If your passion is for straight espressl or cappuccino most days of the week, investment in a professional-quality machine and grinder will be amply rewarded; however, if what you enjoy is an occasional caffe latte, the less costly machines may well meet your needs.

Stove-top makers and relatively inexpensive “cappuccino” machines (which operate using tank pressure rather than a pump or piston) will make a strong coffee, but these machines do not produce enough pressure to brew true espresso, and have limited milk-steaming capabilities.

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