Breville Bijou Espresso Machine Review


If you need to make high quality espresso at house and you do not thoughts taking the time to be informed, this equipment is one to believe. Small-scale and amusing, Breville’s Bijou Espresso Machine makes a cracking coffee and wonderful frothy milk.

Design & look

  • Stainless metal frame
  • 1.5 litre tank
  • Makes 1-2 espressos at a time

Inside the field, there is a 15-bar pump coffee device, a portafilter, a scoop and tamper, a handbook, and two double wall filter out baskets – a 1-cup and a 2-cup measure.

All the contents of the box

The device itself has a chrome steel frame with a clear 1.5 litre tank on the again. The energy cable is 70cm, so that you don’t wish to position the application immediately in entrance of a plug level. Standing simply over 29cm prime, 20cm large and 28cm deep, it’s a neat equipment that doesn’t take in a lot area in your counter.

The Bijou's water tank

At the entrance, the device has a three-button row – one for energy, one for brew and one for steam – and a dial. Below the portafilter socket, there is a black plastic drip tray with a chrome steel grid quilt, which is simple to take out and change.

Performance and use

  • No pre-set allotting volumes
  • Not tall sufficient for a latte glass
  • Cool-down necessary after steaming milk

After unboxing the device, you can wish to wash the tank and run 400 ml of water throughout the device to scrub it. You can pull out the tank to fill it from the faucet – it slips simply again into position – or use a jug whilst the tank is in situ. 

Rinsing out the Bijou

When you flip the device on, there is a watch for it to warmth up. We discovered that it takes about six mins from an excessively chilly get started. You’ll comprehend it’s in a position when the brew button indicator gentle stops pulsing.

Once you’ve run the cleansing procedure, you’ll make your first espresso.

Choose your filter out basket relying on how a lot espresso you need to make, after which pop it into the portafilter via aligning the basket bump with the portafilter notch – this stuck us out first of all till we re-read the directions.

Use the offered scoop to measure your espresso into the basket, turn the inside track around and tamp the espresso with the opposite finish, ensuring to use drive. Then twist the portafilter into position at the device. There’s a little of a knack to this, and we discovered it to be a little stiff in the beginning.

Put your cup beneath the portafilter and switch the regulate dial to brew; the device will then begin to dispense espresso with cushy puffs of steam. When you could have the specified quantity, simply flip the dial again to standby.

Bijou coffee making

As you can observe from the method described, this isn’t one-button espresso brewing. And until you could have barista coaching, attending to grips with the device can represent a steep finding out curve. We needed to do a good quantity of experimentation. But this implies it is an excellent acquire for espresso hobbyists in search of their first house coffee device.

An moderate coffee shot is 30ml however that is tough to gauge via eye and we wildly over-dispensed the primary few instances. Eventually, we ended up the usage of a pitcher with the proper stage marked at the aspect till we were given a good suggestion of what 30ml seemed like in a cup.

Bijou finished shot of espresso

The want for a tribulation and mistake duration is because of the Bijou’s handbook dispense dial. This Breville style has no pre-set dispense quantity serve as, which means that it isn’t the best device for individuals who need to press a button or two to get their morning brew.

On the plus aspect, the handbook dispense offers you the facility to simply customize espresso power in some way that an automated equipment would possibly not.  

Once we were given our dispense volumes proper, the end result was once spectacular: a Guinness-like coffee with a fantastic crema on best, a really perfect odor, and a deep wealthy style.

You can, then again, most effective make one or two cups at a time, and the Bijou doesn’t have the peak for tall latte glasses. If you need to make 4 espressos, lattes, or cappuccinos, preparation turns into a multistep procedure.

Breville suggests you are making the coffees first after which steam your milk afterwards. The steaming procedure makes the application too scorching to then brew correctly, so you wish to have to devise a bit if you wish to serve a espresso with steamed milk to greater than two other people. 

Alternatively, you’ll free up the warmth throughout the quiet down cycle via urgent the brew button, striking a jug below the steam wand, and turning the dial to steam. It takes about 40 seconds, you flip the dial to standby once more, and the application is then in a position to make any other around of espressos.

When you wish to have to faucet out your espresso grounds, there is a clip to head over the basket so the filter out does not fall out.

Steaming milk

  • Steep finding out curve to get just right effects
  • Steam wand too low to permit a pint of milk to be steamed

Fill your milk jug a couple of 3rd or part complete. As the Bijou is so compact, the steam wand doesn’t have the peak to can help you steam a pint of milk immediately.

You can use any form of chilly milk – rice, almond, oat, coconut – however complete fats milk works easiest. Soy milk is way more difficult to paintings with, as each prime temperatures and the acidity of espresso could make it curdle. 

Press the steam button, insert the wand slightly under the skin of the milk and switch the regulate dial to steam. Then steam your milk to the specified texture and temperature. When you’ve gotten completed, flip the dial to the standby place and wipe down the wand.

This sounds simple, and it’s as soon as what you are doing, however it is any other large finding out curve for newcomers. Our first 3 makes an attempt had been totally garbage: we over-frothed and under-heated, over-heated and under-frothed – at one level, we unintentionally ran the quiet down cycle thru a jug of milk.

So bear in mind, you can want some observe if you’re coming to exploit steaming for the primary time. The Bijou doesn’t spoon-feed you.

But what it does do is provide you with regulate and the chance to experiment and make nice espresso with no need to fork out masses of kilos or surrender much-needed kitchen counter area. It’s a really perfect equipment for a small family.

When we in the end were given it proper the end result was once a easy, velvety cappuccino that rivalled, most likely bettered, a coffee-shop espresso. 

Price and availability

Espresso machines are pricey. Breville has constructed one thing inexpensive and high quality right here via outsourcing a large number of the fine-tuning to its person. The Bijou has an RRP of £199.99 however should you store cannily, you must have the ability to pay money for one for nearer to £150.

It’s lately available from Amazon for £153.35. At this worth, it actually is superb price. 

Bear in thoughts that the Bijou doesn’t grind beans. If you just like the sound of the Bijou however need an in-built grinder, Breville additionally has a device with one: its improbable Barista Max Espresso Coffee device, which we now have additionally reviewed. 

Verdict

This isn’t an equipment for individuals who need a easy method to make coffee within the morning: it isn’t fast and it’s fiddly. Nor would it not go well with huge families with a number of other people desperate to get their espresso speedy.

But we beloved this equipment. We had a large number of amusing tinkering with allotting volumes, milk frothing, and shot-to-milk ratios. We would have favored a Breville-supplied coffee-making information, and perhaps a bit more space beneath the steam wand. 

The Bijou dispensing coffee

If area is at a top class on your family, the Bijou is a compact, budget-friendly method to get high quality espresso.

For extra espresso device choices, take a look at our round-up of the most productive espresso machines we now have examined.

Specs

Breville Bijou Espresso Machine (VCF149): Specs

  • Dimensions: 30 x 21 x 27cm
  • Bar drive: 15 bar
  • Power: 1050 Watt
  • With integral milk frother
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