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Mr.Coffee ECM160 Review

 
Mr.Coffee ECM160 4 cup steam espresso machine
Mr.Coffee ECM160 4 cup steam espresso machine
Mr.Coffee ECM160 4 cup steam espresso machine

 
Overview
 

Machine Type:
 
Espresso Type:
 
Capacity: 4 cups
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Appearance
 
 
 
 
 


 
User-friendliness
 
 
 
 
 


 
Value for Money
 
 
 
 
 


 
Taste
 
 
 
 
 


 
Total Score
 
 
 
 
 
4/ 5


 

Product Features


  • Steam driven.
  • 4 cup decanter.
  • Metal boiler.
  • Cup warmer.
  • Steaming wand.
  • Cord storage.


  • Brief Summary

    The Mr. Coffee ECM160 is a steam driven espresso machine which can make up to 4 cups in one go. The neat machine hardly takes up any space on your kitchen counter and it looks quite smart with its stainless steel finish. You can pre-heat your cups on top of the machine while you wait for the pressure to build up. Make great cappuccinos and lattes with steamed milk from the frother.

    Posted April 3, 2013 by

     
    Review
     
     
    T

    he reason I got interested in the Mr.Coffee ECM160 was due to the 4 cup decanter. I like the thought of brewing enough espresso in one go for making a few cappuccinos or lattes. It just makes it so easy when I have friends over.

    The glass decanter has a capacity of 20 oz. and has measuring marks to make it easier to apportion it equally in several cups. You can also brew as little as one cup and straight into your cup of you like. In fact, the machine has a cup warmer on top which warms up the cups while the machine heats up water.

    The machine itself is neat and looks quite nice with its stainless steel finish. It doesn’t take up much space on my kitchen counter and has cord storage underneath for excess cord.

    Mr.Coffee ECM160 4 cup glass decanter

    The espresso shot

    A tip when using this machine is to always check if you have enough water in your tank before you turns it on. If you run out of water during the brewing or frothing process you have to depressurize the machine and start over again. The reason for this is that the water reservoir is pressurized. I have managed to do this a few times already and believe me it is annoying. Be careful when you unscrew the lid (dome on top of the machine) it might still be pressurized and you might get burned by hot steam.

    The portafilter seems a bit flimsy, but it works great. Measuring marks inside the portafilter makes it easy to add appropriate amounts of coffee grinds. The included measuring scoop has a flattened end which is meant to be used as a tamper. Buy a separate steel tamper (49mm) because the scoop is terrible as a tamper.

    If you have had a pump driven espresso machine previously you will be amazed how quiet this Mr.Coffee ECM160 is. Since this machine is steam driven it unfortunately don’t make any crema. The production of crema depends mainly on the pressure during brewing, but also on the freshness and grind of the coffee beans. I get only signs of crema production, often called blonding, on my espresso shots when the beans are fresh. Steam driven espresso machines can’t match the pressure a pump driven can produce hence less crema. So if you mostly drink espresso, I would rather go for a pump driven machine than this Mr.Coffee ECM160.

    Steaming wand

    The steaming wand or frother is located on the right side of the machine. It can’t be moved but it really doesn’t matter since it has a large enough clearance to the counter anyway. I can easily fit a 20oz. pitcher underneath, but I usually use my 12oz. pitcher. It is much easier to use a small pitcher to get the rolling motion to get milk steamed quicker.

    I am quite pleased with the steaming wand and I can make the milk steamed to dry foam easily. The plastic tip is removable and washed in the dishwasher.

    Conclusion

    Mr.Coffee ECM160 is both neat and inexpensive entry level   espresso machine. What I like the most is the ability to make up to 4 cups of espresso at once. Perfect if you want to serve your guests. Unfortunately the espresso shots don’t get any crema on top since it is a steam driven machine. I would rather have bought the De’Longhi EC702 if you mainly drink espressos, but if you enjoy cappuccinos and lattes you should definitely go for this machine.

    Pros

    • Inexpensive.
    • Great steaming wand.
    • Quiet.
    • Cup warmer.

    Cons

    • No crema.
    • Poor tamper.

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