The Barista Pro, Barista Touch, Barista Express & Barista Express Impress
Sage Espresso Machines with Integrated Grinder
Sage manufactures integrated grinder espresso machines with no assistance in addition to the Oracle machines, which are automated in terms of dose and tamp, and the Barista Express Impress, which is aided.
The first machine of its kind was the Sage Barista Express.
It includes an integrated grinder, but there is no automation or assistance, making this a machine for home baristas. It’s a PID machine, as are all Sage coffee machines, and I think it’s a decent choice for a first home barista machine.
It has 18 grind settings (the Barista Express Impress has 26), therefore it doesn’t have as fine adjustment as most stand-alone espresso capable grinders, with most espresso specialist grinders having significantly smaller grind steps or “stepless” adjustment.
However, if you’re content with “ball park dialling in,” the Barista Express is adequate. For example, if you’re content with a shot time of 25-30 seconds, and you’re not going to be too particular if it’s in a window that extends beyond this, you should be fine with this machine.
If you want to nail the extraction, you may find this machine frustrating at times. For example, you may be at 24 seconds, then on the next coarser level, you wind up at 32 seconds, wishing there was a grind step in between. If you don’t mind not being able to dial in precisely, this shouldn’t be a problem.
The quicker “ThermoJet®” thermoblock on the Barista Pro provides this machine a heat up time of just 3 seconds and almost instant steam.
In addition, the Barista Pro features more grind options than the Barista Express (the Barista Pro has 30 grind settings Vs 18 on the express).
This machine contains an LCD screen as well as a shot timer. It does not have a touch screen like the Barista touch, Instead, you control it with the settings dial, which makes it much easier to change brew temperature, adjust shot buttons, and enter cleaning cycles than the Barista Express.
The Sage Barista Touch is the Barista Pro’s touch screen counterpart. It falls somewhere between the two categories of home barista machines and bean-to-cup machines.
Here is the Barista Express in action;
Bambino & Bambino Plus
A small, attractive, and simple to use espresso machine that is ideal for novices.
The Sage Bambino, Sage’s newest addition to its line of coffee makers, is a little, simple-to-use espresso machine that isn’t in the least bit pretentious. It’s neither big, pricey, nor crammed with fancy features. Sage guarantees that it can produce “third wave specialty coffee” and that it is moderately priced and appealing to look at. Sage believes that this modest machine has the potential to transform your kitchen into a one-stop coffee house.
The Bambino and its somewhat larger sibling, the Sage Bambino Plus, may not be immediately distinguishable from one another In fact, they are so similar that even Sage’s own websites in the UK and the US are unable to distinguish between them; at the time of writing, both sites incorrectly state their dimensions, which they very surely do not.
The Bambino is even smaller than the Bambino Plus, at only 16 cm wide, 26 cm tall, and 32 cm deep. It is now around 3 cm slimmer and approximately 5 cm shorter, making it ideal for fitting into even the smallest spaces in small kitchens.
As usual, Sage includes a useful assortment of fundamental accessories as standard. You receive both pressurised (dual wall) and unpressurised (single wall) baskets for single and double shots, along with a 480 ml stainless steel milk bottle, a lightweight plastic tamper, and these items.
The 1.4 litre water tank detaches from the back of the vehicle, or you can simply unscrew the cover and add a jug or bottle of water as needed. A water filter is also included in the package; with typical use, it will last for around three months.
Does it brew good coffee?
The Bambino makes brewing espresso simple, even if you don’t have the time or want to fuss. The nearly instantaneous heat-up times make it simple to adjust the settings, and since the steam wand only needs a few seconds to provide either hot water or steam, making long blacks, flat whites, and cappuccinos is incredibly quick and simple. The Bambino is a surprisingly efficient machine for its size when it comes to brewing several coffees simultaneously.
The pressurised baskets are the ideal option if you’re using pre-ground coffee that isn’t very fresh, like the packages you can find on most grocery shelves. These allow for more consistent outcomes without the hassle and are far more forgiving of coffee freshness and grind size.
You’ll get the best flavourful results from the unpressurised baskets if you’re using nice, fresh coffee beans and a good grinder. To obtain the perfect balance of ground coffee to brewed espresso, you’ll need to adjust the single and double shot buttons, but that’s standard procedure. Alternatively, you can hold down either button and the Bambino will keep pouring until you push the button again.
Sage advises a dosage of between 18g and 22g for the double shot unpressurised baskets; I started with about 19g of ground coffee and aiming for shots around the 38-40ml range, which is a very typical 1:2 ratio. That’s a bit excessive in my opinion; the Bambino didn’t start to perform well until I reduced the dosage to closer to 17 grammes and switched to a slightly coarser grind.
Duo Temp Pro
The Sage Duo Temp Pro is the entry-level espresso machine and is It less expensive than premium models like the Barista Express or Oracle. It’s also intended to be simple to use while still producing cafe-quality espresso.
Design and Appearance
The brushed steel body of the Sage Duo Temp Pro immediately identifies it as a Sage coffee machine. It’s a bit smaller than the company’s larger models (dimensions: 26x30x33cm), but it’s nonetheless sturdy and long-lasting. While some of the components are made of plastic, they are sturdy and have a commercial appearance.
It also looks fantastic. So you won’t feel embarrassed to have it on your kitchen worktop!
The Sage is powered by a 1700W thermocoil heating system and a 15 bar pump. This, in conjunction with the digital PID temperature control, aids in maintaining a steady and exact temperature during extraction. In fact, the PID system is typically available exclusively on much more costly coffee makers, so it’s fantastic that it comes included with the Duo Temp Pro. A micro-foam milk frothing arm, integrated tamper, and 1.8 litre water tank are also included (with built-in scale feature).
The automated heat purging system is an intriguing feature. Using the steam wand raises the internal temperature, which can impact the flavour of the following espresso. To avoid this, the purging mechanism lowers the temperature, ensuring that all following espressos are prepared at the proper temperature. This is a fantastic feature if you intend to make multiple beverages.
A low-pressure pre-infusion mechanism is also used by the Duo Temp Pro. Increasing the pressure gradually during the extraction process helps to extract a more even flavour.
Sage has chosen a straightforward control panel for the Duo Temp Pro. A centre control dial provides three options: standby, espresso, and steam. If you choose steam, there is a separate selector for steam and hot water, so you may create a long black or an Americano using the hot water option.
If you just want a rich espresso with no effort, its simplicity is excellent. However, there is no possibility to automatically alter variables such as water temperature or cup size.
In terms of simplicity, the Sage Duo Temp Pro does not contain a built-in grinder. You’ll need the Barista Express, Barista Express Touch, or Oracle to use this feature. While purchasing a second grinder (we recommend a burr grinder) is not difficult, it adds to the overall cost and is less handy than a true bean-to-cup system.
There is also the option of utilising pre-ground coffee. However, if you desire a fresh flavour and a rich crema, we do not recommend this.
Sage has supplied two non-pressurised and two pressurised baskets in addition to the machine itself. The best option depends on whether you want one or two cups of coffee and if you use pre-ground or freshly ground coffee.
Finally, the portafilter is simple to install and use. However, because it is a 54mm portafilter, accessories and extra filters may be difficult to find.
As previously said, the Sage is a simple machine with few customisation choices. Even the volume of the espresso shot must be regulated manually, which takes considerable practise to master.
One disadvantage of this approach is that there is a tiny lag when turning off the machine. This may result in you dispensing more coffee than you intended – at least until you get the hang of it.
However, because there are two spouts, it is possible to deliver two cups of coffee at the same time. You will, however, need to switch baskets for this.
Despite its limited customisation choices, the Sage Duo Temp Pro delivers great espresso in a surprisingly short amount of time. It has a strong scent and flavour that complements many café espressos.
Of course, the flavour is significantly influenced by the beans used. If you don’t use fresh, high-quality beans, you won’t receive the flavour and crema that this machine is capable of making.
Other Coffee Flavours
While the Duo Temp Pro produces great espresso, it performs poorly with milky coffees.
The frothing arm is intended to provide microfoam textured milk for cappuccinos and lattes. It does a good job of frothing in a short amount of time, but it’s not as smooth or textured as we’d like. It also takes some time to warm up.
The machine is also awkward if you need to make several milky drinks at once, like when you have guests over. This is a regular problem with this type of domestic equipment, therefore we won’t blame the Duo Temp Pro for it.
If you’re looking for perfectly extracted espresso every time, look no further than the Sage Dual Boiler espresso machine.
Two boilers provide the heat for this device. In addition to the instantaneous and forceful steam provided by the dedicated steam boiler, the PID temperature control of the espresso shot boiler is another notable feature. That way, you can steam your milk to cafe standards as you extract your shot at the ideal temperature for maximum flavour.
Characteristics of the Product
Digital temperature control (PID) on the dual stainless steel boilers and heated group head ensures water is always at the ideal temperature (+/- 10C) for optimal flavour extraction with every shot.
Use the proper quantity of ground coffee to create espresso that is consistent and well-balanced every time. The quantity of coffee that can fit inside a 58mm portafilter is approximately 19-22 grammes.
Incorporating Microfoam into Milk Texture:
You can make the micro-foam necessary for latte art with the help of the steam wand, which is powered by a separate boiler and delivers the pressure of commercial machines.
Flat-panel liquid-crystal display:
Simple to programme and equipped with a timer to precisely time the extraction process.
You can customise the amount of espresso you get in your cup by selecting between one shot, two shots, or making a manual adjustment.
In addition, it features a genuine low-pressure pre-infusion, which gradually raises the pressure to softly expand the grinds for an even extraction and a milder flavour.
Temperature, pre-infusion pressure, and brew time can all be set beforehand.
- Dual Pump Pressure. Italian pumps with a pressure of 15 bar make it possible to steam milk and extract espresso at the same time.
- Timer: The espresso shot clock shows shot duration as a benchmark for consistency in the extraction process.
- Triple Heating System: Delivers precise water temperature, dedicated espresso boiler with digital PID control aids in thermal stability, and heated group head with embedded element under PID control upholds thermal stability.
- Function for pre-infusion: Gradually raises water pressure to gradually expand grinds for a consistent extraction.
- Dimensions: 37.3 x 40.5 x 37.7 cm Water tank capacity: 2.5 lt
- Onboard Storage: for cleaning supplies and equipment.
- Additional features include a paddle for activating the steam. Provision for the continuous supply of hot water. Shot Timer. The pressure gauge. controlled by two PIDs. Simple rear access thanks to a drop-down wheel. Big mugs warming rack. Water tank is filled from the front and back.
- Water filter holder and water filter
- Water hardness test strip
- Integrated tamper
- 58mm stainless steel portafilter
- 1 cup and 2 cup single and dual wall filter baskets
- 16 fl.oz (480ml) stainless steel jug
- Cleaning kit
- 58mm razor dosing tool
Pairing Sage’s Dual Boiler coffee maker with a Smart Grinder Pro creates a powerful duo. Two boilers provide the heat for this device. PID temperature control is used for the espresso shot boiler, and a separate, powerful steam boiler provides steam on demand. So that you can steam your milk to café standards as you extract your shot at the ideal temperature for maximum flavour.
Digital temperature control (PID) on the dual stainless steel boilers and the heated group head consistently delivers water at the ideal temperature (+/- 10C) for espresso extraction, ensuring that every cup delivers the fullest possible flavour.
The perfect latté art requires the microfoam texture of commercial equipment, which is delivered by a steam wand driven by a specialist boiler.
There is an LCD screen for simple programming and a timer to keep track of how long the extraction process will take.
Modular Shot Size Adjustment: Customise your espresso dose with the option of a single shot, double shot, or manual adjustment.
The Smart GrinderTM Pro, a dose-controlling grinder, may ground beans for use in a portafilter, an airtight container, a gold-tone filter basket, or a paper filter. That’s up to you to decide.
The Sage Oracle
The Sage Oracle was the first almost fully automated home barista espresso machine, delivering cafe-quality espresso and espresso-based coffees with the ease of a bean to cup machine.
The portafilter must be handled by the user, however this gives the machine a more authentic home barista experience.
The Oracle lets users look and feel like home baristas and enjoy their coffee without learning or employing the expertise required for this sort of machine.
Most bean-to-cup coffee makers lack boilers. Most bean-to-cup machines I’ve seen use thermoblocks or thermocoils, which are on-demand water heaters, not brew boilers.
The Sage Oracle has a steam boiler and an espresso brew boiler. Its temperature stability, which makes superb espresso, is largely due to its dual boiler.
With the Oracle, you can steam milk and make espresso simultaneously like a professional barista, making your coffee faster.
The Oracle’s 45 espresso-range grind options let you to “tune in” unlike most bean-to-cup machines’ 5-10 settings.
Dialing in means adjusting grind size to get the best flavour from your beans.
The oracle handles the most difficult phase of espresso-making. The correct amount of coffee is ground, dosed, and tamped into the portafilter when you put it in the grinding area.
Bean-to-cup machines and milk depend on texture. These machines create “old school” cappuccino with more bubbles.
One-touch bean to cup machines don’t normally make microfoam for silky flat white and “third wave” cappuccino and latte.
The Oracle has a steam wand with a thermostat and digital controls to customise milk texture and temperature. This machine produces milk exactly how you want it and lets you fine-tune the texture for each drink.
The Oracle Touch
The touch screen screen version, dubbed “The Oracle Touch” (what else..), features touch screen controls that allow the user to choose their drink by image and name.
For instance, to order an Americano, one would swipe until the image of an Americano and the word “Americano” appeared, and then tap the image.
You can modify the five factory preset coffees anyway you like, and fill out the remaining eight slots with your own unique blends.
What exactly are the Oracle and Oracle Touch coffee machines?
This is a fair question, as these devices are neither true bean-to-cup coffee makers nor are they authentic espresso machines. Here’s a rundown in case any of those phrases sound unfamiliar:
Espresso makers that use whole beans
When it comes to these, ease of use is the top priority. While they make espresso, they don’t use the standard equipment—a portafilter, filter basket, manual tamping, and so on—to make it.
Bean-to-cup coffee makers, on the other hand, feature a brewing unit. Together with the built-in grinder, this allows for the coffee to be ground, dosed, tamped, the shot to be extracted, and the spent coffee to be disposed of within the machine.
With the touch of a button, the user can refill the water tank and bean hopper, and dispose of spent coffee pucks in the built-in dregs drawer.
The Precision Brewer
Sage coffee machines presently only produce one filter coffee machine, which is the Sage Precision Brewer. If you enjoy filter coffee, you’ll appreciate the precise brewer.
It can brew up to 1.7L of coffee and can be used with your own favourite drip filter, such as a V60 or Kalita, if you prefer that to the precision filter’s default filter device.
You can programme it to turn on and begin brewing when you wake up, making your morning coffee ready for you. It offers six different brewing settings, allowing you to pick the one that brews just how you like it.
It can also brew cold brew and has a PID (which means you have temperature control, which all Sage coffee machines have but many more costly machines don’t). It even identifies when you place a small cup beneath the filter rather than the carafe, and will automatically brew a modest volume.
Nespresso Sage Creatista
Nespresso production differs slightly from Espresso production in terms of grind profile, flow rate, and pressure (quite a bit higher with Nespresso). In addition, Nespresso uses less coffee than Espresso.
As a result, Nespresso “espresso” is more subtle than espresso, often somewhat cooler, and lower in caffeine.
The great thing about Nespresso machines nowadays is that you can get great Nespresso compatible capsules from a variety of suppliers, including UK coffee roasters like Pact Coffee, so you aren’t confined to Nespresso pods. Nespresso has a large selection, but not everyone is a fan of Nespresso or Nespresso pods – and if you aren’t, there are lots of alternatives.
Sage Nespresso Machines
When Sage decided to get involved, there were numerous Nespresso machines on the market, but Sage did not simply build another machine that was compatible with Nespresso.
Sage does not act in this way. Sage (or Breville, as they’re known outside of Europe) is always looking for game-changing products; it’s what they do.
Sage currently sells three Nespresso machines: the Creatista Uno, the Creatista Plus, and the Creatista Pro, all of which, as you can see, are based on the popular Bambino Plus and have the same pro steam wand and automatic milk texturing.
The Creatista Uno is Sage’s most affordable Nespresso machine, yet it still includes numerous incredible features that its more expensive siblings do not, such as a 3 second warm up time, automatic milk texturing, pre-programmed coffees, and programmable water hardness.
The Creatista Plus includes all of the same features as the Uno, but there are more of them.
It has eight milk texturing options and eleven temperature settings, compared to the Uno’s three of each.
In comparison to the cheaper Uno, it boasts a digital colour display control panel and is finished in stainless steel.
The most expensive model, the Creatista Pro, has an entire touch screen control panel, a bigger 2 L water tank, a special hot water spout, and 8 pre-programmed coffees