choice for people seeking a more café-style professional touch.
Bialetti Express Moka Pot (Stovetop): Perfect for a homier, ultra-classic feel and a great alternative for those with tight budgets.