Intense taste, creamy, persistent aroma, unchanged organoleptic characteristics of the coffee: to obtain these results, is it better to use a traditional coffee machine or an automatic one?
If it’s time to buy a coffee machine for your business or home, you must know the differences between the manual and the automatic coffee machine.
Both are valid alternatives, but each of them offers the best performance when used in the most appropriate context.
Before choosing, therefore, you must understand how many coffees you want to prepare daily, how much space you have for your coffee machine, and where you intend to place it.
Each piece of equipment has its pros and cons and, only by knowing these details, you will be able to make the right choice.
Do you have a bar or a cafe?
In this case, it is necessary that you choose the best professional coffee machine, as you will need to prepare many coffees on the same day. And, above all, beyond functionality, the espresso must be memorable so that your customers decide to come back and visit you every day.
If, on the other hand, you think of a coffee machine that is easy to manage, to be placed in an office or in a place where coffee is a special element but not focused on business, the characteristics to be evaluated will be different.
Let’s see what are the pros and cons of the traditional coffee machine and the automatic coffee machine.
The Traditional Coffee Machine
First, let’s give a correct definition of what is meant by a Traditional coffee machine.
Surely you have seen thousands of them, entering the bars, in a restaurant, in the breakfast room of a hotel, or a B&B, the traditional coffee machine is the classic espresso machine used by baristas all over the world.
There are many types, with different designs and with various accessories, but the mechanism of the machine is always the same: the water is heated inside a boiler, passes into the coffee powder, passes through a filter, and reaches the mug.
The operation of the espresso coffee machine is manual.
What does it mean?
That the process must be followed by a person who does not just activate the power button.
To prepare an excellent espresso with the traditional coffee machine it is necessary to pay attention to some steps, necessary to guarantee a drink with a unique flavor.
First, you need to reduce the coffee beans to a powder with a grinder and put them in the filter holder. In this step, you have to exert the right pressure on the coffee and then insert the lever and start the mechanism.
Only after the coffee grounds have been compacted is it possible to start the traditional coffee machine and let the water pass through the coffee.
Remember that the beans must be ground on the spot, otherwise, you risk that the coffee will lose its organoleptic characteristics.
The pressing must then be carried out perfectly since the taste of the coffee is determined by the type of tamping.
In short, even with the best traditional coffee machine, you’ll need to do some practice. But, thanks to this machine, it is possible to manage every stage of coffee preparation.
Let’s see in detail the pros and cons of a traditional coffee machine.
What are the advantages of using a traditional espresso coffee machine?
If you love the flavor of coffee and you want to know what are the advantages of having a traditional coffee machine, we have prepared a small list for you with all the pros of this choice:
- The coffee that is extracted with the traditional coffee machine is of excellent quality, maintains its olfactory characteristics and the taste is dense and full. The important thing is that the barista is experienced and knows how to manage the steps in the best possible way: the grinding of the coffee, the amount of powder, the pressing.
- It allows you to work continuously, without pauses or interruptions. The traditional machine is ideal for preparing a large amount of coffee a day, one after the other.
- The traditional machine is very versatile and can also be used to extract other types of drinks, such as cappuccino, latte macchiato, and tea, depending on the needs or tastes of your customers.
- Espresso machines are designed to make the cleaning process quick and easy. They can usually be cleaned with a mild detergent. While the filter and the filter holder can be disassembled and rinsed in an instant.
- A high-quality coffee machine shows a design studied in detail. The style of traditional coffee machines, therefore, can add value to the aesthetics of your place, adapting to the context perfectly.
- The use of the coffee grinder is an added value, as it indicates that a fresh blend is used at all times. This causes the aroma of the coffee to be more enveloping, making the atmosphere of the place pleasant and welcoming.
The cons of using a traditional espresso machine
As we have already mentioned, the usage of the traditional coffee machine requires experience and practice. After making a certain number of coffees, however, the extraction result will be optimal.
In some cases, however, training can be complex, especially during some steps.
- Grinding of the beans: this step has a decisive influence on the final result. Therefore it is very important to understand which is the ideal texture to have a quality result. A powder that is too fine or, on the contrary, too coarse, can alter the taste of the coffee.
- Pressing, or tamping: this is the pressure exerted on the powder once it is inserted into the filter holder. You have to learn how to dose the strength, as too light pressure makes the drink watery and lacking in character, while too much force makes the coffee burnt and bitter.
- Preparing milk with steam: this is one of the most complicated steps. Entering the bar may seem like a simple and intuitive job, but it is not. Mastering the steam wand, controlling the intensity of the steam, adjusting the angle of the cup are factors that affect the taste and texture of the milk.
- Characteristics of coffee: with the traditional machine, the barista makes the difference. Therefore, depending on who uses the machine, the result can change and the coffees can be very different from each other.
- Espresso machines are complex and are not suitable for sporadic use. So as self-service machines for customers they could prove to be not easy to manage.
- Initially, there may be a waste of coffee, especially by inexperienced operators.
- In some places, where silence must be respected, the coffee grinder could be annoying. This is the case of libraries or congress halls.
Automatic coffee machine
Just select the desired drink on the display and press the power button to have a cup of coffee ready in no time. Automatic coffee machines have a fully automated process, which does not require any experience to have a good drink of standard taste.
They are very practical machines and suitable for anyone, in which the process can start from partially ground beans, pods, or capsules.
The product is exactly what you requested, leaving no room for customization.
What are the benefits of using an automatic coffee machine?
Those who love the practicality and do not have time to devote themselves to the cult of coffee, generally prefer automatic coffee machines.
To use them you don’t need any experience: just press the button and the coffee is ready in an instant.
Let’s see what are the pros of this choice:
- It is not necessary to practice or have any kind of experience. So anyone can take care of the management of the coffee machine, without investing time and resources in staff training.
- The machine can be made available to everyone, employees and/or customers. So everyone is free to prepare their coffee at any time.
- No coffee or water is wasted, as everything is dosed perfectly and thoughtfully.
- The resulting drink has a constant taste. The important thing is that the coffee machine is neat and well cleaned.
- There is no need to spend time completely on making coffee. You can also turn on the machine and devote yourself to another activity.
- The process is very fast and there is no risk that the coffee will lose its characteristics during preparation.
Cons of using an automatic coffee machine
Although managing an automatic coffee machine is very simple, it still requires daily maintenance. It also cannot be used to make a large number of coffees at a time.
Let’s see what are all the cons of this type of coffee machine:
- The multi-product system must be cleaned daily, otherwise, there is the risk that the flavor of the drinks will be altered. For some equipment, cleaning is complicated and requires an expert for maintenance or training.
- Automatic coffee machines are more linear in appearance and have an essential design. Compared to lever coffee machines, they are less characteristic, as they completely lack the typical components of coffee machines for bars. So the atmosphere is not the same and there is the risk of disappointing customers.
- The number of coffees that can be prepared every day is limited because they need more frequent maintenance than the others. They also need to be cleaned daily, the milk must be replaced and the components need to be kept working before starting to work again.
So, what is better? A traditional coffee machine or an automatic one?
The traditional coffee machine must be handled with care. It can be used by a barista or a trained person, able to control the grinding of the coffee beans and the pressing of the powder into the filter holder.
The greater control over the preparation phases allows obtaining a perfect espresso, characterized by the typical creamy texture and intense taste.
Their appearance makes the atmosphere of each room more typical and fascinating. The design of traditional coffee machines adapts to any type of environment, giving that magical context that the customer expects.
To use the traditional machine it is necessary to do some tests to get familiar with its operation. But once you have learned the gestures, everything will become easier and the effort will be rewarded by the taste of coffee.
This machine is very suitable for those who make a lot of coffees since it was designed for high performance and the extraction of a large number of cups.
So it’s perfect for bars, restaurants, hotels, and bed and breakfasts.
Automatic coffee machines are suitable for everyone. They can be easily used, just select the drink and it will make it.
Given the ease of use, there is no need for trained staff. Anyone can make coffee, even while doing any other business. All steps are automated and no specific training is required to use them.
Automatic machines are very suitable for environments such as offices or places open to the public, where everyone can help themselves.
In short, if you are wondering what is better between a traditional coffee machine and an automatic one, the answer is simple: it depends on your needs.
The traditional coffee machine is designed for coffee lovers, for all those who appreciate its aroma, organoleptic characteristics, and hints on the palate.
The original espresso is precisely the one that flows from lever coffee machines, in which the barista manages the pressing, adjusts the grinding of the beans, and decides the amount of powder to put in the filter holder.
When you order a coffee, you expect to be delighted by the taste, to indulge in a moment of pleasure, and savor traditional espresso.
If you think that perfectly made coffee requires a few more moments but that the result is priceless, the manual machine is for you! Discover the models of Pontevecchio lever machines, you will savor the taste of coffee everywhere.