Best Espresso Machines NZ Buying Guide

Best Espresso Machines NZ Buying Guide

Compare Espresso Machines
Keith Jambora

Posted on 27/02/2024

Finding the right espresso machine in New Zealand can be as complex as the drink itself. There’s a lot of factors to consider like pressure settings, milk frothing capabilities, the size of the machine, grinding techniques and a lot more. This all makes it difficult to discern which espresso machine is right for you.

Don’t panic though, we’re here to help. This guide is designed to help you find the right espresso machine for you. We’ll explain what you should consider when making your purchasing decision and we’ll give you a list of what we think are the best espresso machines NZ.

What you need to know about espresso machines in NZ

Espresso involves forcing hot water through finely-ground coffee beans, resulting in a concentrated shot of coffee. The ideal espresso machine for this process is not just about power; it's about precision. From the pressure of the water to the temperature and the grind of the bean, every aspect must be meticulously controlled to make the perfect espresso.

In New Zealand, you'll find machines boasting pressures from 9 to 15 Bars (known as barometric pressure) – indicating the number of atmospheres of the pressure of water being pushed through the coffee grounds. For example, a Bar of 9 shows the water pressure is nine times Earth's atmospheric pressure at 1 Bar.

The capacity of machines ranges widely, from the compact 0.5-litre models perfect for a small household to the more robust 2-litre machines that can serve a family or an office.

Durability is another crucial aspect, with materials ranging from stainless steel to plastic. Not only does the build affect a machine's longevity, but also the brew's taste. And let's not forget the design – an espresso machine can make your kitchen counter, after all.

In this guide, we'll consider various factors such as boiler type – single or dual-use – and the importance of a built-in grinder versus a separate one. We'll also explore the nuances of manual versus automatic machines. For the at-home barista, a manual machine might offer the allure of hands-on crafting, while those seeking convenience may lean towards an automatic model that delivers a consistent shot at the touch of a button.

What to consider when buying an espresso machine

Here's what you should consider before making your espresso machine purchase:

  • Budget Parameters: Espresso machines come in a wide price range. More expensive models often feature higher-quality materials, greater durability, and advanced technology for a more consistent espresso. However, mid-range machines can also deliver excellent results. Decide on a budget that balances cost with the quality of espresso you desire.
  • Size and Capacity: Consider the machine's size and water tank capacity, especially if kitchen space is at a premium or you entertain often. Capacities can range from under 1 litre for personal use to over 2 litres for frequent use.
  • Pressure and Temperature Control: Look for machines with at least 9 bars of pressure, the standard for an authentic espresso, with some going up to 15 bars. Temperature stability is crucial for extracting the perfect shot.
  • Grinder Integration: A built-in grinder can save space and make the process more convenient, but separate grinders can offer a higher quality grind. Decide which setup best fits your needs and space.
  • Ease of Cleaning: Machines with removable parts are generally easier to clean. Regular cleaning is essential for machine performance and the taste of your coffee.
  • Milk Frothing: If you enjoy milk-based drinks like lattes or cappuccinos, consider a machine with a quality steam wand or an integrated milk frothing system.
  • Programmable Settings: Higher-end machines often feature programmable settings for shot volume, temperature, and strength. These can be particularly useful if you want to personalise your coffee experience.
  • Durability: Look for machines constructed with durable materials like stainless steel rather than plastic. A sturdy build often translates to a longer lifespan.
  • Brand Reputation and Support: Research brands for their reputation in quality and customer service. A good warranty and accessible customer support can be invaluable.

Extra Features: Some machines offer additional features such as cup warmers, water filters, and energy-saving modes. Consider whether these features justify additional costs.

The Best Espresso Machines NZ

1. Breville "the Oracle" Espresso Machine

espresso 1.webp

Price: $2,498

Key Features

  • Quick and Easy Operation: Produces two lattes or cappuccinos in just 90 seconds.
  • Large Capacity: Features a 280g bean hopper and a 2.5L water tank.
  • Precise Extraction: Utilises dual stainless steel boilers and a heated 58mm group head with Digital Temperature Control.
  • Simultaneous Coffee Extraction and Milk Frothing: Independent brew boiler and steam boiler.
  • Conical Burr Grinder: Offers 45 grind settings and direct grinding into the portafilter.

The Breville "the Oracle" Espresso Machine combines automatic and manual espresso-making features, delivering café-quality coffee at home with remarkable ease. It stands out with its ability to produce two lattes or cappuccinos in a rapid 90 seconds, showcasing its efficiency. 

The machine is equipped with a sizable 280g bean hopper and a 2.5 litre water tank, ensuring you can cater to multiple coffee needs without frequent refilling.

A defining feature of the Oracle is its precise extraction process. It employs a dual stainless steel boiler heating system and a heated 58mm group head integrated with Digital Temperature Control (PID), optimising flavours. Furthermore, the independent brew and steam boilers let you simultaneously extract coffee and froth milk.

For coffee enthusiasts who love to experiment, the built-in conical burr grinder is a game changer. It grinds, doses, and tamps up to 22 grams of coffee directly into the portafilter, offering an impressive 45 grind settings to fine-tune your coffee's texture to your liking.

The Breville "the Oracle" Espresso Machine is a superb choice for anyone on the hunt for a high-quality, versatile, and user-friendly espresso machine. Its combination of speed, precision, and customisation makes it a standout choice in the espresso machine market​​.

2. DeLonghi Maestosa Automatic Espresso Machine


Price: $3,799

Key Features

  • Adaptive Grinding Technology: Incorporates two coffee grinders for customising the grind of coffee beans.
  • Two-Bean Containers: Allows storage of two types of coffee beans, selectable via a 5” touchscreen display.
  • LatteCrema System: Electronic froth regulation for perfect proportions in milk-based drinks.
  • Mix Carafe: Over 21 drink recipes, including Italian espresso, cappuccino, and various cold drinks.
  • App-Enabled: Bluetooth connectivity with the Coffee Link App for control and customization.

The DeLonghi Maestosa Automatic Espresso Machine brings café-quality coffee into your home. Its Adaptive Grinding Technology, featuring two coffee grinders, allows for a high level of customisation in coffee preparation. The dual bean containers enhance this by letting you choose between different bean types at the touch of a button.

The LatteCrema System is impressive, ensuring perfectly proportioned milk-based drinks every time. The ability to create over 21 different drinks, from classic espressos to cold lattes, makes it incredibly versatile. App-enabled features add a layer of convenience, allowing for easy adjustments and recipe creations from your smartphone.

The DeLonghi Maestosa is ideal for those who want quality, variety, and the art of coffee making​​.

3. DeLonghi PrimaDonna Soul Fully Automatic Coffee Machine

espresso 3.png

Price: $2,177

Key Features

  • Bean Adapt Technology: Customises settings according to the coffee bean type, ensuring optimal grinding, dosing, and infusion temperature.
  • 500ml LatteCrema System: Allows for the preparation of various milk-based beverages with an ideal texture.
  • Thermoblock System: Maintains optimal coffee extraction temperature between 88°C and 96°C.
  • 500g Bean Hopper: Features a freshness seal and a see-through design for timely refills.
  • 21 Pre-Set Coffee Recipes: Offers a wide range of coffee options including cortado, long black, and brew over ice.

The DeLonghi PrimaDonna Soul Fully Automatic Coffee Machine is all about convenience and customisation in coffee brewing. The innovative Bean Adapt Technology is a great feature, allowing users to tailor the machine's settings to the specific type of coffee bean they use, ensuring a perfect brew every time. The machine's 500ml LatteCrema System is another highlight, which can make milk-based beverages with the ideal texture and temperature, a delight for latte lovers.

Moreover, the Thermoblock System ensures that every cup of coffee is served at the perfect temperature, between 88°C and 96°C. The large 500g bean hopper with a freshness seal is a nice perk, keeping your beans fresh and ready for use. The machine's ability to offer up to 21 pre-set coffee recipes, easily accessible via a user-friendly 4.3-inch touch display, makes it a versatile choice for any coffee enthusiast.

The DeLonghi PrimaDonna Soul is an all-around solution for anyone seeking a high-quality, feature-rich, and user-friendly coffee machine. Its combination of innovative technology, convenience, and variety makes it a fantastic choice for most.

4. Nespresso Breville Vertuo Creatista Espresso Machine - Brushed Stainless Steel

Screenshot 2024-02-27 095323.png

Price: $999​

Key Features

  • Streamlined Coffee Making: Offers an intuitive process for crafting various caffeine drinks like espresso, caffè latte, cappuccino, and more.
  • Delicious Textured Milk: Features an automatic barista steam wand with three texture levels and milk temperature settings.
  • Versatile Functionality: Can brew drinks for 6 different cup sizes, including options for single or double espressos.
  • Intuitive and Quick Start: One-touch precision brewing with quick heating times for coffee and milk.
  • Large Capacity: Equipped with a 2-litre removable water tank and a 0.480L milk jug.

The Nespresso Breville Vertuo Creatista Espresso Machine is an excellent fit for baristas wannabes. This machine stands out for its ability to provide a streamlined coffee-making experience. Its versatility is showcased through the ability to brew for six different cup sizes, catering to all coffee preferences. The automatic barista steam wand is a notable feature, allowing beautifully textured milk creation, essential for various coffee styles.

With its one-touch precision brewing and quick start function, making your coffee of choice is fast and effortless. The large 2-litre tanks for water and milk reduce the need for frequent refills. Design-wise, its brushed stainless steel finish makes for a stylish fit into any kitchen decor.

The Vertuo Creatista offers a perfect blend of style and convenience, making it an excellent choice for anyone looking to elevate their at-home coffee-making experience.

5. Breville the Barista Touch

Screenshot 2024-02-27 095804.png

Price: $1,497

Key Features

  • Intuitive touchscreen display with pre-programmed cafe drinks menu.
  • Automatic microfoam milk texturing.
  • Precise espresso extraction for superior coffee quality.
  • Quick heat-up time, reaching optimum temperature in just 3 seconds.
  • Integrated stainless steel conical burr grinder for fresh coffee grounds on demand.

The Breville Barista Touch brings the heat thanks to its barista-quality performance and intuitive features, and it isn't as pricey as many of the best espresso machines on this list. 

Its touchscreen simplifies the brewing process, offering a variety of pre-set drinks ready for brewing. Moreover, its automatic milk texturing does the legwork to whip up a creamy texture. It's hard to beat its rapid 3-second heat-up time, making it ideal for quick coffee fixes without compromising quality. The integrated grinder ensures freshly ground beans for each cup, enhancing the aroma and flavour of each cup. 

The Barista Touch is a top-tier choice for coffee enthusiasts seeking convenience, speed, and quality.


The best espresso machine NZ: FAQs

1. What size espresso machine is best for home use?

For most home kitchens, a compact espresso machine is ideal. Look for dimensions around 9 inches wide, 12 inches deep, and 11 inches tall (23 cm x 30 cm x 28 cm). This size fits comfortably under most kitchen cabinets.

2. How much should I expect to spend on a quality espresso machine?

Prices vary widely, but expect to spend between $500 to $2,000 for a durable, high-quality machine. More expensive models offer greater customisation and durability.

3. Are manual or automatic espresso machines better?

This depends on your preference. Manual machines offer more control over the brewing process, which is ideal for enthusiasts but requires more skill. Automatic machines are user-friendly and consistent, perfect for beginners or those seeking convenience.

4. What pressure should a good espresso machine have?

A pressure of 9 Bars (130 psi) is generally considered excellent for extracting espresso. However, some high-end machines may offer up to 15 Bars (217 psi) for more extraction options.

5. How important is the boiler type in an espresso machine?

Boiler type affects temperature stability and steam power. Single boilers are more affordable but slower, while dual boilers provide more consistency and speed but are pricier. For a good balance between both, heat exchange boilers are a solid option.

6. What maintenance is required for espresso machines?

Regular cleaning and descaling are essential. Descaling, depending on water hardness, should be done every 2-3 months. Rinse the group head and clean the portafilter and basket on a daily basis.

7. Can I use any coffee beans in an espresso machine?

While you can use any coffee beans, for best results, choose beans labelled as 'espresso' or 'dark roast.' These beans are specifically roasted for espresso brewing.

8. Is it worth buying a machine with a built-in grinder?

A built-in grinder adds convenience and ensures fresh grinding. However, it can limit your options compared to standalone grinders. Consider your space and preference.

9. How long does an espresso machine typically last?

Proper maintenance ensures that a good quality espresso machine lasts 5-10 years. Higher-end models may last longer with regular servicing.

10. What warranty should I look for when buying an espresso machine?

A minimum of a one-year warranty is standard. Some premium models offer longer warranties or extended service plans.

Shopping tips direct to you
Occasionally we will send newsletters including exclusive offers, the best discount codes, top shopping tips and awesome competitions. The PriceMe newsletter will help you discover new products and services, compare prices, browse for products and redeem coupons from a range of service providers and online stores. The PriceMe newsletter gives you everything you need to simplify the shopping experience.
Connect with us