This machine is simple, and entirey appropriate technology for a good macchiato
Machine runs for years, spare parts (if required - any of them) are easily available, and very easy to fit.
Get a medium coffee to start with (half dark Arabica, half dark Robusta) and see how you go. Robusta beens are cheap, and a bit nasty, but add a very strong, aggressive flavour without much boiling. Getting a dark Arabica coffee, in strong format (eg. long black ) is nirvana, but I've never met a North American coffe shop who can actually serve it. Must have something to do with the bleach-sprayed chicken corpses that go into making bleached-flesh mc Chicken Nuggets.
Best classic machine....
You really can't go past this machine. It works for all the usual reasons, so I wont waste time speaking them here. It's more on the 'professional' side to operate, rather than the idiot-whinger-who-does-not-get-technology user. You need to ignore this latter group.
Durable, affordable espresso machine
I have a 2004 Gaggia classic and with the right maintenance routine it will last forever. Parts are relatively cheap and easy to replace. The only reason not to get good espresso from this machine are bad coffee bins and grinder.
Purchased in April 2013.
Acquiring this machine has changed our coffee drinking habits and was well worth buying.
Once you get the hang of loading the coffee in and the sequence you need to follow to brew the coffee the results are pretty good.
The aroma in the early morning is not quite as good as the real barrista masters but its better than McCafe.
Frothing milk is bit if an art, and we had to find some special coffee cups not to big so they would not fit under the dispenser, not too small so they would overflow, just right.
So two months on its frothed latte for breakfast and not over indulging.
Our coffee consumption has actually decreased.
The washing up is so easy just the milk jug the stand and the brewing container and the cups of course.
When we shopped for cups, branded $50 each op shop $4.
A great starting espresso maker with a few minor setbacks
The Gaggia Classic is a easy machine to use and very forgiving. I have used many different kinds of beans in this machine and as long as the grind of the coffee is right, I am usually satisfied.
It is quite easy to use although it is a little clunky because of its size. I find myself having to negotiate the espresso cup under the portafilter to avoid spilling the coffee. Also the tamper is a little flimsy and is too small for the portafilter (easy fix, just buy a decent tamper). Cleaning isn't an issue.
I have had it for a little over a year and I am quite impressed with this device. I hope to have it for many more years to come.
Have 2, one at home, one at work.
Make excellent coffe, better than you can buy most of the time.
Combine with a good grinder and it’s one of the best things you’ll ever buy
Can’t fault it
Very very very very very good
I love my classic....
Had the machine 12 years. No real learning curve.. once you get the beans and grind of your desire, you'll want all your coffees made from a classic..
Cleaning is easy. Not sure if overflow pipe has been threaded since I purchased mine but it easily pulls out to allow resovoir tank access for cleaning.. Shower head only thing that needs a tool and in 12 years I've taken off twice to clean the holes (I'd advise to do more regularly, lol)..
the water pump has just gone on mine and again this machine shines, with everything inside easily disconnected with replaceable parts.. after a while you realise your in a secret club, only classic owners know the coffee that this machine can produce. Is there a fan club?
Excellent Coffee Every Day
If you love coffee you already know Gaggia and you might know about this machine too. It's the brilliant baby Gaggia and its sits in pride of place in our kitchen. I use it every day and am always interested in trying new roasters. This develops the real power you need to get a proper espresso extraction but you also need to have the touch and skill loading the basket just right, to get top results..I clean it after every coffee to keep it taint free - if you look after your equipment, it will look after you. It is solidly made and I expect to own ity for many years to come
Handy little thing, hard to clean
There are a couple of things about this machine that could be improved.
First up, for the price, it's a handy little thing, and it makes great espresso.
The milk frother is simple to use, although it's rigid, so you can't easily fit a larger milk jug under it (unless you raise the entire machine). If the arm had a flexible component to it, it would be much more useful. This is actually quite annoying.
Getting the water reservoir out to clean is also difficult. There's a metal pipe that runs down in front of it, into the drip tray. Unless I'm missing something, you have to unscrew that pipe to remove and clean the reservoir. I want to clean it often, but that makes it hard.
So, yes, wonderful to have a little coffee machine in the house, and a nice start for people. But the cleaning and milk frother side of things mean that, if I had my time over again, I'd make another choice. I may change in the near future if the tax man is kind to me.
There's not a lot to dislike about a Gaggia Classic. it will make any type of coffee you have the skill to create and it will do it with beautiful extraction.
I only have one negative my steamer leaks spurts so i have to keep a small jug under it. This is very common from what i've read and requires some minor surgery and new parts to fix but even so, it's still making fantastic coffee and giving me milk that has enabled me to dabble in Latte art.
The machine is so good you can get away with cheaper beans if you want. The more educated you become of course the more you'll want to buy good beans and couple the machine with a quality conical burr grinder.
i wouldn't recommend it to a beginner. A beginner should probably buy a cheap version of this type of machine before graduating. it requires that you know and love coffee and will make adjustments and learn. And that you'll maintain, backflush, descale etc on a schedule.
The rewards are worth it for the home Barista. My coffee at home is superior to many if not most cafe's and my Latte art draws oohs and ahhs from friends. Everybody who comes over is waiting for one of my coffees and every person says- beautiful.
They don't make them like this anymore
So easy to use, such a consistently good brew, and over 11 years old second hand. What more can you ask.... I would highly recommend this workhorse, especially if you use a good brand of coffee and don't burn the milk. It is also very portable for taking away with you on weekends.
The extract can be ok but not a reliable machine.
Having worked on a few Gaggias would not recommend these as a reliable machine. Ok at best.
I'm impressed people review them as highly as they are when there are cheaper options out there that can do both steam and coffee extraction at the same time.(breville(not recommended) or sunbeam)
Fantastic machine, great quality
Makes fantastic coffee and is very consistent but requires you to be involved (which I love!). Upgraded the steamer for perfect microfoam and bought a good grinder. It will make several cups in succession for groups, Easy to use and clean, just about perfect! Make sure you clean regularly for best results.
Perfect coffee machine
I am very happy with this machine
I have been using it for seven years and nothing broke so good quality. The panels are made of stainless steel so It is easy to clean and like the name suggest, classic. It will always make a perfect expresso
Overall I would recommend buying this
Fantastic Little Machine.
This is a fantastic little coffee machine, not only is it stylish and cool with a nice chrome finish it makes a fantastic coffee, despite its size it caters to a surprisingly large quantity of people.. I recommend changing the steam wand, which is relatively easy to do, as the standard wand can make the milk a little bubbly.
Basic and great
This is a classic machine and is a favourite amongst the online coffee world. It can be modified with different steam wands, etc and easily cleaned. Parts are available online (local and overseas) and easily found.
I bought this second hand, and it works well. Not great for pumping out coffees for a party though, but great for daily coffee or two.
Easy to use but grinder not so great.
The only downfall is not the machine itself but the grinder. We got it second hand and it is still in good condition. The stainless steel is a bit of a pain to clean but other than that we are still happy with it. Plenty of more coffee beans to try on it in the future.
Great Manual Coffee Machine
This machine has been around for over two decades for a good reason, it is built like a tank! Commercial quality engineering and components in a domestic coffee machine. It is an even better machine if you go to the expense of upgrading the frothing wand. Makes a quality Crema delivered at the ideal temperature.
RIP old girl
We upgraded to this model after our previous one didn't produce good enough coffee for my father-in-law. I cannot fault the quality of the coffee it makes, and since I always have espresso, I hardly noticed if the milk wand worked or not.
We, too, replaced the plastic handle, having banged through a whole lot of coffee shots and cracked it.
We serviced our machine annually at the store we bought it from, which was not the cheapest thing but since we used to own an Italian car, we knew that Italian technology isn't exactly fire and forget, so we were happy to do this.
However, within a month after servicing it, the machine ceased functioning again, so it lies on our countertop, dead and cold. All up, we spent about $600 servicing this and replacing various parts over 5 years, plus a $700 purchase price, so I am not exactly rushing out to add another $100 service onto it a month after doing the last one.
A shame, really; our previous Breville did a decade's service without fault but the Gaggia required the aforementioned TLC.
We bought two of these
After my first Gaggia Classic died due to poor maintenance on my part (never descaled it) I made the silly mistake of buying a Nespresso. Yes, this was handy with the pods and all but the coffee was expensive and lets be real, pod coffee actually tastes awful compare to a freshly ground bean coffee. The Gaggia really makes a great coffee. I now descale this every 6 months and it works like a charm. The pressure that this thing produces is enough to make a fantastically thick and creamy crema. It steams the milk with ease and it is easy to keep clean. It has no automatic features so it is simple, straight forward and robust. No computers, touch screens or buttons. It only has simple on/off switches. I recommend this machine. You'll need to practice a little first, after all, this is a real entry level espresso machine.
Like the other reviews this coffee machine is built like a battleship and uses good quality components thar are readily available should you break something.
It makes great coffee but for me the auto steam wand doesnt give me good milk texture so I replaced it with a Rancillio Silvio wand bought on ebay for $33 and now its perfect.
I also bought a spring loaded tamp and that makes the results predictably good, again worth the investment.
I was lucky to get it at $99 off the retail because it was Coffe Italia's birthday so happy about that. Hopefully this machine will last me for many years like the other owners say.
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