Pros: Good espresso and milk steaming, quite inexpensive
Cons: Doesn't quite achieve cafe quality results, somewhat slow, no built-in grinder
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|Pros||Good espresso and milk steaming, quite inexpensive||Great espresso, impressive milk steaming performance, compact design||Great taste, exceptional lattes and cappuccinos, mostly automated milk steaming||Pulls excellent shots, great milk steaming||Easy to use, quick and convenient, good taste, makes brewed coffee also|
|Cons||Doesn't quite achieve cafe quality results, somewhat slow, no built-in grinder||No built-in grinder||No built-in grinder, automated steam wand isn't ideal for microfoam or latte art||Has a learning curve, no pressure gauge to help beginners, no grinder||Uses expensive capsules, only a limited number of espresso flavors available|
|Bottom Line||Offers good taste and overall quality at a far below average price||One of the smallest machines we've found that can achieve cafe-quality results||A top-notch machine that pulls great shots and offers the best mostly-automated milk-steaming we've found||An excellent machine if your familiar with the process of manual brewing, and already have a high-quality grinder||Great if you don't mind paying for convenience and want the ability to make brewed coffee too|
|Rating Categories||Gevi||Breville Bambino||Breville Bambino Plus||Breville Duo Temp Pro||Nespresso Evoluo|
|Ease of Use (30%)|
|Ease of Cleaning (15%)|
|Milk Steaming (15%)|
|Specs||Gevi||Breville Bambino||Breville Bambino Plus||Breville Duo Temp Pro||Nespresso Evoluo|
|Dimensions||13" x 10" x 16"||7.7" x 12.6" x 12.2"||7.7" x 12.6" x 12.2"||15.5" x 13.3" x 17.6"||9" x 12.2" x 12.3"|
|Milk Frother||Steam Wand||Steam Wand||Automatic Steam Wand||Steam Wand||None|
|Water Tank Capacity||42 oz||47 oz||65 oz||61 oz||54 oz|
|Cost per Shot||$0.45||$0.45||$0.47||$0.47||$0.85|
|Lifetime Cost per Shot||$0.50||$0.58||$0.68||$0.64||$0.93|
|Number of Cafe Replacement Shots to Make Up List Price||51||118||198||158||93|
|Number of Cafe Replacement Lattes to Make Up List Price||30||70||118||94||52|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Gevi is one of the few truly budget machines we've tested that actually produces good espresso, making it a great choice for those shopping for a bargain.
Both the straight espresso shots and milk drinks we tasted from the Gevi were significantly better than average but fell just short of true cafe quality.
The espresso we made with this machine had good flavor and a decent bit of crema. In general, the Gevi was able to sufficiently scratch the itch when we were craving espresso. However, the portafilter is slightly small (we maxed out at a 17-gram dose) and the machine isn't capable of the same high pressures as many of the more expensive models on the market. Both of these factors mean the espresso is almost always going to be just a bit weaker than what you'd get in a cafe. If you're a fan of americanos you can probably just add a bit less water and still get a great beverage, but straight shots and milk drinks are going to lack some of that fullness and robustness. Still, this machine far outperforms almost anything else in its price range.
Ease of Use
The user experience of the Gevi is fairly standard for a semi-automatic machine. Learning to grind, tamp, and brew the espresso, as well as steaming milk with the wand, will take a bit of practice for beginners, but no more so than most other semi-automatic machines on the market.
Our major annoyance with the Gevi is its lack of speed. It takes longer to heat up than most other machines. After pulling a shot, it takes a full minute for the boiler to heat up enough to operate the steam wand. This isn't ideal, as your espresso will start to go flat and lose its crema. Then, if you want to make another drink, you either have to wait 12 minutes for the boiler to cool back down to brewing temperature or purge a lot of steam from the wand to cool it down faster. This makes brewing multiple milk drinks in a row feel less than efficient.
Additionally, the instruction manual can be a bit confusing. If you do run into any issues, you'll likely be turning to Google for answers rather than the manual.
Ease of Cleaning
The cleaning process for this machine is fairly standard. The water tray has a helpful indicator to let you know when it's getting full, the steam wand wipes down easily, and the descaling process is relatively hands-off.
The biggest issue we ran into when cleaning the Gevi was the portafilter. It has a tiny plastic piece inside that tends to hang onto grinds and can be slightly awkward to scrub clean. We certainly wouldn't call this a dealbreaker, but it does add an extra step to making every shot.
This machine's steam wand is capable of producing creamy microfoam that results in a very good latte. This is the true test of a steam wand, and this machine certainly impressed in that area.
While this steam wand can make great microfoam, we feel it takes a bit more finesse to get those results than with some other machines. Therefore, beginners may be somewhat disappointed in the milk quality right off the bat. Still, even having the possibility of producing microfoam in this price range is incredibly impressive.
The Gevi provides slightly above-average performance for a far below-average price. This combo, in our opinion, makes it one of the best values on the market. Even considering that you might need to buy an espresso quality grinder separately, this rig is well below the cost of some of the best machines on the market while providing about 75% of the quality. Color us impressed.
Though it can't quite reproduce cafe-quality results, the Gevi provides good espresso and milk steaming at a very low price. Just keep in mind that you'll need a grinder to fully complete your setup.
— Michelle Powell and Max Mutter
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