If you’re a coffee drinker that cannot live without your shot of espresso in the morning, then you might dread those spontaneous weekend getaways and camping trips. But how can anyone expect to live without caffeine, even for a single day? Well, fear no more!
The Wacaco Nanopresso promises to deliver fantastic flavor with every pump, all in a pocket-sized package that slips easily into a briefcase or backpack. But, can this be for real?
I got my hands on this impressive device to check out the extraction process and put it through its paces. Keep reading this Wacaco Nanopresso Review to determine if this is the answer to all your outdoor brewing problems.
Recommended: How to Make Coffee Without a Coffee Maker
What’s the big deal about Wacaco?
Wacaco is a startup company based out of Hong Kong and founded by Hugo Cailleton in 2013. Hugo had one simple goal: decent espresso on the go.
Not only did he succeed in making a delicious shot of espresso, but he created a convenient, portable espresso machine with an aesthetic design. As a result, Wacaco now produces several portable espresso makers, pour-over coffee makers, and colorful vacuum insulated mugs.
But is this the handheld espresso maker that’s ‘bean’ missing from your life? Keep reading to find out if the Nanopresso is right for you.
Why choose the Wacaco Nanopresso?
Whether you travel a lot for work or just an occasional camping trip, this lightweight plastic espresso maker delivers consistent flavor wherever you are. But the truth is, this is not an espresso maker meant for daily use.
It is perfectly pocket-sized and includes everything you need to make amazing espresso coffee. Just add water and espresso.
But if you’re looking to add espresso to your daily routine, you might want to check out one of these espresso machines.
Wacaco has won some awards, too! For example, the Nanopresso was listed among the Best Portable Espresso Makers in 2020 by Wired Magazine, and the Picopresso made the list in 2022!
The Nanopresso will make single shots of espresso in a few minutes, with consistent pressure powered by your hands. Take it camping, on weekend business trips, or to your office. It’s quiet, compact, and easy to use.
Let’s take a closer look at this manual espresso maker.
|Dimensions||6.14" x 2.8" x 2.44"|
|Water Capacity||2.7 fl oz|
|Ground Capacity||8 g|
|Max Pressure||261 psi|
Every Wacaco Nanopresso includes a built-in espresso cup, a filter basket, a coffee grounds scooper, and a brush. This scooper and cleaning brush fit right into the water chamber. Every part of the Nanopresso fits together into one handheld portable coffee maker.
When you start craving your caffeine, all you have to do is remove the coffee scoop and brush from the water tank and fill it with boiling water.
Next, place eight grams of coffee grounds in the coffee filter, unlock the piston, and hand pump to achieve up to 18 bars of pressure. After a few minutes of coffee extraction, you’ll have a cup of espresso with a layer of crema.
The Nanopresso also comes with two Wacaco stickers and a one-year warranty card. I registered my Nanopresso in less than a minute; it was that easy.
You might be wondering what the difference is between the Nanopresso and the Wacaco Minipresso GR, and that’s a great question!
The Wacaco Minipresso GR was the original design. It’s larger, heavier, holds less water, and achieves less pressure.
Though both portable machines deliver an espresso shot on the go, the Nanopress is the new and improved model. And it comes with a carrying bag.
I can’t wait to tell you about some of the incredible features this Nanopresso includes.
Some Stand Out Features of this Portable Espresso Machine
Since purchasing this extra-small espresso machine, I have enjoyed sipping a shot of espresso with rich crema every morning.
A sleek, compact design
Without question, the ability to take this pocket-sized coffee pot with you wherever you go is a tremendous benefit. It’s only about the size of a can of soda, and it’s beautiful!
Wacaco did not skimp on the style. It feels solid and sturdy, despite being made of plastic. There are no dangling parts or fragile pieces to worry about breaking off.
But the Nanopresso looks and feels like it was made to climb mountains and sleep out under the stars. Its design summons up images of backpacking through the woods or rafting down a raging river.
This mini-machine is made to move.
Built-in espresso coffee cup
Before I ever tried out Nanopresso, I worried about any device that promised to serve me a shot of espresso in the wilds. Did I hold it over my open mouth while hiking the trails?
Fortunately, Wacaco thought of everything. The Nanopresso includes the perfect espresso coffee cup that easily fits the water reservoir.
So, it doesn’t matter whether you’re sneaking a sip at the office or on the trails. You have everything you need.
The patented pumping system
With a simple twist, the piston on the side of the Nanopresso unlocks for pumping.
Unlike the Wacaco Minipresso GR, which only reaches eight bars of pressure, the Nanopresso forces an impressive 18 bars of pressure against the espresso puck.
And with only the power of your hands! After the Nanopresso is locked and loaded, you pump several times to build atmospheric pressure in the chamber.
Then you pump about once per minute until the hot water has turned into liquid gold and filled your cup of coffee with a tasty shot of espresso complete with beautiful crema.
You get a light workout and a rich coffee.
Coffee basket and scoop
Once again, Wacaco ensures that you have everything you need to make the perfect cup of coffee. Well, except for coffee beans.
This miniature coffee basket holds eight grams of ground coffee. Of course, every coffee snob knows that espresso tastes best when tamped down tightly.
Well, Wacaco thought of that too! The coffee scoop doubles perfectly as a tamper. So after you’ve measured out your portion of ground coffee, you can use the scooper to tamp it down tightly into the coffee puck we all love.
Easy to clean
The only thing that ruins the best-tasting coffee is a mess to clean up afterward. Well, the Wacaco Nanopresso does not disappoint.
After you’re done drinking your delicious coffee, the whole machine comes apart easily and can be rinsed under cold water.
It took me only a few seconds to have it cleaned and dried. Some users recommend waiting a few minutes after extraction to let the puck dry out for easier removal.
Occasionally a deep cleaning might be necessary. In that case, all the components of the portafilter come apart easily.
Accessories for this Portable Espresso Maker
As if this mini-machine wasn’t impressive enough, there are a few accessories that make it even better. But, of course, they don’t come standard.
The NS Adapter
If you’re worried about grinding espresso powder in the woods, then this NS adapter is perfect for you. It uses Nespresso coffee capsules and replaces the portafilter on top.
Simply unscrew the standard portafilter, replace it with the NS Coffee Adapter Accessory, and pop in your favorite coffee capsule. This makes it easy to use on extended trips or outdoor excursions and cuts down on the clean-up.
The Barista Kit Accessory Pack
What’s better than a single, delicious shot of coffee anywhere at all? How about double shots? The Barista kit includes a larger water tank and extra baskets!
Two double espresso filter baskets and a single shot filter basket are included, all with caps so you can pack them ahead of time.
With the more extensive water reservoir and additional filters, you can make yourself a double shot or make extra cups of coffee for your camping friends.
The Nanopresso Case
Did I mention Wacaco thinks of everything? Well, they’ve made a case to cradle your Nanopresso on all of your adventures.
This case contains durable EVA material with a soft interior that protects your mini coffee machine from any scratches or dents.
It even has a built-in attachment loop for a carabiner, making it the perfect outdoor brewing device.
The Elements line comes standard with this protective case and is available in many fun colors and designs. I have the lava red one.
I never like bringing up the negatives, but the truth is: nothing is perfect. Though this Wacaco Nanopresso makes a rich shot of espresso on the go, it has a couple of drawbacks that may change your mind.
It takes a lot of pressure
Of course, you know that this micromachine gets up to 18 bars of pressure, and you have to exert more force for each bar of pressure.
Though this new and improved Nanopresso requires considerably less force than the Wacaco Minipresso GR, it still gives you a workout.
Sometimes water can get stuck inside the chamber, causing the additional force to build up and making the pumping harder. It also might be due to incorrect grind size or too much tamping.
Trying a coarser grind may fix the brewing process.
And because it builds up so much pressure, it’s sometimes hard to open once you’re done. As a result, I find the portafilter will sometimes get stuck. Or maybe I’m just tired from all the pumping.
I found that by the time I finished making my shot, the coffee temp had cooled off considerably. I might get faster with consistent use, but it took me a bit of time. And drinking a lukewarm espresso shot was a little disappointing.
Water left in the reservoir
This may be due to my lack of upper body strength during the brewing process, but the piston would sometimes run out of pressure, and I’d find water still in the water reservoir.
Of course, you want every drop of this caffeinated nectar in your cup.
Once again, if I can speed up my brewing methods, I may avoid this issue altogether.
If you’re looking for a completely portable espresso machine, look no further than the Wacaco Nanopresso. So light and small, it fits easily into a backpack or briefcase but is designed to deliver big, bold flavors and the best-tasting espresso you’ve ever had.
But maybe you don’t want the hassle of manually pumping it yourself. I would recommend checking out the De’Longhi Espresso maker.
Or, if you’re looking for a cheaper coffee option, check out the Aeropress coffee maker. It’s as light and portable as the Nanopresso, but a true coffee aficionado may be disappointed with the flavor.
The bottom line is that the Wacaco Nanopresso consistently delivers balanced flavor with little setup time, cleaning, and maintenance.
And every rich coffee shot comes topped with an impressive crema. I think you’ll agree that it’s the perfect companion for your next camping weekend.
Wacaco Nanopresso Review: Espresso On The Go!
Can't imagine traveling without coffee? Check out our Wacaco Nanopresso Review that might solve all your outdoor brewing problems!
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