Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine

Rancilio Espresso Machine SILVIA Review

Before we get to the review, lets state the Silvia is the favorite machine over at Coffee Geek.  Period.  And at this price point – it’s the champ.   Rancilio make high end commercial machines and all that know-how is present and active in this machine.  The Silvia is their only home market product.  It’s earned itself a great reputation for performance and reliability.Rancilio Sylvia

The first thing that hits you about the Sylvia is that the design is clean and functional.  No wasted fancy bells & whistles.  Simple, clear controls.  Simple, strong design.rancilio espresso machine - rancilio silvia

The frame of the machine is iron.  The boiler and group head are made from brass.  This makes it strong with really good heat stability.  This is essential for a decent espresso machine. The steam wand has been newly designed to make milk frothing as simple as possible.  It is easily used with a variety of shapes and sizes of jugs. The large water reservoir fills at the top.  Thanks to this design, it can be filled during use.  For me that’s an important benefit.  Many times I forget to put in enough water, so this is a lifesaver.  Also, there’s a hot water dispenser for tea, hot chocolate or long espresso drinks.

COSTS:
Category price range $500 – $750
This product: $649 at Amazon.com

Product rating:
Amazon review summary: 17 positive (4 or 5). 2 negative (2 or less). 1 neutral (3)
Last 5 reviews: 5 Positive 0 Negative

The Positives

In the main, most on-line reviews about the Rancilio Espresso Machine SILVIA are very good. The build, looks and quality of the machine are admired.  And universally users agree that once you get the hang of using it, it produces a pretty perfect cup of coffee.  The steaming wand is super powerful, and whips up the milk to a creamy foam in a matter of seconds. Of course,  quality  has its price.  But investing in a Sylvia means you should have a machine giving you coffee shop quality coffee for years to come.

Rancilio SylviaThe Negatives

First off, you need to realise that this is a manual machine, not an automatic. If you are not familiar with the art of using this, or a similar machine, then it’s going to be a pretty steep learning curve. Some of the reviews on Coffee Geek are less than complimentary about how difficult the machine is to use,  The folks on Amazon seem less bothered about this. It’s got a few things to watch out for.  For one, you’ll need to purchase a decent tamper as the included one is dreadful.  Also, the water takes a long time to get to temperature. There’s a few cheats available on the internet to get around this though.

THE BOTTOM LINE

As long as you are aware that you’re going to have to spend a little time learning how to use it, then the Rancilio Espresso Machine SILVIA is possibly the best espresso machine on the market in this price range. Sure, it’s not the cheapest, but if you want real decent coffee on a daily basis without having to pay coffee shop prices, then over a few months this machine will more than pay for itself.  Rancilio have recently upgraded many aspects of this home espresso machine, and their experience in the market shows in the finished product.

Product Features and Specifications
• Product dimensions -13.25 x 9.25 x 11.25 inches
• Shipping weight – 30.4 pounds
• 1100 watt power output (European) 800 watt (US)
• 12 oz brass boiler with thermal protection thermostat
• 15 bar heavy duty pump
• Removable water tank with 67 ounce capacity
• Multi directional, articulating steam wand
• Commercial grade filter handle
• Built in cup warmer
• Easy to use controlsRancilio Sylvia
• Espresso pod adaptor available as optional upgrade
• 2 year warranty