The Gaggia 14101 is fast, reliable, and like most European appliances, delivers great espresso when used properly and cared for. It is durable in its design and operates like a commercial machine, while still looking like part of the furniture in your home.
Who is the machine best designed for?
If you like to drink straight espresso shots, ice lattes, and americanos, you will definitely love this machine. However, our tests showed the steaming wand being a bit of a letdown if not cleaned properly, so if you want to exclusively make lattes and cappuccinos, and you have a habit of not cleaning up after yourself, you should probably look for a different machine.
What features does it have?
Some great features of the Gaggia include a 72-oz water reservoir and a frothing wand for créma, which is the brown foam you get on a really great shot of espresso. The large water reservoir is very convenient – you can put in water that will last you through several espresso shots, rather than having to refill it every time. Be careful to use filtered water, however, since tap water can cause mineral build-up if it sits in the machine for too long.
The frothing wand results in a nice créma for your espresso, but please purchase a high-quality burr grinder as well, so you can grind your espresso beans just before you put them in the machine. You’ll get better espresso if you grind them just beforehand instead of buying pre-ground beans. Also, a good burr grinder will allow you to determine the best grinding settings for the perfect espresso with a great crama.
It’s fast. But does it retain consistent temperature?
The Gaggia is very fast and stable. It takes around 20 seconds to make two espresso shots, and the temperature stability is great (thanks to the brass portafilters and grouphead) so you can make as many espresso shots as the water reservoir will allow without worrying about the temperature. The quick warm-up time is thanks to its high-power 17-1/2-bar pump with a high-voltage boiler.
What sets the Gaggia apart from other espresso machines?
The Gaggia 14101 is great if you want to play the barista at home – you can make great espresso for several people in a short amount of time. The machine comes with a three-way solenoid value that has a rapid pressure release from the grouphead when the pull is completed, so you can prepare shot after shot quickly and efficiently.
Wait. It’s not just for coffee?
Nope. If you have a guest who prefers tea, you’ll be happy with the hot-water dispenser on the Gaggia that’s great for making tea. The machine also has a cup warmer, which can be useful.
How durable is this machine?
It can last for a really long time, maybe ten years, if you maintain it well. Get a great cleaning kit and clean it periodically so you don’t have to worry about mineral build-up. And above all, learn how to use the machine. The instructions in the manual can be vague, so do your research online and learn all you can – then you’ll truly enjoy all the benefits that the machine can offer.
Is it well designed?
Besides its solid performance as an espresso machine, another great thing about the Gaggia is how good it looks! It’s beautiful and classically designed. I love the stainless steel look – it goes great with stainless appliances in the kitchen. It doesn’t look overly complicated like some of the high-tech espresso machines out there – it’s sophisticated and simple but really, really good-looking.
Where can I read more about the Gaggia 14101?
You can read more about the Gaggia 14101 at Amazon. Not only can you read consumer reviews by people who have already purchased the machine, you also have the best chance of finding discounts and special offers, most of which can be sent to you with free shipping.